Community Leaders tell Torontonians: The Mayor’s Transit Plan Snubs Suburbs!

For Immediate Release
April 1, 2011

Toronto: Community leaders representing people who live and work in Toronto’s suburbs got together today to send a clear message to their suburban neighbours: the Mayor’s new transit plan will do nothing to relieve traffic congestion and crowded buses in Toronto’s suburbs.


TTCriders and TEA Press Conference with speakers, from left to right: Mohamed El Rashidy, Director of the Canadian Arab Federation; David Poopalapillia, National Spokesperson for the Canadian Tamil Congress; Robert Cerjanec, V.P. Operations-Elect, York Federation of Students; Teferi Zemene, Member, Unite Here Local 75 and Jamie Kirkpatrick, TEA Transit Campaigner 

Last year there was a plan to build fast, reliable transit along Finch West to replace the busiest bus route in Toronto,” said Silvia Arauz, mother of two and local community organizer. “Yesterday we found out we may get an express bus. This is an insult to people who ride the overcrowded Finch bus. And it’s an insult to drivers who will continue driving along a congested Finch West.”

“We are very much disappointed that this plan leaves out Scarborough,” said David Poopalapillai National Spokesperson for the Canadian Tamil Congress. “We had a plan to build light rapid transit out to Malvern and the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus. Now we have nothing. We hope that Mayor Ford will reconsider his position and bring back the LRT lines to Scarborough.”

The Mayor’s Transit Plan will build 25 km of Light Rail Transit (LRT) with the Province’s $8.2 billion instead of the original 52 km that was announced last year.

“It just makes no sense that the Mayor is willing to sacrifice fast reliable transit on Finch West and in eastern Scarborough simply so that he can bury the final 8 km of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT,” said Robert Cerjanec, V.P. Operations-Elect, York Federation of Students. “This does nothing to help the students who rely on transit to get to school, work and home. Torontonians deserve to be consulted and have their voices heard before this plan goes ahead.”

Speaking on behalf of all the community leaders, Mohamed El Rashidy, Director of the Canadian Arab Federation said “We urge all Torontonians, especially those who live in the suburbs, to call their Councillors immediately and tell them they don’t support the Mayor’s Transit Plan.”


For More Information, contact:

Jamie Kirkpatrick, Transit Campaigner, Toronto Environmental Alliance