Transcript: Debating Transit Planning in Toronto | Apr 02, 2019

Steve sits in the studio. He's slim, clean-shaven, in his fifties, with short curly brown hair. He's wearing a gray suit, white shirt, and checked blue tie.

A caption on screen reads "Debating transit planning in Toronto. @spaikin, @theagenda."

Steve says POLITICIANS AND
POLICYMAKERS SEE TRANSIT
PLANNING AT ONE LEVEL.
THE PUBLIC - FROM BUSINESSES
RIGHT ON THROUGH TO EVERYDAY
RIDERS - EXPERIENCE IT AS A MORE
IMMEDIATE MATTER OF GETTING FROM
A TO B.
WITH US FOR THEIR FEEDBACK ABOUT
WHAT THE PROVINCE'S PLANS COULD
MEAN FOR GETTING AROUND THE
PROVINCIAL CAPITAL: BRIAN
KELCEY, VICE PRESIDENT OF PUBLIC
AFFAIRS AT THE TORONTO REGION
BOARD OF TRADE...

Brian is in his forties, clean-shaven, with short gray hair. He's wearing a blue suit and shirt.

Steve continues AND TRICIA WOOD,
PROFESSOR OF GEOGRAPHY AT YORK
UNIVERSITY AND A REPRESENTATIVE
OF THE TRANSIT ADVOCACY GROUP, CODEREDTO.

Tricia is in her fifties, with chin-length wavy gray hair. She's wearing a black cardigan over a blue shirt.

Steve continues WHICH I SHOULD ASK ABOUT.
WHY CODE RED?

Tricia says IT CAME AFTER CODE BLUE, THE
CAMPAIGN ABOUT THE WATERFRONT.

Steve says OH, OKAY.
SO NOW WE'RE ON TO CODE RED?

Tricia says YES, THE TTC'S COLOUR.

Steve says I GOTCHA.
I GOTCHA.
LET ME GET BOTH OF YOU TO WEIGH
IN ON THIS WHOLE SORT OF
OVERARCHING ISSUE OF HOW TRANSIT
PLANNING AND OPERATIONS ARE BEST
SERVED, BY HAVING THE CITY
CONTINUE TO RUN IT OR BY HAVING
IT UPLOADED TO THE PROVINCIAL
GOVERNMENT, WHICH HAS MADE THE
ARGUMENT THAT THEY COULD DO A
BETTER JOB THAN THE CITY HAS
BEEN.
TRICIA, IF YOU WOULD.

The caption changes to "Tricia Wood. CodeRedTO."

Tricia says CodeRedTO DID A REPORT, AND
WE LOOKED AT LOTS OF PLACES.
WE CAN TELL YOU THAT IT'S NOT A
QUESTION OF ORDER OF GOVERNANCE.
THE ANSWER IS NOT, WELL, IF THE
CITY RUNS IT THEN IT WORKS, IF
THE PROVINCE RUNS IT THEN IT
WORKS.
IT'S SPECIFIC TO THE SITUATION.
SO WE DO HAVE SOME ISSUES TO
SOLVE, BUT THEY ARE NOT
NECESSARILY SOLVED JUST BY
RELOCATING WHO OWNS IT, WHO RUNS
IT, WHO MAKES THE DECISION.

Steve says BRIAN, YOUR VIEW?

The caption changes to "Brian Kelcey. Toronto Region Board of Trade."

Brian says AS YOU KNOW, STEVE, IN 2017
AND THEN WITH THE FOLLOW-UP
PAPER EARLIER THIS YEAR, THE
BOARD OF TRADE TOOK THE POSITION
THAT WE WANT TO SEE AS MUCH
UPLOADING AS POSSIBLE, AND WE
WANT TO SEE AS MUCH OF A
REGIONALIZED SYSTEM AS POSSIBLE.
THAT'S NOT BECAUSE WE DON'T HAVE
RESPECT FOR EACH CITY'S ROLE IN
HELPING TO PLAN WHAT HAPPENS
AROUND STATIONS OR WITH THE
TRANSIT SYSTEM.
IT'S BECAUSE THE PRIMARY BARRIER
WE'RE FACING TO GET TRANSIT
BUILT AND TRANSIT REPAIRED IN
THIS REGION IS MONEY, AND THE
PROVINCE HAS ACCESS TO IT.
THEY HAVE GROWTH REVENUES.
THEY HAVE A LOT OF DEBT CAPACITY
THAT CITIES DON'T HAVE.
AND SO WE ALSO KNOW THAT THERE'S
A LOT OF TRANSIT RIDERS OUT
THERE, ME AMONG THEM, WHO HAVE
TO CROSS CITY BORDERS IN AN
INCREASINGLY REGIONAL SYSTEM.
YES, MOST OF THE RIDERS ARE HERE
IN TORONTO, BUT WE NEED TO
DISTRIBUTE JOBS AND HOMES MORE
EVENLY THROUGHOUT THE REGION.
AND THAT MEANS DISTRIBUTING
COMMUTES THROUGHOUT THE REGION.
SO WE WANTED TO SEE AND STILL
WANT TO SEE A PREDOMINANTLY
PROVINCIALLY FUNDED SYSTEM WITH
INTEGRATED FARES ACROSS THE
REGION SO THAT THE... YOU KNOW,
NOT ONLY IS THE RIDE SEAMLESS
FOR TRANSIT RIDERS WHO WANT TO
GO ACROSS THE BORDER TO A JOB IN
MISSISSAUGA OR BRAMPTON OR
VAUGHAN, OR VICE VERSA, BUT ALSO
SO THAT WE START THINKING
REGIONALLY IN TERMS OF HOW WE
BUILD TRANSIT SO THAT THOSE
AREAS THAT ARE UNDERSERVED, THAT
HAVE TOO MANY DRIVERS ON THE
ROADS CAN START TO SEE ENOUGH
TRANSIT CAPACITY.
THEN WE CAN CHANGE THEIR MATH.

