Sooner or later, buses are going to be running again in Ottawa, and one city councillor is suggesting some measure of free transit to get people back on board.

“The city has an obligation to all of its citizens to rectify the situation as quickly and painlessly as possible,” said Capital ward Coun. Clive Doucet.

“Part of that solution is ensuring any unintended savings are returned to riders in the form of no-charge transit.”

As residents turn to other modes of transpor-tation during the transit strike, it will inevitably lead to a signifi-cant decline in ridership once buses are back on the roads.

The strike is costing the city commercial and productivity losses of $8 million every day, Doucet said, all because of a scheduling dispute with drivers that is expected to save about $3.4 million annually.

Doucet said the city needs to start planning how to get people back on transit as quickly as possible once the strike is finished.

That means making a commitment to return all money saved from the strike by providing the city with no-charge transit, he added.

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