Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The case for free public transit - GTWA

Free Transit flash-mob in downtown Toronto.
The Bullet | Socialist Project: "Toronto needs to radically decrease the dependence on private vehicles that has been structured into our living and working lives since the mid-20th century. On its own, Free Transit would not end car dependence. Doing that would require not only dramatic increases in transit capacities, but also measures to transform the way we use cars today."

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Thursday, December 20, 2012

Free public transit and eco-social justice - GTWA

NOW editors pick a trio of this week’s can’t-miss events | NOW Magazine: "Sometimes you’ve gotta push the boundaries. The Greater Toronto Workers’ Assembly wants to initiate a discussion of free public transit and invites the interested to share some good cheer, food and conversation. Expect to hear talk about creating an eco-social justice campaign to make moving around the city accessible to all. Tonight (Thursday, December 20), 6 pm. Free. Centre for Social Innovation, 720 Bathurst. workersassembly.ca."

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Monday, November 26, 2012

Arrogance no surprise when you have the whole autosprawl industry behind you

The law and Rob Ford: "It all comes down to what the Ontario Superior Court judge called a “stubborn sense of entitlement” and “a dismissive and confrontational attitude to the Integrity Commissioner and the Code of Conduct.”

The judge examined all the possible loopholes — including inadvertence and error in judgment — and found no way out of the legislation’s mandatory punishment: removal from office."

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Friday, November 23, 2012

Oil industry needs to kill #publictransit

Jeff Rubin: Why shale oil won’t save you at the pumps - The Globe and Mail: "The IEA pretends that its prediction for a huge increase in unconventional oil supply can occur with only a modest increase in oil prices from current levels. Such unbridled optimism is belied by what’s going on in the industry. Getting oil out of the ground has never been more expensive. Just look at the pullback in capital spending among oil sands operators. And costs are only going up from here. Forecasts of exponential growth in U.S. shale oil ignore some very real challenges with it – such as wells that deplete at a rate of more than 40 per cent, even in rich fields like Eagle Ford in Texas, and a lack of basic pipeline infrastructure in the Bakken."

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Struggle for #transit continues in Toronto

TTC approves 5 cent fare hike - thestar.com: "But the restraint in funds comes at a time when ridership continues to grow. Transit officials project the delivery of 528 million rides next year, about 25 million more than this year.

But Stintz said the TTC has now done its part to hold down costs for the city, and transit officials are already talking to the city manager about a subsidy increase for 2014.

“I expect that next year we will see an increase to our subsidy,” she said."

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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Enbridge’s Hidden Agenda to Export Dangerous Tar Sands Through Ontario Exposed « EcoWatch: Uniting the Voice of the Grassroots Environmental Movement

Enbridge’s Hidden Agenda to Export Dangerous Tar Sands Through Ontario Exposed « EcoWatch: Uniting the Voice of the Grassroots Environmental Movement: "Tar sands oil is more corrosive to pipes and more dangerous to ship through pipelines, putting water and farmland along Line 9’s route at greater risk of oil spills. When tar sands oil spills, it is much harder and more costly to clean up than conventional oil, and it causes more damage to human and environmental health. Line 9 crosses major rivers in Ontario like the Rouge, Humber, Grand and Rideau, all of which feed into Lake Ontario, putting the drinking water for millions of people at risk of pollution."

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Sunday, October 21, 2012

TTC sets new ridership record - Transit Toronto - Weblog

TTC sets new ridership record - Transit Toronto - Weblog: "From October 3, 2011 until October 2, 2012, the Toronto Transit Commission carried more than 510 million passengers — a new ridership record. By the end of this year, the TTC expects to have carried 514 million riders, and is planning for as many as 528 million riders in 2013"

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Thursday, September 20, 2012

Gas prices drop overnight, part of the new norm of wild swings, experts say

Gas prices drop overnight, part of the new norm of wild swings, experts say: "The world is running out of easily accessible oil, he argues. That means we’re running out of cheap oil.

It costs less than $5 a barrel to extract typical Saudia Arabian oil, compared with about $80 a barrel for Alberta oilsands oil, he says.

Other “unconventional” sources, such as oil from Siberia or the deep ocean, will also be “very, very expensive — magnitudes more expensive” than cheap sources."

