Transit pilot barely passes at Algoma U; all students will pay


In another attempt to gain more ridership for the Sault Transit system, City staff have come up with another pilot plan that narrowly passed with Algoma University.

The pilot is so that Algoma University will be presented with a U-Pass, which will require all Algoma University students to pay into the project to get a better rate for those students that use public transit.

The pilot is for a year with the possibility of a three year extension and will be discussed at city council on Monday.

City staff met with Algoma University and Sault College in 2018 to start discussing a universal pass concept or U-Pass. This is a common idea used across the province.

The concept is that all post-secondary students could have access to this pass as part of their student fees.

In 2019 Algoma University sold 178 semester passes, and Sault College sold 534 passes over the full year. In addition, 1,449 semester passes were also sold at additional locations throughout 2019.

In 2022 Algoma University has sold 81 and Sault College has sold 98 semester passes to date. On a combined basis, $397,624 in revenue was generated from students for 2019.

The student unions needed to agree with the concept. A referendum was recently held by Algoma University Student Union (AUSU) which took place from December 7-10, 2022. The U-Pass item passed with 67 per cent support. A one year pilot agreement is being recommended to be entered into Algoma University on a stand-alone basis.

Sault College is not included in this pilot.

City Staff recommend the $20/month charge for the pilot, as it will increase revenue by an estimated $60,600 during year one.

Ridership is said to potentially increase by 700 active youth riders while continuing their post-secondary studies.


  1. So, if all students are being charged, whether they ride the bus or not, are all AUC students also paying for those who own cars? Chipping in for gas, insurance and maintenance costs on everyone’s vehicles? Isn’t it the City’s responsibility to pay for public transportation considering the enormous tax increases all of us are paying? Things that make me smack my head…🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️

  2. So they do this in other regions sudbury north bay as examples …. they should give students the option to get a bus pass or parking pass in the fees

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