Canada Line P3, $5 billion for DRIC, buses are cheaper

Hotline 1118, May 27, 2011
Transport Action Canada

very late: 3 government high speed rail study
very late: Canadian Transportation Agency Toronto-London rail
very late: Transport Canada commercial vehicle safety plan

Transit: Money's not the problem, it's the priorities 

"Don’t be taken in by the Bus Rapid Transit argument (see Globe and Mail Right of Way Gets Green Light, May 23). The main point, Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) is the cheapest, is just the point. Why pick the cheapest mode," Natalie Litwin, President Emeritus of Transport Action Ontario writes.

"Our provincial government can find the cash to build the unnecessary Detroit River International Crossing at Windsor that costs over $5 billion. Then the Ontario government cries poor over funding subways and/or Metrolinx  largely light rail plan for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton region.

"Madrid and Montreal built extensive subway systems at relatively low cost in short periods of time.  Paris and Zurich have extensive, electrified, regional rail systems that cover great areas also built at relatively low cost in a short time, but Ontario cannot find the money to build public transit right.

"It’s not the money that’s missing, it’s the priorities," Litwin wrote.

Transport Action BC: Canada Line P3 “Get Out of Jail Free” card?

"Transport Action BC members have raised concerns about Canada Line  service incidents that seriously affected its passengers, with no publicised action taken against the line’s private sector operator. ...  There are two incidents that concerned Transport Action BC. Both incidents resulted in significant and lengthy disruptions to Canada Line passengers. ... Transport Action BC felt that the Canada Line operator should have been able to handle a snow storm that, while uncommon, can reasonably be expected in a Vancouver winter.  ... Under our understanding of a P3 scenario, this should have resulted in a penalty to the concessionaire," Transport Action's Rick Jelfs reported on May 22.

Transport Action Atlantic: New board elected on May 14, 2011

The new board is made up of Ted Bartlett (Moncton), Marcia Carroll (Charlottetown), Iain Dunlop,  secretary (Bristol, NB), Christine Mills-Garnet (Dartmouth), Allan MacDonald  (Antigonish, NS), Donald MacLeod, treasurer, bulletin editor, (Halifax),  Clark Morris (Bridgetown, NS), Harold Nicholson, past president, (Hartland,  NB), John Pearce (Dartmouth), Mike Perry, vice-president (St.Andrews, NB).

US rail passenger ridership up 5.9%

"Amtrak, according to the U.S. National Association of Rail Passengers has announced the 17th consecutive month of year over year growth in passengers. March 2011 showed a growth of 5.9% over March 2010.  Details include 6 month growth (Oct-Mar) of 3.9% in the Northeast Corridor, 7.7% in state supported and other short corridors, and 5.3% on long distance trains.  The last statistic is good news for Canadian overnight trains which are suffering a low priority with VIA and government and need U.S. growth to spill over the border. Eurostar, the high speed Chunnel passenger train company, also reports strong growth in the Jan-Mar first quarter revenue and passenger numbers," Transport Action's John Pearce reported on May. 25.

Le plan du tramway proposé par Projet Montréal.

« Pour son 375e anniversaire, le chef de Projet Montréal, Richard Bergeron, souhaite offrir à Montréal un leg aussi important que le métro l'a été pour son 325e. Il veut lui offrir un réseau de tramway moderne de 37,5 km  » Jennifer Guthrie a rapporté pour Métro cette semaine.

«  Le chef de la deuxième opposition a exhorté le maire Gérald Tremblay à prendre une décision rapidement, puisque l'échéance approche à grands pas. «On a besoin de minimalement trois saisons estivales pour construire ces 37,5 km de lignes de tramway, a-t-il affirmé. Mais ça serait mieux si on en avait quatre. Ça veut dire qu'il faudrait mettre ce projet en chantier l'année prochaine pour que ce soit terminé à temps pour le début de 2017 » Métro a rapporté.

680 848 $ pour les transports en commun

L'Ontario contribue aux efforts en vue de rendre les transports en commun de Clarence-Rockland, Russell, et La Nation plus pratiques, accessibles et confortables en octroyant des fonds qui amélioreront les transports en commun. Cette année, ces municipalités recevront en financement provincial les fonds énumérés pour des améliorations aux services municipaux de transport en commun:
-  Clarence-Rockland 252 364 $
-  Russell  130 311 $
-  La Commission de transport Glengarry Nord Prescott-Russell 298 173 $
Le député Jean-Marc Lalonde a announcé le 24 mai 2011.

Un autobus remplace 40 véhicules et évite l'émission de 25 tonnes de gaz à effet de serre dans l'atmosphère chaque année.

Rural transit help in Eastern Ontario

Ontario is helping to make public transit in Clarence-Rockland, Russell, and The Nation regions more convenient, accessible and comfortable for commuters by providing funding for public transit improvements.

This year, the municipalities will receive $680, 848 in provincial funding for municipal transit improvements.
-  Clarence-Rockland $252,364
-  Russell $130,311
-  North Glengarry Prescott - Russell Transit Board$298,173

“This funding provides support municipalities can count on to improve transit services across the province.  Our record investments in public transit help build better communities and make life easier for Ontarians,” said Kathleen Wynne, Minister of Transportation

Transport Action on new commuter road for downtown Halifax

"Halifax businessman Bill Black wants government to examine the possibility of a new commuter road for those trying to access or leave Halifax’s urban core. "In a city our size . . . people who live in places like Sackville (shouldn’t be) taking an hour to get to work,",Clare Mellor reported for the Halifax Chronicle Herald.

John Pearce writes: This comment by Bill Black is so absurd. Millions are now being spent to deepen water depth at piers at south end Halterm. Container traffic through Halifax is now growing rapidly (since the recession)  and the remaining Ceres terminal cannot handle projected demands

The first of ten American Feeder Lines coastal shuttles linking Boston and Portland, Maine to deepwater megaship port of Halifax is to begin operation this month.

The traffic at the grain elevator is growing and diversifying to include not only grain but locally produced wood pellets and now pulse crops shipped from southern Saskatchewan for shipment to diverse markets around the world.

The combined VIA and Acadian bus terminal is continually being upgraded and passenger rail traffic is growing.  Commuter rail is being proposed and it would need the downtown terminal and tracks. over flour depends on the presence of the grain elevator. Parking is getting even more difficult downtown as vacant surface land is being dedicated to high rise office/apartment buildings.  Where would the added motor traffic go when it arrives downtown:  chaos!!

Jamaica runs its first passenger rail trains in about 20 years, albeit on a trial basis

No trucking safety plan in Road Safety Strategy 2015

Transport Canada's Road Safety Week ended at midnight on Monday. The week saw Canada launch a new 5-year road safety plan. The nation embraced the UN's Global road safety decade and hailed drops in newly crash stats. One hundred and fifty-six media stories warned about unsafe driving behaviours like texting, speeding, and drinking. It sounded good, but with all the honking we missed a few things.  Like the failure to include trucks in the new national safety plan.