New LRTs to make traffic worse

Transportation plans exclude the majority of people

TAKE HEED. ALL that traffic you find yourself stuck in is going to get worse. There is a plan discreetly hidden in the mayor’s agenda to increase congestion. It is part of the antiautomobile ideology that the mayor is preaching. One councillor recently complained that all the “suburban people” that come downtown to “his ward” on the weekend by car make it terrible.

Aren’t we one city? Doesn’t everyone have a right to use a public roadway? We want to move people across this city, not create gridlock and not increase pollution with idling cars and buses stuck in traffic congestion.

Have you looked closely at the mayor’s Transit City plan? Simply put, construct LRTs along Finch Avenue, Don Mills Road and Sheppard Avenue East and take two lanes off these roadways to build dedicated streetcar lanes.

In principal, it sounds good. But LRTs create traffic congestion, which starts during construction and continues when operational. No more buses and no more bus stops. For example, the Don Mills line between Finch and Steeles Avenues, which has eight bus stops, will be reduced to four LRT stops — doubling the walking distance between stops.

Construction of the LRT rightof- way eliminates left turns. You will have to drive to the next intersection and wait for a signal to let you turn to go back to your street. Try this on Don Mills now at rush hour. To be a world-class city, you have to think worldclass. New York, Chicago and London all have extensive public transit systems and maintain road capacity for cars and buses.

It’s happening: the $60 vehicle tax, elimination of free parking at TTC lots, converting more vehicle lanes into bike lanes and taking down the Gardiner Expressway.

The plan to reduce road capacity ignores the needs of the majority of people. Your taxes are welcome, but your car is not.