Launched in December 2020, Huron Shores Area Transit (HSAT) operates an inter-community public transit service linking Lambton Shores, South Huron, North Middlesex, Bluewater and Kettle & Stony Point First Nation with each other and Sarnia, London, Goderich and Strathroy. The fully accessible service provides an important regional, accessible, convenient and affordable transit service for seniors, students, workers and youth for employment, education, health and wellness, and leisure.

Collectively, the service area has a population of 37,686 (2021 Census) and covers 1,519.5 km2 (687.5 sq. mi.). The geographical area served is more than twice the size of the City of Toronto (630.2 km2 / 243.3 sq mi), with just two 20-person buses and four fixed-route bus routes. Each bus can accommodate two wheelchairs and two bikes.

HSAT is funded by an Ontario Community Transportation Grant (CTA program):

  • 2018 – 2023 (March 31): $2 million
  • 2023 (April 1) – 2025 (March 31): $1,065,946
  • 2024: $318,169.50 – “top up” funding to cover cost increases since the original grant amount was determined in 2018.

The funding was part of $14 million the province committed in support of public transit to 38 Ontario communities.

Fast Facts

  • $10 long-distance fare / $5 local fare.
  • Children 12 and under ride free with an adult.
  • 2 buses.
  • 4 bus routes.
  • 1 bus serves 3 routes.
  • 22 towns/villages served.
  • 51 bus stops.
  • Route 2 bus switches at noon to service Route 3 and Route 4.
  • Bus Hub is Sobeys Plaza (Grand Bend).
  • Bus Hub enables passengers to transfer between buses to reach other destinations.
  • 20,066 trips/boardings in 2023.
  • Sarnia to Grand Bend Route 1 is the busiest, 12,727 trips.
  • Average Monthly Ridership 1,672.
  • 53% of trips are local; 47% are long-distance.
  • Summer Bus runs July and August to accommodate beachgoers.
  • Employee Shuttles run July through October to accommodate seasonal workers.
  • Smart Cards account for 32% of trip payments.
  • Buses are on time 72% of the time.
  • In 2023, HSAT buses completed 3,979 return trips and travelled more than 504,000 km.
  • Bus runs not completed due to mechanical breakdown in 2023 were 22 and due to weather were 21.

Transit Advisory Committee

The Transit Advisory Committee emerged in 2019 from the earlier 2018 Huron Shores Transit Steering Committee, which formed as a grassroots advocacy group from business owners and organizations and social agencies who over a number of years had identified affordable housing and public transit as major opportunities for rural community sustainability.

The role of the Transit Advisory Committee is to be a sounding board and feedback mechanism for the Transit Coordinator and to connect Huron Shores Area Transit to its constituent municipal partners (Lambton Shores, Kettle & Stony Point First Nation, South Huron, North Middlesex and Bluewater).

Members on the Committee represent the municipal partners, key businesses and social agencies.

  • Bruce Shaw – retired Executive Director of Community Living South Huron, former principal of South Huron District High School, long-time Grand Bend Rotary Club member
  • Cindy Maxfield – Health Promotion and Partnership Coordinator with Grand Bend Area Community Health Centre
  • Darren Boyle – Director with Grand Bend & Area Chamber of Commerce, hockey and softball coach
  • Doug Cook – Mayor of Lambton Shores and official representative from the municipality
  • Glen Baillie – Chair, Past-President of Grand Bend & Area Chamber of Commerce, Lambton Shores Councillor, local business owner, and community volunteer
  • Janet Ferguson – Treasurer of Lambton Shores and managing supervisor of Huron Shores Area Transit
  • Kyle Walker – Job Developer with Cooperative Education and Employment Ontario at Lambton College
  • Lorri Kerrigan – Social Planner in the Social Planning and Children’s Services Department for the County of Lambton
  • Lynne VanHaaren – recently retired Firm Administrator at MPW Chartered Professional Accountants LLP, Club Manager of Forest Curling Club, long-time Director on Forest BIA Board of Directors
  • Rebekah Msuya-Collison – Municipal Clerk of South Huron and official representative from the municipality
  • Todd Jardine – Executive Director of Southwind Corporate Development Inc., enhancing the First Nation’s stature as a business oriented community, official representative from the First Nation
  • Winona Bailey – Bluewater Councillor, official representative from the municipality, community volunteer