In the first post of this series, I discussed some of the philosophy behind the coming Metrolinx Regional Transportation Plan. Rather than getting into a lot of detail (that deserves a separate post), I want to talk about process.
[Oh no! He’s going to go all policy wonk on us! Let’s just go somewhere else for our evening’s entertainment!]
Sorry, folks, but how this process is going on is at least as important as the nitty gritty of all those reports and charts and maps.
Once upon a time, governments announced grand schemes, but nothing happened for quite a while. Politicians fought over which line would be built first. Then the engineers studied it, held public meetings, produced an Environmental Assessment, and waited for the money to flow. Finally, a line was built (or not) and opened (or not), and the whole mess started over.
Then someone discovered that the Toronto way to build transit might be a tad short of world class, and that other cities just went out and did things. It helped that the star attraction was in a European tourist haven, Madrid, rather than someplace with a lot of snow and a dour government.
Presto, chango! Let’s get the EA process down from two years to one. No sooner do we do that, than we want it down to 6 months! We want results! Now! Today! Before the next election! Continue reading