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Free transit for youth proposal headed for vote

Youth in Grande Prairie could be riding transit for free if approved by Grande Prairie city council on April 3rd. During the March 27th Public and Protective Services Committee meeting, staff presented a proposal that youth under the age of 16 be able to use transit for free, changing the current bylaw relating to fees, rates, and charges for the city service.

According to the city, last year youth made up 16 per cent of total ridership. Director of Transit Services Steve Harvard says the proposal follows in the footsteps of city council’s strategic priorities for improving the quality of life for its residents.

“I think they looked at this report and decided this would be an excellent way of ensuring that there is opportunities for everybody and that they were equitable for the youth.”

If city council decides to move forward with offering free transit service to youth, Harvard says they will meet with school administrations to find out the best way of moving forward with getting a transit pass into students’ hands.

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“We are hoping, optimistically, before the end of the school year but that is still yet to be determined. A lot of it is again based on logistics and how quickly we can get things in place.”

Back in December, the committee directed administration to look into subsidized bus passes for riders under the age of 16.

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