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Friday, September 14, 2012

Our cities will define our future - The Globe and Mail

Our cities will define our future - The Globe and Mail: "In Live Where You Go, the recently released report prepared by the Pembina Institute and the Royal Bank, residents in Ontario and elsewhere increasingly say they would give up a large house and yard and a long car commute in favour of homes that are a convenient distance from workplaces, amenities and rapid transit."

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Saturday, August 18, 2012

Toronto Greenhouse

Toronto Greenhouse: "Toronto Greenhouse’s mission is to foster the growth of the environmentally-friendly business community, by acting as a sustainability-focussed chamber of commerce. Our signature event is a monthly networking session and speaker series. Monthly & partners events, along with our annual Green Business Strategy Summit, have over 1000 annual event attendees and high profile speakers. We are the leading environmental business forum in Toronto. "

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Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Markham arena: Residents fire questions at mayor and private partner - thestar.com

Markham arena: Residents fire questions at mayor and private partner - thestar.com: "“The emphasis needs to be providing transit services to the area, and not auto,” said traffic consultant Sharon Sterling. “The more auto services you put in, it reduces the frequency and capacity and service level to buses.”
...
“This is supposed to be next to a mobility hub, but that vision and having hundreds of thousands of parking spaces doesn’t mix,” she said."

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

How the TTC marketed itself, vintage edition

How the TTC marketed itself, vintage edition: "Building a subway was just the first step, without anyone to cough up a fare the TTC wouldn't have got very far with its underground transit system. Hence, ads."

Sunday, July 15, 2012

New advocacy council seeks to widen debate on transit in Hamilton and GTA - The Globe and Mail

New advocacy council seeks to widen debate on transit in Hamilton and GTA - The Globe and Mail: "What we want to do is try to have an informed and open debate about the urgent need for improvement to the region’s transportation infrastructure and the various options that exist to pay for it. "

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Thursday, June 28, 2012

thestar.com iPhone : Transit plan: Dramatic OneCity proposal floated by Stintz, DeBaeremaeker

thestar.com iPhone : Transit plan: Dramatic OneCity proposal floated by Stintz, DeBaeremaeker: "Two councillors leading the TTC say it’s time to move ahead on an accumulating wish list of transit projects: 175 kilometres, including six subway lines, 10 LRTs and five bus and streetcar routes across the city.

The latest proposal would dramatically expand Toronto’s transit network over the next 30 years. And while it comes with a $30 billion price tag, it is well within the city’s grasp, say the councillors at the helm of the Toronto Transit Commission.
"

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Monday, June 11, 2012

Surveys show people want #publictransit, not more roads

Mississauga Mayor Hazel McCallion calls for regional sales tax for transit | OpenFile: "McCallion joins a number of voices calling for a regional sales tax. Earlier this year, the Pembina Institute released a survey showing that 54 per cent of commuters supported a sales tax dedicated towards transit. A regional sales tax increase was part of Los Angeles' major transit expansion, including new subways, LRT lines and even toll freeway expansion."

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Thursday, May 31, 2012

Young people have decided. Driving sucks.

Car-free by choice; young urbanites ditching wheels in record numbers | OpenFile: "Driving culture has shifted dramatically in the past decade. The percentage of teenagers with driver’s licences has fallen through the floor, and people in their 20s and 30s are fast following suit. Researchers expect falling driving rates to continue.

North Americans have fallen out of love with the automobile. Young urbanites spurred the breakup, while a swirl of social changes fuelled the antipathy."

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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

It’s time to speak out for nature and democracy | Pembina Institute

It’s time to speak out for nature and democracy | Pembina Institute: "Through Bill C-38, the Harper government will repeal the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, and replace it with a new law that allows cabinet to override the decisions of the supposedly arms-length National Energy Board, fast-track environmental reviews to speed up approvals of infrastructure projects and dramatically narrow the definition of ‘environmental effects’ to be considered in environmental reviews.

