Bus route will go through Dartmouth subdivision despite residents' complaints

·2 min read
 (Robert Short/CBC - image credit)
(Robert Short/CBC - image credit)

Changes to a Halifax Transit bus route will go ahead despite some last-minute opposition from a local councillor and residents who say a bus doesn't belong in their neighbourhood.

Starting in November, route 55 in Dartmouth will be extended to include stops at Mic Mac Mall, Alderney Landing and the bridge terminal.

A portion of the route along Waverley Road will be discontinued, and the bus will travel through the Craigburn Drive subdivision.

Close to a dozen people who live in the neighbourhood made presentations to Halifax regional council on Wednesday, arguing they were not properly consulted.

They made it clear buses were not welcome on Craigburn Drive because of safety, noise and exhaust concerns.

"We do not want a bus running through our streets. It seems like council and transit are just not listening," said Brett Moxam.

Councillor calls for consultation

Coun. Cathy Deagle-Gammon suggested delaying the changes for a year by adding $50,000 to the proposed budget.

"Then we can consult with the community a little bit better, we can look at other options," said Deagle-Gammon. "That's the best way forward."

The changes were released in 2016 as part of an overall transit plan called Moving Forward Together.

Deagle-Gammon had support from other newly elected councillors who also have concerns about transit changes.

"The outlying areas have to be championed for in a different way," said Coun. Becky Kent.

Coun. Patty Cuttell said council doesn't always get it right the first time.

Motion defeated

But the councillors who have lived through years of bus route changes warned against making one-off amendments to the transit plan.

"We're playing Jenga right now," said Coun. Lisa Blackburn. "If you don't do it right, the whole thing is just going to collapse."

Coun. Waye Mason said council can't make decisions based "on who's making the most noise."

Deagle-Gammon's motion was defeated in a 9-8 vote.