Municipal candidates opposed to ION light rail asked to provide details on what they would build instead
The Tri-Cities Transport Action Group is calling on regional chair candidate Jay Aissa and other municipal candidates opposed to the ION light rail project to reveal to the public what rapid transit solution they would implement as an alternative to ION. To date, TriTAG is not aware of any detailed, fully costed rapid transit plan from any candidate promising to cancel ION.
“Mr. Aissa says he has a plan for transit that is somehow both cheap and comprehensive, yet he hasn’t shown it to voters,” said Michael Druker of TriTAG. “We believe the public deserves to hear the details.”
“If Jay Aissa has the respect for voters he claims and truly believes in transparency, he will share the details of his supposed ‘plan’,” added Druker.
Specifically, TriTAG is asking Aissa and other candidates to provide details concerning:
- the form of rapid transit they would build (e.g. more iXpress buses, buses with dedicated lanes, subways, etc.);
- the route their planned rapid transit would take;
- the debt and tax impact of their plan for both capital and operating expenses, and
- the timeline for implementation of their planned rapid transit network
“If Mr. Aissa’s plan is dedicated rapid bus service for the ION route, that means more debt and higher taxes over the lifetime of the project. Ottawa has shown BRT means sky-high operating costs and a system that must be converted to light rail at huge expense,” said Taylor Byrnes of TriTAG. “The public needs to know whether Mr. Aissa’s plan can overcome both the cancellation costs for ION and high expenses to meet swelling ridership demand; or whether Mr. Aissa is just making empty promises he can’t keep.”
ION went through a decade of planning and public debate in Waterloo Region. If Mr. Aissa and other candidates want to overturn it overnight, TriTAG asks them to disclose their transit plans so voters have the weekend to scrutinize them before heading to the polls.
More TriTAG election resources: