DRIC, voies réservées, TransLink on Jack Layton

Hill Times ad Aug. 22
Jack Layton and public transit, No DRIC please, Un réseau de trolleybus, Transport Action BC campaign for Seattle-Vancouver train and more in today's Transport Action Canada hotline.

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Jack Layton, Doug Kelsey, TransLink Chief Operating Officer 

“It’s safe to say that we could not have brought in as many improvements as we have over the past six years if not for Jack Layton’s work,” notes TransLink Chief Operating Officer Doug Kelsey. “His Bill C-66 brought over $105 million to British Columbia for transit capital projects, and TransLink got $40.3 million of that. In fact, he used his party’s balance of power in Parliament to make sure that funding was included in the federal budget – which shows how willing he was to use whatever influence he had for the betterment of his country and its people.”

TransLink reported, "As president of the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, Mr Layton played a key role in establishing the federal Gas Tax Fund, which returns monies to regions so they can pay for transit improvements and supporting infrastructure. Money from Bill C-66 and the Gas Tax Fund has enabled TransLink to replace and expand the fleet of buses and SkyTrain cars and build the third SeaBus, all at a time when the Metro Vancouver region was expanding beyond anyone’s expectations. "

110 millions, Congestion routière à Montréal, Transport 2000 réagit favorablement

« Un mois gratuit à l'achat d'un abonnement annuel au transport en commun, ajout de 40 kilomètres de voies réservées et stationnements incitatifs additionnels. Voilà les principales mesures annoncées hier par le ministre des Transports du Québec, Sam Hamad, pour tenter de décongestionner le réseau routier montréalais »  Jeanne Corriveau a rapporté pour le Devoir le 25 août.

SRC a rapporté « Normand Parisien, directeur général de Transport 2000, réagit favorablement aux mesures de Sam Hamad. Il salue particulièrement les mesures incitatives en faveur de l'utilisation du transport en commun. »

« Plusieurs des mesures dévoilées hier n'entreront pas en vigueur pour la rentrée scolaire. Certaines seront mises en place au cours de l'automne, alors que d'autres ne s'appliqueront que l'an prochain. Au total, ce cocktail de mesures nécessitera des investissements de 110 millions »  le Devoir a rapporté.

No DRIC, Transport Action Ontario Hill-Times ad says

A Sierra Club of Ontario and Transport Action Ontario advertisement in the Aug. 22 edition of the Hill Times said: "Save both money and nature. STOP the Detroit River International Crossing!

"The Canadian access road to DRIC, the Windsor-Essex Parkway, will permanently damage a rare and threatened natural area and will harm several rare and threatened species. The recovery and survival of at least two endangered species will be jeopardized by the Parkway.

"DRIC ignores alternative modes of transportation. It fails to take into consideration the new CP Rail/ Borealis Infrastructure Tunnel proposed in Windsor-Detroit that will provide an alternate means of transportation resulting in a substantial amount of freight being diverted to rail and reducing air pollution. Improving and constructing alternative modes of transportation also creates Ontario jobs," the Hill Times ad said.

Hon. Vic Toews, Seattle-Vancouver 2nd Amtrak train

On Aug. 18, 2011 Transport Action BC's Matthew Buchanan reported: "The second daily Amtrak train between Seattle and Vancouver will continue. Canadian Border Services has agreed to not charge Amtrak for customs and border inspection services. Unlike past announcements, this one seems to be permanent."

Crosscut reports: "The so-called second Seattle-Vancouver Amtrak train, whose continuation has hung by threads since its 2009 launch, has entered the realm of the permanent. Canada's Public Safety minister, Vic Toews, announced Tuesday (Aug. 15) that the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA), “despite some significant financial constraints,” will continue to perform border clearance inspections for the train when it arrives in Vancouver every evening."

Un réseau de trolleybus à Montréal pour 2017

Lacordaire, Pie-IX, Saint-Michel, Saint Lawrence, Gouin, Sauvé-Côte-Vertu, Jarry, Rosemont, Beaubien, Mont-Royal, Van Horne, Édouard-Montpetit, Sherbrooke et Newman.

« La Société de transport de Montréal projette d'acquérir 100 voitures et de mettre en service les premières lignes d'un «réseau structurant» de trolleybus dès 2016-2017 » Bruno Bisson a écrit pour La Presse le 24 août 2011.

Ce plan en six points prévoit la mise à l'essai de technologies et d'autobus électriques, la mise en service de «MidiBus» de 30 passagers dès l'an prochain et la conversion progressive à l'électricité des véhicules de service des employés de la STM.

