War on car gets out of bike lane, train rapide avance lentement

Transport Action Canada,  Hotline 1120, June 10, 2011

Electrify GO Transit, No little plan

Toronto Star letter writers liked T-REX an idea put forward by Transport Action, Clean Train Coalition and the Canadian Auto Workers in "No little plan: Electrify GO Transit". "I entirely agree with transport specialist Greg Gormick that the most cost effective way to improve the rail network in the Toronto area would be to make more use of the existing surface rail corridors that radiate from Union Station. Frequent, all-day services should run on all of these lines. The cost would be limited to new rolling stock and additional tracks where necessary," David Fairthorne wrote in a letter to the Toronto Star. 

"Once again, we’re shown how world-last and stupid we are here. Instead of using the Weston rail corridor for effective transit of good benefit to many Torontonians, we are blowing bundles to service low-density suburbs and ensure that a monstrously polluting airport — which has a limited future due to peak oil — gets good service," Hamish Wilson wrote to the Star. 

 Note to Transport Canada, Sikorsky S-92 Helicopters can't fly for 30 minutes without oil

"The widow of a passenger who died in a chopper crash off Newfoundland two years ago says she is frustrated by Ottawa's plans to consult foreign regulators before requiring changes to the gearbox that was a cause of the disaster. Lori Chynn, whose husband John Pelley was aboard Cougar Flight 491, said the time has come for Transport Canada to order improvements on the crucial component instead of setting up more focus groups and meetings. Transport Canada said Tuesday it will first consult with American and European regulators before ordering any changes to a gearbox that lost oil and was a cause in the March 12, 2009, helicopter crash,"Michael Tutton wrote for the Canadian Press on June 7

Aucune mesure budgétaire pour la reconstruction du pont Champlain

« La coalition Champlain en chantier : QUAND? déplore le fait que le gouvernement de Stephen Harper n’ait prévu aucune mesure budgétaire pour la reconstruction du pont Champlain. «Étant donné l'urgence de la situation et les études alarmantes qui ont été rendues publiques au cours des dernières semaines, la seule solution possible consiste en la construction d'urgence d'un nouveau pont, et ce, avant la fin de la vie utile de l'actuel pont Champlain», a insisté le président de la coalition, Me Martin Fortier »  Métro a rapporté le 7 juin. 

La coalition Champlain est appuyée par Transport 2000. 

Regina Transit's 100th anniversary

The Canadian Urban Transit Association's (CUTA) annual conference was held in Regina last week to coincide with Regina Transit's 100th anniversary. "It's not surprising that (Saskatoon's) transit ridership is quite a bit higher than Regina's," said Michael Roschlau, CUTA president. "There are a lot of inherent geographical and demographic issues that help to shape the potential for transit in  community." That could change in Regina with the potential redevelopment of the CP Rail yards north of Dewdney Avenue. Roschlau compared the project to the redevelopment of Edmonton's City Centre Airport, which will see new growth and development in that city's core with a focus on public transit," The Regina Leader Post reported.

War on the car gets out of the bike lane

"Put a road toll on every highway in the GTA. Throw in a congestion charge in the downtown core. And hike up gas taxes in the region by another 10 cents. Do it all to raise money for public transit," Brett Popplewell wrote for the Toronto Star on Jun 4.

"A 2010 report from the Toronto Board of Trade said Torontonians spend an average 80 minutes a day commuting to and from work. The board has pegged the annual economic impact of congestion in the GTA and Hamilton at $6 billion in lost productivity. Last year, the board released a report meant to educate decision makers on different ways to fight gridlock and raise money for transit. It outlined how $4 billion a year could be raised off the backs of drivers through four new levies that would each bring in $1 billion. They included a $1 per day surcharge on commercial parking spaces in the city; a 10 cent gas tax on every litre of fuel sold in the GTA; a 10 cent per kilometre toll on the QEW, Gardiner Expressway, Don Valley Parkway and the GTA’s 400-series highways; and an unspecified congestion charge in a restricted zone (presumably the downtown core)," the Toronto Star reported.

Le projet de train rapide Montréal-New York avance lentement

« Après le Plan Nord du gouvernement Charest, Raymond Chrétien se démène pour faire avancer son Plan Sud. Comme le premier, il s'agit d'un chantier dont la durée pourrait s'étaler sur plusieurs décennies. Il consiste à intégrer Montréal aux grands couloirs ferroviaires nord-américains où rouleraient des trains à haute vitesse (THV) sur des voies réservées pour la plus grande partie des trajets » Rudy Le Cours a rapporté pour la Presse, le 9 juin 2011.

« Le délégué général du Québec à New York, John Parisella, a pour sa part rappelé que le nord-est des États-Unis pèse gros pour les exportations québécoises. Il a aussi expliqué qu'il ne faut pas rêver à un TGV comme on en voit en France, en Espagne et même au Maroc. Le THV dont il est question aura des pointes d'un peu plus de 200 km/h, mais il ralentira jusqu'à 100 km lorsqu'il empruntera des tronçons partagés avec les trains de marchandises. Outre ses moindres coûts, ce partage est incontournable en raison de l'impossibilité de bâtir de nouvelles voies qui traverseraient le parc Adirondack, protégé par la constitution de l'État de New York » La Presse a rapporté. 

VTPI, A stupid attack on smart growth

A new Victoria Transport Policy Institute report critiques National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) research concerning how various land use factors affect travel activity and pollution emissions, and therefore the impacts and benefits of smart growth policies. The NAHB contends that smart growth is an ineffective emission reduction strategy, but these conclusions are based on an inaccurate summation of its own research. Summarized in “A Stupid Attack On Smart Growth," at Planetizen Blog.

Social Equity and Sustainable Transportation

A new VTPI report discusses the importance of incorporating social equity and environmental justice objectives into transport policy and planning analysis. It recommends a systematic and comprehensive social equity impact evaluation framework. This analysis considers how various transport planning distortions tend to reduce transport system diversity, which reduces transport options increases various costs that are particularly harmful to disadvantaged people. This comprehensive analysis framework can help identify integrated, win-win solutions, which achieve multiple social, economic and environmental objectives. This approach can help build broader coalitions among diverse interest groups.

Higher gas prices may reduce car trips 

The Victoria Transport Policy Institute  reports, "Higher elasticities imply that price reforms are relatively effective, consumers are able to reduce vehicle travel, and rebound effects are relatively large. Some studies found that price elasticities declined during the last quarter of the Twentieth Century, but recent evidence described indicates that transport is becoming more price sensitive. Changing Vehicle Travel Price Sensitivities, The Rebounding Rebound Effect report discusses the concepts of price elasticities and rebound effects, reviews information on vehicle travel and fuel price elasticities, examines evidence of changes in price elasticity values, and discusses policy implications."

CP's Malcolm Cairns to speak on rail freight transportation in Hamilton

TRANSLOG 2011, scheduled for June 15-16 at the Hamilton Convention Centre in Hamilton, will bring together a diverse mix of transportation practitioners to provide a 360 degree view of timely issues in goods and people movement. This year the conference will identify gaps between where we are today and where we could be for sustained and efficient movements of goods and people. The event, entitled "Efficient Movement of Goods and People: Are We There Yet?" is being put on by The McMaster Institute for Transportation and Logistics and Supply Chain and Logistics Association Canada. Malcolm Cairns, Director of Business Research at CP will present a talk on "The Strengths and Challenges for Rail Freight Transportation in Canada," Truck News reported on May 31.