Rob Ford releases transportation plan (on YouTube, no less)
Yes, Rob Ford has a plan that goes beyond just cutting taxes and stopping the "gravy train." Who knew?
The mayoral candidate released his transit plan on YouTube for some reason yesterday. Opening with awesome 80s throwback music, Ford takes eight long minutes to explain how he will improve Toronto transit without introducing new taxes or tolls.
Ford says it's time to stop the war on cars, give up on streetcars and focus on building more subways. He says he will create 12 kilometres of new subway track along Sheppard Avenue that would connect Downsview and Scarborough Town Centre, as well as connect Sheppard to the Bloor-Danforth line to create a "closed loop." The expansion will, he says, be completed before the 2015 Pan Am Games and cost $4 billion; $3.7 billion has already been committed by the provincial government for the first phase of Transit City and the rest will come from private funds.
Continuing to read off his paper and speaking at a snail's pace (a press release would work just fine next time, guys) Ford says $700 million will be put into road infrastructure to improve conditions and simplify congestion. The plan includes replacing some streetcars with buses and introducing colour-coded curb painting to indicate parking rules; red means no parking, green means park and pay and yellow means read the signs.
Ford also said $55 million will go towards new jogging and 100 km of new bike trails "where it makes sense."
Sarah Thomson wasted no time to release a statement on Ford's plan:
"Toronto cannot expand the Sheppard Line without first building a Downtown Relief Line (DRL) to accommodate the added capacity that comes with an expanded system. Anyone who has done their research on our subway system would know that the DRL is a priority before any other expansion, especially when talking about moving people to their jobs. My transit plan considers that Toronto's streets are a public asset, not simply a haven for cars and congestion."
Obviously, they ignored his on-camera charisma and still-frame cutaway skills. Go team.
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