Scarborough Unfair

I can’t even.


If Scarborough is not going to get any benefits from enhanced revenue tools, why would we support it? We’ll put our money where our mouth is as long as we get to benefit. If we are not going to benefit, then we see no reason to support either the downtown relief line or any other expansion of transit in the city of Toronto.  Councillor Michael Thompson.

It’s times like this when, if asked about the notion of de-amalgamation, I just throw up my hands and say, yeah, fuck it. Let’s do it. Such noxious self-serving toadying will be the death of any good transit planning anyway. So if a majority of Scarborough councillors want to stamp their feet and hold the entire process hostage by stirring up sub-regional resentment, good riddance to them.

(Although the transit file was dealt with on a 416 wide level long before amalgamation. kicktothecurbBut since we’re swimming in a spite pool, allow me to dip my toe in.)

It’s not that I even believe a further Scarborough subway extension of the Bloor-Danforth line is necessarily a bad idea. As Tess Kalinowski and David Rider point out in their Star article, there are compelling arguments for doing so. But councillors Michelle Berardinetti, Glenn De Baeremaeker and Thompson don’t bother putting them forward, choosing instead to wallow in the cheap, petulant politics of misinformation that’s usually the speciality of Mayor Ford.

Only in the minds of those more interested in grandstanding than in reason and fact based governing would getting an LRT be seen as some sort of slap in the face. By dismissing LRT technology as of no benefit and somehow getting less than other parts of the city, the Scarborough 7 have internalized the Ford Administration’s baseless and entirely uniformed transit views. metooIt’s legitimizing them and foisting them back into the debate.

So what if there’s a subway going up into Vaughan? (And I’ve only been out of town for a couple days. When did I miss Markham getting a subway?) Why compound one mistake – if the University line subway extension up past York and into Vaughan was a mistake – by making another? Mississauga seems content to build an LRT. Why does Scarborough think it’s better than Mississauga?

You see where this discussion might go, right?

It’s the destabilizing effect in opening up this debate once again that could be the most damaging. As the only rational seeming Scarborough representative, Councillor Paul Ainslie points out it simply signals the city’s unpredictable and impulsive attitude toward transit building. imwithstupidWhy should the rest of the city and the entire GTA region bother being serious if a group of Scarborough councillors are willing to scupper a deal to score cheap political points?

The increasingly Machiavellian (and I say that in the most non-complimentary way possible) Councillor Josh Colle believes that even if it throws the transit debate wide open to a pie in the sky wish list of options, it’ll be worth it to finally air out the Scarborough LRT-versus-subway for good. Uh huh. Maybe if we were actually going to have an honest debate about the issue, I could fully get behind that sentiment. But it doesn’t appear as if that’s going to happen, given the re-opening salvo from the Berardinetti-De Baeremaeker-Thompson triumvirate. Instead, we’re going to get full on crass pandering and pitting one region against another rather than region wide transit building.

Nobody “deserves” a particular form of transit especially based purely on what a nearby neighbourhood or area of the city has. You should get the transit that best fits the built environment within the budget you’re willing to spend. youhappynowSo let’s have the debate based on that premise, if we haven’t already, and not the politics of petty parochialism.

It’s that that’ll kill any chances we have of getting a GTHA-wide agreement on the proper funding tools needed to get started on the Big(ger) Move. And if we fail to do so, we’ll know where to point the finger of blame. I hope all the Scarborough councillors who are now beating their collective chests demanding their subway will be prepared for that kind of exposure.

annoyedly submitted by Cityslikr

6 Responses to Scarborough Unfair

  1. Patrick Smyth says:

    “I hope all the Scarborough councillors who are now beating their collective chests demanding their subway will be prepared for that kind of exposure.” Now who’s stompin’ their feet?

    I can see you’re starting to catch-on as to why Councils since Amalgamation are so dysfunctional. But, unless you acknowledge the divide, and why it came about, how will you and everybody at AFUITBS ever be able to save this city?

    Keep up the good work- but with less of the pandering to your own favourite councillors. They’re all the same (as I’ve told you so many times). Just have Cllrs Vaughan, Perks etc., tell Scarborough that it just can’t have a subway. Kill them at Council with a slick move, or two.

  2. Sonny says:

    Thompson is a right winger who will not get the additional funding for a subway because he is a yes man to Ford.

    Ford’s interference has put all the LRTs off schedule; which means the Scarborough work won’t be done in time for the Aquatics in Scarborough for the Pan Am Games

  3. R B Luddite says:

    I never thought I’d say this … Kudos to Paul Ainsley and shame on Glenn De Baeremaeker. It is beyond ridiculous to feel slighted by any proposed subway line because it lacks the name Scarborough in it. Any Scarborough resident who doesn’t see the direct benefit of the DRL (which will be essentially a suburban express train) has not struggled, as I have, to find a seat on the BD subway at Warden (2nd stop) during morning rush hour. The subway to Vaughan will make York University more accessible to the whole GTA and relieve the impossible congestion around the campus. Presently, York is not an appealing option to many post-secondary seeking students in Scarborough as it is so difficult to get to either by transit or car. There’s no doubt Scarborough needs better transit. Metrolinx has a plan for that. Let it happen and stop pouting over subway line names.

  4. The reason the transit in our city is so terrible is partly the citizens fault too. For example, the number of people on here claiming that subways are an investment in the future. What future is this? All of the lines that an LRT are proposed for are ones that are not projected to meet max LRT demand for decades (I’m not sure of the exact dates, sorry, I don’t want to take the time to look up the stats since I’m just killing a few mins at work). That area that everyone wants Eglinton LRT to be underground for? It’s an open valley, a few suburban houses, big box stores, and factories! Not exactly a place that is going to see huge intensification in the next few decades. Look at Sheppard subway, it is nowhere near the ridership demand for a subway. I understand people don’t want to wait in the cold for a bus or LRT on Eglinton, but those people are basically saying they are better than the people on Finch and Sheppard, which would be getting NOTHING in Fords plan. How is it fair to spend all your money burying an LRT on a wide open area on Eglinton and then saying to Finch and Sheppard commuters “screw you, you can wait in the cold for buses that are already full because I’d rather wait underground for my nice new LRT than stand in the cold for a few minutes.” It’s this kind of rampant selfishness that destroys communities and cities.

  5. Simon Says says:

    Paying taxes for someone else to benefit will always cause divisions in the city. You can show charts and studies that illustrate its not “responsible” to have a subway in a certain area, but it does create have and have-nots. The more a section of the population feels snubbed, the more the issue of transit will sit in a quagmire and will waffle between “you need a subway” and “you don’t get a subway”.

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