If ever there was a case to bring light rail to Orléans, a recent report citing Ottawa as the third-worst city in Canada in which to drive to-and-from work is all any politician needs to understand why we desperately need all levels of government investing in Stage 2 bringing LRT to Orléans.
Disturbingly, Ottawa residents lose 81 hours being stuck in traffic, which is only slightly behind Toronto at 83 hours. When you consider Toronto has more than more than five times our population, these figure become even more alarming.
For commuters in Orléans, the lost 81 hours is likely much higher especially during the school year when the 174 can adequately be described as a parking lot.
This is one of the reasons why Orléans surpasses the City’s current ridership targets for public transit use. Furthermore, Orléans has the highest transit ridership of any suburban to downtown trip in North America for a City of Ottawa’s size.
LRT to Orléans is also the single biggest economic investment in the history of Orléans – jobs, jobs, jobs!
But Stage 2 is not just about Orléans – it will become part of a system, which will see LRT extended west to Bayshore Shopping Centre and Algonquin College, south to the growing suburban community of Riverside South.
This project will connect West, South and East with Light Rail.
Together, the City of Ottawa, province of Ontario and Government of Canada can dramatically change the way in which our Nation’s Capital operates and grows into the future. We can transform Ottawa into the world class G8 capital we all aspire it to become.
In the end, turning our backs on taxpayers is simply wrong and irresponsible.
By sending truckloads of Ottawa tax dollars down the 401 to pay for Toronto’s mega billion dollar transit projects will once again confirm “A tale of two cities” and it won’t be hard to see who will have the best of times and who is left with the worst of times!