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More fuel added to request for bus stop at Salmon Arm seniors centre

City council supports request for bus stop at 5th Avenue 50+ Activity Centre
The Fifth Avenue 50+ Activity Centre in Salmon Arm is lobbying for a bus stop on Fifth Avenue SE with support from city council. (Martha Wickett-Salmon Arm Observer)

The push is on to get Shuswap Transit buses rolling to a stop at a Salmon Arm seniors centre.

The board of directors of the the 5th Avenue 50+ Activity Centre wrote a letter to council and BC Transit requesting a bus stop at 170 5th Ave. SE.

Board president Cynthia Merrell noted that the centre has 589 members and hosts more than 22 different activities. It also rents out the facility for a variety of purposes such as weddings and markets. Although most members are mobile, some are not and must rely on others for transportation.

“The Centre is asked on a weekly basis whether there is a bus stop in the locale that does not require individuals to walk up or down a steep incline, especially during inclement weather,” she wrote.

The letter noted a bus-stop bench is already on 5th Avenue so a new bus stop would just be a matter of altering a current route.

Read more:Total lack of regard’: Resident wants bus stop at 5th Avenue seniors centre

Salmon Arm council had discussed a similar request at its April 11 meeting, where Mayor Alan Harrison told council that a letter from the board would generate further discussion and a more fulsome request to Shuswap Transit.

Rob Niewenhuizen, the city’s director of public works and engineering, told council at its May 8 meeting that in the early 2000s the bus went down 5th but it was changed. He said a change request would go to BC Transit planners and he wasn’t sure it could be done easily.

Harrison said he’d done a little layman’s research and agrees it’s a valid request.

He said perhaps a bus that goes down Shuswap could go to the seniors centre, circle through the parking lot and go back to Shuswap.

“I think approaching BC Transit on that or another suggestion might be a good way to go.”

Other council members supported the plan to explore options with BC Transit.

Coun. Louise Wallace Richmond said she’s not a logistics expert but perhaps the college loop could go to the centre and end up at city hall. She said the messaging to BC Transit could mention it’s the largest seniors centre in the city, as well as it being important to goals of active transportation and inclusion.

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Martha Wickett

About the Author: Martha Wickett

came to Salmon Arm in May of 2004 to work at the Observer. I was looking for a change from the hustle and bustle of the Lower Mainland, where I had spent more than a decade working in community newspapers.
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