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Specialized Transit 

Specialized Transit is a door-to-door shared ride accessible public transit service intended for persons unable to use Barrie Transit's conventional accessible fixed-route system due to a disability. Specialized Transit enables clients to stay active in their community.

Specialized Trans​it is available on an unconditional (permanent), temporary or conditional basis, depending on eligibility. Registered clients may use the service for medical appointments, school, shopping, visiting family or friends and social outings within the City of Barrie limits.

Specialized Transit Considerations
to help Minimize the Spread of COVID-19

Barrie Transit continues to operate and has increased the cleaning of vehicles and facilities. To protect the Specialized Transit Clients and Operators and to help minimize the spread of COVID-19:

  • P​​lease keep non-essential appointments to a minimum.​
  • To minimize the need for multiple shopping trips, the allowed manageable amount and maximum of (2) two parcels or bags has been increased to (4) four. Please remember that you must be able to carry your own parcels and keep the parcels on your lap during travel.
  • If you are unwell, please remember to cancel your trip or do not reserve a trip.
  • The Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit has issued a directive for all of Barrie, Simcoe and Muskoka when you enter into a public indoor space or use public transit you will be required to wear a face covering. Children under the age of 2, or those under 5 who cannot be persuaded, are not required to wear a face covering, as well as individuals whose health or ability, or cultural or religious reasons would prevent them from doing so. No proof of exemption is required.


There are three different types of eligibility for Specialized Transit service:

Unconditional eligibility A person with a permanent disability that prevents them from using conventional transportation services.
Temporary eligibilityA person with a temporary disability that prevents them from using conventional transportation services. Example: a person having knee-replacement surgery.
Conditional eligibilityA person with a disability where environmental or physical barriers (example: snow in winter months) limit their ability to consistently use conventional transportation services.

Eligibility criteria for Specialized Service is based on several guiding principles. Eligibility is considered on a case by case basis for persons unable to use Conventional Transit due to a disability. Eligibility is not based on a particular disability, age, income or lack of available public transit in an applicant's area. Eligibility is not for those who find it more difficult or are unwilling to use a regular conventional fixed route public transit system. Specialized Transit is not an attendant care service. Passengers whose medical conditions require specific transportation (i.e. extreme fragility requiring transportation below regular speeds or inability to remain on the vehicle for up to one hour) need to contact a non-emergency medical carrier for transportation.  

Applicants must be residents of the City of Barrie. Specialized Transit will provide service to any person visiting Barrie who meets the eligibility requirements and is an active registrant of another accessible service. A Visitor Service Request Form is required for verification of  eligibility and registration with another accessible service in their home jurisdiction.

As you contemplate eligibility for Specialized Transit,  please consider you may be able to use Barrie Transit's conventional accessible fixed-route system. Barrie Transit offers accessible buses on all conventional routes. Accessible features include pre-boarding electronic announcement, on-board next stop announcement  call/display system, low-floors with ramp, hand rails and priority seating with space for two wheelchairs.

Applying for Specialized Transit

Download the Application Form. After completing all 4 pages return it to the below address, fax it to 705-730-0377, or email it to Once received, the application will be reviewed within 14 calendar days and notification of eligibility will be sent to you. Please note that an incomplete application cannot be processed and will result in delays.

Service Barrie
City Of Barrie, 70 Collier Street, 1st Floor
P.O. Box 400, Barrie, ON, L4M 4T5

Please note: if a client does not use Specialized Transit during a consecutive 2 year period, they will be deemed inactive, and will have to re-apply for the service.

Fare Structure

Specialized Transit offers the same fare structure as Conventional Transit Services. For detailed information on our rates,  please visit our Fares page.

Booking, Confirming or Cancelling Trips

Specialized Transit is a shared ride system and you can expect to be on our vehicles up to 60 minutes (one hour) before you arrive to your destination, so please book accordingly.

