Candidates Unsure About LRT But Support Transportation Change

Our website features the responses to our transportation survey of nearly 90 candidates for City Councils and Regional Council in the Region of Waterloo (including Mayors). The election will be next Monday, October 25. We asked candidates for their stances on dealing with growth-related traffic, light rail transit, sidewalks, segregated bicycle infrastructure, parking, and mixed-use zoning. In a “why we’re asking” section, we explained TriTAG’s stance and provided links for further information.

A number of themes were shared in many responses, including views on parking and cycling. There is near consensus that it is inappropriate for municipal staff to be provided with transportation subsidies exclusively in the form of parking. There was support for a bike-sharing system like Montreal’s BIXI, and there was widespread enthusiasm for segregated cycling infrastructure. To make cycling feel safer and be a more viable transportation choice, we believe on-street bicycle infrastructure must be physically separated from motor vehicle traffic and prioritized at intersections.

Candidates expressed support for mixed-use zoning along arterial roads, and many candidates agreed that minimum parking requirements in municipal zoning should be reduced or eliminated.

Regional Council candidates expressed a wide range of views on the light rail transit (LRT) project, with some suggesting it should be scrapped, others suggesting that they prefer bus rapid transit (BRT), and many indicating that they would support it if modifications take into account the funding situation. Overwhelmingly, candidates believe that transit should be improved to be a choice for everyone and not only a social service, and that transit should be a primary means of dealing with continued growth.

The responses are posted at our 2010 election page. Candidates who have not responded may still contact us to do so.

2 thoughts on “Candidates Unsure About LRT But Support Transportation Change”

  1. I hope our new Regional Council continues on a path that includes LRT. This is an investment that I’m personally willing to make to create an even better city with continued innovations for my children and their generation. When you look at the real costs involved, which very few actually do, we’re not looking at such a major investment. Some infrastructure maintenance would be included in the project and long-term, you’re removing cars from the road and the region would require less roads. There is a small but very influential group of people in the ear of those seeking positions on council. Brenda Halloran has already flipped on her support and Doug Craig has the attitude of a 2 year old. If he can’t have it, no one should.

    Look at some of the success stories from other LRT projects. Please don’t become short-sighted politicians who only work for their current term in office. Have some vision for the future and the evolution of our city from a car-centric city that is spreading out much in the way that London, Ontario has done to an intensified city that has a strong core.

    For the rest of us who have silently supported this project as rail rather than bus, it’s time to speak up to prevent more flip flop politicians like Brenda Halloran.

  2. The more I read about the LRT, the more I become convinced that this is a well-researched and smart investment in the growth of our city. I hope the new council has the strength and conviction to do what is right for our long term growth, and not succumb to poorly informed nay-sayers who haven’t bothered to do the research. I have yet to hear a well-informed argument against the LRT.

    We are at a crucial point in the growth of our city. We won’t get a do-over in terms of core development and intensification in 15 or 20 years, even if we do end up going back to LRT at such a future point. This is the right time, the best time, and we won’t get a chance like this again.

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