All-Time List of Canadian Transit Systems

by David A. Wyatt

Edmonton, Alberta

Principal System

Edmonton Bus Line advertisement (1895)

Edmonton Bus Line (1890's)
omnibus Omnibus operation between Edmonton and the railway station at South Edmonton (later Strathcona). Service timed to coordinate with railway arrivals and departures. In 1901 other omnibus operators running scheduled service between Edmonton and Strathcona were D.E. Cameron and N. Leclerc (Tingley p. 10). Perhaps discontinued when the two communities were linked by the Edmonton, Yukon & Pacific Railway Co. in 1902, but certainly the market would have dried up when the street railway opened in 1908.

Edmonton Street Railway Company (No Operation)
failed street railway Incorporated 1894 (Dom.) to operate street railway in Edmonton. Franchise secured from the Town of Edmonton 1903. $10,000.00 performance bond forfeited 1905. (Dorman et al.)

ERR Streetcar Edmonton Radial Railway (30 October 1908 - 16 July 1946)
street railway/light rail trolley bus Municipal operation. Also cited in law as Edmonton Radial Tramway. Municipality authorized 1893 (NWT) to construct and/or operate tramways. Authorized 1908 (Alta) to operate tramways in Edmonton and for 80 miles (128 km) in any direction. This included operation to St. Paul, St. Albert, Morinville, Lacombe, Namao, Athabasca Landing, Fort Saskatchewan, and Daysland. (None of this was ever done). Acquired 26 August 1908 the Strathcona Radial Tramway Company Limited (incorporated 08 October 1904, NWT) which held, from 30 September 1907, an exclusive franchise to operate tramways in the City of Strathcona. In addition to the cities of Edmonton and Strathcona, service was also extended to the villages of North Edmonton and Calder. ERR name changed to ETS 1946. (Photo: NewDavesRailPix)

Edmonton English Electric Co trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton ACF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton Radial Railway 5 (1939 Leyland Cub) (David A. Wyatt 2009) Edmonton Pullman trolleybus (DavesRailPix)

Edmonton Transportation ticket (front) Edmonton Transportation System (16 July 1946 - 29 April 1947)
street railway/light rail trolley bus Municipal operation. Name changed again in 1947.

ETS New Flyer Model D40LF bus

Edmonton Transit System (29 April 1947 - 14 November 2016)
street railway/light rail trolley bus ETS took over transit service in the Town of Beverly in 1961, and in the Town of Jasper Place in 1964. Name altered to Edmonton Transit 1977 but “Edmonton Transit System” began appearing on buses again in 1993. Contract transit operator for St. Albert (1974-1986), Sherwood Park (1977 - c1989), Beaumont (2003-2004), Edmonton Garrison (2004-present), Fort Saskatchewan (2004-present), Spruce Grove (2006-present), and Leduc (2010-2014). Regular bus service between Edmonton and Edmonton International Airport begun 29 April 2012. Formal name change from Edmonton Transit System to Edmonton Transit Service arose from organizational changes announced 14 November 2016. (CUTA 1989, CUTA 1991/2, CUTA 1992) (Photos: ETS Photo Gallery, DavesRailPix, William A. Luke, Angus McIntyre, Peter Cox)

Edmonton Transit System #101, and AEC trolley bus (Peter Cox) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton Transit System 192 (1949 CCF-Brill T-44) Angus McIntyre) Edmonton Transit System 73 (1951 Twin 45-SP) (Angus McIntyre) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton Transit System 860 (Bluebird) on Jasper Ave. (Angus McIntyre) ETS CCF/Brill trolleybus bus Edmonton ETS411 GM old look (William A. Luke) Edmonton CCF-Brill trolleybus (DavesRailPix) Edmonton 989/Winnipeg 689 GM new look (David Wyatt) Edmonton BBC-GM trolleybus (DavesRailPix) ETS 128 (GM/BBC 1982) EB on 102 Av at 124 St (David Wyatt 2009 Apr 24) Edmonton Transit System 04 (Glavel) (David A. Wyatt 2009) Edmonton Transit System 138 (BBC-GM) (David A. Wyatt 2009)

Edmonton Transit System logo circa 1950s
circa 1950s
Edmonton Transit System logo circa 1960s-1977
circa 1960s-1977
Edmonton Transit logo 1977-1997
Edmonton Transit System logo 1997-
Service area population606,000 (1991)
Vehicle fleet713 buses,
98 trolleybuses,
37 LR cars (2000)
Employees1744 (1991)
Ridership68,493,582 (2009)
Data Sources: CUTA 1991/2
CTF [Aug. 2010] (ridership)

Edmonton Transit Service (14 November 2016 - present)
street railway/light rail Organization's formal name changed from Edmonton Transit System to Edmonton Transit Service circa November 2016.

