The Province of B.C., with the support of the Government of Canada, is taking steps to ensure that people who live and work in northern British Columbia continue to have access to inter-city bus services.
BC Transit, as directed by the Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, is conducting a competitive process to extend northern inter-city bus services through to March 31, 2021. The request for proposal (RFP) aims to select one or more qualified transportation providers to operate on the four routes currently serviced by BC Bus North.
"Many people depend on the bus in northern B.C. This is an important step towards creating and sustaining reliable inter-city bus service in the North," said Claire Trevena, B.C.'s Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. "We remain committed to safe, reliable and affordable transportation, so people can get to work or school, access the services they need and have the freedom to travel."
The RFP will remain open on BCBid until Aug. 22, 2019, at 2 p.m. Pacific time. Respondents are asked to state conditions that would lead to the inter-city transportation service to operate without government subsidies. All inquiries from interested parties are to be directed to BC Transit as outlined in the RFP.
The Government of Canada, through Western Economic Diversification, will partner with the Province for the northern inter-city bus service and will deliver up to $10 million to support Western provinces following Greyhound's decision to cease its operations.
"The Government of Canada is delighted to partner with the Province of British Columbia to provide safe transportation options for Canadians in northern B.C. – especially for Indigenous women and girls," said Marc Garneau, federal Minister of Transport. "This inter-city bus service will also provide economic opportunities for northern British Columbians."
The B.C. government launched BC Bus North as a temporary solution on June 4, 2018, just days after Greyhound discontinued the majority of its northern bus routes.
Elsewhere in B.C., private sector transportation providers are already actively servicing the majority of the routes vacated by Greyhound in 2018.