Transit riders from Gatineau hoping to transfer directly onto Ottawa's new Confederation Line once it opens Saturday will have to wait a while longer.
The majority of Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO) buses crossing into Ottawa will continue to stop on Wellington Street instead of proceeding to the new Lyon station one block south on Queen Street, at least for now.
"We don't have a formal date as to when they are going to do their change," John Manconi, Ottawa's general manager of transportation services, told councillors on the city's transportation committee Tuesday.
LRT delays to blame
Manconi said OC Transpo and the STO have been negotiating the transition for more than a year, but failed to arrive at a plan in time for Satuday's LRT launch.
"With our changes and delays they had to adjust accordingly," Manconi said. "They have asked for a lot of notice because it impacts them very significantly."
Manconi said he's meeting again with STO officials this week, and hopes to secure a date for the route changes.
"They are being very cautious," he said.
STO spokesperson Karine Sauvé confirmed no date has been set for the switchover to Lyon station. She said the transit service needed six months notice to prepare its fall schedule, and said the change likely won't happen until next spring.
Sauvé said the STO needs time to test the tweaked routes to ensure a smooth transition for both drivers and passengers.
Starting Saturday, STO passes encoded with the capability to transfer can be used to board the Confederation Line, according to Pat Scrimgeour, OC Transpo's director of transit customer systems and planning.