Steve says LET ME UNDERSTAND YOUR
GROUP'S POSITION A LITTLE BIT
BETTER.
IF IT DOESN'T NECESSARILY MATTER
WHETHER IT'S THE PROVINCE OWNING
IT OR THE CITY OWNING IT, WHAT
DOES MATTER?

The caption changes to "Tricia Wood. York University."

Tricia says WHAT DOES MATTER IS RUNNING
IT WELL AND LEAVING IT IN THE
HANDS OF THE MOST EXPERIENCED
AND SUCCESSFUL AGENCY.
SO IN THE CASE OF TORONTO, I
THINK THE TTC HAS A STRONGER
CASE TO MAKE, AND THERE'S A
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FUNDING,
WHICH OF COURSE WE DO WELCOME,
AND OWNERSHIP.
RIGHT?
SO IS IT NECESSARY FOR THE
PROVINCE TO UPLOAD THIS... ALL
OF THE TTC OR PARTS OF IT IN
TERMS OF THE SUBWAY, WHICH IS
THE ALLEGED PROPOSAL, IN ORDER
TO FUND IT BETTER?
I MEAN, WE ABSOLUTELY AGREE THAT
THE MAJOR OBSTACLE IS THAT.
AND IN TERMS OF REGIONAL
PLANNING, YES, THAT'S A NEED AND
WE ALSO SUPPORT THAT, BUT THAT
ALSO HAS TO COME FROM SORT OF
THE GROUND UP.
YOU CAN'T IMPOSE A REGIONAL
STRUCTURE ON TOP OF A LOCAL
STRUCTURE WITH KIND OF DISREGARD
FOR IT.
IT REALLY NEEDS TO BE BUILT OUT.

The caption changes to "tvo.org/theagenda; agendaconnect@tvo.org."

Steve says YEAH, I MEAN, LET ME
PUT IT THIS WAY.
THE PROVINCE, OF COURSE, HAS
ACCESS TO MORE MONEY THAN THE
CITY DOES, BUT THE WAY IT'S
ALWAYS BEEN DONE IN THE PAST IS
THEY'VE JUST TRANSFERRED THE
MONEY TO THE CITY AFTER THE
CITY'S MADE A DECISION OF WHAT
IT WANTS TO DO. WHAT PREVENTS
THAT FROM CONTINUING?

The caption changes to "Connect with us: Twitter: @theagenda; Facebook, agendaconnect@tvo.org, Instagram."