The net result is weaker standards for environmental review across the country and a reliance on a patchwork of less comprehensive provincial assessment laws. In other words: a huge setback for environmental protection. "

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Monday, May 14, 2012

How high priced oil is changing our lives - Moneyville.ca

Former CIBC World Markets economist Jeff Rubin sees persistently high oil prices changing our assumptions about economic growth. ( May 9, 20120) Nick Kozak

How high priced oil is changing our lives - Moneyville.ca: "we’re going to see tremendous public pressure for spending on public transit,” Rubin predicted "

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Thursday, May 3, 2012

Toronto News: James: Fight for more transit or face failure - thestar.com

Toronto News: James: Fight for more transit or face failure - thestar.com: " “There’s an unprecedented transit deficit resulting from the past 25 years of inaction. (Metrolinx) has been talking (quietly) for four plus years. We must create a sense of urgency.”

Urgency and desperation. Growth and development gallop ahead, mobility needs increase, delays in transit improvements multiply and solutions stall on the pages of reports and visionary documents.

Meanwhile, TTC ridership is at record levels, approaching 500 million a year; GO Transit is at record pace, hitting 50 million passengers a year.

Gridlock is a daily reality, with commuting times now 81 minutes a day."

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

New study finds Toronto-area drivers would pay to expand rapid transit and beat gridlock | Pembina Institute

New study finds Toronto-area drivers would pay to expand rapid transit and beat gridlock | Pembina Institute: "TORONTO — Drivers in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) are willing to pay for alternatives to commuting on congested roads five days a week, according to a new transportation study released by the Pembina Institute"

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Sunday, April 22, 2012

Cars no good for city transportation

Global gridlock: How some cities tame it while others grind to a halt - The Globe and Mail: "I have spent three years researching the state of public transport around the globe for a book, and nothing I've seen makes me believe the private automobile has any future as a form of urban mass transit. From Lagos to Los Angeles, we're reaching a crisis when it comes to ever-worsening gridlock. (Congestion in the Toronto-Hamilton region, which some experts rank the worst on the continent, is now estimated to cost the regional economy $6-billion a year.)"

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Monday, April 16, 2012

The Age of Cheap Oil Has Ended  |  Peak Oil News and Message Boards

The Age of Cheap Oil Has Ended  |  Peak Oil News and Message Boards: "One of the first impacts of increasing oil scarcity has begun to manifest – food prices are rising. Industrial food production is inextricably linked to the price of oil because it is so energy intensive. It is not only about how food is planted and harvested but also in how vast amounts of food are shifted across vast distances, often inter-continentally. Simply put, food has become just another industrial commodity, inextricably linked to other commodity cycles."

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Friday, March 30, 2012

How walkable is your city? - Your Community

How walkable is your city? - Your Community: "Toronto residents would swap greater square footage and a large backyard for ease of walking, biking or taking public transit to a nearby grocery store or park, a recent report reveals."

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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Monday, March 26, 2012

Oil industry trolls pretend to be "common" people.

How Rob Ford failed Etobicoke North (his own riding): "The Fords need to be very careful. If there were ever a critical examination of their records beyond this issue of transit in this area, you would arguably find a parallel neglect and lack of understanding and support for those who helped assist in his attaining power."

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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Congestion pricing and the Lexus Lane

Free Public Transit: Congestion pricing and the Lexus Lane: "Now the taxpayer is running out of money. So what to do? Privatize the road system. That is why you are hearing more about "congestion pricing" aka "road pricing". States will have to agree to road-price to get a few pathetic crumbs for public transit."

'via Blog this'

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Make NO mistake. It is all about #oil and #tarsands. NOT subways.

Oil-troll mayor of Toronto kept pretty quiet during debate over "subways" [virtual subways] and light rail. Why? because he is not "for" subways, just using the promise of subways to confuse people that he is for transit of any kind.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Subway promises are a hoax

In Scarberia, it’s LRT all the way | NOW Magazine: "The Ford administration hasn’t been able to make a business case for a Sheppard subway extension from Don Mills to the Scarborough Town Centre. To start, there’s the $1 billion the mayor’s transit point man, Gordon Chong, couldn’t find from private donors."

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Toronto Mayor listening to #tarsands money, not the "people."

LRT best option for Sheppard Avenue, advisory panel concludes - The Globe and Mail: "The report goes beyond endorsing light-rail on Sheppard Avenue East. According to a draft of the recommendations stamped confidential and obtained by The Globe and Mail, the panel also urges council to take a serious look at new revenue tools to pay for future transit expansion, in concert with the province’s transportation authority for the Greater Toronto Area."

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Monday, March 12, 2012

Come out to drop flyers because Scarborough deserves Rapid Transit Now!

