The newly announced Municipal Transit Initiative may have some benefit to the City of Cold Lake’s transit system and helping to keep cost manageable, but Mayor of Cold Lake, Craig Copeland says he’s thinking higher than ground transit. Could the initiative aid in bringing in a commercial airline to Cold Lake? is the question on the Mayor’s mind. One he intends to find an answer to over the next few weeks.
“We’re working with a person from the Transit Minister’s office,” Mayor Copeland explains the representative will come and tour the City’s busing system. “We want to engage her to find out if we will qualify for any grants for our transit.” Cold Lake’s free transit system has been gaining attention provincial, says the Mayor, “staff from the Province have taken notice of our transit in Cold Lake. We’re a small city and we got it up and running, and of course it’s free; people are taking notice from across the province.” The City was able to save a lot of money to start the transit system, thanks to the purchase of surplus buses from Calgary, says the Mayor. “The fact that we got surplus buses from the City of Calgary shows that we tried to do [the transit system] economically. We’re going to try to tap into some money there.”
The City is working on securing a CATSA designation for the Medley Terminal, Mayor Copeland says the transit initiative could aid in bringing commercial air travel to the city. “It’s a possibility that maybe air could be a part of this whole grant program; we’re going to inquire about that.” While attending a meeting in Red Deer, Mayor Copeland brought up the possibility, “everybody’s looking at busing for rural Alberta, but if it’s going to be heavily subsidized, why not air?”
“We’re going to talk to the [Transit Minister representative], she’ll be coming out in the next couple weeks. We’re going to try to understand more about everything. If you look at the Budget that funding doesn’t come in until 2017, so we have some time to work on it,” states Mayor Copeland.