Brian says WELL, FIRST OFF, ONE OF
OUR PRIMARY CONCERNS AT THE
BOARD IS WITH RESPECT TO THE
CITY OF TORONTO IN PARTICULAR,
AND THIS APPLIES TO OTHER
CITIES, OF COURSE, AS THEY GROW.
THE CITY FACES PRACTICAL AND
LEGAL LIMITS ON HOW MUCH IT CAN
BORROW, AND WE'VE HAD A ONE
THIRD, ONE THIRD, ONE THIRD
FINANCING SYSTEM IN THIS
COUNTRY, AND IT'S BEEN MODIFIED
A LITTLE BIT IN TERMS OF PAYING
FOR THESE THINGS, AND THERE'S AN
UPPER LIMIT THAT CAN LEAD TO HOW
MUCH CITIES CAN CONTRIBUTE IF WE
KEEP FOLLOWING ALONG WITH THAT
MODEL.
WITH RESPECT TO OWNERSHIP, YOU
KNOW, ONE OF THE THINGS RIGHT
NOW THAT THERE'S REALLY TWO
CONVERSATIONS GOING ON BETWEEN
THE CITY AND THE PROVINCE, WHICH
IS PRESUMABLY WHY WE'RE HERE,
AND ONE OF THOSE IS A
CONVERSATION OF WHAT HAPPENS
WITH EXPANDED TRANSIT AND THE
OTHER IS WHAT HAPPENS WITH THE
EXISTING SUBWAY LINES.
LET'S PUT THE EXISTING LINES
ASIDE FOR A MOMENT.
THE BIGGEST TRANSIT EXPANSION WE
HAVE UNDER WAY RIGHT NOW IN THE
CITY LIMITS IN THE CITY OF
TORONTO, EGLINTON WEST AND
EGLINTON CROSSTOWN BY FAR THE
LARGER OF THE TWO.
BOTH ARE PROVINCIALLY OWNED
LINES AND PROVINCIALLY FUNDED
LINES.
THE PROVINCE HAS AGREED IN THE
CASE OF EGLINTON TO LET THE TTC
OPERATE THAT LINE, BUT I'M NOT
SEEING A CROWD OF PROTESTERS
SAYING IT'S DISASTROUS THAT THE
PROVINCE IS ACTUALLY GOING TO
OWN THE LINE...

Steve says Well those aren't subways.

Brian says WELL, A PART OF THE EGLINTON
LRT IS GOING TO BE UNDERGROUND,
AND SO FOR ALL INTENTS AND PURPOSES...

Steve says THAT DOESN'T MAKE IT A SUBWAY.

Brian says WHAT DIFFERENCE IT MAKE...

Steve says because the Province wants the SUBWAYS.

The caption changes to "Brian Kelcey, @stateofthecity."

Brian says SURE, AND SO AS I SAID, WE'VE
GOT A DEBATE NOW IN TERMS OF
WHAT HAPPENS WITH NEW SUBWAY
LINES AND WHAT HAPPENS WITH
EXISTING SUBWAY LINES.
AND IF THE PROVINCE WANTS TO
COME FORWARD AND SAY, FOR
EXAMPLE, AS THEY'VE ALREADY
HINTED IN THE LEAD-UP TO THIS
BUDGET, THAT THEY ARE WILLING TO
FUND A RELIEF LINE BUT THEY WANT
CONTROL AND OWNERSHIP OVER THAT
ASSET, THAT IS STRUCTURAL...

Steve says YOU'RE FINE WITH THAT.

Brian says NOT THAT DIFFERENT FROM WHAT
WE'RE SEEING WITH THE EGLINTON CROSSTOWN.

The caption changes to "Tricia Wood, @pbkwood."

Tricia says THERE IS A THIRD PART HERE,
RIGHT?
THIS ISN'T ONLY ABOUT WHERE WE
FIND THE MONEY.
THIS IS ABOUT WHO MAKES THE
DECISIONS.
THIS IS INITIALLY PRESENTED TO
US AS YOU SAID THE PROVINCE IS
WILLING TO PUT UP MONEY FOR IT
BUT THEY WANT TO OWN IT IN ORDER
FOR THE PARTICULAR WAY THAT THEY
WANT TO CAPITALIZE IT.
BUT WHAT THEY'VE NOW COME
FORWARD WITH IN THE LAST WEEK OR
SO WITH THE LETTERS FROM MICHAEL
LINDSEY IS AN INDICATION THAT,
NO, THEY ACTUALLY WANT TO MAKE
DECISIONS.
THEY WANT TO OVERTURN EXISTING
DECISIONS ON THE PART OF THE
CITY, AND THEY WANT TO BE THE
ONES WHO MAKE THE DECISIONS
ABOUT WHAT WE BUILD.

Steve says WHAT'S WRONG WITH THAT?

Tricia says WELL, THAT'S A GOVERNANCE
QUESTION, AND THAT'S NOT THE
SAME THING AS FUNDING.
AND SO THERE'S A LITTLE BIT OF
SLIPPERINESS HAPPENING BETWEEN
THESE.
IF WE UPLOAD IT, THERE ARE NO
GOVERNANCE ISSUES, THERE ARE
GOVERNANCE ISSUES.
THE METROLINX BOARD OF DIRECTORS
IS NOT THE SAME IN TERMS OF THE
WAY IT'S STRUCTURED AS THE TTC
BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS, WHICH
HAS ELECTED OFFICIALS ON IT AND
HAS A MUCH GREATER DEGREE OF
ACCOUNTABILITY.

The caption changes to "The province's changes."