Specialized Transit operates with a 30-minute scheduling window, that is from 15 minutes before the scheduled pick up time to 15 minutes after the scheduled pick up timeFor example, if you have a booked trip for a 10am pickup, the Specialized Transit operator will be scheduled to arrive between 9:45am and 10:15am.

Reserve a Trip: Office/Reservation Line

Please call the Office/Reservation line at 705-792-5033, press 1,  up to one week (7days) in advance and be prepared to provide the following information:

  1. Date you need transportation
  2. Your Client Identification Number and Name
  3. Time of your pickup
  4. Address of pickup and accessible entrance (specific location required)
  5. Address of destination and accessible entrance (specific location required)
  6. Is anyone accompanying you?
  7. Whether you will be using a wheelchair or other mobility device
  8. Pickup time for your return trip
Confirm or Cancel a Trip: Self-Serve Automated Line

To keep lines open for reservations, you are encouraged to confirm your trip by calling the self-serve automated line 705-737-6949, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. If you wish to cancel your ride please call as soon as possible so that we may accommodate others.

When you call the self-serve line, it will ask you for your Client Identification Number. Once you have entered it, it will ask you to enter your password (same as your client identification number). The self-serve line will remind you that anytime you may press "0" for assistance. The self-serve line will then greet you by name and ask you to Press 1: to confirm a previously booked trip or; Press 2: to cancel a trip. The self-serve line will offer you several options in regards to confirmation or cancelling your trip.

Cancellation Policy (under review)

We understand that sometimes plans change, however, please cancel your trip as soon as possible should you not be able to go out. Your cancellation and consideration will allow us to accommodate other passengers. A same day cancellation up to 30 minutes before your scheduled pick-up time is considered a late cancellation and is subject to a $3.00 fare the next time the service is used. A monthly pass or ride card cannot be used to pay the no show/late cancellation fare. The No Show fare and policies apply.

No Show Policy (under review)

The No Show policy applies to passengers who fail to appear at the pick-up location within 5 minutes of the arrival of the vehicle. When a No Show occurs, Specialized Transit will automatically cancel the remainder of trips for that day unless we hear from you. If a return trip is needed, we will do our best to re-schedule your trip, however, there may be a lengthy delay or you may be responsible for arranging alternate transportation. No shows are subject to a $3.00 fare. The no show fare must be paid the next time the service is used. A monthly pass or ride card cannot be used to pay the no show/late cancellation fare.

A maximum of four No Shows and/or late cancellations in one calendar month or refusal to pay no show/late cancellation fare will result in a five-day suspension of service. Continued violations of the NO Show Policy may result in progressive suspensions of service of up to 90 days.

Subscription Service

Passengers who wish to use the service at the same time and location more than twice weekly on a regular basis (for work, education and/or appointments) may be able to book their trips in advance through a subscription service. Transportation can be provided only if resources are available for the time requested. 

Once your subscription service is set up, you must use the specific bookings at least 75% of the time; otherwise your booking may be suspended or cancelled. All subscription bookings are currently automatically cancelled on some statutory holidays. Please note that if you cancel a regular morning pickup, your afternoon ride is assumed to be cancelled as well, unless otherwise notified.


If a companion (voluntary spouse, partner, friend or family) will be accompanying you, tell the booking agent when you make your trip reservation as we must reserve them a seat as well. A companion is required to pay their own fare when traveling with you. Companions may travel permitted space is available and it does not result in other eligible passengers with disabilities being denied service.


If you require more then door to door accompaniment or extra assistance, you must make the necessary arrangements with your Health Care Professional to have an attendant with you to ensure your safety. An Attendant is a mandatory support person who assists with communication, mobility, personal care, medical and behavioural needs. If it is determined that you require an Attendant, the Attendant must accompany you on all trips. One Attendant is permitted to travel with you at no cost. A registered client cannot act as an Attendant for another registered client. The separate Attendant card application form for Conventional service is not required and does not apply to Specialized Service.


