Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION

Get on the bus, Gus — and set yourself free

  • Print

Riding the bus should be free. This was an utterly surprising topic I read about recently. The more I thought about it, the more sense it made. Of course, it will never happen, but I found it most enlightening to read the arguments the writer proposed.

Here is the gist of what they wrote:

We would need many, many more busses, and they would have to be very comfortable. That way more people would use them.

If they were free, and plentiful, than half the cars on the road right now would be unnecessary.

That would make traffic jams a thing of the past.

Second cars would not be necessary. What a saving!

Of course this would have to be financed somehow. Perhaps a tax of $2,400 a year for everyone — which is comparable to the $200 per month that most people pay for a second car.

It reminded me of the bicycle situation in Amsterdam. I first saw it in 1984. I saw a large pile of bicycles piled up in the town square. Should you need transportation anywhere, you simply picked up a bicycle, drove it to your destination and dropped it off where there was another pile of bikes. Wow! I was impressed! No registrations needed, no licences to buy and very little theft!

They had no pretense about biking. There was no complaining about the indignity of riding a bike, or, as I had heard here, from yuppies about riding a bus the one day when Winnipeggers were urged to ride a bus to work. It was all I could do not to speak up.

It certainly did away with much of the extra car traffic that day. But with all their over-bearing talk, I realized that very soon, I would be mumbling "against wind" as they were, certainly not thinking about why they were supposed to ride a bus to work that day.

But with "free busses," perhaps these artificial stigmas would become non-existent?

Bertha Klassen is a North Kildonan-based writer.

Neighbourhood Forum is a readers’ column. If you live in The Herald area and would like to contribute to this column, contact jim.timlick@canstarnews.com.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

Readers' Choice Awards

Best Of Winnipeg Readers Survey

See the results of the 2014 Canstar Community News Best of Winnipeg Readers' Survey.

View Results

This Just In Twitter bird

Poll

If the NHL expands into Las Vegas, will you go to see the Jets there?

View Results