Steve says I GET THAT, BUT...
THIS IS GOING TO SOUND STRANGE,
BUT GOVERNANCE ISSUES ASIDE,
FUNDING ISSUES ASIDE,
MAINTENANCE ISSUES ASIDE, THE
ONLY THING THE PEOPLE WHO ARE
WATCHING THIS RIGHT NOW ARE
LISTENING TO IT ON PODCAST CARE
ABOUT IS WHO HAS A GREATER
CERTAINTY OF ENSURING THAT MY
TRANSIT EXPERIENCE IS BETTER.
CITY OR PROVINCE?
THAT'S ESSENTIALLY THE QUESTION
THEY WANT THE ANSWER TO.
WHAT DO YOU THINK THE ANSWER IS?

Tricia says WELL, BUT THAT ISN'T... THAT
ISN'T THE ANSWER.
WHO WILL MAKE THIS BETTER?
THERE'S NO GIVEN THAT SAYS THAT
THE PROVINCE... YOU KNOW,
SWITCHING IT WILL MAKE IT BETTER
OR LEAVING IT WILL MAKE IT
BETTER.
THERE ARE PROCESSES.
WE STILL HAVE TO MAKE GOOD
DECISIONS WHOEVER DOES IT.
IN TERMS OF TORONTO SPECIFIC
SITUATION, DISINTEGRATING IN ANY
WAY THE TTC IS NOT GOING TO MAKE
THE EXPERIENCE BETTER.
IT MAKES EVERYTHING ABOUT ITS
COORDINATION MORE CHALLENGING.
SO THERE'S NOT... THERE'S NOT A
GOOD CASE FOR MAKING CHANGES IF
THE GOAL IS BETTER SERVICE,
INCLUDING IN TERMS OF BETTER
REGIONAL SERVICE.
THERE'S NOTHING GETTING IN THE
WAY OF THE TTC... YOU KNOW, THE
CITY OF TORONTO AND THEN ITS
NEIGHBOURING MUNICIPALITIES, YOU
KNOW, WORKING AMONGST THEMSELVES
EVEN, BUT IDEALLY WITH THE
SUPPORT OF THE PROVINCE, TO
BETTER COORDINATE TRANSIT ACROSS
THOSE BOUNDARIES.

Steve says IN FACT, BRIAN...

Tricia says OWNERSHIP IS NOT REQUIRED, OR
CHANGE OF OWNERSHIP IS NOT
REQUIRED TO DO THAT.

Steve says I MEAN, THAT HAPPENED.
THAT'S WHY THERE'S A SUBWAY THAT
GOES NORTH OF STEELES NOW TO
VAUGHAN, WHICH IS IN YORK
REGION, WHICH IS NOT THE 416.

Brian says AND THERE'S A COUPLE ISSUES
HERE IN TERMS OF FIRST WITH
RESPECT TO, YOU KNOW, WHAT
OUTCOMES YOU GET FROM HAVING THE
PROVINCE AT THE TABLE.
I THINK IT'S IMPORTANT TO SAY,
AND ESPECIALLY WITH FORMER MAYOR
MILLER'S COMMENTS ON THIS SHOW,
ELSEWHERE, TODAY THAT WE'VE HAD
WHAT I'LL CALL A PANIC DEFLATION
IN TERMS OF CONCERN ABOUT WHERE
THIS PARTICULAR GOVERNMENT, THE
FORD GOVERNMENT, IS GOING ON
THIS RELATIVE TO WHAT'S ACTUALLY
HAPPENING.

Steve says PANIC DEFLATION?

Brian says WE WOULD BE EQUALLY CONCERNED
AS A PRO-TRANSIT ORGANIZATION IF
YOU STARTED TO SEE LINES BEING
DRAWN ALL OVER THE PLACE AND THE
PROVERBIAL SUBWAYS TO PICKERING
THAT WE'VE HEARD ABOUT.
WHAT'S BEEN REVEALED THROUGH THE
LETTER EXCHANGE, THROUGH TALKING
ABOUT THE RELIEF LINE AND
FUNDING THE RELIEF LINE, LET'S
REMEMBER, IS THE CITY'S AND THE
TTC'S TOP PRIORITY RIGHT NOW.

Steve says AND THE PROVINCE'S APPARENTLY TOO.

