Paving the way for new bus service between Charlottetown and Cavendish

Published on March 2, 2017

CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. - Students who work in Cavendish during the summer, but live in Charlottetown, might have a new way into work this year.

A bus service between Charlottetown and Cavendish may be available this summer.

Tourists would be permitted to ride on the bus as a way to go in or out of the city, but the bus’s main objective would be to shuttle employees to and from work every day – with a majority of these employees being students.

Sandi Lowther, president of Tourism Cavendish Beach, said it’s hard for students to get themselves to work everyday in the summer, especially if the distance is that far.

“Not all students who work throughout the summer have a vehicle. So they have to depend on their parents, who are also working, to drive them, and that can be a challenge to do everyday.”

Tourism Cavendish Beach is still looking for funding for the bus service, but Lowther hopes to get the funding soon and have a pilot project ready for this year, and next.

The pilot project would provide three rounds trips per day between Charlottetown and Cavendish, with possible stops including North Rustico, New Glasgow and Stanley Bridge.

AJ MacLeod worked at the Parks Canada Provincial Campground in 2015 as a student employee and said travelling to work from his home in Stratford wasn’t easy.

“Even though I had my own car, driving up every day for work was a lot. I started to just carpool with co-workers after a bit.”

MacLeod said the proposed bus service is a great idea and would attract more students from Charlottetown to take jobs in Cavendish.

“I’m sure there’s more students willing to work there, knowing that they have a ride to and from work everyday.”

Matthew Jelley is also excited by the proposed bus service.

Jelley and his family own the Maritime Fun group that owns many businesses in the Cavendish area — which includes Shining Waters, Sandspit — that employs roughly 200 students a year to fill job positions.

Jelley said the bus service would be a positive thing for his businesses and others in the area.

“We support any efforts to make it easier for students to gain and maintain employment.”

Though the pilot project has not been finalized, Lowther is looking forward to the possibilities.

“Public transportation is the way of the future and we’re excited to provide that service between two areas on the Island whose industry is so tourism-heavy.”