Rapid transit in London is back in the news this week and that's a good thing.
As we move through this process together it’s important to communicate the facts and address any concerns that may arise.
Over the past few weeks there have been some questions about our rapid transit plans, how the project will be funded and what effects the construction will have on those along the proposed routes both during construction and over the long term.
The full business case with the proposed routes can be found by clicking here.
We know that transit ridership in London has grown by 94%. In 1996 there were 12.4-million rides, in 2014 there were 24.1-million.
We are the largest city in Canada without a rapid transit system.
Between 2011 and 2016, London’s population grew 4.8%. That means more people on our sidewalks, using our services and driving on our streets.
We can expect 77,000 more people to be living in London and 25% more cars on the road by 2030.
Widening roads costs money. Hundreds of millions of dollars in fact, simply to allow more cars on the road. It's been suggested that widening our roads to fight congestion is like buying a bigger belt with the hope of losing weight. As a municipality, we can only loosen our belt so far, and every time we do, it costs money. Without rapid transit, Londoners will be paying $290-million in taxes just to widen our roads.
Rapid transit costs money too. It will cost $560-million. London will pay $130-million, the majority of which is coming from development charges. This will not affect the tax levy. The rest of the funding will come from the provincial and federal governments, investments in infrastructure that they have both promised to make.
An article recently published in Business London suggests Londoners are already paying for public transit, other people’s public transit. You can read his article by clicking here and turning to page 16.
I understand the business owners downtown who are worried about what will happen when construction begins. That’s why myself, our City Engineer, Acting City Manager and Ward Councillors will be meeting with each business in the weeks to come to address concerns, clear up misinformation and work on solutions to move forward together.
We know that this rapid transit system will have more than $1-billion in economic, environmental and transportation benefits.
Richmond Street will not be shut down and Londoners will still be able to visit their favourite bars, restaurants, clothing stores and other shops downtown.
Soon, Council will make a decision on the proposed routes. We are going to take our time. We are going to listen and we are going to get it right.
This is short-term pain for long-term gain. This is innovation. This is moving London forward.
At the YOU Made It Cafe with Executive Director Steve Cordes where Deputy Premier Deb Matthews announced a boost in funding to the Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative.
Celebrating the 140th St. Patrick's Day with the Irish Benevolence Society in London.
- Boler Mountain season extended thanks to chilly forecast
- London Police caution revelers for St. Patrick’s Day
- Woman of Excellence Michelle Quintyn finds her work “warms the heart”
- London Food Incubator helping new companies get off the ground
- New bar to take over vacant Mongolian Grill
- City doubles Community Grants program
- London among best in Canada on new immigration integration index
- What was London’s worst intersection for crashes in 2016?
- Province boosts funding to London to help fight homelessness
- Downtown London to consult members over BRT routes
Events and Occasions:
- Pints and Politics at Western University
- Meeting with Cassie Ferguson
- Earmark launch
- Rapid Transit round table with MP Peter Fragiskatos
- Meeting with David Proudfoot
- London Medical Network Governing Council meeting
- #LdnOnt TV segment
- Community Homelessness Prevention Initiative announcement
- Meeting with Stephen Bolton
- Meeting with David Brebner
- Irish Benevolent Society’s 140th St. Patrick’s Day luncheon
- King’s Mentorship Program meeting
- King’s Women in Civic Leadership Course
Welcomed Madison in to the Mayor's Office and a tour of City Hall on her March break.