Victoria handyDART and your community

handydart banner image

To support growth in ridership, expanding Victoria’s conventional bus system, and enhancing handyDART service for many of the most vulnerable in our communities is essential. Significant investments are being made in new, purpose-built transit facilities that can support expanding a low-carbon fleet that make it easier for people to choose transit over single- occupancy vehicles.

Improving Services for our Customers

handyDART is an accessible, door-to-door shared transit service for people with permanent or temporary disabilities that prevent them from using fixed-route transit without assistance from another person. The new location will enable BC Transit to respond to the growing needs for handyDART services in Greater Victoria, as well as expand the conventional transit service.

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure recently provided the eight-acre property at 2401 Burnside Road to BC Transit for a new handyDART centre. The centre will occupy a portion of the property with opportunities for the unused portion of the property to be enhanced through sidewalks, landscaping, and environmental restoration. The facility is planned to open in 2023.

Victoria handyDART map - image

Project at a Glance

  • The centre will be the first BC Transit facility in British Columbia built to achieve Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold requirements. LEED principles outline site requirements that employ best management practices to reduce chemical use, energy, water, air pollution, solid waste, and/or runoff associated with the building site. The main building will include West- Coast design elements to respond to the neighbourhood character and context. A wash bay and fueling station will also be included. The entrance will be off West Burnside Road.

  • All handyDART vehicles will be gas and electric. Although handyDART has traditionally used diesel vehicles, no diesel vehicles will be utilized at this location. BC Transit’s Low Carbon Fleet Program provides a roadmap for transitioning to a fully electric transit fleet and infrastructure to support a fully electric fleet will be installed during construction.

  • Environmental protection is always a key planning principle applied to site design and operations. The development will meet or exceed all Provincial and Federal standards for environmental protection. Thoughtful planning in consultation with environmental professionals and local streamkeepers will ensure the environmentally sensitive features of the property, in particular, Craigflower Creek, are protected.

  • In addition to retaining much of the existing greenspace, new landscaping will include dozens of native mature trees. Site fencing will be added, and boulevards and sidewalks will be improved on Watkiss Way and Burnside Road. New transit shelters will be introduced and opportunities to enhance the Galloping Goose Trail adjacent to the site will be pursued.

Project Timeline

The preliminary design will be shared in Summer/Fall 2020 and a refined design will be available for review a few months later. Construction is expected to start in 2021.
Project Timeline

Site Features

A number of important features are already located on this property, specifically, Craigflower Creek, the Galloping Goose Regional Trail, a CRD water main and the BC Hydro Transmission Tower. As a result, there are only two suitable building locations. BC Transit had previously considered locating the building on the east corner, adjacent to the Craigflower Creek. Based on community feedback, the area adjacent to the highway is now being explored for the main building.
Site Features

Guiding Principles

Six guiding principles will inform the design and sustainability objectives for the site:
  1. Archaeological preservation:
    Engaging local First Nation communities to explore opportunities to work together to ensure protection of archaeological and cultural heritage on site.
     
  2. Sustainable design:
    Use the redevelopment of this site as an opportunity to repair and restore the disturbed ecology of the site, including the watershed and Craigflower Creek, and design a site and building that can achieve LEED Gold.
     
  3. Improved pedestrian and cycling experience:
    Introduce new or improved accessible connections for people who walk and cycle, including new sidewalks and potential realignment of the Galloping Goose Trail.
     
  4. Neighbourhood integration:
    Respect the qualities of the host neighbourhood by designing a site, building and landscaping that integrate well and enhance the neighbourhood. Consider and mitigate potential visual, safety and other impacts of the development on the surrounding area.
     
  5. Good neighbour:
    Build responsive relationships within the local community and First Nations to inform various elements of the redevelopment and on-going communications.
     
  6. Effective and reliable service:
    Design a site that supports expansion of a sustainable, fully electric handyDART service that improves access to transit for people with permanent or temporary disabilities that prevent them from using fixed-route transit without assistance from another person.

Memorandum of Understanding with Town of View Royal

BC Transit has a  memorandum of understanding with the Town of View Royal, committing to follow the spirit and intent of all of the Town of View Royal’s development processes, permitting and bylaws for 2401 Burnside Road. In addition to a number of public realm improvements, such as sidewalks and landscaping, BC Transit will also provide $150,000 to the Town of View Royal for community amenities.

We Want to Hear from You

BC Transit is listening closely to feedback from the Town of View Royal and View Royal residents and have identified several opportunities for the community to influence the development in a meaningful way.

All public input will be shared with the design team to inform future planning and design. It will also be shared with the Town of View Royal and posted here.  

An online survey was offered in May-June 2020. You can learn more about what was shared and what was heard here . All input collected was shared with the design team to inform the preliminary design. Further opportunities for public engagement will occur to seek feedback on the preliminary design in Summer/Fall 2020. 

Questions?

If you have any questions about the project, please contact VictoriahandyDARTproject@bctransit.com or call 250-995-5706.


Technical Studies

BC Transit is committed to undertaking all necessary permitting and studies required by Town of View Royal land-use regulations and bylaws.

FAQ

Why is a new location for handyDART needed?