RDOS advances transit plan

Plans to expand BC Transit's bus service in the South Okanagan and Similkameen will be brought to the province for approval.

Board members with the regional district voted unanimously to pass the first three readings of the expansion plans on Thursday, which will be moved ahead to the Inspector of Municipalities.

It will likely take three to four months before the province to give its approval. 

BC Transit is eyeing a launch of the route expansion in the fall of 2019, which would see a daily trip to and from Kelowna.

The expansion would service all communities within RDOS boundaries — from Coalmont to Osoyoos and areas in between. 

As it stands, BC Transit runs a route from Princeton to Penticton on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, as well as a route from Osoyoos to Kelowna on Mondays.

Upon provincial approval, the RDOS would seek approval from residents through an alternate approval process.

The new service is currently expected to cost about $259,000. The regional district will cover just under $157,000, with the average cost per household being between $1.33 to $4.11 per year. 

The RDOS' contributions may be lowered if Peachland and West Kelowna contribute to the service costs. The RDOS has requested the municipalities to do so since they would benefit from the expansion.

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