Our Specialized vehicles are able to accommodate wheelchairs and scooters that are no larger than 42 inches in length and 30 inches in width. Our vehicles will not be able to accommodate anything larger.

Our lifts can accommodate a maximum of 600 lbs. at a time, therefore, the combined weight of the passenger and assistive device must not exceed 600 lbs. 

Our ramps can accommodate 600 lbs. up to a maximum of 800 lbs.(on restricted/limited fleet only); therefore, the combined weight of the passenger and assistive device must not exceed 800 lbs. It is important to ensure that your wheelchair/scooter is clean and in good repair (i.e. tires, foot pedals, seatbelt, brakes). If your wheelchair or scooter is deemed unsafe your trip will be refused. When boarding and alighting, passengers using power wheelchairs must position their wheelchairs on the lift with largest wheels toward the bus. Passengers who use a scooter must be able to transfer to a seat. Passengers are responsible for the safe maneuvering of their assistive device.


Operator Responsibilities

Operators Will:

  1. Be responsible for the safe and efficient operation of specialized transit vehicles.
  2. Make their presence known at the pick-up locations.
  3. Provide light assistance such as walking with you to and from the bus and to the closest accessible exterior door, opening doors.
  4. Verbally guide you with the positioning of your mobility aid on the vehicle lift/ramp and operate the lift/ramp.
  5. Safely secure your mobility aids and all belts and/or seatbelts.
  6. Ensure they arrive at the proper accessible entrance at your pick-up location.
  7. Maintain their schedule when time, traffic and weather conditions permit

​Operators Do Not:

  1. Assist clients to get on or off transit vehicles and/or maneuver, push or pull wheelchairs and/or scooters and do not park on private driveways.
  2. Make repairs or adjustments to mobility aids.
  3. Help go up or down flights of stairs, carry parcels, baggage, personal effects or heavy articles.
  4. Lift wheelchair or scooters up or down stairs.
  5. Report to reception, specific stations or other medical locations to find you.
  6. Unlock doors, enter private homes or wait for someone to arrive to open the door.
  7. Wait more than 5 minutes past your scheduled pick up time.
  8. Assist you with fare payment by looking into bags, backpacks, coats or other.

Passenger Responsibilities

  1. Please be ready at the nearest accessible door 15 minutes before your scheduled pick-up time. You are expected to board the vehicle once it has arrived. Remain seated while the vehicle is in motion.
  2. Please have your pass displayed or exact fare ready for the Operator when boarding.
  3. If you are not able to make your trip time or you must cancel, please do so as soon as possible. This will avoid no show/ late cancellation fare charges and allow others to use the time.
  4. If you are more than 5 minutes late, the bus will have to proceed to the next scheduled ride and the No Show policy will take effect.
  5. Expect to share your ride with others, and expect a longer ride, up to 60 minutes.
  6. Inform medical professionals that you are using the service, so that they may assist by keeping you on time. If you are running late please call and cancel or reschedule to avoid a late cancellation or no show fare.
  7. Please be considerate and courteous of the Operator and other passengers at all times.
  8. For the health and comfort of staff and riders kindly avoid excessive odors or scents. Odors may include but are not limited to scents related to unlaundered clothing, lack of bathing, uncontrolled bowels, and excessive perfumes. Failure to comply may result in suspension of service.
  9. Please have a clear accessible path to your door before pick-up and drop-off times, even in the winter months. Safe access to your property is your responsibility. Inaccessible paths may result in refusal of service.
  10. Ensure you keep all personal and health information up to date, including your phone number and address.
  11. Please keep parcels and personal belongings to a safe, manageable amount and maximum of (2) two.
  12. Profanity or abusive language/conduct will not be tolerated on Specialized Transit vehicles, when communicating with Booking Agents or Transit Staff. Failure to comply may result in a suspension of service.


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