All Quiet on the Transit Front?
With civic elections only weeks away, there has been a lull with transit issues and stories.
The city of Vancouver, which considers itself the centre of the universe, provides us with some mirth as the elections draw near.
The left leaning C.O.P.E. political party is proposing that all Vancouver residents should have universal transit for a $1.00 a day. No plan on how to fund this proposal or getting regional mayors approval or increasing transit services, none the less C.O.P.E. continues to bang the drum for very heavily subsidized universal transit passes for Vancouver citizens.
Vision(less) Vancouver and the N.P.A. right of centre political parties, still champion a Broadway subway and like C.O.P.E. have no plan to pay for it except having regional taxpayers foot the bill.
From Quebec, it has been revealed that Bombardier and SNC Lavalin are heavily funding a citizens group to demand politicians build a ART SkyTrain across the new Champlain Bridge. What is bizarre is that Bombardier and SNC are claiming both that ART (SkyTrain) is more cost effective and can carry more people than LRT and that ART is cost effective at carrying less people than what LRT can carry. An obvious case of having your cake and eating it too!
As Ottawa has shown, modern light rail has the edge over SkyTrain in capacity and that it is cheaper to build.
There is a persistent rumor is that corporate managers in Europe want Bombardier, in essence a German Company, to scrap its ART Skytrain program to save money and concentrate on airport people movers and light rail. What is happening in Montreal could be seen as SkyTrain’s last kick at the can, so to speak, as the Skytrain gravy train may run out of track.
There is also evidence of this in Vancouver, where the SkyTrain Lobby are desperately trying to get Skytrain on track again in the metro Vancouver area.
It will not be until after the November election, when transit issues will be sensibly debated.