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Edmonton Transit bus routes are changing mid-2021.

On Demand Transit Update
To ensure all Edmontonians can connect to the City’s new bus network next year, Edmonton Transit Service (ETS) has selected Pacific Western Transportation (PWT) and Via to launch Canada’s largest On Demand Transit service. A total of 57 shuttle buses will conveniently and safely connect residents in select neighbourhoods to and from a nearby transit hub. These accessible shuttles do not follow fixed routes and only operate upon request. The On Demand Transit service, which will add a new layer to ETS’ integrated transit network, is set to launch in mid-2021 and will be part of a 2-year pilot project.

Due to the City's focus on the COVID-19 pandemic, we are postponing the launch of the new bus network until mid-2021. This is a significant change for customers, and we want to make sure they are properly prepared and our staff are ready to help them navigate the new routes.

Edmonton’s new bus network will connect you to where you need to go on more direct routes. The benefits of the new network are:

  • More frequent bus service
  • Expanded service into evenings and weekends
  • Straighter routes with more direct service

Edmonton last redesigned its bus network in the late 1990s and our community has changed a lot since then. The new bus network is an important step in modernizing Edmonton’s transit system in preparation for growing our city to two million people.

Project Timelines

Late 2020: Installation of new bus stop signs that provide more information begins.

Early 2021: New schedules and online trip planning available to help you plan your trips before the new routes are launched.

Early 2021: Public outreach to help you get ready for the 1st day of the new routes.

Mid-2021: First day for the new network. City staff available on site to help you learn the new network.

Late summer 2021: Public outreach to help post-secondary students get familiar with the new routes before going back to school.

The New Route Types

The new network features different route types to meet different needs:

  • Frequent routes will have buses that come every 15 minutes or better, 7 days a week at most times of the day and most days of the week
  • Rapid routes, which are express routes, have limited stops that quickly connect suburbs with downtown destinations
  • Crosstown routes will connect key destinations without going through downtown
  • Local routes will connect neighbourhoods to local destinations and other routes
  • Community routes will connect seniors’ residences with nearby services

Interactive Map

The approved version of the map is subject to change based on the status of construction projects and unplanned road closures around the city closer to the bus network launch date in mid-2021. A Day 1 map will be available in winter 2021 and will include known long-term detours due to construction projects including Valley Line Southeast.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some of the most common questions the City has received about the proposed new bus routes and the bus network redesign project.

Are the new bus routes final?

Yes. City Council approved the new bus network on November 26, 2019. The new routes will be reviewed after one to two years to ensure they are working as intended and meeting customers' needs.

When will the new bus network launch?

The new bus network is scheduled to roll out in mid-2021. Bus schedules and online trip planning will be available by winter 2021.

When will the new maps and bus route schedules be ready?

Maps and route schedules, as well as online trip planning, for the new bus routes will be available by winter 2021.

I live on a road that won’t have service in the new network. What is happening to the bus shelter at my stop?

Shelters at bus stops that will no longer have service after the new network is launched will be gradually removed and relocated to active bus stops.

Can I still provide feedback about the new bus routes?

Public engagement for the design of the new bus network ended in December 2018. The What We Heard and Did Report, which summarizes public feedback, can be found on the public engagement page.

City Council approved the new bus network on November 26, 2019. The new routes will be reviewed after 1-2 years to ensure they are working as intended and meeting customers' needs.

I currently have direct bus service to work, school or shopping. Why do I need to transfer with the new routes?

The new bus network is designed to move residents across the city more efficiently. Wait times are anticipated to be shorter when transferring into the frequent network.

How will the new bus network be better?

Almost every bus route is new, and routes are straighter with less overlap. These changes will provide more direct, more frequent and efficient service. Residents in central areas of the city can expect to see an increase in service throughout the day, while those in suburban areas will see an increase in service during peak times for commuters.

What is On Demand Transit?

The On Demand Transit pilot program will be offered in neighbourhoods that are difficult to serve using regular buses, have walking distances greater than 600 metres to the nearest bus stop and where ridership is better served by a smaller vehicle on an on-demand basis. On Demand Transit can also introduce service into newer communities much faster than the introduction of regular bus routes.

How are the new routes planned?

Routes were planned based on the principles in Edmontonians’ Transit Strategy, public feedback and historical data about transit use. Many routes were straightened and some duplicate routes were combined. This increase in efficiency means ETS can provide better service overall across the network through more frequent buses and expanded service on evenings and weekends.

What is ETS' plan for bus service until the Valley Line Southeast opens?

Express buses will travel frequently along a route that closely matches the Valley Line Southeast path and will stop at existing transit centres (Millgate and Mill Woods) until the new transit centres (Davies and a new transit centre at Mill Woods) are open. Routes that serve the new transit centres and LRT stops will be altered slightly until the Valley Line is open.

Background

In 2015, we started talking to Edmontonians about what they wanted in a transit system. A new approach was needed, based on a community conversation about the role of transit in our city. These conversations resulted in the development of the Transit Strategy.

We heard from more than 20,000 Edmontonians. We spoke with all sorts of people - motorists and transit riders, young children and seniors, suburbanites and urban dwellers, indigenous Edmontonians, people with disabilities, and many others.

What we heard from Edmontonians directly informed the development of the Transit Strategy and now the bus network redesign. The elements of the Strategy - Values, Pillars, Guiding Principles, and Actions - guide how we deliver transit service and how we invest in transit over the next 10 years.

In spring 2018, we released the first draft of the new bus network for public feedback, which guided us as we refined the network. As a result of citizen feedback, we made changes to about 20 per cent of the first draft.

In fall 2018, we released the second draft to check in with citizens to make sure we heard them. The final network is very similar to this second draft, with minor changes made to accommodate operational needs.

In 2019, we continued to explore on-demand transit options with citizens as a possible new layer of service in our integrated transit network.

Our What We Heard reports from each phase of public engagement are available for review.

Council Decisions

July 11, 2017
  • Approved beginning work for the Bus Network Redesign project
  • Approved the Transit Strategy that reflects the priorities of Edmontonians and will modernize Edmonton’s transit system over the coming years
November 26, 2019
  • Approved the Bus Network Redesign and the Transit Service Policy

March 11, 2020
  • On Demand Transit service two-year pilot project approved by City Council

April 27, 2020
  • Implementation of the new bus network and On Demand Transit postponed to mid-2021 to focus on the City of Edmonton's response to the COVID-19 pandemic and allow customers enough time to prepare for the changes

For More Information

Bus Network Redesign Project

Online Contact 311 Online
Telephone

In Edmonton: 311
Outside Edmonton: 780-442-5311

TTY 780-944-5555

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