Thursday, July 8, 2010

Light Rail and Redevelopment

I found an article in The Salt Lake Tribune about light rail and the economic grow that it will spur in the community of Murray (in the Salt Lake City region of Utah.) According to the article, the city contracted a Portland development firm and a Portland architectural firm to evaluate the potential in their downtown core.
“In 10 or 15 years, mass transit will play a critical role in the future success of this valley for economic and environmental purposes,” said Murray Mayor Dan Snarr.

But Murray will be particularly well-positioned, Snarr said.

“We’ll have the only platform-to-platform transfer from one train to another,” he beamed, referring to the city’s current light-rail TRAX stop and its future FrontRunner South station connecting Salt Lake City to Provo.
Back in Ottawa, the National Capital Commission (a crown corporation) is already working on station design for the yet to be finalized light rail in that region. According to the Ottawa Citizen:
But now the NCC is running ahead of the train, so to speak, in seeking to help the City of Ottawa design the stations that will make up the proposed light-rail system. The projected $2.1-billion rail project has 13 stops, a number that coincidentally corresponds with the number of Canadian provinces and territories. The NCC has mused about a design competition that would showcase, in a thematic way, the different regions of the country.
Finally in Toronto, another report has come out recommending road pricing to help fund transit and reduce congestion. According to the National Post:
The Toronto City Summit Alliance says tolling highways such as the 400 series at a rate of 10¢ to 20¢ per kilometre would relieve “congestion hot spots” while promoting the use of public transit — but acknowledges the existing transit system would require an overhaul.
PS: Check out the Toronto City Summit Alliance website for the full report and other information.

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