Brian says AND THE PROVINCE'S APPARENTLY
TOO, DESPITE A HUNDRED RUMOURS
AND COMPLAINTS TO THE CONTRARY.
WE'RE TALKING ABOUT FUNDING THE
YONGE EXTENSION, WHICH WHATEVER
THE ISSUES AROUND WHETHER IT
GETS BUILT FIRST, SECOND OR
THIRD IS A TTC PLAN.
I WAS SKEPTICAL OF IT AND I WENT
DOOR KNOCKING LATE LAST FALL,
AND I KEPT RUNNING INTO PEOPLE
SAYING THE TTC WANTS THIS
BECAUSE THEY ARE ABLE TO STAGE
TRAINS ON YONGE IF THEY CAN
BUILD YORK FURTHER NORTH, WHICH
THEY CAN'T DO NOW.
SCARBOROUGH IS ON THAT LIST AS
WELL, AND OBVIOUSLY IT'S A
CONTROVERSIAL LINE.
I'VE BEEN A PART OF ARGUING THAT
IT SHOULD BE A CONTROVERSIAL
LINE.
BUT NEVERTHELESS, THAT'S THE
LINE THAT THE TTC IS NOW
PLANNING AND THAT ALL THREE
LEVELS OF GOVERNMENT, ALL THREE
POLITICAL PARTIES AT BOTH LEVELS
OF GOVERNMENT AND BOTH
CANDIDATES IN THE LAST ELECTION
ALL SUPPORT IT.
WE'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT DRAWING
LINES ALL OVER THE PLACE.
WE'RE TALKING ABOUT POTENTIAL
ADJUSTMENTS TO A RELIEF LINE
BASED ON PRESUMABLY PROFESSIONAL
ADVICE ABOUT HOW TO BUILD IT
BETTER, AND LET'S WAIT AND SEE.

Steve says OKAY, LET ME GO...

Brian says IS CRAZY...

Steve says LET ME TAKE TRICIA TO
SCARBOROUGH.
IT STARTED AS AN LRT, THEN WENT
TO A THREE-STOP SUBWAY, THEN TO
A ONE-STOP SUBWAY.
NOW BACK TO A THREE-STOP SUBWAY.
I DON'T KNOW IF THEY'RE ANY
CLOSER TO MAKING THIS THING
HAPPEN.
IT WAS GOING TO BE 2.5 BILLION DOLLARS.
NOW IT LOOKS LIKE IT'S GOING TO
BE CLOSER TO 4, MAYBE NORTH OF
4 BILLION DOLLARS.
IS THIS ANY WAY TO RUN A
RAILROAD?

The caption changes to "Off the rails?"

Tricia says IT WOULD BE 5 BILLION DOLLARS WHEN
IT WAS DONE.
IN ALL THE RESEARCH, WE CAN
PREDICT GIVEN WHAT WE HAVE AND
HAVE NOT DONE IN TERMS OF A
RIGOROUS BUSINESS ANALYSIS AND A
PLANNING PROCESS.
WE HAVE TAKEN STEPS BACK IF
WE'RE GOING TO CHANGE OUR PLANS
NOW.
THE ONLY THING THAT IS
COMPLETELY DROPPED OFF THE
RADAR, WAS NOT ON THE PROVINCE'S
LIST, IS THE EGLINTON EAST LRT,
WHICH WOULD CONNECT IN
PARTICULAR THE SCARBOROUGH, AND
THAT'S A VERY IMPORTANT LINE,
AND IT IS A PRIORITY OF THE
CITY, AND IT'S NOT ON THE LIST.
AND THESE ADJUSTMENTS ARE NOT
SMALL.
I MEAN, CHANGING WHETHER... NOT
ONLY HOW MANY STOPS THE
SCARBOROUGH SUBWAY HAS, BUT
WHERE THE LINE RUNS BECAUSE THEY
ARE TALKING ABOUT EXTENDING IT
BEYOND THE TOWN CENTRE NOW IN
THE SECOND LETTER, THAT'S NOT A
SMALL ADJUSTMENT.
NEITHER IS IT A SMALL ADJUSTMENT
TO START TALKING ABOUT
TUNNELLING THE EGLINTON WEST
LINE CONNECTING OUT TO THE
AIRPORT.

Steve says DO YOU THINK THE
SCARBOROUGH SUBWAY IS EVER GOING
TO BE BUILT?

Tricia says I FEAR IT'S NOT, ACTUALLY.
I'VE WORRIED ABOUT THIS FOR
QUITE A WHILE, THAT
FUNDAMENTALLY WE'RE GOING TO RUN
OUT OF MONEY.
WE HAVE AN ENVELOPE SORT OF, YOU
KNOW, SET OUT FOR IT.
IT ALREADY EXCEEDS THAT, AND IT
HAS CROWDED OUT ANY POSSIBILITY
OF THE EGLINTON LRT, AND WHAT I
FEAR IS THAT, YOU KNOW, THE
SCARBOROUGH RT IS GOING TO COME
TO THE END OF ITS HAPPY LIFE AND
PEOPLE WILL BE PUT ON BUSES AND
UNLESS THERE'S A MAGIC TREE OF
MONEY SOMEWHERE, IT'S JUST NOT
GOING TO GET BUILT.
YOU KNOW, AND I THINK
ALTERNATIVES KIND OF FILL IN.
AND THAT'S A SHAME, BECAUSE THEN
SCARBOROUGH RIDERS WIND UP
ACTUALLY WITH LESS THAN WHAT WE
HAVE NOW INSTEAD OF MORE.

