GRT celebrates Northfield Drive Maintenance Facility opening

Posted on Friday July 15, 2022

On July 14, Grand River Transit celebrated the grand opening of the new Northfield Drive Maintenance Facility, which will support the modernization and growth of transit in the Region of Waterloo.

After years of expanding service and growing ridership, GRT has outgrown two other maintenance and storage facilities in Kitchener and Cambridge. With space for 200 buses, the 305,000-square-foot facility can house larger capacity, articulated buses, which will help GRT as it continues to expand service frequency and services into new areas and communities within the Region.

“Public transit is key in helping us build stronger, more sustainable communities,” said the Honourable Bardish Chagger, Member of Parliament for Waterloo, on behalf of the Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Infrastructure and Communities. “The new Northfield Drive Maintenance Facility will allow the Region of Waterloo to offer residents a modern and reliable transit system to connect them to work, school and each other for years to come.”

“Transit is at the heart of creating a livable community for everyone, providing access to employment, recreational opportunities, schools and destinations throughout the Region,” said Region of Waterloo Chair Karen Redman. “This investment in our community will help grow sustainable transit in the Region of Waterloo as we plan to increase ridership and expand our network.”

The new building includes 22 maintenance bays, two service lanes, two bus wash stations and office space for GRT staff.

Building in Waterloo creates options for more efficient operations and maintenance as buses will not have to travel as far to and from the facility at the beginning and end of the day. The building will also support GRT’s transition to a zero emission bus fleet and will be home of the new electric buses and charging infrastructure pilot in 2023.

The facility has several green features, including bike storage, rainwater harvesting for the bus wash, lots of natural light, a 6,750-square-foot green roof and LED lighting. The building will go through a green building verification and review process to achieve LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification.

“The new Northfield Drive Maintenance Facility will support more frequent, efficient and faster transit options for families, businesses and communities in the growing Waterloo Region,” said Kinga Surma, Minister of Infrastructure. “Investments in critical transit infrastructure, like the one being announced today, are just one of the many ways our government is working to carry out Premier Ford’s vision to Build Ontario, while creating jobs, stimulating economic growth, and keeping the flow of people, goods and services moving smoothly.”

The Government of Canada contributed 40 per cent, the Government of Ontario 33 per cent and the Region of Waterloo 27 per cent towards the total $118.8 million joint investment.

Members of the community will have a chance to tour the facility this fall.