Secondary Systems

Edmonton, Yukon & Pacific Railway Company (1902 - 1929)
commuter rail Between 1902 and 1929 the EY&P operated passenger trains between Strathcona and Edmonton. Schedule was 4 times/day in the 1920s.

Edmonton Incline Ry Edmonton Incline Railway (20 May 1908 - circa 1913)
funicular Incorporated 1907. A funicular (incline railway) operating at the foot of First Street. Closed when a more convenient river crossing opened.

Beverly Transportation Beverly Transportation (circa 1922)
Probably short-lived bus transportation between Edmonton and Beverly. Owner Victor Lelland Kellough. Kellough is listed in the 1922 city directory as the proprietor of Radial Bus & Taxi Service. (photo: YouTube).

[Forest Heights Bus Service] (circa 06 May 1937 - 1946?)
Bus service connecting the Forest Heights and Riverdale neighbourhoods with downtown Edmonton. Owned by John Carlson, and then Wallace Storey. Service received subsidy from the City of Edmonton. Service sold by Storey to Bus Universal Supply of Alberta Ltd. circa October 1938. (research by Martin Parsons 2012).

[Beverly Bus Service] (1930s? - 1950?)
Serving the Town of Beverly. Initial ownership either in the hands of Diamond Bus Lines (sole proprietor Nicholas Mazatiuk) according to City clerk (April 1937) or jointly held by Sunburst Motor Coaches and William A. Quick (October 1938). Route and bus sold October 1938 to Bus Universal Supply of Alberta Ltd. (research by Martin Parsons 2012).

Checker Taxi Cab Company Ltd. (circa 1940 - circa 1946)
Authorized to operate a public bus service between downtown Edmonton and Blatchford Field (airport) for the duration of World War II plus six months. Established to serve the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan facility. (research by Martin Parsons 2012).

Beverly Bus Lines Ltd. (1951 or before - 31 December 1961)
Serving Beverly (Sullivan). Town annexed by Edmonton 01 January 1962. (Edmonton Journal Jan. 02, 1962, p. 21).

Jasper Place Diamond Lines Prevost (William A. Luke) Diamond Bus Lines Ltd. (circa 1947 - 16 August 1964)
Serving Jasper Place. Real estate advertising for Jasper Place mention bus service as early as 1940. Town annexed by Edmonton 17 August 1964. (Sullivan) (photos: William A. Luke, Peter Cox).

Diamond Lines [Jasper Place] Twins (Peter Cox 13 Sep 1964)

High Level Bridge logo (ERRS)

Edmonton Radial Railway Society (14 June 1997 - present (seasonal May to October))
street railway/light rail Heritage trolley operation between downtown Edmonton and the Old Strathcona heritage district. Local service began in June in Old Strathcona. Service to Grandin Station began 15 August 1997. Service also operated over part of the line 06 - 08 October 1979, 14 August - 04 September 1995, and 12 - 14 October 1996. The Society has operated an electric street railway within the Fort Edmonton historical park since 1984.

Mechanized River Valley Access (09 December 2017 - present)
funicular A funicular (incline railway) operating at the foot of 100 Street NW. Service is fare free. Vehicle is unstaffed. Responsibility for day-to-day operation falls to the City of Edmonton.


John Walter's Upper Ferry (but not Belle of Edmonton) c1881 ferry Prior to the construction of bridges across the North Saskatchewan River ferry services were operated at three points. The “upper ferry”, 1881-1913 (vessel Belle of Edmonton from 1882), between the later Walterdale and High Level bridges, and “lower ferry”, 1882-1900, at the mouth of Mill Creek were owned by John Walter. A ferry service (?-1912) in the vicinity of the Dawson bridge was operated by a teenager named Fred Marshall. (Monto & Lawrence)

Research also found October 1938 correspondence with the City regarding a private bus service to operate on Fort Road between 118th Avenue and a point two blocks past the Transit Hotel on 66th Street (to 66th St./130th Ave. or Fort Rd./64th St.?). The C. Kruger Bus Line received permission from the Edmonton Radial Railway Superintendant to operate one bus, a 1933 Chevrolet with a 26 passenger body. It is unclear if this service was operated, or for how long. (Martin Parsons 2012).


Funicular20 May 1908 - circa 1913,
09 December 2017 - present
Electric railway30 October 1908 - 01 September 1951>
Light rail transit23 April 1978* - present
Electric railway (heritage)14 June 1997 - present (seasonal May to October)
Motor bus1932 - present
Trolley coach24 September 1939 - 02 May 2009
* Edmonton Transit employees were carried on free rides 17 April 1978, and the public was carried free 18-20 April 1978. Formal opening ceremonies were held 22 April 1978.


Copyright ©1989-2022 David A. Wyatt. All Rights Reserved.
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This page last modified: Tuesday, 13-Dec-2022 12:04:04 CST