Thursday, January 03, 2008

2008: a year of great challenges for public transit (Editorial) - Orangeville Citizen

Aside from recapping past, present and future expansion news from GO Transit, this editorial proposes to run commuter rail service on the Orangeville-Brampton Railway - something I've long advocated for. The writer claims that a service operated using refurbished Budd Rail Diesel Cars, the very same as those used by VIA Rail on Vancouver Island an on the Sudbury Junction - White River run, could reach downtown Brampton in 40 minutes - 20 minutes faster than the current bus service. With track upgrades (potentially expensive due to the tight curves between Cataract and Inglewood), service could be even faster.

Such a service, if implemented, could be extended north to Shelburne to serve other areas in rapidly growing Dufferin County. Several stops could be placed in Caledon, as the line passes through several settlements. It would also serve northwest and southwest Brampton (should it continue downtown via Streetsville), which has also seen explosive growth in recent times. The only problem I can anticipate is Milton corridor passengers overcrowding the trains should they run local between Streetsville and Union (or more likely, North Toronto).

In a recent article (two posts down), the Mayor of Caledon commented that if GO provided the service, people would use it. Since this line would serve the vast majority of the Town's settlements west of Highway 10, Caledon stands to benefit from this proposal as much as Orangeville would. I hope that Mayor Morrison's support for GO service didn't only apply to the Georgetown train.

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At 1/03/2008 4:21 p.m. , Blogger Andrae Griffith said...

Just a few statistics to illustrate the growth in the areas where this train could run:

Orangeville grew by 6.6% between 2001 and 2006. The existing station site is located in the older part of town, so this would be a good catalyst for improving local transit service.

Shelburne grew by 22.2% between 2001 and 2006. Increasing property values in the city are pushing people who want to own detached houses to the other side of the escarpment.

Brampton grew by 33.3% between 2001 and 2006 .Snelgrove and Churchville, possible station sites, are neighbourhoods seeing rapid growth.

Caledon grew by 12.7% between 2001 and 2006. Most of the growth has been in Bolton, where a GO train should arrive under MoveOntario. However, Inglewood, where the line passes through, is one of the designated growth areas in the town.

In comparison, the Toronto Census metropolitan area grew by 9.2% between 2001 and 2006.

Source: Statistics Canada


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