Beginning Labour Day weekend, Hamilton’s public transit system will provide conventional bus service to Fifty Road in Stoney Creek.

This long overdue service expansion (more of a catch-up since Fifty Road has been fully urbanized for well over a decade) is part of an overhaul of bus routes in Stoney Creek.

The HSR will eliminate the underperforming route 58 Stoney Creek Local bus route.

This is an excellent public spending decision.

The 58 provides a direct connection between Downtown Stoney Creek and Eastgate Square.

However, it is a redundant route.

The 5-Delaware (Stoney Creek) and 44-Rymal both service the same streets.

Decades ago, the 58 was necessary.

The 5-Delaware (Stoney Creek) was a limited service route which did not operate in the evening. The 44 Rymal was introduced in 2009.

The only downside is the few riders who use the 58 will now transfer between buses at Centennial Parkway South and King Street West.

[King Street East (Hamilton) becomes King Street West (Stoney Creek) at the former municipal boundary. Yes, driving eastbound, King Street East becomes King Street West.]

The 58 bus has entire trips in which it has zero passengers. Here’s a photo I took in 2017 as the only passenger on the bus one evening.

A HSR articulated bus, interior, with no passengers
A HSR articulated bus operating on the 58 Stoney Creek Local Route with one passenger (the photographer) in 2017

Petition Against the Changes

On board a 58 bus today [Monday], a person was organizing a petition against the route change.

I listened intently. The five passengers on the bus are unhappy they will have to transfer buses to ride to Eastgate Square or the Red Hill Library branch.

[A vocal group of seniors who live in Downtown Stoney Creek continuously complain the Saltfleet branch of the Hamilton Public Library is well used by teenagers. The library branch was originally integrated with the high school. Over a decade ago, the City separated the library from the school. This is a whole other story.]

One believes the City is out to “destroy” Downtown Stoney Creek. Another thought it was “wasteful” to have ‘two buses in place of one’.

These kinds of responses to route changes are expected.

A petition is ultimately futile – the changes are finalized. Bus schedules have been printed, bus operators have been assigned to drive, and bus stops are being installed for the expansion to Fifty Road.

City Withholding New Bus Routes and Schedules

This brings us to an actual problem – the HSR’s lack of communication.

The new bus schedules are top secret, the HSR does not plan to release them until late August.

The new bus routes are also top secret. Will route 5 Delaware be extended a few blocks to connect with route 55 at Highway 8?

Will the HSR improve bus stops at Centennial Parkway and King Street?

All questions the HSR is not answering.

Production Details
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Published: July 17, 2023
Last edited: July 17, 2023
Author: Joey Coleman
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3 replies on “Joey’s Notepad: Effective Allocation of Public Funds and Transit in Stoney Creek”

  1. Hi. Why have I not ever seen a bus north of the Qew (lake side) in Stoney Creek, between the water park to Grimsby?

    1. Hi Joe,

      I agree this is a service void which needs to be addressed. Hopefully, we’ll see a route next fall.

  2. I was a frequent rider on the #58 to Eastgate for shopping at Fortino, Shoppers Drug Mart and other stores including the Food Court…Rarely was there nobody on the bus but those who did use it in the afternoons were seniors. You do realize that disabled people who use walkers and other mobility assistive devices do no pay so there is no record of them every having been on the bus…Do you know if the HSR has records of the numbers of passengers that used the Stoney Creek bus?
    What some of us asked for was a situation similar to the Walmart bus. Just because the HSR ran the #58 from early morning till 2:00 am knowing there was no one on it doesn’t mean it wasn’t important for the seniors during the early afternoon…We need a direct bus from Old Stoney Creek to Eastgate because taking the #5 to the corner of King to wait 20 or more minutes for the #44 just doesn’t cut it…The return home on the undersized #44 is a nightmare as well. An improvement it is not.

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