The City of White Rock’s free shuttle began running along the waterfront April 6, with service scheduled to continue until Sept. 30. (City of White Rock image)

White Rock’s unnoticed free shuttle ‘runs empty’

City working with operator of waterfront bus to address advertising needs

A White Rock councillor says he’s concerned money spent on White Rock’s free waterfront shuttle service is going to waste due to lack of signage on the white minibus that started doing runs along Marine Drive last month.

“I don’t think anyone can recognize it, with the comments I’ve been hearing from people,” Coun. Grant Meyer told Peace Arch News Thursday, noting he’s been hearing from residents who have noticed it “go back and forth empty.”

“One fellow rode it and the (driver) said, ‘Oh, you’re my first customer this week…’ It’s a little disappointing, to say the least. We spend all this money…”

The shuttle began operating on April 6 and is scheduled to continue – seven days a week, noon to 8 p.m. – through Sept. 30, to “help people move along the waterfront strip during the revitalization of Memorial Park and construction of the new parkade,” according to the city’s website.

Depending on traffic, it makes about three round-trips between East and West Beach per hour, with stops at Lee and Balsam streets, as well as at the White Rock museum and Bayview Park. It does not offer service outside of Marine Drive.

The initial budget of $100,000 was increased by $11,000 last month “after an RFP process and adding expenses such as signage.”

City communications manager Farnaz Farrokhi said the signage noted in the budget update referred to bus-stop signs that had to be created.

City staff “have also noted that there needs to be more signage on the shuttle bus,” Farrokhi said, adding the operator “may need to use the shuttle in other areas of Metro Vancouver, therefore, we are working with them on additional signage that meets both our needs.”

Meyer said a requirement for “significant signage,” at least eight inches high, should have been part of the RFP. He suggested removable magnetic decals would allow the bus to be used in other areas.

Farrokhi said it is too early to assume that a lack of signage on the bus is impacting the shuttle’s ridership. Based on last year’s trolley numbers, ridership was anticipated to be lower in April and May.

“The numbers in June and July are the ones that will be telling and we’ll be happy to share those with you,” she told PAN by email Thursday.

Efforts are underway to create greater awareness of the service, Farrokhi added.

Marine Drive business owner Tyson Blume agreed more advertising is needed.

Blume contacted PAN Thursday to comment on the issue. He praised the city for the service, but said he wished more people knew about it.

“I know that when I mention it to customers, nobody’s aware of it,” Blume said. “I feel like it’s just under-advertised. Conceptually, it’s wonderful.”

 

Signage on White Rock’s courtesy waterfront shuttle is inadequate, says a city councillor. City officials say efforts are underway to increase awareness of the service. (Contributed photo)

Map of the city’s courtesy shuttle route. (City of White Rock graphic)

Just Posted

Surrey RCMP searching for missing teen

Kishan Gopal, 15, was last seen at 11:30 a.m., Oct. 17, in the 1900-block of King George Boulevard

Surrey RCMP say teenager stabbed after ‘dispute’

Police say suspect and other youth fled the scene before officers arrived, near 147th Street and 83rd Avenue

UPDATE: Delta police called to alleged gunman incident at Delta Rise

Police searched the building for the suspect, but couldn’t find him

Surrey business groups dig in heels on LRT

Mayor-elect Doug McCallum and his coalition aim to cancel LRT in favour of extending SkyTrain

New faces on Surrey council: Who they are and how they got here

The council includes seven of eight candidates who ran with Doug McCallum-led Safe Surrey Coalition

B.C. sailor surprised by humpback whale playing under her boat

Jodi Klahm-Kozicki said the experience was ‘magical’ near Denman Island

Opioid crisis may be shortening British Columbians’ life expectancy: report

Canada among healthiest wealthy countries, but 8,000 overdose deaths since 2016 are causing concern

B.C. cold case helps ‘60 Minutes’ explain genetic genealogy

An arrest in the 1987 double-murder of two people from Victoria was one of three examples highlighted in a segment you can watch here

Delivery of cannabis could be impacted by postal strike

BC Liquor Distribution Branch look at alternative third-party delivery services

Around the BCHL: Chilliwack Chiefs snag spot in CJHL national rankings

Around the BCHL is a look at what’s happening in the BCHL and the junior A world.

Rural regions get priority for B.C. referendum mail-out

Ballot security measures aim to protect against voter fraud

B.C.’s natural gas supply could see 50% dip through winter due to pipeline blast

It’s been two weeks since the Enbridge pipeline ruptured near Prince George on Oct. 9, sparking a large fireball

Mega Millions, Powerball prizes come down to math, long odds

Biggest myth: The advertised $1.6 billion Mega Millions prize and $620 million Powerball prize aren’t quite real

2 Canadians advance to finals at world wrestling championships

Olympic champion Erica Wiebe just missed joining them with a loss 3-1 to three-time world champion Adeline Gray of the United States in the 76-kg event

Most Read