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Politics Toronto Transit

Toronto’s new rapid transit plan

Yesterday, City Council decided, by a vote of 27-16, to go ahead with the $3.1 billion one-stop extension of the Bloor-Danforth Subway to Scarborough Centre, rejecting Councillor Josh Matlow’s last-ditch attempt to resurrect the LRT replacement and extension of the ageing Scarborough LRT line. Council — Mayor Tory included — also voted to spend resources studying three more […]

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Politics Toronto Transit

The difference between the Fords’ Subway Plan and John Tory’s Subway Plan

The Rob Ford/Doug Ford Subway Plan, circa 2014 The above is the subway plan promoted by Rob Ford, and later Doug Ford, in the 2014 municipal election. Thanks to today’s pandering to suburban councillors demanding their own subway lines, below is the John Tory-backed subway plan. The John Tory Subway Plan, circa 2016

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Politics Toronto Transit

The Truth About SmartTrack

This article originally appeared on June 27, 2016 in Torontoist In 2014, then-mayoral candidate John Tory ran on a campaign of sound fiscal management, returning decorum to City Hall, and a curious new transit plan called SmartTrack, which promised “London-style” rapid transit from Mississauga to Markham. During the election campaign Tory claimed that the new […]

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Politics Toronto Transit

What do I know? I’m just a downtown elitist

I once described Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong as the city official that “knew the cost of everything and the value of nothing.” In 2014, Minnan-Wong complained about the costs of building new washrooms at the soccer fields at Cherry Beach, holding up a sign that simply said “$600,000.” That photo of Minnan-Wong, scowling for the cameras, trying […]

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Toronto Transit

A good, a bad, and an ugly week for Toronto transit

There was some good transit news for Torontonians today, as the provincial government announced $150 million in funding for detailed study and engineering for the planned Relief Line subway. The preferred route and station locations for the first phase of the new subway line was also released this week, with eight stops from Pape to […]

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Politics Toronto

Leadership, John Tory style (updated)

Updated May 29 I was frustrated this week by Mayor John Tory’s pronouncement that he’s “not in favour of adding any more politicians here,” referring to the proposed new ward boundaries released last week that would increase the number of city councillors from 44 to 47. This is despite a rigorous and solid process, with plenty of public […]

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Politics Toronto Urban Planning

The least-worst alternative for the Gardiner East

Back in May, I outlined the reasons why I supported the removal of the elevated Gardiner Expressway east of Jarvis Street. Of the various options, which included maintaining the existing highway, a so-called “hybrid” section that would maintain most of the existing structure, but re-route the section between Cherry Streets and the Don Valley Parkway, and […]

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Politics Toronto Transit

A smarter SmartTrack

John Tory’s original SmartTrack plan, shown with the existing TTC Subway and GO Rail networks.  In Friday’s Globe and Mail, we were treated to a scoop by Oliver Moore, that newspaper’s excellent transportation reporter, on behind-the-scenes revisions to Mayor John Tory’s SmartTrack rail transit platform, a topic that I discussed several times in this blog. […]

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Politics Toronto Transit

Not so FAST: SmartTrack gets a lobby group, raises many questions (Updated)

I find myself feeling frustrated, worn down, and at times angry about this federal election that’s thankfully coming to an end on Monday. As a progressive voter, I’ve been disappointed by Thomas Mulcair and the New Democrats, for reasons that Desmond Cole explains so very well in today’s Toronto Star. (Locally, I ‘ve been supporting the NDP’s Linda […]

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Politics Toronto

Gardiner East update: a close vote, but one Tory is likely to win (updated)

Projected Gardiner East council vote as of Monday, June 8. (Updated 5:00 PM, June 8) With Councillors Jon Burnside and Raymond Cho coming out in support of the “Hybrid” option for the Gardiner East, and Councillor John Filion supporting the Removal/Boulevard option, here’s the latest map. Only seven councillors are considered “unknown” in their intentions for […]