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County Transit to offer Picton Summer Loop in partnership with Base31

County Transit, in partnership with Base31, will pilot a new public transit route in Picton this summer.

“We’re delighted to give everyone an additional way to get around town,” says Emily Cowan, Director of Community Services, Programs and Initiatives with the County of Prince Edward. “By partnering with Base31, we’ve created a dynamic new option for citizens, at zero cost to the municipality. It’s a win all around: providing a safe, easy, and convenient transportation solution to Base31 and elsewhere in Picton, while also allowing the municipality to learn more about transit needs in our community.”

The Picton Summer Loop will follow most of the current route of County Transit’s fixed route in Picton, which begins and ends at the Metro parking lot (73 Picton Main Street). The Picton Summer Loop will add stops at Base 31 and The Waring House.

“We’re excited to partner with County Transit to offer this valuable service, providing an affordable transit option on weekends, safe nighttime transit and enhancing the summertime experience for all,” says Tim Jones, CEO, Base31. “In addition to helping reduce drinking and driving, we’re pleased to support the County’s ability to generate insights that inform transit planning and make a case for further government grant funding.”

The Picton Summer Loop will start Friday, May 24, and run through to Sunday, September 8. The loop will operate Fridays from 5 pm to 12 midnight, Saturdays from 11 am – 12 midnight, and Sundays from 3 pm – 9 pm. The service will be operated by Quinte Transit, the municipality’s transit service provider, and will become part of the County Transit system. In addition to the Picton Summer Loop, a permanent stop at Base31 will be added to the regular weekday route in early June.

Passengers can expect the Picton Summer Loop to complete its circle around Picton every half hour. This high-frequency schedule ensures that residents, youth, and guests can easily visit friends, attend events, get to and from work, and explore the vibrant summertime attractions of the Picton area.

The fare structure for the route will be the same as the County Transit local Picton one-way fares:

  • $3.50 per adult
  • $2.50 for seniors (55+), students (elementary, high school or post-secondary), and registered specialized service clients (people with disabilities)
  • $1.75 for children 6-11

For the moment, fares are cash-only, but a new tap-card payment method is in the final stages of integration across all systems served by Quinte Transit, including Prince Edward County. Monthly and two-week passes are also available, as are pre-paid tickets. Click here for more.

Fare revenue covers a small portion of the costs associated with delivering transit services. For the County Transit’s regular service, the municipality also uses grants, property tax funds, and revenue from advertising and sponsorship to support the service. For the Picton Summer Loop, Base31 has agreed to cover the difference between the cost of offering the new route and the fare revenue collected.

The Picton Summer Loop is a pilot project for the summer of 2024. By generating valuable data and insights, this project will support future transit planning, ensuring continued growth and improvement in the transportation network for the benefit of all residents and visitors. As the municipality grows, County Transit remains committed to reducing traffic congestion via affordable, sustainable mobility alternatives.

The public is invited to learn more about the Picton Summer Loop at a municipal open house focused on active transportation and transit on Wednesday, May 8, 6-8 pm at the Picton Town Hall.

Details about the Picton Summer Loop, including the route, schedules, and information on how to use the service, will be available online soon. In the meantime, the public may contact Transit Coordinator Vincent de Tourdonnet vdetourdonnet@pecounty.on.ca.

About County Transit: County Transit currently operates a fixed route daytime service Monday-Friday, with a 14-person bus that loops around Picton, heads up to Belleville via Bloomfield, returns and loops around Picton again, four 4 times a day. Anyone who lives outside of this route can call Quinte Transit for dispatch service, which is integrated with its specialized service for any registered clients with mobility challenges, or who are 55 years or older.  

The municipality is in the process of a transit strategy refresh with the goal of creating a 5-10-year plan for enhancing transit services across the municipality. The public will be engaged throughout this strategy refresh project. The first public engagement opportunity in this process relates to expanding the existing fixed route service to and from Belleville with an additional departure time. The public is currently invited to provide their input on several schedule options. More information is available on Have Your Say.

About Base31: Base31 is a major cultural destination on the site of a former 70-acre Second World War air training base in Picton, Prince Edward County, Ontario. Base31 is the cultural heart of a larger 750-acre site that is being developed over the coming years into a dynamic collection of neighborhoods with a mix of uses: retail, restaurants, places to work and create, parks, trails, and recreation areas, a full complement of community amenities, and a range of housing to suit many needs.  

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