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Viva buses use new Enterprise rapidway today
-- but only for training

Don’t be surprised if you see new Viva buses operating today along the new Enterprise rapidway — the bus-only roadway extending east from Warden Avenue toward Birchmount Road north of Enterprise Boulevard.

You should be surprised if one of the buses stops to pick you up, though: the buses are only appearing on the rapidway while drivers are training — learning where to stop at the new vivastation on the roadway.

Drivers are practicing approaching and stopping at the new Enterprise vivastation and trying the new onboard systems. Training should continue for about four weeks Mondays to Fridays from 8:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m.

The new buses, which Nova Bus makes in Canada, have larger windows, a wider centre aisle, better lighting and an accessibility ramp at the front door instead of the middle. Advanced clean diesel propulsion systems that produce fewer emissions propel the buses. For drivers though, it also has new, unfamiliar on-board systems and controls.

The new vivastation is completely different from a typical transit shelter. It’s a rapid transit station, with heated waiting area, messaging boards and safety and accessibility features. However, since the platform is much higher than a street curb, Viva drivers must practise pulling into the station and review procedures for operating the buses.

The rapidways allow Viva vehicles to bypass congested traffic as they operate in their own lane.

Passengers should continue to board or exit Viva buses at the temporary stops on Enterprise Boulevard until York Region Transit and Viva officially open the road later this spring.

When the rapidway is open, Viva buses operating along the green, pink and purple routes will drop off and pick up passengers at the new vivastation.