|MPP Frank Klees at|
Sept. 8 election debate.
Transport Action Ontario report cited, No little plan
"Ontario’s New Democratic Party said Monday it will oppose current plans to initiate diesel multiple-unit (DMU) train service linking Toronto’s Union Station with Lester B. Pearson International Airport, based on environmental concerns. NDP also said the current plan “calls for building the ARL twice—first as diesel, and then converting to electric. The process will take up to 10 years and add significant costs, according to a recent report by Transport Action Ontario,” Railway Age reported on Sept. 26
Transport 2000 Québec, Plan métropolitain d'aménagement et de développement
On doit mettre fin au développement de la capacité routière Le Devoir a rapporté « Bien qu'elle déplore que le PMAD reste silencieux sur les aspects socioéconomiques, Transport 2000 Québec reconnaît une meilleure volonté d'intégration des transports et de l'aménagement dans l'avenir, comparativement à ce qui était pratiqué jusqu'à maintenant. «L'évolution des tendances et le leadership d'un certain nombre de municipalités peuvent créer un contexte favorable pour l'avenir, explique Normand Parisien, directeur général de l'association également membre de Transit, qui ajoute toutefois qu'il est de la responsabilité conjointe de la CMM et du ministère des Transports de proposer un plan de transport intégré des personnes et des marchandises dans la région métropolitaine, «chose qui n'a toujours pas été faite malgré la création de la CMM, il y a 10 ans.» Malgré que l'objectif de regrouper 40 % des nouveaux développements autour d'axes de transport en commun puisse paraître ambitieux, l'association considère néanmoins comme réaliste la mise en oeuvre du PMAD sur 20 ans.
« Côté aménagement, M. Parisien considère que les priorités énoncées dans le PMAD sont restreintes. «La CMM et Transport 2000 Québec convergent avec certains objectifs, malgré une dissidence observée parmi des municipalités, dans la banlieue nord surtout. Des divergences qui portent davantage sur l'accessibilité aux moyens de transport en commun, car les politiques tarifaires pratiquées sont quelque peu dissuasives pour les navetteurs qui utilisent fréquemment l'automobile ou pour les populations appauvries, ajoute-t-il. Ainsi, Montréal a été la ville la plus vorace en matière de hausses de tarifs depuis 10 ans et les municipalités membres de la CMM, qui en auraient pourtant le pouvoir, ne désapprouvent pas ces hausses... Les besoins en transport sont considérables, mais, à ce niveau, la balle est dans le camp du gouvernement», conclut ce dernier, en indiquant toutefois qu'il s'agit là d'une tout autre question... » Valérie R. Carbonneau a écrit le 24 septembre 2011 pour Le Devoir.
Transport Action Atlantic, Loss of rail service will hurt Maritimes
"Recently revealed news that CN Rail is considering abandoning part of their "Newcastle subdivision" on the N.B. North Shore (likely the 60 miles of track from Bathurst south to Rogersville) has wide-ranging impacts for communities on the North Shore to the lower St. Lawrence and Nova Scotia. Residents of towns and cities such as Miramichi, Bathurst, and Campbellton, rely heavily on VIA Rail for overnight trips to Montreal and beyond, and also south to Moncton and Nova Scotia. The only alternative air service from Bathurst is very limited and expensive. The only Acadian Bus is a once-per-day local service. Any closure of this route for VIA would also affect Quebec centres from Rimouski east to the Matapedia valley," Transport Action Atlantic's John Pearce wrote to the Editor of the Moncton Times & Transcript on Sept. 28.
"Second, this route represents some valuable redundancy for freight service in case of accidents or major trestle maintenance on the 317 mile Napadogan and Pelletier sub-divisions used for CN through freight between Moncton and the St. Lawrence valley. The consequences of any major blockages on this freight route would have dire effects on overseas container and time-sensitive Maritime freight service. Third, and most important, the loss of a robust freight line would have serious effects on attempts to revive the flagging industrial base on the North Shore. Rail freight is three times as efficient as truck for handling lighter loads such as containers for Newfoundland shipped through Belledune, or wood chips for a new ACOA-funded facility in Dalhousie," the Moncton Times & Transcript letter said.