Come out to drop flyers because Scarborough deserves Rapid Transit Now!: "The future of public transit in Scarborough is at stake. Now is the time to act! Please join TTCriders this Sunday afternoon to drop information flyers because Scarborough deserves Rapid Transit Now!

When: Sunday March 18. Noon - 3:00pm
Meet at: Eglinton Avenue and Bellamy Road (At the Go Station on the South side of Eglinton Avenue East) Map

(We'll have the flyers and map ready for you. All you have to do is just show up!)

TTC:
From Kennedy Station: Take the 86 Eglinton Ave East Bus (just for 10 minutes)

See you and don't forget to bring your friends!

************************************************************
The City Council will hold a special meeting on Wednesday March 21 to vote on a public transit expansion plan for Scarborough. This vote determines how long residents of Scarborough will remain stuck on buses. The choice could not be simpler: a Light Rapid Transit (LRT) line that is fully funded and can be finished in 4 years, or the promise of subways without a plan, without any money, which will guarantee that people will be stuck on crowded buses for decades to come.

To learn more, please visit www.ttcriders.ca"

Saturday, March 10, 2012

#Tarsands trolls advocating subways - virtual subways

It is getting harder and harder to be an oil-industry troll. They try every way possible to stop people from demanding more and better public transit. The latest scam is to oppose real transit with virtual transit. What is real transit? Transit that is affordable, budgeted. What is virtual transit? It is transit that is not affordable, not budgeted.

Why do they want subways? Harper has accidentally told the truth. To send poor people underground, so that cars can continue in the sunlight. Cars choke the economy, causing clots in the bloodstream of commerce. They dump carbon into the air and cause wars over energy. But oil trolls don't care. Their job is to sow uncertainty, confusion, and fear so oil profits will continue to flow.
Harper weighs in on Toronto transit debate: He prefers subways - The Globe and Mail: "“I prefer when I want to use public transit to go underground, unimpeded ... and when I want to use my car I prefer not to be running in to LRTs and streetcars,” Mr. Harper said"

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Oil trolls getting clever. Using ephemeral promise of subway to kill actual promise of light rail

Queen’s Park Watch: Provincial Pols Pick Sides in Transit Wars | politics | Torontoist: "The get-together was essentially meaningless, since the only time anyone’s hinted that Finch might get a subway was an off-the-cuff remark by Mayor Rob Ford back in March of last year, when he promised underground transit within a decade to replace the light rail line he had just killed. Since then there’s been no discussion of, let alone planning for, the funding or building of the thing."

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Saturday, February 25, 2012

Mayor’s opponents building coalition to derail subways - The Globe and Mail

Mayor’s opponents building coalition to derail subways - The Globe and Mail: "Dismayed by the dramatic dismissal of TTC general manager Gary Webster, opponents of Rob Ford are building a new coalition of council votes to derail the mayor’s subway plans."

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Global Toronto | Premier McGuinty says he's losing patience with Toronto over transit fight

Global Toronto | Premier McGuinty says he's losing patience with Toronto over transit fight: "TORONTO - Premier Dalton McGuinty says he's running out of patience with Toronto as its mayor battles with city council over transit plans.

McGuinty says the "time for talk is coming close to an end" and the city needs to get on with building public transit."

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

How #oil trolls operate

thestar.com mobile: article: "When Ford got elected he cancelled Transit City, summoned Webster to his office. Webster promised to outline the TTC’s current position on LRTs versus subways. A staff report was prepared, but Ford stopped its circulation. Instead, he wanted Stintz to engineer Webster’s dismissal. And he demanded Stintz not circulate the report.

Stintz kept the report quiet, but refused to do Ford’s dirty deed. Webster’s views actually made sense, she thought, and were certainly not a firing offence."

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Friday, February 17, 2012

TTCriders ask: “Why silence Gary Webster?” | Toronto Environmental Alliance

TTCriders ask: “Why silence Gary Webster?” | Toronto Environmental Alliance: "“Why are they firing Gary Webster,” asked Jamie Kirkpatrick, spokesperson for TTCriders. “Are they afraid he will do his job and provide an objective analysis of how transit expansion should happen in Toronto?”"