Steve says DO YOU THINK THAT
SCARBOROUGH SUBWAY WILL BE
BUILT, WHETHER IT'S ONE STATION
OR THREE STATIONS?

Brian says WE'LL SEE.

Steve says OF COURSE WE WILL SEE.

Brian says WHAT I'M TRYING TO FOCUS ON
IS WE'VE HEARD A LOT OF HISTORY.
YOU KNOW, A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE
COMPLAINING ABOUT DECISIONS THAT
WERE MADE IN THE PAST, AND
FRANKLY I AGREE WITH THEM, THE
BOARD AGREES WITH THEM ON A LOT
OF THE MISTAKES THAT HAVE BEEN
MADE.
NOBODY'S HAD A PERFECT RECORD ON
THIS, WHETHER IT'S THE TTC OR
METROLINX, THE PROVINCE OR THE
CITY.
THEY'VE ALL MADE DECISIONS THAT
COMPROMISED ON EVIDENCE-BASED
DECISIONMAKING.
THEY'VE ALL HAD OVERRUNS ON
THEIR PROJECTS.
THERE'S A LOT OF BLAME TO GO
AROUND.
I AM, AND THE BOARD IS TRYING TO
BE OPTIMISTIC ABOUT GETTING
BETTER RESULTS, AND SO FOR
EXAMPLE, SEVERAL MONTHS AGO IT
WAS NORMAL IN THE TRANSIT
ACTIVIST COMMUNITY TO BE SAYING
THAT KING STREET PILOT WAS GOING
TO BE SCRAPPED FROM QUEEN'S
PARK, THAT ALL OF THE LRTS ON
THE WESTSIDE OF THE CITY WERE
GOING TO BE SCRAPPED, AND HERE
WE ARE.
HAMILTON IS CONFIRMED.
EGLINTON WEST IS UNDER
CONSTRUCTION.
THE MAYOR AND THE PREMIER JUST
MADE AN ANNOUNCEMENT THAT THEY
ARE PROCEEDING WITH A SLIGHTLY
REDUCED VERSION OF ONTARIO'S
LINE IN MISSISSAUGA.

Steve says THE KING STREET PILOT
IS APPARENTLY GOING TO BE...

Brian says RIGHT.

Steve says BECOME PERMANENT.

The caption changes to "Watch us anytime: tvo.org, Twitter: @theagenda, Facebook Live."

Brian says WE'RE TRYING TO JUDGE ON
OUTCOMES HERE.
THE NEXT BENCHMARK WE'RE GETTING
SIGNAL FROM THE PROVINCE FROM
ITS VARIOUS COMMUNICATIONS,
PUBLICLY AND PRIVATELY ON, IS
THE RELIEF LINE, WHICH IS THE
HIGHEST PRIORITY.

Steve says LET ME FOLLOW UP ON THAT.
WE'VE HEARD SOME PRETTY
INTERESTING THEORIES OUT THERE
ABOUT WHAT THE RELIEF LINE, AND
MAYBE SOME OTHER LINES, MIGHT
LOOK LIKE.
WE'VE HEARD ABOUT MONORAILS.
THE MINISTER OF TRANSPORTATION
CONFIRMED TODAY THAT'S NOT ON.
WE'VE HEARD ABOUT, YOU KNOW,
MAGNETIC... WHAT'S THAT?
MAGNETIC LEVITATION, YEAH.
I MEAN, FLYING TRAINS.
I DON'T KNOW.
WHATEVER.
IS THERE A NEAT IDEA WE HAVEN'T
HEARD BEFORE THAT YOU KIND OF LIKE?

