qathet Regional District faces additional costs with four bus shelters

BC Transit delivers and installs the facilities

A portion of the financial contribution toward four bus shelters totalling $154,138 in cost will be recommended to the qathet Regional District board of directors.

At the Thursday, May 9, committee of the whole meeting, the committee recommended that the regional board approve a budget amendment to increase the paratransit capital budget for construction of four bus shelters to $154,138. The committee also recommended the board approve a budget amendment to allocate $23,000 from the community works fund toward the paratransit service in 2019 to support the construction of bus shelters at the following locations: downtown Lund, Craig Road south, Black Point North and Lang Bay north.

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According to a staff report, the purpose of the recommendation was to consider allocating $23,000 of community works funds to support the construction of the four bus shelters to cover a budget shortfall from the original budget. Under the revised budget, the regional district contribution would be $50,522, which would cover additional costs from BC Transit and money for base construction and site preparation.

Electoral Area B director Mark Gisborne said the expenditure was a lot of money. He asked for some clarification.

Manager of operational services Patrick Devereaux said when the regional district initially applied for the grant to BC Transit for the bus shelters, it happened several years ago, and at the time the bus shelters were deemed too expensive. He said the program changed and the federal government kicked in money. The grant from BC Transit now covers 80 per cent of the cost of the bus shelters.

Devereaux said when the approval came in, BC Transit also added $1,000 per bus shelter in administrative fees, of which the regional district was not aware. With all additional costs, the total cost to deliver and install the shelters is $8,000 more than originally anticipated.

There was also an oversight on establishing the foundations for the bus shelters, so that added another $15,000.

BC Transit supplies, delivers and installs the shelters.

Gisborne asked if there was any way to have community organizations, such as volunteer groups, construct the shelters, rather than going this route.

“It seems rather expensive and I know there’s a number of different organizations in town that would be interested in constructing bus shelters,” said Gisborne.

Devereaux said the regional district had looked at building its own shelters.

“The cost is quite comparable,” said Devereaux.

The motion carried with Gisborne opposed.

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