Shuttle bus could be coming to U of T Scarborough

Proposed plan in first stages following SCSU appeal at Governing Council
U of T plans for the Brampton campus to have transit links with UTM. CAROLYN LEVETT/THE VARSITY
U of T plans for the Brampton campus to have transit links with UTM. CAROLYN LEVETT/THE VARSITY

At the 2013 Governing Council meeting on December 13 the Scarborough Campus Students’ Union (SCSU) made a presentation asking the Council to look into a shuttle bus program that would run between the Scarborough and the St. George campuses. Guled Arale, vice-president external of SCSU, advocated for the shuttle bus program, saying “the program would offer easier access and a more rapid service for the students who need to get to the edge of the city for their classes.” The SCSU believes that more accessible transit is one of the biggest issues for the student body of U of T Scarborough (UTSC).

While it is relatively easy to get to the St. George campus using public transit,  the UTSC and Mississauga campuses are a different story. The difference between UTSC and UTM is that students on the UTM campus are able to take advantage of the shuttle bus operating between St. George and UTM, which generally departs every 20 minutes. While UTSC students are expected to take multiple buses and subway lines to get to campus, where according to Arale public transit — availability is scant at best.

UTSC used to offer a shuttle bus services to its students over a decade ago, however, the service was discontinued due to low demand. Arale believes that since the Scarborough campus has grown by: “two or three times since then, it’s time to bring the shuttle bus back.”

The proposed shuttle bus program is expected to enter its first planning stage this semester under the leadership of Jill Matus, vice-provost, students. It is unclear at this point how much, if at all, students on either campus will be charged for the shuttle service. Arale believes that student accessibility is important, saying that “the program will try and not put more financial burden on students.” Representative of the Governing Council were not available for comment as of press time.

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