Closing Remarks from the GTA Transit Summit

The following text is adapted from the notes of my closing remarks at the GTA Transit Summit on Saturday, November 4.

Think Big

If there was one vital thread running through the weekend’s presentations, it is this:  population growth vastly exceeds our plans for providing more and better transportation services, and the public is getting fed up with excuses for what we cannot do.  Politicians need to recognize the true scope of the problem and stop using unworkable shared funding schemes as their excuse for inaction.

The GTA population is growing at a rate of 100,000 per year.  Over half of this will locate outside of the 416, and growth within the 416 is substantially higher in the outer suburbs where transit service is the worst.  The TTC does a tolerable job (it could do much better) at providing support for a car-free lifestyle in the central area, but everywhere else a car is an absolute necessity. Continue reading