Watch my life unravel...



Top Canadian Blogs - Top Blogs

Local Directory for Ottawa, ON


Moving the bus station?

Mayor Larry wants to move the Voyageur/Greyhound bus station out to the east end, where the train station is. He says it’s because “a transportation hub combining train, buses and the city’s proposed light-rail transit would be good for all parties and would benefit Ottawa residents and visitors.”

This explanation doesn’t make sense to me.

People take either the bus or the train on a single trip, not both, so I don’t see any advantage to having them in the same place. Having “a transportation hub” with all of the modes of transportation located together in the east end makes as much sense as having an “education hub” with all the city’s schools located together in the east end.

When I travel, I usually take the bus because the bus station is more accessible and cheaper to get to than the train station. Those of us who travel by bus tend not to have cars, so keeping the bus station in a central, accessible location makes sense.

In Owl News:

When Phoebe the hummingbird abandoned her nest, I started watching Molly the Barn Owl instead. It was a weird transition from watching a sweet little hummingbird who eats nectar and hovers and lives in a nest the size of a golf ball, to watching a big freaky owl who eats rats and lives in a box lined with regurgitated rabbit fur and keeps a stack of half-eaten carcasses beside her. But Molly has grown on me, and now I think she’s adorable.

I love it when she stands up on her spindly legs and looks around. An owl’s eyes can’t move, so they have to turn their head in order to look around. GC does a hilarious imitation of Molly the Owl.

Molly the Owl’s first owlet hatched a couple of days ago. It’s name is Max and it’s pretty cute with its big floppy head and cute little wings. There are four more eggs, and I think the next one is due to hatch today or tomorrow.

11 comments to Moving the bus station?

  • I adore Molly! I love how Max is all beak right now :-) Also comparatively, barn owls are on the cute little spectrum of owls…there’s a cool eagle cam too.

    I also like that Molly’s mate brings her mice in exchange for recreational sex. LOL!

  • Those of us who travel by bus tend not to have cars, so keeping the bus station in a central, accessible location makes sense.

    I agree, though anything on the Transitway is still pretty easy to reach, even for those of us without cars.

    As for never switching between the train and the bus, I can think of a few times I have done so myself. The train is far more comfortable, but the bus is much more affordable and tends to run more often.

  • Owls, incidentally, are rather wonderful. There was a barn owl shelter in Oxfordshire, and they used to bring the adult birds out when fundraising. It was remarkable to be able to watch them up close and in person.

  • Glad you pointed out the logical squishinesses in Mayor Larry’s transit blue-skying, ma’am.

    A guy who never takes public transit, who has proven indifference to the lives of people who do, and who demonstrably lacks the basic ability to plan his own way out of a sodden piñata with a big white cane, may wish to consider, ummm, not blessing the city with his ideas that area.

    He seems unlikely to gain the expertise to get it right, no matter how many napkin backs he uses to record his brainstorms…

  • Guy

    Whats central anymore? Big city now Kanata, and Orleans are massive. So trying to define central might mean the train station. Taking rapid transit to the bus and train station just might make sense after all. Just a thought.

  • maplestar

    People take either the bus or the train on a single trip, not both, so I don’t see any advantage to having them in the same place.

    I know that, at least once, I’ve used both on a single trip. I much preferred the train, but I was living in Arnprior at the time, so I could only do the Arnprior-Ottawa portion by bus. I would have used both far more often if it had been more convenient (either the two stations closer together or if the Route 101 had been running at that time).

  • The train station used to be downtown until they (controversially) moved it in the 60s and took out the tracks along the canal. But even then, it wasn’t that close to the bus depot on Catherine. If I ran a bus company, I would be polling my passengers to see what they would prefer, as that should mean more business to me, to locate them where they want to be.

    I have actually taken a city bus to the train stations (both Barrhaven and the other one). As long as you want to go somewhere along the main routes in Ottawa, OCTranspo is pretty convenient. It’s when you want to go somewhere Else that it becomes a pain. But that is true of other cities I have been in, like London, Paris and NYC. BUT, those cities are more pleasant to walk across – they don’t have the vast wastelands as much as Ottawa does, where there’s nothing to see and nowhere to stop.

  • XUP

    Further to what Julia said, unless you’re in walking distance of the bus terminal, it’s not in a very convenient location as it’s not served by the transitway like the train station and airport are. It would make sense to co-locate the bus terminal with an OC Transpo station perhaps. Or, if you’re going to have a transportation “hub”, throw the airport in there, too. It was very convenient for me recently to have the VIA rail station right by Dorval airport, for instance.

  • Aww, as if the owlet was named after me! It must be really cute.

    I agree that having the bus station in the east end is stupid. Not to mention, the last time I looked Greyhound was a PRIVATE company, who the hell is he to tell them where they’re located?

    Your analogy of having an ‘education hub’ is not only hilarious but bang on — who the hell would propose that? I hope our councillors can see through this fluff and vote it down. Thank god Larry is almost gone!


  • Also, (sorry to put this in another comment), on my recent trip across Canada (it SEEMS recent), when we stopped in Winnipeg, the tree-planter I had been hanging out with since Sudbury was super-excited to get off the bus and walk around downtown Winnipeg. He told me of a cool little bar he always goes to when he’s there, and a diner, and a couple other things. Winnipeg was the longest layover of the trip (almost 5 hours) and I was excited too.

    Until we found out they had relocated their Greyhound terminal to the airport — which, in the case of Winnipeg, would be like doing that here. Our airport is way out near NOTHING. We couldn’t even buy smokes because the nearest gas station would have taken almost an hour to walk to and from. So though it may be convenient sometimes, I think it’s neat to suddenly release 40 people into our centretown area for like an hour. They can run to the diners etc. and get a quick taste of life, instead of staring at concrete, industrial jungle.

  • DW

    I hate agreeing with Larry but even the sun shines on a dogs behind sometimes and I think he got this one right, or at least not horribly wrong which is probably the best he can do.

    While I can see the pros and cons of both sides, I think having both in the same location or at least the bus terminal somewhere on the transitway makes better sense.

    Catherine St. is hard to get to via bus and driving (its one way). Walking is about the only easy way to get to it, and if you have a larger suitcase, especially one without wheels, you are getting a workout. However you could walk to it if already downtown.

    At the train station, its further south and more to the east end, but its still inside the greenbelt and probably closer to more of the population center of the city as a whole while being easier to get to via public transit or car (via an easy 417 exit). No chance in hell of walking to it though.

    Lets also not forget as car centric as the ‘burbs are downtown is slowly (and not so slowly in some neighborhoods) gentrifying while most of the economically challenged areas in the city are along the 97 route, which is closer to the train station than downtown, they are your bus users. The other big group, students, Carelton students looses out, though not horribly so but Ottawa U and Algonquin students benefit.

    I am not sure what the plan du jour is for our tunnel/LRT plan, but is there plans for a stop be at the Via station eventually? Wherever it moves it only makes sense to build it along the future LRT line and that is not Catherine St.

    Of course that is also one of my arguments against building LL but that’s another discussion.