Light Rail

LRT on CHCH

By Ryan McGreal
Published July 21, 2011

My interview with CHCH the other night on light rail transit (LRT) in Hamilton is now up on their website:

Poster Image

Ryan McGreal, the editor of Raise the Hammer, lives in Hamilton with his family and works as a programmer, writer and consultant. Ryan volunteers with Hamilton Light Rail, a citizen group dedicated to bringing light rail transit to Hamilton. Ryan writes a city affairs column in Hamilton Magazine, and several of his articles have been published in the Hamilton Spectator. He also maintains a personal website and has been known to post passing thoughts on Twitter @RyanMcGreal. Recently, he took the plunge and finally joined Facebook.

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By H+H (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2011 at 08:45:28

Good job Ryan.

What is it with Bratina? Am I to believe that because he can only think of "ribbon cutting" being no sooner than 2020, therefore we should delay the studies that are underway currently?

Of course it's going to take some time before we open LRT. We all get that. What we also get is that there is a ton of detailed assessment that has to take place between then and now, some of which is being done right now, or at least it was until the email Chris Murray sent on the eve of his vacation. Classy Chris. Very classy.

Given his utter lack of vision (read his own words on this site) and sense of urgency, it's pretty clear to me that Bratina won't have to worry about cutting any LRT ribbons (or any other civic ribbons for that matter) regardless of whether it's Metrolinx's preferred B-Line or Bratina's preferred A-Line. ("Everyone who has come to my office in the last year, or six months, has had to go through the boredom of me unrolling my map of where the LRT should go.")

Cue the calliope. This circus has added another ring.

Comment edited by H+H on 2011-07-21 08:50:20

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By WRCU2 (registered) | Posted July 21, 2011 at 08:53:18

Well spoken but where's your tailored suit Ryan? You really should be dressing the part if you want to start messing with the oligarch;-)

Again, I find the timing of all this very intriguing; Hamilton CATCH has recently announced that "the provincial privacy commission (IPC) may force both Hamilton and Burlington to reveal how much public money each has spent in controversial lawsuits."

Lawsuits initiated by the City and also those where the City is a defendant are costing us taxpayers millions of dollars to sustain. These are a frivolous waste of precious resources, including staff time, staff time and capital resources that could be better spent pursuing city building and not fighting those who will be funding our projects or the one's who will actually be doing them.

I am beginning to think our city has been getting some very bad legal advice and this aggressive pursuit of all-day GO service is an effort to clear the dockets of this malaise in order to focus more intently on the PanAm Games.

I wonder if the good people at city hall have begun to realize that rather than hiring teams of lawyers, that money would be better spent hiring architects, planners and engineers because these people actually produce something useful that each and every one of us can cheer, as 2015 draws evermore near.

Comment edited by WRCU2 on 2011-07-21 09:09:42

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By Ryan (registered) - website | Posted July 21, 2011 at 09:00:48 in reply to Comment 66690

where's your tailored suit Ryan?

When I got dressed that day, I didn't know I'd end up on TV. I asked the camera guy to shoot me from the waist up so it wasn't obvious I was wearing cargo shorts. :)

I am beginning to think our city has been getting some very bad legal advice

IANAL but I've been scratching my head over the city's legal advice for years.

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By SpaceMonkey (registered) | Posted July 21, 2011 at 16:57:43

You looked comfortable in front of the camera Ryan, and what you were wearing never even crossed my mind. You looked fine to me. Good job.

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By grahamm (registered) | Posted July 21, 2011 at 21:56:37

"It's, like, going to take a long time to get LRT. So we should totally not do anything about it for like 7 or 8 years. Then we can do a hash up job, install a crappy system thats bound to fail and prove, finally, to all those lefties that want LRT, that it was a bad idea"

I'm tired. That's hyperbole. But still, what is wrong with a long range plan, Bob? 9 years out doesn't get you elected next time?

That's hyperbole too. But I really am curious why the mayor is turning his back on something that people from the grassroots, to city staff, to provincial staff believe is a good idea. What are we missing?

Not a single argument put forward by the mayor is as convincing as the examples in other cities and the proposals put forward by the city staff.

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By jason (registered) | Posted July 21, 2011 at 22:18:05 in reply to Comment 66757

I thought he was only planning on being mayor for one term, but I'm guessing now that he wants to run again (might want to start developing some semblance of a platform) and wants to re-align LRT to go through some suburban or Mountain wards to help with the votes.

Either that, or he honestly believes that LRT's number 1 priority isn't economic development, but instead, finding the route with the least amount of underground services.
And if he really thinks that, and won an election for mayor of a city of half a million, he's more brilliant than any of us could ever hope to be.

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By BoBrat (anonymous) | Posted July 21, 2011 at 22:33:00

"Light rail transit is a concept." -- Bob Bratina

It was a concept four years ago, now it's a well-advanced plan with a lot of the design work already done. Bob is just spewing more bullshit here.

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By GrapeApe (registered) | Posted July 21, 2011 at 23:52:57

Bob's 2020 comment proved a lack of long term vision. He's in this for one final term and he'll do as little as possible under the premise of "no tax increase", while hoping we all forget the future fund was blown on half a stadium and a rented circus tent as a velodrome. Cue the clowns...

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