Hot horns rang out at the Simcoe County Administration building on Tuesday morning, to usher in the first day of service for the new LINX Transit Service.
In addition to it being the first day running Route 1, which runs from Penetanguishene/Midland to Barrie with stops in Wyebridge, Waverley, Elmvale and Midhurst, the county also unveiled its marketing campaign centred around the tagline, “Get your brass on the bus.”
“It was important for us to make a splash from a marketing perspective,” said CAO Mark Aitken.
A commercial put out by the county features the Toronto band Shuffle Demons, best known for their 1986 hit Spadina Bus, who reworked the jingle for the Simcoe County transit system. The commercial will be playing across social media. The band also attended the announcement to play the reworked jingle live.
“Transit brings people together,” said sax player Richard Underhill, who has been with the band since its start in 1984.
The Apple and Android app Transit provides riders with up-to-date information on the LINX bus whereabouts, and is integrated with the local municipalities’ transit schedules as well as Uber, to help anyone who might be planning their route. The buses are also equipped with a reader for a reloadable LINX Card for cash-free transactions. The bus is free to use until Labour Day.
“This is a huge milestone for county council, the residents and the community,” said Warden Gerry Marshall. “As a politician, it’s a pleasure to be part of something so new and impactful.”
The transit link has been the product of a 24-month conversation between the county and the varying municipalities that are participating in the project. There are plans for more routes to be unveiled between Orillia and Barrie (2019), Collingwood and Barrie (2019/2020), Alliston to Bradford (2020/2021) and Midland to Orillia (2020/2021).
The province has contributed $8.4 million toward the project, while the county has contributed $5 million. LINX buses offer seating for up to 24 passengers plus room for eight standing passengers and two wheelchairs, while the LINX+ specialized transit service offers accessible door-to-door service through registration and pre-booking only.
For more information on the Simcoe County LINX transit service, click here.