JP Boutros on Transit, and Gridlock Reduction for Ward 16 (Eglinton-Lawrence)

JP on the TTC

I’m a driver, but when it comes to commuting downtown, I’m a regular TTC rider (and occasional cyclist).

I strongly disagreed with Councillor Stintz on her support for a Scarborough Subway, and I will fight to reverse this billion dollar mistake.

Why does the Scarborough Subway decision matter so much to Ward 16? Because the planned Scarborough subway is a waste of urgently needed transit dollars. It will cost all of us 1.6% more in property taxes for the next thirty years. It raises our debt level to a point where we might not be able to build other rapid transit or subway lines.

Worse: it bumped Ward 16 and our transit riders from the front of the line, diverting infrastructure dollars from where experts say transit money is needed – right along the Yonge corridor (for a Relief Line) and delaying potential investments in better express bus service on Avenue, Bathurst and Yonge.

Other candidates are promising better bus service, but if they support the Scarborough extension, we could be waiting years for the money to appear to get that service. If your candidate is supporting the Scarborough Subway, they’ve already failed a key test when it comes to defending our Ward’s interests at City Hall.

My opponents claim there’s a deal and a plan in place for Scarborough, but that’s simply not true: the contract for the cheaper, faster LRT is still the law of the land. Not one city planner or transit planner has ever endorsed the Scarborough Subway as a priority for Toronto public transit.

But fighting gridlock isn’t just about more transit. I’ll work with drivers and cyclists to improve safety for both on local streets. On another page of my site, I explain my plan to improve the Eglinton Connects project to smooth out traffic flow. Plus, I support investments in traffic management technology, including a pilot of the MARLIN system developed by the U of T to cut traffic congestion at key intersections.