Politicizing Public Transit in Toronto

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~(((( T h e B u l l e t ))))~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
A Socialist Project e-bulletin ... No. 1680 ... October 5, 2018

Politicizing Public Transit in Toronto

Umair Muhammad

According to the Toronto Star, the reason why the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) is in such a lackluster state is because of "politics trumping sound transit planning." Wouldn’t it be great, the Globe and Mail asks us to wonder, "if we could get politics out of public transit?" Yes, answers the Torontoist, it really would be great: "Politics should be removed from transit planning." So, follows up the activist group Scarborough Transit Action, "How do we get the politics out of transit planning?"

The sway of politics in transit policy is blamed for incentivizing vote-chasing behavior. Instead of relying on expertise and evidence to arrive at decisions about transit infrastructure, those who occupy Toronto City Hall and... Queen’s Park base their decisions on the need to attract voters. This is why everyone from the Ford brothers to Kathlyn Wynne and John Tory eventually got behind the $3.35-billion 1-stop Scarborough subway. Even the federal government agreed to help fund the wasteful project.

It’s no surprise, then, that transit activists are being won over to the idea that politics should be sidelined in transit policy discussions. Many have come to believe that if only transit experts were allowed to do their jobs without interference from vote-seeking politicians, an evidence-driven transit policy could be adopted and Toronto could build the kind of world-class transit system it deserves.

Continue reading

Share on Facebook

Follow us onr0

Forward to a friend: this link

powered by phpList

Login Form