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CUSA-SFUO Lobby Document- Evaluating the Costs and Benefits of U-Pass Program

CUSA-SFUO Lobby Document- Evaluating the Costs and Benefits of U-Pass Program

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Published by: climbrandon on Nov 17, 2011
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Graduate Students’ Association of the University of OttawaCarleton University Graduate Students’ AssociationStudents’ Federation of the University of OttawaCarleton University Students’ AssociationPrepared for theCity of Ottawa Transit CommissionFall 2011
Table of Contents
Introduction 2Projected Direct Revenue from the U-Pass 2
Actual vs. projected revenue or the 2010-2011 Pilot Year 2Efect o enrollment increases on U-Pass Revenue 2Projected revenue rom annual increase o 2.5% 3Projected revenue increases rom combined annual 2.5% increaseapplied to projected enrollment increases 3Ontario’s Gas Tax Program 3
Review of the Cost of the U-Pass Program 3
Probable error in calculation o lost revenue rom the U-Pass 3Students’ use o transers 4
Additional Cost Savings and Revenue Gains from the U-Pass 5
Reduced strain on OC Transpo Sales and Inormation Counters 5Reduced sales commissions paid to vendors or pass and ticket sales 5Fare enorcement/Unpaid Fares 6Environmental Benets and Reduced strain on the City o Ottawa’sInrastructure 6Sustained Ridership 6
Conclusion: Summary of Revenue Increases and Cost Savings 8Resources 10
1 14
Student Action for Public Transit
 S t ude n ts f o r a U - Pass
For the last year, students have enjoyed the success o the Universal Transit Pass PilotProgram (the ‘U-Pass’). With a at rate or access to transit across the City o Ottawa,students have changed their travel patterns and given up their cars in avour o public transit. The U-Pass has increased ridership and provided OC Transpo with areliable revenue stream.In its 2011 budget documents presented to City Council, OC Transpo orecast a $3million expense per year or the U-Pass program. This gure was estimated at themid-point o the pilot program and largely derived rom OC Transpo’s analysis o twostudent ridership surveys conducted in March and November o 2010. The students’unions at Carleton University and the University o Ottawa have since conductedadditional research into the program. This research, in combination with the beneto having completed a ull academic year o the program, provides additional insightinto the nancial viability o the U-Pass.
Most signicantly, the analysis conducted by the students’ unions stronglyindicates that the U-Pass program valued at the base rate of $145 per semester,with annual maximum increases of 2.5%, is revenue positive for OC Transpo andthe City of Ottawa.
This analysis is explained in detail throughout this document.Students at both the University o Ottawa and Carleton University look orward todiscussions with the Transit Commission, City Council and OC Transpo on the costsand benets o the program with the goal o moving orward with a program thatbenets all parties.
Projected Direct Revenue rom the U-Pass
Actual vs. projected revenue or the 2010-11 pilot year
Documents prepared or the 2011 budget deliberations were prepared mid-way through the U-Pass pilot program and understandably relied on a numbero estimations. At this time, OC Transpo orecast revenue rom the U-Pass to be$14,514,500. The actual revenue received rom the U-Pass was $14,648,281, anincrease o $133,781 over projected revenue.
Efect o enrollment increases on U-Pass revenue
Both Carleton University and the University o Ottawa have seen signicant increasesin student enrolment over many years and have orecast similar increases or theyears to come. These increases need to be incorporated into any calculation o revenue rom the U-Pass.The additional revenue rom projected enrollment gures or both universitiescombined over actual revenue rom the 2010 pilot year are as ollows*:
13 2
2011: $322,1412012: $633,7322013: $903,4282014: $1,104,102
*Note: Projected enrollment numbers or graduate and undergraduate students have been combined or both universities. Specifcbreakdowns o enrollments are available upon request.

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