Durham Regional Transit introduces ‘On Demand’ service for people with disabilities

by The Standard | Ocobter 29th, 2020 Podcast

COURTNEY McCLURE,
for The Standard

NORTH DURHAM: Rural areas in Durham Region like Scugog and Uxbridge have been accessing Durham Regional Transit (DRT)’s ‘On Demand’ service since 2017.
According to Christopher Norris, DRT Manager of Customer Experience, the DRT has expanded their operation hours to seven days a week in rural areas of the region. “On Demand service provides significant benefits to customer’s mobility.” He added this would not be possible with a scheduled bus service.
Mr. Norris said the new on demand service provides flexibility when riding with DRT. New trip planning and tighter books have been added to the ‘On-Demand’ service. There was also a launch of a new online ticket system.
DRT’s ‘On Demand’ service offers early start times and runs later into the evening. Your ride can be booked up to 15 minutes in advance from when you want to leave.
“I’d like to encourage residents to give Durham Region Transit On-Demand service a try,” shared Uxbridge’s Mayor, Dave Barton.
According to Mayor Barton, DRT’s new ‘On Demand’ service means seniors can take the bus to complete their daily needs or wants. For example, they can schedule a ride with ‘On Demand’ and go shopping, or to their jobs on Highway 47. “We no longer have to fit our transportation needs around a pre-determined bus schedule or route,” he added.
‘On Demand’ is easy to book and has short wait times for the bus.
Mayor Barton said it is exciting, residents may be able to have fewer cars per household because of the convenience of DRT’s new ‘On Demand’ service.
It may also help residents feel at ease, especially as seniors, knowing they will be able to stay in their homes longer because effective transit has been introduced to the Uxbridge and the surrounding areas.
“On Demand is a huge benefit to the township,” he said.
The ‘On Demand’ bus service is part of DRT’s ‘Rural Review’ results. Although the service would have come to the rural regions of Durham at a later date, DRT saw the Covid-19 situation as an opportunity to put through some of their initiatives. ‘On Demand’ transit to rural areas in Durham Region, through DRT, was one of those initiatives.
This service was brought to the more northern regions of Durham because people were asking for better bus service for people with mobility issues. According to Mr. Norris, the Rural Review study said, ‘On Demand’ service provided flexibility and could be easily extended to the outer rural areas of Durham Region.
For more information about DRT’s on demand service, residents are encouraged to visit their web site, at durhamregiontransit.com.