All Posts by Transport Action Ontario

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Jan 19

Increased Interest in U.S./Canada Cross-Border Passenger Rail

By Transport Action Ontario | Intercity Rail and Bus , Latest News

With the passage of President Biden’s infrastructure bill in November, 2021, there is considerable interest in the U.S. to boost passenger rail connections to Canada.

Transport Action Ontario (TAO) board member Ken Westcar has published an article in the Winter 2022 newsletter of the (U.S-based) Rail Users Network (RUN). It speaks about the challenges of rigourous border procedures, food/beverage service and the necessary cooperation of host railways. The article is found on page 6 of the newsletter.

Ken is also cited on pages 11-12 of the newsletter, discussing proposed new service between Chicago and Toronto. This paperk was presented at the RUN mini-conference in October. Ken’s slides have been posted on the TAO website in an October 15 posting.

The RUN newsletter is attached below.

Jan 15

Input to Updated Business case for Northeastern Passenger Rail

By Transport Action Ontario | Intercity Rail and Bus , Latest News , Northern Ontario

With the soon-to-be-expected release of an Updated Business case for Northeastern Ontario Passenger Rail, Transport Action Ontario has written the Minister of Transportation and the President of Ontario Northland with two suggestions:

  • Interim service to Huntsville or North Bay using GO Transit
  • Requirements for permanent rolling stock

Our letter can be viewed here.

GO Train at Bloor station. Photo by Sally Hewson.
Jan 13

GO Rail Expansion in the GTHA – the Path Forward

By Transport Action Ontario | Latest News , Urban Transit

In November, 2021, Metrolinx released an important update on their $27B + GO Expansion Program, announcing that two proponents had submitted proposals in response to a tender request.  The successful proponent is to be announced in 2022.  This Program is vital to the future of the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA), but has received relatively little publicity and public scrutiny versus the more notorious subway projects. 

The attached article summarizes the status of the Program and identifies some best practices, largely listed in a Toronto Region Board of Trade report of March, 2022,  that hopefully will be incorporated in the Program or in future expansion projects. 

The article can be viewed below:

Jan 03

Ontario Pre-2022 Election Briefing Note – Short Line Rail

By Transport Action Ontario | Intercity Rail and Bus , Latest News , Northern Ontario , Southwestern Ontario , Urban Transit

In anticipation of the upcoming Ontario provincial election in June, 2022, Transport Action Ontario has issued a briefing note on an important transportation-related issue that has not currently received the visibility it warrants. This issue in the Preservation and Revitalization of Ontario’s Short-Line Railways.

The briefing note can be viewed below:

Jan 03

Response to Mandate Letter to Minister Alghabra

By Transport Action Ontario | Highways and Bridges , Intercity Rail and Bus , Latest News , Northern Ontario , Southwestern Ontario , Urban Transit

Prime Minister Trudeau released his mandate letters to all cabinet ministers in mid December. Transport Action Ontario has written to Minister of Transport Alghabra providing several critical perspectives on the letter he received. They are

-Full due diligence needed

-Improve transparency/reliability/accountability/communication

-Execution skills and talent are a concern

-Rail offers domestic industrial benefits

-Must account for externalities

The letter can be viewed below.


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