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City of Barrie, Ont., extends free transit, adds more coronavirus safety measures

When paid Barrie Transit service resumes, the cost of a monthly transit pass will be pro-rated based on the number of days left in the month. Nick Westoll / File / Global News

The City of Barrie, Ont., is extending its free transit service until new protective operator shields have been installed on all buses, which officials say is scheduled to be completed by mid-July.

When the protective shields are installed, officials say all riders over 2 years old will be required to wear non-medical face masks or coverings.

Read more: 12 new coronavirus cases confirmed in Simcoe Muskoka, local total reaches 589

“The current policy of limiting buses to 15 passengers has resulted in some passengers being turned away,” officials say. “By requiring all passengers to wear a mask, more riders can be safely accommodated.”

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In order to prepare for fare sales, the Downtown Barrie bust terminal will reopen on July 6. The amount of people allowed in the terminal at the same time will be limited so that people can maintain a two-metre distance from one another.

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When paid Barrie Transit service resumes, the cost of a monthly transit pass will be pro-rated based on the number of days left in the month.

Read more: Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre extends hours for drive-thru COVID-19 screening clinic

Officials also say multi-ride cards will be suspended to limit the spread of the novel coronavirus.

“The use of a ride card requires the operator and passenger to transfer and touch a paper fare media product,” officials say. “In the meantime, staff are investigating alternative options to the ride cards.”

Riders will still be able to pay with cash at the fare box on vehicles and can still purchase monthly passes from the bus terminal, officials add.

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