However, for commodities such as unit Ultramar oil trains from Quebec City for Miramichi, ore cars for Brunswick mining operations, structural steel for Belledune's Arctic assembly plant, and paper products, rail freight is six to eight times more fuel efficient. Rail freight service must be retained and upgraded. The Province of New Brunswick needs to take the initiative to upgrade the North Shore line (Newcastle subdivision) which suffered serious deferred maintenance during its ownership by New Brunswick East Coast railway over the past 15 years. Co-operative funding should be available from Quebec due to loss of VIA service along the lower St. Lawrence; from N.S. due to breaking of feeder bus connections to/from VIA in that province; VIA Rail through feds in Ottawa as a major user of the line; CN as a beneficiary for its freight service, and federal agencies such as ACOA designed to bolster the economy of the Maritimes," John Pearce, Past President, Transport Action Atlantic wrote in the Moncton Times & Transcript.
CREDDO, Rapibus, transports en commun et patience collective
« (Canada) est le seul pays du G-8 à ne pas avoir de politique nationale de transport en commun. L'enjeu des transports mérite une meilleure planification à long terme. La possibilité de la construction d'un autre pont interprovincial doit être étudiée avec circonspection pour ne nuire aux investissements en transports collectifs, moins coûteux et plus durables. Il faut donc une offre structurée et efficace qui répond aux besoins des navetteurs et qui s'arrime avec les réseaux de transport de la Ville dOttawa » Nicole Desroches et Vanessa Normand de Conseil régional de l'environnement et du développement durable de lOutaouais a écrit dans Le Droit le 28 septembre.
« Au Québec et ailleurs, on réalise de plus en plus le manque de modes de transports durables à la portée des citoyens. Les enjeux environnementaux, économiques et énergétiques tracent la voie à suivre dans le développement des transports collectifs. Québec devrait s'engager, dès maintenant, à soutenir les projets d'expansions de la STO en plus des transports collectifs en milieux ruraux. Transit, la nouvelle Alliance pour le financement des transports collectifs, estime que le développement de ces réseaux doit recevoir une attention prioritaire des gouvernements. Nous y avons joint nos forces en sachant qu'il n'est plus l'heure de ralentir les projets comme le Rapibus et que le développement de la mobilité régionale et gatinoise passe par des investissements majeurs en transports collectifs » les représentatives de CREDDO a écrit dans Le Droit.
Transportation Minister Blair Lekstrom tells mayors he’s open to TransLink reform”
The debate on Translink funding continues to occupy the media. Today’s contribution from Jeff Nagel (BC Local News) starts with the intriguing possibility that Kevin Falcon’s “reform” might be rolled back. Of course that won’t happen any time soon, or as a precondition for the Mayor’s signing on for a property tax increase. And, of course, it still has to win cabinet approval, and Falcon is now Minister of Finance who is bound to take a keen interest in issue like gas tax increases and so on. Lekstrom might even think it is a Good Idea – but he is not saying that and couldn’t possibly comment if he did or not," Stephen Rees reported on September 28.
The Vancouver blogger cites the BC Local News report: "Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie is one of several others in the region who won’t back the plan because he opposes any property tax hike and won’t take the risk of getting stuck with one. He also wants to know exactly what new source is proposed before he votes on it. “A vehicle levy or road pricing can mean a hundred different things,” Brodie said. “There’s no certainty as to what they’re talking about.” Brodie added he would support a two-cent gas tax alone to build the Evergreen Line immediately while work continues to flesh out other funding options."
