03.25.2013 07:30 AM

Transit and Toronto, blah blah blah

Two things that drive me nuts about Toronto:

  1. The manic focus on transit issues, 24/7, to the total exclusion of all other issues, like poverty, health, crime, environment, etc.
  2. The fact that, despite the continual yammering about transit, nothing ever friggin’ gets done about transit.


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    Joe Henry says:

    The issue is that affordable and accessible transit is actually linked to issues of health and poverty. However, there still is defined concretely enough for the public not the politicians.

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    james Smith says:

    When I was a kid we backed onto Highway 27 (before it was 427) I took a clipping of an illustration from the Toronto Telegram to Current Events at school of the Train that was going to travel to Malton Aeroport down the middle of the then 4 lane highway.

    In the late ’70’s I lived at Bathurst & Bloor. Spadina Subway had just opened. I was sick of listening to folks in Tea Ho go on & on about “The city that works” while I had an hour & a half commute on transit that was a 20 to 30 minute drive.

    Soon after, I moved to Calgary, and watched as the LRT got talked about, planned & built, and built some more. Moved back to the GTHA in ’87 all that was built in 10 years was the RT and one fecking Subway stop.

    I go back to YYC often enough to see their LRT expanding all the time. What’s TeaHo accomplished? The subway to nowhere. Toronto is a joke.

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    !o! says:

    Ford pandering to his base. He’s campaigning, and he doesn’t have the support to build a subway to the suburbs, so he makes a melodrama out of it.

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    Sean says:

    Not being from Toronto, I don’t use Toronto transit very often. However, when I visit Toronto I find the transit service to be excellent.

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      steve w says:

      Same here. I find most cities I visit have, for the most part, excellent transit. It’s always locals who bitch and complain about what they perceive to be bad service.

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        Sean says:

        BTW, I may have mentioned this here before, but NY also has an amazing transit system. Brooklyn to Manhattan – coolest subway ride of all time.

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      !o! says:

      It is DEFINITELY far better than Ottawa.

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    Philippe says:

    Meanwhile, your public transit system & limited metro coverage completely suck as compared to Montreal’s.

    Then again, while yours sucks, our system in Ottawa is downright prehistoric.

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    bluegreenblogger says:

    LOL, I think it’s because transportation is what determines everything in a city. Where people work, where they go to school, where they live, how much businesses spend getting stuff and people around. It is pretty fundamental, and the reason for point 1 is point 2. It costs so freaking much to pursue any consistent policy, and tranportation evolves over decades, so really big moves never get started, and the short term tinkering can not have any serious impact. No resolution means the issue never goes away

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    MCBellecourt says:

    I noticed that as I’ve been reading the news over time, too. Now that you mention it, I can kinda relate. Here, in central BC, we don’t even have decent transit (buses only run downtown once every hour, and very scantily on Sunday).

    We have very serious homelessness and substance abuse issues here, and even though it’s a relatively small place, going downtown can be rather disconcerting. Poverty and unemployment is becoming rampant, and the city in general is crumbling underfoot. More and more people are losing their decent jobs only to get stuck in dead-end part-time Mcjobs.

    But we’re getting a brand spankin’ new wood building!

    And we’re getting some big sports event (I don’t even remember exactly what!)

    Winter games or somethin’….which will, of course, displace many homeless people. You know, outta sight, outta mind.

    And it gets cold up here. It’s minus 2C as I type this at 10:10AM, and very, very damp.

    As in other cities, many of our homeless are mentally ill and became addicts in a desperate bid to dull the pain of their situation.

    It’s all over, Warren. Priorities are so messed up in Canada now. The kinder, gentler nation we once were is no more.

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    Mike says:

    1. Manic focus on transit because it is the worst system ever for a city of 2 .5 million, it costs too much for the service it provides, and it fails to attract enough riders to get people out of their cars. This leads to…

    2. Nothing EVER gets done because the system is run like a steampunk tabletop model railway — not a modern transit system, e.g., this —


    I say, transfer operations to the province with a mandate to weed out the fossils now

    running system.

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    Brammer says:

    When it comes to transit, we are a Province divided. Nothing will happen as long as this type of arrogance persists:


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    Tim says:

    The line that needs to go across town at Eglinton (LRT or subway, either is better than nothing at all) has been stopped twice, once by Mike Harris and once by Rob Ford.

    The focus is on transit because it needs to be improved and clearly can be improved. A good transit system makes life much more enjoyable and productive for all, including those who don’t earn enough money to make ends meet. When people have a more productive and enjoyable life they’re less likely to resort to crime. Improved transit gets cars off the road, so that’s the environment angle for you, and breathing cleaner air makes people healthier.

    So that’s why. Get that bloody midtown line built and everything else will flow. Are you listening Metrolinx types? One thing at a time.

    And don’t take no for an answer from the likes of Ford, Harris or Hudak if he gets in. Those guys are the main ones who have a lot to answer for here.

    In the last few years, my city, Calgary, has extended the LRT (no Rob Ford these are not streetcars) at all three existing ends and opened a western line, so it can be done if people work together. That’s the key, people working together. It’s important. Toronto needs to bear down and get this done.

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