1. @AbbyW The streetcar parts were designed in Europe, manufactured in Mexico, and the streetcars are assembled in Bombardier's Thunder Bay assembly plant. This is the norm in today's globalized world. Nothing substantial — these streetcars, your phone, your automobile — is ever designed and built 100% in Canada in this millennium.

    That's the way business works, and is independent of whether the contract was signed under a left-wing or right-wing city government — the business world didn't start shipping off jobs around the world when Miller was elected, or bring all those jobs back to Canada when Ford took the helm.

    So what did we get by sole-sourcing to Bombardier rather than some foreign corporation?

    We got jobs in Thunder Bay to actually build these streetcars. You can thank Miller for that. Had the contract gone to a foreign firm, those assembly jobs would have gone to foreign workers.

    So please, before you post knee-jerk two-liners, think.
  2. Here's your smoking gun, folks: LRT opponents at Council don't want all the facts to come out.

    They shot down Matlow's requests for information about the true costs and ridership of the proposed subway extension. Why could this be?

    1) Most people don't realize that during the morning peak, only HALF of trains would ever go past Kennedy onto the Scarborough extension, The other half will turn around as if the extension had never been built. [a]

    You're not getting "subways, subways, subways", folks — at the time where it's most crowded, you're getting _half a subway._ It's obvious why subway supporters don't want voters to know that.

    2) When Council voted in 2013 to switch to a subway extension, a 2031 ridership of 14,000 peak passengers/hour/direction was a strong point. (Earlier numbers pegged subway ridership at 9,000 = running 2/3 empty.) City documents now reveal that higher 14,000 number was based on the subway reaching Sheppard rather than Scarborough Town Centre — and was based on more frequent subway service than is currently budgeted for — and was based on the existence of other transit lines which aren't yet approved. [b]

    So this 14,000 number is pure fiction. It's easy to see why subway supporters wouldn't want this to come out publicly.

    3) And as has been widely reported, the subway would only carry 16% more people yearly than the LRT — but cost over double, 115% more! Making Toronto taxpayers pay 115% more money for 16% more ridership is a colossal waste of taxpayer money.

    Again, you never hear a subway supporter admitting those inconvenient facts.

  3. Soknacki was the best candidate in the wrong election. He had the best set of ideas, actually answered debate questions, arrived prepared, costed much more of his platform than others making vague promises. He respected evidence-based planning.

    Unfortunately, this election is a contest between Ford and NotFord and, once a front runner was established, it was adios for everybody else.

    I fervently hope Soknacki will run again in 2018, when Ranked Ballot Voting will allow all voters to support every candidate they believe in, rather than have to hold their nose and vote for someone they dislike in order to prevent the election of someone they hate.
  4. Disconnected groups of roads only reach their full utility when they connect into a complete network.

    Disconnected groups of rapid transit lines only reach their full utility when they connect into a complete network.

    Disconnected groups of bike lanes only reach their full utility when they connect into a complete network. The current bike-lane map looks like someone took a giant eraser to it, leaving a dozen unconnected small groups of lanes. We need to connect those islands.
  5. If the facts bear out that Dentonia usage is dwindling and that there is a dearth of cricket and soccer pitches in the area, it sounds like a no-brainer to give area residents — from 2014, not 1964 — the relational facilities they need. Toronto's citizens are changing; Toronto's infrastructure must follow suit.
  6. @Adriane Taylor Since you we're completely off-topic for this specific article, I will only post one reply. I don't want your disregard for context to be fueled via long exchanges.

    Your tin-foil rant is laughable, but I do want to challenge you on loss of privacy.

    The government doing its best to deprive all Canadians of their privacy is run by the federal Conservatives. Year after year, they keep introducing variations of Internet surveillance bills that would allow ordinary Canadians' privacy to be invaded _without a court warrant._ The latest version, Bill C-13, would even allow Rob Ford (!) to access your personal and Internet information without a court warrant.

    And in typical bully form, they defend such flagrant privacy violations with when-did-you-stop-beating-your-wife arguments like the classic "you are either with us, or with the child pornographers" which shows how they feel about their own footing. If their cause was just and true, they could advance compelling arguments that obey the rules of logic. By resorting to lies and illogic, they expose their cause to be unjust and untrue.
  7. Ugh. The only thing worse than a compulsive liar named Ford in the mayor's chair would be a malicious one.
  8. @Bob Yeah! Damn these UNPAID leaves of absences — how much are they costing us, anyway?

    Ah, Ford Nation — the jokes write themselves.
  9. @spicygarage Correction: he is on a "personal leave of absence", not "medical leave". My apology. Conveniently, this removes the burden of providing justifiying documents to his employer. To quote another discussion board:

    2.12.3 Voluntary leave of absence without pay
    After six months of continuous service, full-time Councillor staff
    are eligible to apply for up to 20 days' leave of absence without
    pay per calendar year, during which their benefits continue.

    Those 20 days would be the equivalent of four weeks. More if stat Holidays are factored in.

    He may also be eligible to use Lieu and Vacation time.
  10. As an astute observer posted on another board, Ford's personal business becomes _our_ business if he is not in rehab. He is on paid sick leave. If he is not in a clinic he is defrauding the taxpayers of Toronto.

    I'm all for leaving him alone until he returns — I do wish that he gets help fighting his addictions — but when he comes back, "Mr. Transparency" had better show Toronto taxpayers a letter from the facility he attended.