Tricia says NO.
AND NOT FOR THE RELIEF LINE.
I THINK THAT'S VERY IMPORTANT.
THIS IS A LARGE AND SIGNIFICANT
PROJECT FOR WHICH WE KNOW IT
WOULD BE IMMEDIATELY A LARGE
RIDERSHIP DEMAND.
THAT IS NOT WHERE WE PUT
SPECULATIVE TECHNOLOGY THAT
EITHER AGENCY HAS NEVER USED
BEFORE, WHICH DOESN'T MEAN THAT
WE'RE NOT OPEN TO NEW
TECHNOLOGY.
THE TTC CONTINUES TO UPGRADE ITS
TRAIN TECHNOLOGY AND SIGNAL
TECHNOLOGY.
I MEAN, THE TTC HAS A VERY
STRONG RECORD, AND I THINK GO'S
IS IMPROVING AS WELL, IN TERMS
OF ADOPTING MORE MODERN
TECHNOLOGY, PARTICULARLY WHEN
IT'S MORE ENERGY EFFICIENT.
YOU KNOW, AS IT BECOMES
AVAILABLE.
AND WE SHOULD ABSOLUTELY LOOK
INTO OTHER TECHNOLOGIES THAT
WE'RE NOT USING, BUT YOU DON'T
PUT THEM ON THE MAJOR LINE RIGHT
IN THE MIDDLE OF THE SYSTEM.
YOU START A LITTLE BIT SMALLER
THAN THAT.
THE OTHER PART, TOO, THAT'S A
CAUTION ABOUT INTRODUCING NEW
TECHNOLOGY INTO THE MIDDLE OF
THE SYSTEM IS THAT THE TTC HAS
EXISTING PLANS FOR BEING ABLE TO
RUN CARS BETWEEN DIFFERENT LINES
AND STORAGE AND MAINTENANCE
FACILITIES.
INTRODUCING NEW TECHNOLOGIES HAS
RIPPLE EFFECTS INTO OTHER AREAS
THAT WE'RE CURRENTLY NOT
PREPARED FOR.
THE RELIEF LINE IS NOT AS FAR
ALONG IN TERMS OF PLANNING, BUT
IT IS SEVERAL YEARS AWAY IN
TERMS OF PLANNING.
IF WE'RE STARTING WITH SOME NEW
TECHNOLOGY, WE ARE AT LEAST
PAUSING AND POSSIBLY TAKING A
FEW STEPS BACKWARDS IN TERMS OF
TIME.
THE OTHER LINE THAT HAS COME OFF
THE TABLE IN TERMS OF THE
CONVERSATION IS THE WATERFRONT
LRT, AND THERE ARE SOME PARTIES
PARTICULARLY CONCERNED ABOUT IT,
BUT PROBABLY NO MORE THAN THE
CONSTITUENTS WHO LIVE THERE.

Steve says WELL, SIDEWALK HAS
SAID THEY ARE PREPARED TO
CONSIDER PAYING FOR THAT THING.

Tricia says IT'S A COMPONENT OF THE AREA
THEY ENVISION.
IT SHOULD BE FOR ALL OF US.
THE GEOGRAPHY FOR THAT AREA IS
BETTER FOR TRANSIT THAN DRIVING.

Steve says HAVE YOU HEARD ABOUT A
FUNKY NEW DESIGN OR SOMETHING
THAT YOU MIGHT LIKE TO SEE THAT
WE HAVEN'T HEARD OF YET?

Brian says I THINK AND I HOPE THAT WHAT
THE PREMIER AND MINISTER ARE
TALKING ABOUT, AND THERE'S BEEN
HINTS TO SUGGEST THAT THIS MIGHT
BE THE CASE, IS TAKING A NEW
LOOK AT HOW WE'RE BUILDING
SUBWAYS.
I WOULD BE WORRIED IF WE WERE
BRINGING IN RADICALLY NEW
TECHNOLOGIES AND REPEATING
HISTORY WITH THE SCARBOROUGH RT
AT THE TIME WHERE THAT WAS VERY
MUCH AN EXPERIMENTAL LINE WHEN
IT WAS CREATED.

Steve says YES.

Brian says HOWEVER, THE BOARD HAS BEEN
VOCAL FOR A FEW YEARS ABOUT THE
FACT THAT EVERYTHING WE'RE
HEARING FROM MEMBERS OF THE
BOARD WHO REPRESENT
INTERNATIONAL ENGINEERING
COMPANIES, WHO HAVE EXPERIENCE
BUILDING TRANSIT IN OTHER
JURISDICTIONS, IS THAT WE ARE
FALLING BEHIND TESTED
TECHNOLOGIES, ROUTINE
TECHNOLOGIES, PROVEN
TECHNOLOGIES IN JURISDICTIONS
LIKE SPAIN WHICH BUILDS SUBWAYS
PRETTY MUCH FASTER THAN ANYBODY
ELSE AND IS HARDLY AN UNSAFE
JURISDICTION.
THEY ARE VERY FOCUSED ON GETTING
TRANSIT OUT RATHER THAN MAKING
IT AS PRETTY AS POSSIBLE.
AND YOU GET A RESULT, WHICH IS
THAT THE TRANSIT SERVICE AND
CAPACITY THAT WE ALL NEED WHEN
YOU GO AHEAD.
SO WHAT I'M HOPING TO SEE IS A
CHANGE IN HOW THIS IS BEING
BUILT, WHICH MEANS THAT YOU
DON'T NEED RADICAL CHANGES TO
MOST OF THE DESIGN THAT'S
ALREADY BEEN DONE IN TERMS OF
ROUTING AND SO FORTH.
AND IF THE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT
IS WILLING TO INVEST TO CATCH UP
FOR ANY LOST TIME ON THAT, AND
EVERYTHING HEARING AND AND
SEEING IS SUGGESTING THEY ARE
PREPARED TO INVEST STAGGERING
AMOUNTS OF MONEY TO DO THAT,
HOPEFULLY WE'LL GET TO A BETTER
RESULT.
IT WOULD BE VERY EASY IN THE
CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE TO BE,
YOU KNOW, LOBBYING FOR ON THE
BASIS OF PRINCIPLE, CONCERNS
ABOUT HOW WE'RE NOT GOING TO GET
A GREAT RESULT FROM ALL OF THIS.
A HUNDRED MISTAKES HAVE BEEN
MADE BEFORE.
WHAT WE CAN ALL START DOING AS
TRANSIT ADVOCATES IS TO KEEP
PUSHING THE FORD GOVERNMENT AND
CITY HALL, FRANKLY, TO TRY AND
GET TO THE BEST POSSIBLE RESULT
WITHIN THE POLITICAL PARAMETERS
THAT THEY ARE WORKING ON.

