Comment 94843

By movedtohamilton (registered) | Posted November 18, 2013 at 11:48:17

"I really find it problematic when people say things like “cities cannot favour automobile owners at the expense of the less financially able members of the community.” It’s not a false statement at all, but to imply that people who use other forms of transportation are “less financially able” is not completely accurate."

Great observation, Stephen.

Let's consider Hamilton public transit. One useful (albeit imperfect) way to gauge ridership income is out-of-home advertising. I ride an HSR bus route almost daily and there are virtually no "private-sector" ads; 99% of all ads are public service (usually public health messages). This tells me that advertisers long ago concluded that there are no "middle-class" riders on the buses, so it's waste of $ to promote their product or service. HSR cannot get any real revenue from this source, unlike Toronto and other cities.

There is a perception that people in Hamilton (lower city especially) ride the bus because they have to, not because they want to. So the irony is that while deciding not to own a vehicle is a smart financial decision, one is stigmatized. It then becomes a self-fulfilling assumptions vortex. HSR is not an innovative agency, and seems unresponsive to requests for simple things like providing real-time data, etc.


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