Saturday, May 2, 2009

Funding transit plans: Transport Canada "neutral" on tunnel

The Ottawa Sun got its hands on a Transport Canada report from April 24 that suggests that a downtown transit tunnel in Ottawa will cost more than the $600-million estimate put forward by city staff.

The report also recommends taking caution when considering how much funding the Ottawa project deserves, the Sun reports.
Transport Canada is supportive of the transit plan, but officials who are engaged in talks with the city should take a "neutral stance with regards to the downtown tunnel alignment and station locations..."

"While the federal government has been supportive of Ottawa's efforts to develop a rapid transit strategy, the federal government should not commit to an agreement in principle to fund the entirety of phase one of the rapid transit plan."

Transport minister John Baird's office, though, says discussions with the city about funding are going well.

The federal government currently has $200 million on the table for Ottawa's long-term transit priorities and Transport Minister John Baird says he is committed to adding to that.

"We are working well with the city and the province to deliver for Ottawa on this important priority," said Baird's press secretary, Chris Day.

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