The Chahko Mika Mall bus stop will not remain permanently at its current location near Walmart, but will be moved to an undisclosed location part-way up the mall toward Save-On-Foods. The city’s Colin Innes says there will be an announcement of the new stop in about a month.
“The Walmart location was an interim solution,” he said. “The garden centre at Walmart has a lot of outdoor activity there. It’s not a good place for a bus stop.”
He said an alternate solution is being worked out between the city, BC Transit, and mall management. “They are testing bus turning radiuses so they can safely navigate through the mall parking lot, and looking at timing [of the bus schedule].”
In December, BC Transit moved the bus stop to the Walmart location from its location at Save-On-Foods because the mall considered it to be a dangerous mix of pedestrians, cars and buses all in close quarters. The move prompted many letters to the city (and to the Star) asking that the bus stop remain adjacent to the grocery store because mall shoppers, particularly elderly and disabled people, do their grocery shopping last, and then board the bus when they are loaded down.
City councillor Valerie Warmington, who sits on the regional transit committee, says she heard from many bus riders about the move from Save-On.
“I got as much mail on this as I get on any issue,” she told the Star. “I always assume that if ten people write to me, I pay attention, because it represents a larger portion of the population.”