Equity in Rural Transit: Investigating the Feasibility of Permanent Public Transit in Wellington County, Ontario
The availability and reliability of public transit has been a long standing equity issue for residents living in rural communities. This issue significantly impacts those who have lower incomes, the elderly, children, and people with disabilities. Access to of consistent and secure funding has been the main factor challenging the sustainability of rural transit. This research focuses on understanding funding opportunities, challenges, and solutions for rural communities through a case-study of RIDE WELL in Wellington County, Ontario. With a better understanding of how public transit can be sustainably planned and funded, community leadership can equitably direct future strategic plans to accommodate for those who need transit most. The outcomes of this research will benefit local and regional stakeholders, including Dillon Consulting, to assist other rural municipalities in building equitable and sustainable rural transit service models – an area of evidence-based research that remains a significant focus for government, and rural development researchers across Canada and around the world.