Trudeau pledges billions in permanent funding for public transit
Canada’s Prime Minister Trudeau announced plans for the government of Canada to spend an additional $14.9 billion over the next eight years on public transportation projects across the country.
The question which many in Ottawa Gatineau area have been asking , can the Bank Street O-Train Tunnel find potential funding? The answer appears to be a tentative yes.
The Prime Minister’s long term plan is the creation of a permanent transit fund of $3 billion per year starting in 2026.
Another question which often comes up in relation to Bank Street, is planning. The transit fund the government of Canada has setup is meant to provide stable funding so municipalities can build and expand their public transit systems with proper long-term planning. This means Bank Street community groups in Ottawa can start planning now and start discussions with Mayor Jim Watson’s office and city council.
Prime Minister Trudeau believes “when we invest in public transit infrastructure, we are supporting good middle class jobs, creating better commutes, fighting climate change, and helping make life easier and more affordable for Canadians. We will continue to do what it takes to ensure our economic recovery from COVID-19 and build back a more resilient country for everyone.”https://cdn.embedly.com/widgets/media.html?src=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fembed%2F6MteSdNXIrE%3Ffeature%3Doembed&display_name=YouTube&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3D6MteSdNXIrE&image=https%3A%2F%2Fi.ytimg.com%2Fvi%2F6MteSdNXIrE%2Fhqdefault.jpg&key=a19fcc184b9711e1b4764040d3dc5c07&type=text%2Fhtml&schema=youtubeBank Street O-Train Tunnel Discussion Video
According to Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities, “as we build back better, it is time to ambitiously invest in modern and sustainable public transit across our country, to reduce congestion, to help create a million jobs, and to support cleaner and more inclusive communities. Permanent, long-term funding for public transit will mean new subway lines, light-rail transit and streetcars” and “It will mean that Canadians can get around in faster, cleaner, and more affordable ways. And it will help drive us to net-zero emissions and ensure a more sustainable future for our kids.”
Jonathan Wilkinson, Minister of Environment and Climate Change believes “investing in cleaner and more affordable modes of transportation is an important part of Canada’s strengthened climate plan — one that means we will exceed our 2030 target and that will put us on a path to get to net-zero emissions by 2050. Transportation accounts for one-quarter of Canada’s emissions and represents an area that is in need of smart climate investments, like the ones that we have announced today, to support good Canadian jobs, a stronger economy, and a healthier planet.”
Only small sections of Trillium Line 2 are being widened causing 12 minute headways to continue.
The Trillium Line issues are compounded by 3 transfers to get from Ottawa International Airport to Parliament Hill. Trillium Line 2 is less desirable since it’s mostly a Carleton University shuttle.
What does all of this mean for advocates of a Bank Street O-Train line? Can Bank Street become an O-Train oriented community? Is Ottawa ready for a legitimate north/south corridor running through the heart of the city? What could this mean for a proper potential Airport to downtown line via Bank? What would it mean for the Ottawa sports & entertainment scene at Lansdowne Park?
Clinton P. Desveaux is an accredited writer for Troy Media. He can be reached via Twitter or Email: ClintonDesveaux@gmail.com