Their NDP May Do, What Our NDP Should Do!

The Scarborough subway soap opera continues.

What is interesting is that the NDP in Ontario may very well kill the now $3.45 billion, 5 km., one station subway for a much cheaper light rail line.

“There is a tipping point beyond which the unjustifiable becomes unsustainable.” and as TransLink and the Mayor’s Council on Transit are deeply afraid in releasing current cost estimates, one must be assured that the tipping point for the Broadway SkyTrain subway has already been past.

Memo to Premier Horgan; show some moral fortitude and kill the project, before the project kills TransLink.

Could the NDP stop the Scarborough subway in its tracks?

The Ontario Liberals and PCs are dug in deep on the transit plan but on the eve of an election what better way for the NDP to resonate with Toronto than by reverting to the original LRT plan, Martin Regg Cohn writes.

By Martin Regg CohnOntario Politics Columnist
Wed., Dec. 20, 2017

It’s not every day — nor even every year — that Toronto opens six new subway stations. More like every other decade.

That’s a long wait for harried commuters. And an eternity for politicians in a hurry.

None of the politicians cutting the ribbons this month were in power all those years ago to cut the cheques. A timely reminder that they only ever benefit from the short-term election cycle, and rarely remain for the long-term investment horizon required to build subways.

Against that backdrop, the back and forth trajectory of transit construction in the GTA is easier to explain. Politicians come and go every few years, while their pet projects zigzag to their final destination:

Former finance minister Greg Sorbara drove the much-needed York University extension all the way to his own riding of Vaughan, a dubious terminus; ex-mayor Mel Lastman gave us the little-used Sheppard stub; the late Rob Ford begat the overbuilt Scarborough subway, with funding from his federal pal, then-finance minister Jim Flaherty; and Dalton McGuinty bankrolled much of it before bailing as premier.

A supporting role goes to Brad Duguid, the Scarborough cabinet minister who warned that any subway changes would be “over my dead body.” Like other transit contortionists and extortionists, Duguid isn’t running again, so he will be long gone by the time his legacy becomes our albatross. Two public servants who have danced around the Scarborough debate are also out of the picture — chief planner Jennifer Keesmaat has quit, and the TTC’s nimble CEO, Andy Byford, is New York-bound.

Who then will cut the next set of ribbons years from now?

A new cast of characters is driving the transit debate — Premier Kathleen Wynne, Progressive Conservative Leader Patrick Brown, the NDP’s Andrea Horwath and Mayor John Tory. Despite their disparate ideologies, they have a shared allegiance to the dubious Scarborough subway extension that defies logical transit planning and fiscal prudence.

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Comments

One Response to “Their NDP May Do, What Our NDP Should Do!”
  1. Dondi says:

    From earlier this year, this letter from the TTC Riders makes the case that, among other advantages, the LRT option would carry more peak load passengers and reduce more greenhouse gas emissions than the subway option:

    http://www.ttcriders.ca/were-asking-the-province-to-compare-the-scarborough-subway-to-the-lrt-option/

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