WFH could be a golden opportunity for better transit

Office workers working from home could provide OC Transpo with a golden opportunity to provide better transit service across the city without needing additional resources.

Historically, OC Tranpso has focused on serving suburban to downtown commuters, sometimes to the detriment of local bus routes.

Serving these regular Monday to Friday commuters puts enormous stress on a transit agency. They need to muster all their resources (bus and operators) for a short commuting window in the morning, then a mid-day downturn, and then a return to full service for the afternoon commute.

This causes challenges with hiring, with staffing, with labour relations, logistics, etc. As operators rise through the ranks, they resist being paid for x number of hours while needing to be available for longer.

In recent years, many office workers have worked full or part-time at home and they have reduced their commuting by transit. Many people are happier working from home and want to continue.

People still need transit. But people may be commuting to malls or employment centres outside the downtown core. People take transit to school, to medical appointments, to social events, and to visit friends and family. They need local routes.

The Ottawa Transit Riders will conduct transit forums in different neighbourhoods, starting on Saturday, January 21st in Kanata. We plan to ask locals what transit services they need. Come join us to discuss transit options. Transit forum in KANATA Jan 21st - Ottawa Transit Riders / Le groupe des usagers de transport en commun d'Ottawa

Change is not always scary – sometimes it can be exciting.


Remote Work Flipped the Commuting Script. Now Transit Must Adapt. (

How Mass Transit Can Adapt to Post-Pandemic Needs | Planetizen News


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  • Steve Smith
    commented 2023-10-11 02:32:53 -0400
    This article brings up an exciting prospect for the future of public transit in Ottawa. The idea of optimizing transit services, especially local routes, by taking into account the changing work landscape is both innovative and necessary.

    The pandemic has indeed reshaped the way we work, and remote work is becoming a long-term reality for many. This shift allows transit agencies like OC Transpo to rethink how they allocate resources and better serve the community.

    The fact that the Ottawa Transit Riders are actively seeking input from local residents is a fantastic initiative. It ensures that any changes made align with the needs and expectations of the people who rely on these services daily. It’s a collaborative and community-driven approach that’s sure to lead to positive results.

    Change, as mentioned, can be exciting, and this shift in transit focus has the potential to improve the overall quality of life for many Ottawa residents. I look forward to witnessing how these developments unfold and how they positively impact the city’s public transportation system. Kudos to all involved in making this a reality!
  • Dwight Williams
    commented 2023-01-20 18:23:05 -0500
    Speaking in support of such ideas from Orléans. Every neighbourhood across Ottawa needs this kind of attention!
  • Kari Glynes Elliott
    published this page in News and activities / Les nouvelles et activités 2023-01-16 13:18:23 -0500