Metrolinx’s strange priorities

crosstownroutemaplarge-640x367Map of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT showing the original working station names along the corridor

It’s too often that we hear from business leaders, planning experts, and pundits that politicians should be kept out of transit planning. To some degree, this makes sense. We saw what happened when politicians, pandering for votes from Scarborough, derailed a viable, ready-to-go transit plan in favour of a shiny, unfunded, subway line.

Metrolinx’s appointed board is made up of developers, business people, advisers, administrators, and two retired politicians. It seems like the kind of place where smart, level-headed, apolitical decisions could be made. That is, until board members start bickering about station names.

In December, Metrolinx rubber-stamped, with little debate, a problematic GO Transit fare increase. But it then spent four times as long debating the names of three stops on the Eglinton-Crosstown LRT corridor. And today, there will be a special teleconference meeting to decide – hopefully once and for all, these three names. Maybe then they can get on to serious business.

I discuss this further in Torontoist this morning.

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