The Régie intermunicipale de transport Gaspésie – Îles-de-la-Madeleine (RÉGÎM) is responsible for organizing public transit services in the territory of Gaspésie-Les Îles. In addition, the Régie is committed to facilitating access to more sustainable mobility for the entire population.
The objectives of the RéGÎM are:
Social: promoting safe travel for everyone, in a spirit of fairness.
Environmental: participating in sustainable development while contributing to reducing greenhouse gas emissions (CO2) emitted by automobiles.
Economic: reducing transit costs and providing assistance to workers without vehicles.
The history of public transit in Gaspésie – Les Îles
Public transit has been growing for a number of years in Gaspésie and Îles-de-la-Madeleine.
2003: Transport Sans Frontières
Transport Sans Frontières (TSF) is a pioneer of public transit in rural areas. This non-profit organization provided paratransit services from 1986 to 2014 in Haute-Gaspésie. The service was initially reserved for people whose disabilities made mobility more difficult.
In 2003, Transport Sans Frontières expanded the service to include public transit for the entire population of Haute-Gaspésie, contributing to the fight against social exclusion. This new public transit service enabled everybody to travel around Haute-Gaspésie. Transport Sans Frontières was based on a reservation system, optimizing the available seats on board each minibus.
In 2006, more than 3,400 people used public transit in Haute-Gaspésie. The project resulted in a number of social, economic, political and community benefits. The success of this innovative transit service in rural areas was noticed by many people in Quebec and exported to other regions.
2010: Réseau de transport collectif
In 2009, the Réseau de transport collectif en Gaspésie et aux Îles-de-la-Madeleine, a non-profit organization, was created as a result of the support of the Conférence régionale des élus de la Gaspésie et des Îles-de-la-Madeleine. The project was consistent with the provincial government’s public transit policy, and inspired by the success of Transport Sans Frontières, though with a regional orientation.
The mission of the Réseau de transport collectif is to provide transit services throughout the territory of Gaspésie and Îles-de-la-Madeleine and for all types of clientele, to increase the mobility of the population and facilitate access to services. Its structure is based on partnerships with the six paratransit organizations in the territory, including Transport Sans Frontière, as well as private carriers. The Réseau de transport collectif began operations on May 3, 2010. Over the months, ridership increased as well as requests for additional routes. The network, initially designed as a pilot project, quickly succeeded in demonstrating the need for public transit. Indeed, in 2011, over 73,000 trips were made.
2013: Régie intermunicipale de transport
As a result of these positive experiences in public transit, the Réseau de transport collectif gradually evolved into having its operations overseen by an intermunicipal transportation board, founded in August 2012 by five Gaspé MRCs and the municipality of Îles-de la-Madeleine, and beginning operations in 2013. The organization, with the support of the Conférence régionale des élus, the MRCs and the Table des préfets, decided to abandon the non-profit status previously enjoyed by the régie intermunicipale. Several advantages motivated the change in structure, including financial, legal and operational. However, the goal of the service remained the same: to increase the number of routes and offer more opportunities for sustainable mobility.
2014: Development of services
Since October 1, 2014, the RÉGÎM has been responsible for transit service in the territory of Haute-Gaspésie. RÉGÎM’s services were enhanced in 2015 with the establishment of a shuttle service connecting to the Orléans Express.