LRT: Ottawa Chose Esthetics Over Efficiency

Ottawa’s challenged light-rail planners missed a vital point.

LRT is supposed to move people, not just look pretty.

Ottawa blew the bank on epic rail stations and an unnecessary tunnel which now might needed to be carved away at because a turn down there could be too tight for the trains wheel-hub assemblies. Expensive, difficult and time-consuming.

houston.light .rail .station.h

Above is pictured a Houston light-rail station. Small, efficient and architecturally pleasing. And right downtown with no tunnel. Streetlights are coordinated to let the train through at traffic intersections. Houston understood that light rail is about moving people … not about making something very pretty though the Houston station above is pleasing enough.

 

ottawa.lrt .station.h


Above is the Tunney’s Pasture LRT station. Epic proportions. Costly. And it was the site in the opening days of Ottawa’s LRT where a huge mass of passengers was forced to walk downtown because the train didn’t work.

Expensive and unreliable. Ottawa opted for an award-winning LRT system for public servants rather than one that concentrated on passengers, efficacy and efficiency. The result was that after blowing the bank on big stations and an unnecessary tunnel, where’s the money to take LRT to Barrhaven and Kanata?

Ottawa’s system was about looking good for awards while Houston’s is functional. In fact, Houston is so happy with LRT that it just keeps building more in increments.

Ottawa’s LRT? Do we need to say more?

Ken Gray

RECOMMENDED FOR YOU

Sutcliffe Must Resign Over Failed LRT Fix: GRAY

Credit To Chiarelli Where It’s Due: BENN

Don’t Let Jim Watson Near Public Policy Again

DON’T MISS OUR REGULAR FEATURES
Everything Ottawa      Full Local     Bulldog Canadian
Opinion    Comments    Breaking News    Auto
Ontario   World    Get Cheap Gas   Big Money
Pop Gossip   Your Home    Relax
Bulldog Weather    Full Local Sports
TV/Movies   Travel
Page 2   Page 3   Page 4   Page 5   Page 6

 

Other features:    Full Bulldog Index    Return to Bulldog Home

3 Responses

  1. The Voter says:

    It would be interesting to see what awards the Houston and other systems were given for their efficient and functional operations.

    I think I’ve just figured out why Ottawa’s stations had to be so grandiose. They must have known even then that passengers would spend long periods waiting in those stations for trains that either don’t come or are late. They wanted us to wait in nice surroundings. Of course, if they’d carried that to its logical conclusion, they would have enclosed the platforms and provided heat so we weren’t exposed to the elements.

    You’ll note that LRT’s awards all came from non-Ottawa sources, i.e. from people who will never have to experience the stations. The irony is that, with the LRT out of service so much, transit riders won’t even see the pretty stations. And they aren’t actually that attractive anyway. They should have saved their money and kept the old Transitway station structures.

  2. sisco farraro says:

    The transitway was a great system that moved people efficiently, safely and was unique. Why did city hall decide to replace it? Probably wasn’t sexy enough. I propose a pool, like a hockey pool or a fifty-fifty draw. On what date will the city finally decide to pull the plug on the whole mess?

  3. Diane Zarnke says:

    As far as I can see….ANYONE, and I mean ANYONE involved in any way…..minute to lead advocate…… for this piece of junk is FINANCIALLY CUT OFF FROM PAY, BENEFITS, PENSIONS., ANY MONEY WHAT–SO-EVER FROM THE CITY AND TAXPAYERS TILL THIS “”WASTE OF MONEY”” IS FIXED AND UP AND RUNNING PROPERLY FOR A YEAR WITH NO GLITCHES

    THIS CRAP MUST BE STOPPED.
    THESE BUGGERS MAKE BAD DECISIONS THEN SKIPP OFF WELL REWARDED WHILE THE TAXPAYER GETS PUNISHED AND MUST CLEAN UP THE MESS

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

 

Paid Content

Home   Full Bulldog Index