Grand River Transit (GRT), the public transport operator in Waterloo, Ontario has celebrated the opening of its new Northfield Drive Maintenance Facility, which will support the modernisation and growth of bus services in the region.
The new 305,000-square-foot facility has space for 200 buses, including larger, articulated models. This increased capacity will support GRT’s continued growth in ridership and service frequency, as well as its expansion into more areas in the Waterloo region.
The building will also support GRT’s transition to a zero emission bus fleet and will be home to the new electric buses and charging infrastructure pilot in 2023.
“Transit is at the heart of creating a liveable community for everyone, providing access to employment, recreational opportunities, schools and destinations throughout the region. This investment in our community will help grow sustainable transit in the Region of Waterloo as we plan to increase ridership and expand our network.”
The new building has 22 maintenance bays, two service lanes, two bus wash stations and office space for GRT staff.
As the facility is located in Waterloo, its proximity to the routes will improve operational efficiency, as buses will not have to travel as far to and from the facility.
A total of 118.8 million CAD (77m GBP | 92m USD) was invested in the new facility, 40 percent of which was provided by the Government of Canada, while the Government of Ontario contributed 33 percent and the Region of Waterloo provided 27 percent of the costs.
“The new Northfield Drive Maintenance Facility will support more frequent, efficient and faster transit options for families, businesses and communities in the growing Waterloo Region. Investments in critical transit infrastructure, like the one being announced today, are just one of the many ways our government is working to carry out Premier Ford’s vision to Build Ontario, while creating jobs, stimulating economic growth, and keeping the flow of people, goods and services moving smoothly.”
The facility has several green features, such as bike storage, rainwater harvesting for the bus wash, lots of natural light, a 6,750-square-foot green roof and LED lighting.
Buses will start operating from the Northfield when GRT’s autumn service starts in September.
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