Statistics provided by Greyhound show declining numbers of passengers disembarking at and originating from the Nelson terminal over the past four years.
For the fiscal year ending in 2014, 4,826 riders exited in Nelson. That number steadily dropped to 4,152 riders last year. Passengers travelling from the terminal has also dropped from 5,014 in 2013 to a low of 4,524 last year.
Those stats were provided by a Greyhound spokesperson writing on behalf of Peter Hamel, regional vice-president of Greyhound’s Western Canada operations, following a request by the Star for local passenger numbers.
“The data for Nelson shows that ridership averages just over 10 passengers a day,” said Hamel. “While we are maintaining service to Nelson, the current ridership alone is not enough to sustain this corridor — this is consistent with the situation we’re generally facing across B.C.”
Greyhound has applied with the B.C. Passenger Transportation Board to either cut or reduce 10 routes across the province, which would include the route Nelson is on. If approved, Nelson’s service would drop from one stop eastbound and one westbound per day, seven days a week, to just two days a week.
Public consultation ended Oct. 13. Nelson’s city council sent a letter to the transportation board protesting the application, while the Regional District of Central Kootenay voted to do the same at a board meeting Thursday.
Greyhound has also said proposed cuts won’t reduce freight service, which would be contracted out.