I’ve taken the following excerpts from The Glob And Mail newspaper.
The province's new regional transportation agency met for the first time yesterday to begin drafting a multi billion-dollar plan to fight traffic congestion, providing a glimpse of the tensions between Toronto and its suburbs.
The projections from the IBI Group suggest that with $17-billion in investments in light rail, buses and subways, the proportion of GTA commuters riding public transit would rise from the current 18 per cent to 23 per cent. Many felt these numbers were too low.
Underlying urban-suburban culture clash was evident in the discussion of the province's regional "smart card" initiative, in which the Toronto Transit Commission -- much larger than all of the rest of the GTA's transit agencies put together -- has only reluctantly taken part, even as the rest of the region begins to adopt it.
The TTC insists the card would add $20-million a year in operating costs alone for Toronto. The TTC is so far participating at only a handful of its subway stations.
Mr. Anderson, who oversees Durham Transit's fleet of 147 buses -- the TTC has more than 1,500 -- also complained that his transit system doesn't get as much money as the TTC does, earning a quick correction from Mr. Miller.
"We don't get anywhere near the provincial subsidy you guys get, for some reason," Mr. Anderson said.
Mr. Miller interjected: "You get much more than us per rider."
Measured per rider, the TTC may be the least subsidized transit system in North America, covering more than 75 per cent of its costs with fares.