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Simmering Ajax bus feud starts boiling over



On Wednesday, the Toronto Star reported on a long-simmering dispute among some South Ajax residents about bus service along a residential street in their neighbourhood.

The issue highlights a fundamental difference of opinion between people who enjoy the convenience of nearby public transit and those who deplore the noise and fumes that results from buses operating along residential streets. The second group also believe that operating large vehicles like buses reduces traffic safety in their community.

The dispute centers on the routing of Durham Region Transit’s 222 South Audley route. DRT buses only operate along the route during Monday-to-Friday rush hours.

South of Bayly Street East, the buses operate along a figure-eight loop, southward along Shoal Point Road, eastward along Ashbury Boulevard, southward along Hoile Drive and then northward along Audley Road South towards Bayly.

Some of the residents of the southernmost loop — and one resident in particular — are disputing whether the service along Hoile is even necessary, seeing as these streets are extremely narrow. They argue that the bus should only travel along the northern loop, ending their trips at Ashbury and Audley and then proceeding northward. They have requested DRT to reroute the service.

Other residents point out that terminating the route at the northern loop would mean that many of them would have to walk more than 600 meters to transit service and that would exceed DRT’s service standard.

Buses currently make just 15 trips daily along the route.

The Durham Region Transit Executive Committee will discuss the issue at its meeting of Wednesday, September 3.


The Star article generated a lot of comments. You can read the article and subsequent reader commentary here. Most of the 63 comments were in favour of retaining the service along the southern loop.


The Ajax News — Advertiser has also published an article and an editorial on the matter.


David Harrison has been covering this dispute since April in his blog, Durham Transit Review. David frequently travels along the 222 Audley South route, although he does not live in the neighbourhood in dispute. You can read David’s perspective on the issue here.

Two other weblogs that focus on transit issues in Durham Region also comment on the matter. You can read Andy Grant’s (Retired) Bus Driver of Durham here. You can read Karem Allen’s Transit Nightmares here.


You can see a map of the 222 Audley South route here. (.pdf)

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