Kanata LRT: What’s Hubley Talking About?

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light rail

An artist’s conception of an Ottawa light-rail station.


Frequent Bulldog contributor Sheridan takes on Councillor Allan Hubley’s comments concerning rail to Kanata:

The Bulldog should make the clarification that the Confederation line is going to Orleans in Phase 2 (officially ending at Place D’Orleans).

Unofficially, there has been talk about the estimated $160-million extension to Trim Road being included in Phase 2, only if the province and feds contribute more than their combined $2-billion funding commitment.

I highly doubt you could go from Bayshore (Phase 2 North-Western LRT terminal) to Kanata for $160-million. So, what exactly is Councillor Allan Hubley talking about? And recall that Councillor Hubley was against Councillor Wilkinson’s idea to use the old CPR line as a LRT link for Kanata commuters. And need I mention the rejected Carling LRT to Kanata solution?

What is being lost in this argument are two things: 1) Shouldn’t any “bonus” transit money be spent on better bus service (i.e. to those areas not serviced by LRT); 2) What about double tracking the O-Train Trillium Line?

The Confederation line is mostly a suburban rapid transit plan which cost may reduce bus routes and service. Ridership on the Confederation line might prove to be healthy but overall ridership might decline if the bus routes are poorly funded.

The South is the fastest growing part of the city, and with many plans for intensification along the O-Train Trillium line (e.g. South Keys). And yet, this line is going to be stuck with its single-track system with no electrification, nor any interlining with the Confederation line. Surely a stronger argument can be made for these changes to the Trillium line (especially after all its signalling failures and cancelled trips) than either the Trim Road or Kanata extensions.


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4 thoughts on “Kanata LRT: What’s Hubley Talking About?

  1. Ken,

    I believe that the use of old CPR rails was Mike Mcguire’s idea. He brought it forth during his run for Mayor. At that time, Wilkinson and pretty well everyone else on Council and in the media ridiculed it. After the election was completed, then Wilkinson suddenly brought forward her bright idea.

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    1. Anne
      I could be wrong but I don’t think the LRT cars contracted at the time actually ‘fit’ heavy rail tracks. I believe the wheel spacing is different. If I remember correctly, the idea was too late when pitched by Mr. McGuire and does not matter who supports it now.
      Could be the same situation regarding the O-Train track dimensions.

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  2. Let’s at least know who is willing to open the dialogue to consult the citizens.

    Although some may think rail to Kanata has been assessed, it actually hasn’t: neither rail using the already existing rail corridors nor rail extended west from Bayshore.

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    1. Canophone,

      Some month’s ago, Hubley requested that City staff make those assessments. The result is still pending.

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