Steve says LET ME PICK UP ON THAT.
TRICIA, JUST IN OUR LAST MINUTE
HERE, THERE IS A CONSIDERABLE
AMOUNT OF OPPOSITION TO THIS
PLAN, NOT NECESSARILY ON THE
MERITS, BUT BECAUSE THE FORD
GOVERNMENT IS PROPOSING IT.
I KNOW YOU'RE A GEOGRAPHER AND
NOT A POLITICAL SCIENTIST, BUT
CAN YOU SPEAK TO THAT?
A LOT OF THIS IS... A LOT OF
OPPOSITION IS WHAT YOU MIGHT
CALL FORD DEARRANGEMENT
SYNDROME.
YOU HAVE TO GRANT THAT, DON'T YOU?

The caption changes to "The city's next move."

Tricia says I THINK THAT MIGHT BE PART OF
IT, CERTAINLY, BUT I DON'T THINK
IT'S A DE-ARRANGEMENT SYNDROME.
IT DERIVES FROM A CONCERN THAT
THIS IS ONE OF MANY INITIATIVES
OR PROPOSALS THAT IS PUT OUT
THERE THAT'S A MAJOR POLICY
SHIFT THAT'S NOT BEEN PRECEDED
WITH A RIGOROUS CONSULTATION OR
STUDY OF EXPERTS.
BUT I WOULD ALSO SAY, THIS IS
CERTAINLY CodeRedTO'S CONCERN,
THAT IT'S NOT A UNIQUE FEATURE
OF THE FORD GOVERNMENT, AND
WE'RE VERY MUCH AWARE OF IT.
THIS IS A LONG HISTORY WITH
MULTIPLE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENTS,
OF ALL OF THE PARTIES, AND IT
REALLY DOES COME BACK TO WHAT IS
THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE
PROVINCE AND THE CITY.
BECAUSE WE FEEL VERY STRONGLY,
ACTUALLY, THAT A REALLY GOOD
RIGOROUS CONVERSATION IS NEEDED
ABOUT THE FUNDING, PLANNING AND
GOVERNANCE OF TORONTO TRANSIT
AND TORONTO REGIONAL TRANSIT.
WE'RE NOT PERSUADED YET THAT
THIS IS THAT CONVERSATION.
BUT IT'S NOT BECAUSE OF THE FORD
GOVERNMENT.
WE DIDN'T HAVE IT WITH THE
LIBERALS.
WE DIDN'T HAVE IT WITH THE NDP.
AND IT'S REALLY IN SOME WAYS TO
BUILD FIVE.
THERE IS A LARGER QUESTION ABOUT
WHAT IS THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN
THE CITY AND THE PROVINCE, WHO
DECIDES WHAT AND WHY, AND ARE WE
GOING TO BUILD ANY KIND OF
GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE IN WHICH WE
HAVE THOSE CONVERSATIONS AND
MAKE THOSE DECISIONS TOGETHER?
THAT'S NOT THIS CONVERSATION
YET, BUT WE HOPE WE WILL GET THERE.

The caption changes to "Producer: Colin Ellis, @ColinEllis81."

Steve says HOPEFULLY WE'VE HAD
SOME OF THAT ROBUST CONVERSATION
HERE ON TVO TONIGHT.
I WANT TO THANK THE TWO OF YOU
FOR COMING IN AND SHARING YOUR
VIEWS.
TRICIA WOOD, PROFESSOR OF
GEOGRAPHY AT YORK UNIVERSITY,
BRIAN KELCEY, VP PUBLIC AFFAIRS,
TORONTO REGION BOARD OF TRADE.
THANKS, YOU TWO.

The caption changes to "Subscribe to The Agenda Podcast: tvo.org/theagenda."

Both guests say THANK YOU.

Watch: Debating Transit Planning in Toronto