We are all happy to see 2020 in the rearview mirror. Here’s a recap of some transit-related stories.
In March, City of Ottawa issued a Notice of Default to Rideau Transit Group, the company responsible for maintaining the Confederation Line, following direction from City Council. This escalation of the City’s legal rights is in response to Rideau Transit Group’s failure to address significant issues with train and station availability, and the multiple failures that have continued across the light-rail transit system since the start of the service.
The private consortium behind the O-Train's Confederation Line still hasn't provided the city with a firm timeline on when it will have the light rail system in a reliable state.
Manconi had said previously that he was holding RTG to a deadline of August 31 to deliver a fully operational light-rail line. He said he was “not confident” that would be possible, as RTG had not committed to that date — or any other — to complete the full suite of needed repairs and maintenance work.
Rideau Transit Group (RTG) announced Monday that Peter Lauch would step down as CEO of both RTG and its maintenance branch, Rideau Transit Maintenance (RTM) effective July 10, 2020.
With most OC Transpo fares set to rise on Jan. 1, transit riders and advocate groups opposing the increase are pointing out that Ottawa already has one of the most expensive systems in Canada.
The transportation committee approved a preliminary plan for a 10-kilometre LRT extension from Baseline station at Algonquin College to the site of a possible future Barrhaven downtown. Frustratingly, the plan It also displaces more than 300 low-income renters from their homes. The tenants said they are the exact sort of people who need to use transit to get around. Instead, they are losing their homes because of the project.
"Public transit is supposed to provide for low-income communities," said Peggy Rafter, "not go right through them."
CTV News: City getting four electric buses in 2021
Inspired Traveler: “A difficult year” in 2020 for the Ottawa light rail
If we have learned anything as a city during this pandemic, we now understand that running a transit system is an absolute necessity, even when it hurts our budget. Transit must be there for everyone. Even during COVID-19, transit has been a must for our many essential workers in hospitals, long-term care homes and even grocery stores. We also need to remind ourselves that transit is the solution in getting greenhouse gas levels down. We cannot have a functioning city without transit.
Youtube: ParaParity, in Ottawa