City of Kelowna staff will be looking into the possibility of having free public transit every Saturday in December.
The idea was proposed by Coun. Luke Stack after approving the annual initiative for free downtown parking every Saturday in December on Monday, Nov. 1. Stack asked if a similar program could be implemented for bus routes heading to the downtown area, which would entice Kelowna residents who don’t have a personal vehicle to come shop.
“This program will entice people to take transit downtown,” said Stack.
Coun. Charlie Hodge proposed that this program should cover the entire community to allow Kelowna residents on other bus routes to take advantage. Coun. Gail Given agreed.
“It is just operationally challenging if this is only limited to downtown routes. If we are implementing this program, we should make it simple and easy,” she said.
City staff said they are interested in exploring this possibility, but noted that transit operates a bit differently. A program like this would need to involve all six regional partners, said a city staff member during the Monday meeting.
In the end, council passed a motion to allow city staff to explore the implications the proposed program might have. A report on this matter is expected to come back to council next year.