Public transit - city, Ottawa
Many Residents of Ottawa or Urbanites believe that getting from A to B or Y to Z, the car =Automobile is the best way, but as one on the fringes of the "Silver Generation", and instead of being caught up in the traffic congestion crawl and stressoing time, Public Transport is the Solution,
In this City of ours, aka Ottawa or National Capital Region, OC Transpo is my preference, notably on Wedensday when travel is gratis, on the other 7 days using the PRESTO CARD has monetary benefits $2.05 vs $2.55 or $3.00.
But on my ride from East to West on the 34 and 97 to the west.
Two reminders of what is happening here with the still controversial Subway / Rapid Light Rail Transport
You've arrived at YOW - Ottawa MacDonald-Cartier Airport map of Arrivals hall
Cleared immigration and Customs, maybe need a Tim Hortons double double and timbits,
for $3-30 you'll be able to ride downton on Bus 97, example of Google Map route
If you're 65+ senior, only $2.00 per ride with transfers
Ottawa's Public Transportation started on June 29, 1891 when Thomas Ahearn and Warren Soper made the first run of the Ottawa Electric Street Railway Company.
The company was privately run for 58 years and was taken over by the government on February 16, 1948.
Nowadays the OC Transpo fleet has over 1000 buses and three trains serving nearly 370,000 daily riders.
Single tickets can be purchased at the bus for CAD 1.30 for a single ride (Actual ticket prices).
The following all day regulary bus services are available:
1 South Keys-Ottawa-Rockcliffe
5 Billings Bridge-St. Laurent
6 Downtown-Tunney's Pasture
7 Carleton-St. Laurent
8 Billings Bridge-Gatineau
14 St. Laurent-Carlington
16 Alta Vista-Britannia
18 St. Laurent-Bayview & Carlingwood
86 Elmvale-Lincoln Fields
87 South Keys-Carlingwood
95 Orléans & Trim-Barrhaven Centre
96 Hurdman-Terry Fox / Stittsville
97 South Keys / Airport-Tunney's Pasture & Bayshore
98 Hawthorne-Greenboro & Tunney's Pasture
99 Greenboro & Downtown-Riverview
101 St. Laurent-Bayshore / Kanata North
111 Hurdman-Lincoln Fields
112 Elmvale-Billings Bridge
115 Heron Park-Billings Bridge
116 South Keys-Baseline
120 Portobello-Place d'Orléans
121 St. Laurent-Hurdman
122 Millennium-Place d'Orléans
124 Beacon Hill-Hurdman
127 Place d'Orléans-St. Laurent
128 Blackburn Hamlet-Hurdman
130 Convent Glen-Fallingbrook
131 Convent Glen-Chapel Hill
135 Esprit-Place d'Orléans
136 Tenth Line-Place d'Orléans
137 Queenswood Heights
140 South Keys-Hurdman
141 Billings Bridge-Alta Vista
142 Gloucester South-South Keys
143 Local East-South Keys
144 Gloucester South-South Keys
146 South Keys-Hurdman
147 Gloucester South-South Keys
151 Tunney's Pasture-Carlingwood
152 Lincoln Fields-Bayshore
154 Lincoln Fields-Bayshore
156 Lincoln Heights-Merivale
160 Morgan's Grant-Terry Fox
161 Bridlewood-Terry Fox
163 Kanata-West Kanata
164 Bridlewood-Terry Fox
165 Terry Fox-Beaverbrook
166 Nepean North & Bayshore-Nepean Centre & Bayshore
168 Kanata North-Terry Fox
170 Fallowfield-Barrhaven Centre
171 Fallowfield-Barrhaven Centre
172 Lincoln Fields-Bayshore
173 Barrhaven Centre-Fallowfield
174 Carlingwood-Nepean Centre
175 Golflinks-Barrhaven Centre
176 Barrhaven Centre-Tunney's Pasture
177 Barrhaven centre-Cambrian
178 Lincoln Fields-Nepean Centre
198 St. Laurent-Cyrville
306 Island Lodge-Elisabeth Bruyère
316 Rideau Centre-Sandy Hill
There are two bus companies in the city - OC Transpo on the Ottawa side and STO on the Gatineau side, both of which acknowledge the other company's tickets and passes. Both buses make small loops also in the other part of the town, but mainly service their own areas.
If you want to get around to further places in Ottawa, buying a day-pass for 6 $ would probably be your best option. Tickets and passes are cheaper when bought beforehand (e.g. the two tickets needed on most bus lines cost 2.60 on the bus and 1.80 when bought beforehand). Bus schedules are available in most bus stops and transit stations and paper versions can be obtained from the main info centres.
Transfers that allow you to travel 90 minutes in any direction are available on buses and the large transit stations allow for convenient transfers.
OC Transpo is the transit company in Ottawa.
They operate both high and low floor buses as well as a light rail line. The newer low floor buses have a/c, which is great in summer. One of the best things they constructed was the Transitway. It is a 31km bus only roadway.
The main transitway routes are 95 and 97. Regular buses cost $3.00 cash or 2 tickets, express $4.50 or 3 tickets and are frequent. The O-Train Light rail costs $2.00 and has a 15 minute frequency .
As a resident I would like to warn visitors to be very careful while taking public transit in Ottawa. Although you will find most bus drivers are courteous (or at least apathetic) there are a small minority who are abusive. I had a recent experience with this and I think it is important to warn others, as there is minimal support from the company itself if you want to report it. Be careful too about waiting for buses at transitway stations off-hours as there are reports of swarmings and violence.
Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.... but at the moment there is a transit strike and no public transit buses are operating at this time. We are now in day 15 of this strike and seems no end is near. It is now Jan 25th and still no end !
OC transpo is sometimes reaible pending where you are taking off.In downtown ottawa you could see the 95 96 97 every 5 and the latest 15 minutes.
Fares:(could change in anytime)3.00 on most routes express 4.00 and rural 5.00.
for routes fares and e.t.c visit www.octranspo.com
The O-Train is Ottawa's pilot urban rail project which was instigated by the Regional Council in 1998 to investigate the feasability of a large-scale light rail network in the National Capital Region to accomodate the area's future population expansion. Following a yearlong study and environmental assessment the project was give the go ahead in 1999 and the O-train service began running in 2001.
The initial 2-year pilot project was viewed overall as a success but the expansion of the service, which would require major capital investment, has become bogged down in political controversy and is now subject to several new studies and consultations.
The existing sevice runs an 8 kilometre route north to south between Bayview and Greenboro, with three intermediate stations at Carling, Carlton and Confederation, and in 2006 carried approximately 10,000 passengers daily. Trains run from about 6.30 am until just before midnight with a frequency of every 15 minutes and a journey time of 12 minutes.
This is more of a commuter service than a tourist service, with the stations linking to OCTranspo bus services on the Transitway, and is mainly used by students and staff at Carlton University.
A journey on the O-Train costs, at the time of writing, $2.25 and the tickets are valid for a limited time but can be used to obtain transfer tickets on the bus services. Bus tickets themselves cannot be used on the train but bus transfers and OCTranspo passes can which integrates this little piece of the National Capital Region's transit network quite neatly into the overall system.
If you arrive by air, take Bus #97 in front of the arrival hall and get off at Macken-
zie King or Albert Kent, only a few minutes walking distance to Parliament Hill, Westin, Chateua Laurier; get off at Macken-zie King and transit 21/31/33/35 on Rideau St.--on the other side of the building to Museum of Civilization; get off at Lebreton to War Museum.
If you arrive by bus, step out of the station onto Catherine St. East and turn left(North) on Bank St., then take any bus (#1/#7) north bound and get off at Parliament Hill, or Rideau Center.
If you arrive by train, then take Bus 95 west bound and get off at the same stop of Bus 97.
Pop-up transfer valid within 1.5 hours.
Day pass purchased on bus:$7.25 served as familiy pass on Sunday and public holidays.
Exact fare and no change.
The city has no metro system but does have a light rail which connects Bayview and Greenboro(Southkey). However, it is mostly used by those who live in south end of the city but work downtown so that they may park & ride, or by those who study at Carleton University. Bus pass and transfer except bus ticket can be used on the train.
Be prepared for travelling on Sunday and public holidays for its' reduced schedule.
Ottawa's public transport system is provided almost exclusively by the extensive bus network of the city's OC Transpo company with a minimal contribution by the same company's O-Train light rail route (see separate tip). The 960 or so vehicles cover the whole of the urban area and many rural destinations carrying over 90 million passengers annually (figures according to Wikipedia sources).
The "Jewel in the Crown" of the network is the 27 kilometres of dedicated bus routes of The Transitway which has been constructed on a mainly East to West route from Trim to Terry Fox with a couple of Southerly spurs towards Barrhaven and the airport. For the whole of the 27 Km of Transitway buses are unhindered by other traffic or traffic lights and share their roadways with only emergency vehicles.
This sounds like a public transport Utopia but unfortunately, as with all Utopias, it does have its flaws, the main one being that the bus exclusive roadways only extend to the edge of Ottawa'a Downtown and as soon as they engage with normal traffic the whole system grinds almost to a halt during peak periods as the buses themselves add to the already congested downtown streets and river crossings.
This is obviously something that the transit planners are more than aware of and various proposals are currently under consideration to solve the problems - see 1st website.
However though, it is a reasonably good system and it does work for the most part, just not in the city proper!
We mostly walked, as we had a good location for our B&B. I found the bus drivers really helpful...a few times they let us know when to get off after we asked about a certain stop instead of leaving us to wonder if we were in the right area.
The most common way (besides by car) that people in Ottawa get around is by the OC Transpo bus. When visiting Ottawa, there's no doubt you will see several red and white buses going all over the city. This is the urban transit service of the City of Ottawa.
While the majority of these buses stay within the city ,some routes provide service to the downtown core of the nearby city of Gatineau, Quebec.
Visit the website below for prices and schedules!
Ottawa offers a good network of buses and more information can be found on their official website below. If you need more information when you are at Ottawa, do look out for transport brochures at transport kiosks such as those shown in the photograph (this koisk was located at the Rideau Centre).
One of the few cities left in the world with a population of over 1 million to not have a dedicated light rail / subway system. Although one is in the works, but it wont be completed until 2010.
The OC Transpo bus system does an adequate job in getting people around the town. The busses are rarely late and very clean. They get crowded during rush hour, but that is expected. The busses run on a system of bus only lanes called the "Transitway". Maps are available on the website.
Regular bus fare is $3.00, but you can buy a sheet of bus tickets at many kiosks, and stores throughout the city. I recommend buying tickets as you will pay 95 cents per ticket, and you need two tickets to get on a bus! So you save $1.
Ask for transfer, they are valid for unlimited transfers for about 1.5 hrs.
Day passes are available as well..
Oh and when refferring to the bus system... it is common to use the term "OC"... ie. Where is the closest OC stop?, or '*** I just missed the OC, when does the next one come?'