Ontario Election Transit, Liberals trumpet the Big Move
Urban Toronto published an interview with Liberal Transportation Minister Kathleen Wynne on Sept. 29. The Minister said: "There are good successes (re. The Big Move) that we’re going to see as a result of the investments that we’ve made. Coming to an agreement on the Eglinton-Scarborough Crosstown Line with the new mayor was a big hurdle to get over. And given that we’re over that, I’m feeling very confident. The Eglinton line really was the priority of Metrolinx ..."
"We have no plans to institute tolls on existing roads. Having said that, there is going to be a discussion about road pricing, about tools that we can use to fund ongoing transit building. Metrolinx is going to bring forward an investment strategy by spring of 2013. … the GTA West corridor and the Niagara-Burlington Mid-Peninsula area. We haven’t settled on a corridor [in Niagara] and t here’s a lot of work that needs to be done in terms of other transit, other expansion of existing roads … I would ultimately like to see us have a network of bike paths around the province, like the Route Verte in Quebec," Kathleen Wynne told Adam Hawkins.
Ontario Election Transit, NDP are big fans of Transit City
"The NDP’s transit platform promises to restore the 50/50 share of transit subsidies with Ontario municipalities that the Mike Harris PC government eliminated in 1998. In exchange for restoring the subsidy municipalities would have to agree to implement a fare freeze for four years," Urban Toronto reported on Sept. 29.
NDP Transportation Critic Cheri DiNovo said, " We’re big fans of Transit City. …(The NDP) did a series of roundtables with transit experts and environmentalists and with one voice they said “build Transit City.” We were fans of doing that. The first body blow was the $4 billion that was taken out. [Transportation Minister] Wynne said it wasn’t moved, that the money was just taken out for now and would have come back in future. Whatever language you use the money’s not there.
Ontario Election Transit, PC party says electrify Pearson airport link
"Frank Klees, MPP for Newmarket Aurora and candidate for re-election and the current PC Critic for Transportation and Infrastructure, said the entire project has not been well managed. "I believe the McGuinty government set up an artificial timeline for the completion of that link," he said. "To force that project because of the Pan Am games deadline was just not good judgment," Erin Hatfield reported for Inside Toronto on Sept. 28, 2011.
"Given the proximity of the corridor to high density neighbourhoods, and the implications it would have on health, noise and quality of life, Klees said electrification should have been a priority for the government right from the start. "Without question this line should have been electrified," Klees said. "By moving ahead as they are (with diesel first), they are going to end up
costing multi millions of dollars more," Inside Toronto reported.
Ontario Election Transit, Green Party, Integrate modes
Frank De Jong, former leader of the Ontario Green Party and Green Party candidate for Davenport, said his party also believes the ARL should be electric now as opposed to later. "When you have electric trains you can start and stop faster so you can have more stops and that will better serve the community. It should be fully integrated with the TTC. It should serve the community just like any other part of the transit system," Erin Hatfield reported for Inside Toronto on Sept. 28, 2011.
Transport Canada permits Lindsay to operate a trolley
"Coun. Gord James advised City of Kawartha Lakes "council at the Sept. 27 meeting that confirmation has been received through MP Barry Devolin's office that the trolley is now licensed, approved and ready for use in Lindsay. You can even book it if you wish. … The trolley was purchased by the City last year for $80,000 as a pilot project to shuttle people around Lindsay, especially from Rivera Park to the fairgrounds. It was brought to Lindsay from the U.S. last year with a deadline of July 31, 2011 to get it road-approved. That process goes through Transport Canada, which regulates all public vehicles," Mary Riley wrote for the Lindsay Post on Sept. 27.
The Guardian, The end of motoring in the UK
Young people today would rather have the latest smartphone than a flashy car. And the number of them who can drive is plummeting. Is Britain's love-affair with the car really over?
Transport Action Canada
Hotline 1133, Sept. 30, 2011
(formerly Transport 2000 / anciennement Transport 2000 Canada)
Recorded Hotline: 1-800-771-5035
October 16-18, Calgary, Railway Association of Canada, AGM, Trade Show and Research and Development Conference
November 22, Toronto, Transport Futures, Mobility pricing stakeholders forum