Councillor Josh Matlow

Transit

As you know, given the fact that almost as many people commute from Toronto, as they do going in to our city on a daily basis, I have been advocating for a regional approach to building a transit network. Implementing a regional sales tax, tolls or other tools across the Greater Golden Horseshoe (GGH) would create new, and dependable, revenue streams paid into by everyone in our region rather than have any one city cover capital expenses through their property tax base.
 
Tolls or a regional sales tax would also offset the current burden on transit riders to pay for the preponderance of transit costs solely through the fare box. My motion for Toronto and GGH municipalities to enter into negotiations with Metrolinx (the provincially mandated transit planning body for Toronto and the GGH) was recently adopted at Executive Committee and will come to full Council in July. This motion requests the City Manager to work with Metrolinx to explore a variety of regional funding mechanisms with officials from across the GGH to move forward with a regional transit funding plan. Any funding initiative should be done on a regional basis to mitigate unintended consequences including job loss and consumer avoidance. Ultimately, we want the City of Toronto to have a leading seat at the table with its partners as Metrolinx’s process moves closer to fruition.
 
Metrolinx has stated that it will deliver a $40 billion transit funding plan to support the Big Move Plan early next year that will include all the municipalities in the GGH. I believe it may be prudent to read this report, and consider a shared and regional system, before Toronto offers to assume a OneCity approach.
I will continue working with Council to create a transit funding model that delivers on the priorities that matter most to residents. Moreover, I submit that while we debate how best to expand our transit system, we must always keep in mind that addressing the current, unacceptable overcrowding on the Yonge subway line during rush hours, and state of good repair, must be our top priority while we introduce more riders to the system. The new transit lines already approved by Council, and supported by Metrolinx, are moving forward including Finch Avenue, Sheppard Avenue and the Eglinton Crosstown. These projects will be paid for by a “one-time” funding allocation from the provincial government.
Your feedback is very important to me and I will continue to keep you informed as this discussion progresses. I am committed to creating an efficient, reliable and accessible rapid transit system that helps reduce gridlock and connects our region, neighbourhoods and residents. The path we take must be both visionary and evidence-based, fully funded and fiscally responsible.
 
Ultimately, I am pleased that we are now debating how exactly we should fund transit expansion- rather than whether there’s a need to have a plan at all.
Sincerely,

Josh Matlow Toronto City Councillor Ward 22-St.Paul’s www.joshmatlow.ca

28 05, 2018

Let’s Move Forward Now with 24 Stops for Scarborough

2018-07-06T20:58:16+00:00Tags: , |

Council decided this week to move forward with a 17-stop LRT extension of the Eglinton Crosstown from Kennedy Station to the University of Toronto's Scarborough Campus (UTSC). While I strongly endorse this LRT line, the Mayor's continued support of the 1-stop Scarborough subway has left no funding available for this Crosstown extension. Further, the City's [...]

4 05, 2018

We Need Relief (Subway Line) Now!

2018-07-11T14:29:01+00:00Tags: , |

As any resident who rides the subway knows the Yonge Line is already at capacity. During rush hour at stations like Eglinton, it is common to wait for two or three trains before boarding and once on, you’re crammed in like a sardine. The overcrowding is most critical at Bloor-Yonge station, which is already nearing capacity, with [...]

4 05, 2018

Have Your Voice Heard: Judicial Inquiry on Scarborough Subway to be debated at Executive Committee May 14

2018-07-06T20:38:47+00:00Tags: |

As I wrote to you in an extensive newsletter last week, I submitted a motion requesting that a judicial inquiry be established regarding the information presented to Council leading up to the July 2016 vote to approve the 1-stop Scarborough subway. This motion was referred to the Monday May 14, 2018 meeting of the Mayor's Executive Committee. This meeting will provide you [...]

25 04, 2018

Demanding Transparency, Accountability and Honest Action on Transit Planning: Scarborough Subway and SmartTrack

2018-04-25T13:14:26+00:00

  This week, Council will vote on items that will impact billions of your tax dollars, the future of our city's transit system, accountability in our local government and our quality of life- including questions relating to Mayor Tory's SmartTrack proposal and our request for an independent judicial inquiry into the Scarborough Subway Extension. I've prepared the following [...]

2 02, 2018

We Need Relief (Subway Line) Now!

2018-07-06T20:09:54+00:00Tags: , |

As many of you experienced first-hand, Toronto's already overcrowded subway system was thrown into chaos this week. The serious delays on Tuesday and Wednesday caused by signal errors, track problems, and other incidents, punctuated the need for the Relief Subway Line. As any resident who rides the subway knows, the Yonge Line is already at capacity. [...]

13 12, 2017

Council Votes against Value-for-Money Audit (the most basic and relevant facts) on Scarborough Transit

2018-07-06T19:38:32+00:00Tags: , |

  It is unfortunate that, yet again, the Mayor and Council decided to not ask for relevant and important information, regarding the future of our rapid transit system and the expenditure of billions of tax dollars, by voting against my motion to finally see a Value-for-Money comparison of the 1-stop subway extension with a 7-stop LRT in the McCowan corridor. [...]

7 07, 2017

Federal Government Contributes $4.8 billion for Toronto Transit Projects

2018-07-11T14:29:20+00:00Tags: , |

The federal government announced they would contribute $4.8 billion toward 1/3 shares of transit projects in Toronto. City council has submitted four priority projects for the federal transit fund: The Relief Subway Line ($6.8 billion) RER ($3.7 billion) Eglinton East LRT ($1.7 billion) Waterfront transit ($1.5 billion) Together, the projects are estimated to cost $13.7 billion. [...]

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