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Friday, February 10, 2012

Toronto City Council Defeats Mayor, Resurrects Transit City | Planetizen

Toronto City Council Defeats Mayor, Resurrects Transit City | Planetizen: "In a stunning blow to Mayor Rob Ford -- who, on his first day in office in 2010 scrubbed the "Transit City" plan in favor of an ill-thought out and unfunded subway scheme -- the Toronto City Council has quashed his plans and resurrected the old one."

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Monday, February 6, 2012

Do you sense the invisible hands of #tarsands in Toronto?

Transit and planning experts rally against Ford's plans: ""Planning for desperately needed public transit expansion within the City of Toronto... is currently in a state of disarray and the Mayor's current plans will not provide cost-effective solutions to the City's pressing transportation needs," the letter reads. Perhaps the collective clout of the signees will sway council when it convenes to determine the immediate future of transit planning in Toronto. That's clearly the idea."

Why send people underground so cars can be on the surface? Subways can only be justified in very heavy density. The future of cities is carfree surface transit. Funding? Why do we argue over a few million dollars for transit when congestion costs billions and is choking the economy, energy wars are raging, more than a million dollars a day goes out of town for gasoline, and oil is running out? The oil trolls want to squeeze the last dollar out of the last drop of oil, no matter what the cost to society. It is time for people to organize and demand FARE-FREE PUBLIC TRANSIT. It doesn't cost more, it actually saves more than it costs.

Yes, tarsands. Even if not one drop is burned in North America, oil and petrol are global markets. Many people hope to get rich from tarsands. They will be disappointed. Only a very few will profit. The cost to the biosphere will be unbearable.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

No, you don't need that much parking | Better! Cities & Towns Online

No, you don't need that much parking | Better! Cities & Towns Online: "The change reflects the evolution of the city's parking standards, The Globe and Mail reports. Since 1997, Vancouver's transportation plan has capped downtown parking and banned new roads—helping to reduce the number of car trips, even while the number of jobs and the overall number of trips into the city's center have grown."

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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Mayor Rob Ford had no authority to cancel Transit City, lawyers say - thestar.com

Toronto News: Mayor Rob Ford had no authority to cancel Transit City, lawyers say - thestar.com: "A report by a respected Toronto law firm says Mayor Rob Ford exceeded his legal authority when he cancelled Transit City without city council approval.

Councillor Joe Mihevc, who solicited the legal opinion, will release it publicly on Monday."

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Saturday, January 14, 2012

The TTC | Together Toronto

The TTC | Together Toronto: "TTC ridership is the highest it’s ever been, with 502 million transit rides predicted next year. This means hundreds of millions of fewer car trips, cleaner air and less gridlock in the City. What a success story!

Imagine the increased gridlock and damage to our environment if those TTC riders drove their cars instead."

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Sunday, January 8, 2012

Oil Trolls get elected for the purpose of making #transit worse

Let’s save transit from disaster this year | The Grid TO: "In 2011, the Ford administration turned public transit into a multi-billion-dollar boondoggle. Toronto's New Year's resolution must focus on fixing this TTC mess."

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Saturday, January 7, 2012

Save Transit City

Save Transit City: "On the day he took office Rob Ford canceled Transit City, a project to build fast, reliable and affordable light rail transit (LRT) in the areas of Toronto that need it most: the suburbs. The province has $8.7 billion to spend on three rapid transit lines on Finch West, Sheppard East and Eglinton, a plan that would cost Toronto $0."

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Friday, January 6, 2012

Fighting for the TTC: Meet CodeRedTO | cityscape | Torontoist

Fighting for the TTC: Meet CodeRedTO | cityscape | Torontoist: "For all of their concerns about Rob Ford and his approach to governance, many on the progressive side of Toronto do credit the mayor with one thing: he’s sparked a wave of activism and community engagement this city hasn’t seen in years. Helping to lead the charge against some of Ford’s more headline-grabbing plans last year was CodeBlueTO, a group of citizens who became very concerned when Ford brother Doug started musing about scrapping existing plans for waterfront revitalization in favour of Ferris wheels and monorails. Building on a network of concerned residents that had developed over the past decade or more, as those original plans were developed, CodeBlueTO launched a website, hashtag, petition, and public information campaign that helped turn the tide against the Ford brothers and let to a unanimous vote by city council to endorse the existing planning framework."

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