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 beneto having completed a ull academic year o the program, provides additional insightinto the nancial viability o the U-Pass.
Most signicantly, 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 benets o the program with the goal o moving orward with a program thatbenets 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 signicant 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*:
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.