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One ticket, Kitchener to Union Station please.

By shost at 9:53 pm on Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Wouldn’t it be nice if you could leave your car behind and take the train to work? Wouldn’t it be nice if you could work on your presentation on your laptop, or read a book, while you zoom past the never-ending traffic on the 401, 407, or Highway 7? Isn’t something like this already available?

The answer is yes — if you live in Georgetown, Milton, or points closer to downtown Toronto. From these places, you can ride GO transit. Cities west of there are out of luck, however, and you are stuck with GO or Greyhound commuter bus service. If you are really lucky, your schedule, where you work, and where you live will add up well enough for you to take the Via train that goes to Toronto Union station.

Not to say that the alternatives are bad methods of transportation. They are not, but there is a clear need to bring our growing cities into the wonderful commuter rail network known as GO Transit. Our region is vastly underserviced by mass transit, and our roads are becoming ever busier, slower, and more overcrowded, to the point of near gridlock for the tens of thousands of daily commuters who must put up with this only viable route to work..

You may not believe it now, but we can help make this a reality. The municipal governments of our cities are already working on a plan to lobby the federal government for this service. Further, GO transit is working to improve their central infrastructure to allow expansion of its capacity and service to areas such as ours, but it won’t happen without real public demand. The time is now to ensure that our cities are aware of the challenges and are ready for when it is time to GO.

What are the challenges cities need to consider?

  • Where will the stations go?
  • Will there be adequate parking?
  • Will it be located in an area convenient to commuters?
  • Will it be linked to the existing urban transit infrastructure?
  • Will it link to other inter-city transit options?
  • Are the administrators of the city aware of and prepared to contribute to GO transit?
  • Is the track infrastructure capable of handling GO trains?
  • What other alternatives are there?
  • What other challenges stand in the way of GO service to our cities?

Municipal elections are due in November and the candidates are gearing up for their full campaigns. Are they aware of this challenge? Why not help make them aware and influence the voting process. Once they are in office, they can continue to learn the facts to help them overcome this challenge for their voters and for their cities.

If this is a topic of interest to you, consider joining me in this quest. We need volunteers to help maintain the news and information on this site and to help get the message out.

Let’s help Guelph, Kitchener-Waterloo, Cambridge, and Acton get on the GO.

Stephen C. Host

 

Filed under: Cambridge,City of Guelph,Kitchener,Waterloo1 Comment »

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Comment by Anne

October 16, 2006 @ 3:44 pm

Even a bus that ran along Gordon/Brock/Hwy 6 going to Milton via 401. A station would not be required for parking as much if there were bus stops along the way.

Guelph needs a bus station at the south end because according to Grey Hound unless the stop are on the official service map, drivers are not required to stop for passengers.

Also, couldn’t the Grey Hound have a bus to Mississauga too. How many people do you suppose work there and surrounding areas like Brampton.

I’m so tired of being told I can’t get there from here or it that is very difficult and time consuming. What adds to the problem is when Go transit customer service doesn’t know the fastest route from Streetsville (Mississauga Rd. & 401) to Guelph would be. I can elaborate if requested.

And don’t get me started on the proposed LRT’s, it’s a dumb idea, maybe okay for those in Central and NOrth Guelph, but the population in the south end should not be ignored.

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