Week in review: October 22, 2016

Regional Budget

It’s time for the Region to start preparing next year’s budget again. Assessments are down, which means less natural revenue growth. The projected property tax increase to cover planned or anticipated expenses is about 4%.

At risk is the GRT business plan, which calls for increasing bus service by nearly 30% over the next five years. This is necessary in order to integrate GRT buses with ION light rail service and grow ridership by 40%. This will be a challenging task, one not made easier by the fact that ridership has fallen in the face of years of punishing fare hikes. Will Regional Council have the vision to continue to invest in transit in Waterloo Region, without gouging transit riders?  (more…)

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Week in review: October 15, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines


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Week in review: October 8, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines


Cyclists don’t follow the rules of the road? Maybe it’s time to change those rules (Tom Babin)

“Yet streets are already governed by different rules for different users, such as laws that require slower speed limits for big trucks, or that mandate school buses to stop at uncontrolled railway crossings. Rather than demonize cyclists for their inability to conform to rules designed for cars, laws should recognize that riding a bike is different than driving.”

Feds launch task force on cycling and pedestrian safety (Ottawa Citizen)

L.A. street makeover shows road diets work (NextCity)

Majority of Torontonians favour bike lanes, new survey suggests (The Star)


Turnaround: Fixing New York City’s buses (TransitCenter)

Pushing back on apathy about bus service (Human Transit)

“If you want to know why your bus system isn’t better, the answer is almost always that not enough people care, and that in particular, not enough influential people care.  Sure, there are other kinds of resistance, but those can all be overcome when civic leaders decide that better bus service is important.”

New option may see LRT in service as scheduled in late 2017 (570 News)

Like a bright daffodil, a new bus stop emerges from the King Street chaos (Luisa D’Amato)

Region approves transit and fare enforcement plan (The Record)

WMATA finds biking and walking improvements near Metro stations pay off (MobilityLab)

A technical follow-up: How we built the world’s prettiest auto-generated transit maps (TransitApp)

Why it will take more than light rail to fix US transit (NextCity)

“The process begins by creating clear objectives tailored to each place’s needs. For all the flaws under the post-World War II approach, reducing congestion was a clear governing principle. Now cities and regions need to go back to the drawing board and formalize new objectives. Is it designing denser communities that support shorter distances between places? Is it to improve the amount of regional jobs people can reach in a given timeframe? Is it removing the physical barriers that separate communities? Whatever the objectives might be, each community must define accessibility on its own terms.”


Parking lots are an incredible waste of space. Here’s how to end them (Motherboard)

Lots to lose: how cities around the world are eliminating car parks (The Guardian)

Land use

No shortage of land for homes in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (Neptis Foundation)

Smart growth planning looks up and not out (Community Edition)

Kitchener homeowners should learn more about RIENS (Frank Etherington)

Other headlines

Waterloo traffic calming plan proves divisive (Waterloo Chronicle)

Victoria Park to get continuous stretch of sidewalk (The Record)

Rod Regier appointed Waterloo Region’s commissioner of planning (CBC News)

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Week in Review: October 1, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines


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Week in review: September 24, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines

TriTAG this week

On the blog, we questioned why vehicles were being prioritized over pedestrian safety at the corner of Queen and Charles, where the sidewalk tapers to less than a metre. We also called for an all-day frequent network for iXpress routes.


14435018_10209333865217908_7389558894695083537_oION: Small sidewalk at Queen and Charles not permanent: Grandlinq (CTV Kitchener), Roads, intersections, and highway ramps reopening next week (CTV Kitchener)

Ride-sharing: Uber, other ride-sharing bylaw approved by Waterloo Region (CBC KW), Editorial: A Region rides into the future (Waterloo Region Record)

Development charges: Who pays for what will be quite a debate (Karen Scian for Waterloo Chronicle)

Traffic calming: Sunny Kitchener mural shines a light on fast drivers at Lancaster and Chapel streets (CBC KW)

Accessibility: Small steps still big barriers to wheelchair access, advocates say (Waterloo Region Record)

Transit fares: Group wants free public transit for the poor (570 News)

Trails: The City of Waterloo is getting close to counting its millionth trail user in 2016 (@CityWaterloo)

Top Reads

Schools: Guide to safer streets near schools (Toronto Centre for Active Transportation)

Cycling: Anonymous San Franciscans are making renegade bike lanes (CityLab), Good riddance to the Prospect Park West bike lane lawsuit (Streetsblog)

Parking: I have met the enemy, and it is parking: Matt Elliott on Toronto’s biggest barrier to progress (Metro News)

Regional transit: Solving the Last Mile (Ryerson City Building Institute)

Planning: Jane Jacobs’s street smarts (New Yorker)

Self-driving cars and ride-sharing: Lyft president predicts private car ownership will be over by 2025 thanks to self-driving cars (CityLab), Report on how paratransit costs can be saved through new reservation tools, collaboration with ride-sharing services (NYU Rudin Center for Transportation), Can self-driving cars protect black people from police violence? (CityLab)

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How long should you have to wait for the bus?

Imagine a gate at the end of your driveway that opens only once every 30 minutes. How would that affect you?

We tend to think of trips by car in terms of how much time they will take. So it’s natural to compare transit by the same yardstick. How long will this trip take by bus compared to car? Is a train that takes 44 minutes to travel 18km fast enough? No question: fast transit is good.

But frequent transit is better. Frequent transit means being able to travel when we want. But this is often overlooked. It may even be overlooked in the next GRT business plan. But more on that in a moment. (more…)

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Week in review: September 17, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines


Top Reads

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Week in review: September 10, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines


Top reads

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Week in review: September 3, 2016

Consultations and feedback deadlines


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