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Commute got you down? Calgary Transit thinks karaoke may be the answer.

The agency is inviting transit users to share their musical chops on its “karaoke bus,” which it says will “entertain” random routes throughout the city starting next week.

Calgary Transit spokesman Stephen Tauro said the bus is part of a push to get residents back on public transit after a pandemic-induced slump in ridership.

“We’re looking at … creating an environment for customers that is more than just a journey from Point A to Point B. It’s more of an experience, more fun,” he said.

A press release for the initiative promises that “you never know when you might step onto your bus and be dazzled by the sensational vocals of one of your co-commuters.”

“We have a team of people who are brainstorming ideas daily, just trying to figure out what could work, what would be acceptable for customers, what would be exciting,” he said. “So we’re just brainstorming and ideas in the back house, taking chances and risks.”

Mr. Tauro said it seems like the karaoke risk could pay off, given the turnout to a stationary preview of the bus’s offerings on Wednesday.

“There were people waiting at 10 a.m. in line, waiting to sing,” he said.

Technicians are currently working on the vehicle to get it back in driving condition for next week’s official launch.

“The bus is wrapped with a generic fun activity wrap,” Tauro said. “We did it as that so we can use it for different events. The destination sign will say ‘karaoke bus’ when it’s in service.”

The bus will be free to ride and it will add to, rather than replace, existing trips on its routes.

Those hoping for a quieter commute or concerned about the potential spread of COVID-19 are welcome to wait for a regularly scheduled vehicle, Mr. Tauro said.

He noted that transit agencies around the world have been looking at ways to spice up commutes, but he’s not aware of any others that are bringing karaoke on board.

Earlier this year, the Toronto-area GO Transit also brought some artistic flair to the daily commute, partnering with the Luminato festival to share a performance in which a suit-wearing fish sheds his urban garb and finds his aquatic calling.

A key difference: the GO Transit initiative was silent.

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