Metrolinx ad ruled ‘misleading’ on electrification

"Advertising Standards Canada found the flyer failed to explain that the Pearson-to-Union Station shuttle won’t run electric trains when the service opens in 2015. In fact it will be at least seven years before the line can be electrified, according to the electric train advocates who filed a complaint," Tess Kalinowski reported for the Toronto Star on Aug. 19 2011.

Metrolinx, The Clean Train Coalition is skeptical  

"This is not the first time Metrolinx has attempted to make the public believe they have embraced this clean, modern form of rail service and are expediting its construction. The  Clean Train Coalition believes Metrolinx is trying to delay or derail electrification and continue with its earlier plan to add more than 200 diesel trains to this densely-populated corridor the coalition said," Railway Age reported on Aug. 22.

"Separately, a source on Monday told Railway Age, “The Metrolinx objective is not to actually implement all the new transit services that [Ontario]Premier [Dalton] McGuinty is constantly announcing and re-announcing. It is closely controlled out of the premier’s office and its function is to make it look like something is being done, but then keep the improvements to a bare minimum for very good fiscal reasons,” Railway Age reported.

Tearing up the tracks, CP Ottawa Valley rail line

"Canadian Pacific Rail has begun removing the tracks from its Chalk River Subdivision running through the Ottawa Valley. But Renfrew County representatives, and even Arnprior's mayor, are still thinking about the future of rail travel along the line. CP spokesperson Ed Greenberg told the EMC that just a little over 40 kilometres (25 miles) would be torn up this year between Renfrew and Pembroke with more to follow over the next two years. As that happens, CP will salvage its railway ties, rails and related equipment," Theresa Fritz reported on Aug. 18 for EMC News.

CP rail line could be a vital commuter link

With the ever increasing cost fuel, transport trucks while able to deliver directly to customers location, isn't the most economically viable. The rail lines and the right of way remains there with the CP lines and I believe that allowing CP Rail to remove these rails will not only rob our children and grandchildren the opportunity to see a train, but more importantly cost the people of the Ottawa Valley jobs and infrastructure opportunities," Stephen Mielke wrote to the editor of EMC West Carleton on Aug. 18.

"I would like to ideally see these rails active again with freight trains. This rail line is also the one which supported CFB Petawawa. I travel the 417 quite a bit and see on a regular basis numerous transport trucks transporting military equipment from CFB Petawawa to other locations. Why can this equipment not be transported using the rail lines?" the EMC letter said.

Manitoba, Kansas companies part of salvage process

"The Manitoba company, Cando Ltd., will be working in the Renfrew area into late October to help salvage equipment from Canadian Pacific’s abandoned rail bed.  A&K Railroad Materials, through its Canadian subsidiary Canadian Rail Track Material, won the salvage contract for the rail line that runs from Smiths Falls to Mattawa. A&K, which is based out of Kansas City, has subcontracted out the dismantling and salvage of railway equipment, including the ties, anchors, spikes and other steel components, to Cando Contracting," Steve Newman reported for the Renfrew Mercury reported on Aug. 25.

China to halt more high-speed rail services

"Chinese rail authorities said they would stop more high-speed rail services, just as a magazine published claims that a big safety flaw had been discovered on a bullet train made by a state-owned firm," AFP reported on Aug. 23.

"The Shanghai Railway Station announced that 18 trains running on high-speed rail links -- including the new one between Beijing and Shanghai -- would be suspended from August 28," AFP reported.

50% off, Via Rail celebrates the end of summer

"Travel anywhere on the VIA Rail network by October 4, 2011, and get 50% off the adult regular fare in Economy* and Business** classes. But hurry – this offer ends August 31, 2011. All our Canadian destinations are on sale!" the VIA rail promotion says. Transport Action's George Bechtel notes "the deal does not apply to Kitchener-Toronto tickets. As our tickets are $46 and the minimum is  $50 excluding sales tax."

Montreal commuters face 'perfect storm,' conference told
Michelle Lalonde, Montreal Gazette, Aug. 25, 2011


Sept. 8, Toronto, Transport Action Ontario, Ontario political parties on transportation,  7:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m., Metro Hall, 55 John St., Toronto , Rooms 308/09, featuring Frank De Jong, Green Party candidate, NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo, Frank Klees MPP PC. http://www.transport-action.ca/ontario

Sept. 17 Sault Ste-Marie, CAPT Group of Seven Train Event, http://www.groupofseventrainevent.ca

Sept. 17  Regina, Transport Action Prairie, Annual General Meeting,  Knox-Metropolitan United Church, 2340 Victoria Ave., 2 - 4 pm.