(Unifor333)

A new and improved operations facility for handyDART buses has been announced for View Royal.

The new operations and maintenance facility will be funded jointly by the provincial and federal governments, and the Victoria Regional Transit Commission for a total of $32.4 million.

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“It’s great to see the growth in ridership in Greater Victoria, but the region needs more buses and facility space to meet the demand that creates,” said Claire Trevena, B.C. Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, in a statement.

“This new facility will allow BC Transit to provide better handyDART service with a more central location. It’s also an essential step in ensuring the region has an efficient and reliable system for everyone who chooses transit.”

The existing handyDART facility on Glanford Ave will be converted into a operations and maintenance site for conventional BC Transit buses in preparation for expansion to meet greater ridership demands.

A statement shared by Infrastructure Canada on Friday says that handyDART facilitates over 390,000 accessible trips for riders with reduced mobility across Greater Victoria every year.

Once complete, this new View Royal facility will be able to accommodate 110 buses, which double the current fleet in Greater Victoria.

The space will also be the first (LEED) Gold standard BC Transit facility in British Columbia, ensuring reduction in chemical use, energy waste, water waste, air pollution, solid waste, and/or runoff associated with the building and site.

To fund its construction, the Government of Canada is providing $12.6 million, the provincial government is contributing around $12.9 million, while the Victoria Regional Transit Commission is pitching in $6.9 million.