Support for Passenger Rail in National Capital Region
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 30, 2016
(Ottawa) — The Green Party of Ontario (GPO) and Green Party of Canada (GPC) announced their support today for the concept of bringing regional passenger rail to the National Capital Region.
"We desperately need good transit to reduce gridlock, and help people and goods move around efficiently,” says Mike Schreiner, leader of the Green Party of Ontario. "Trying to make better use of existing infrastructure is a good idea.”
The GPO and GPC believe a privately funded mass transit business model, like the one the Moose Consortium is pursuing, has the potential to be a unique way of achieving sustainable mass transit.
This model would run comfortable passenger trains across existing rail lines, taking advantage of the underutilized infrastructure in Eastern Ontario. The idea could potentially deliver a much needed service to residents throughout the entire region.
It would be funded by station owners paying a train stopping fee, with return to the owners coming through value added property development. The cost to riders will be lower than existing transit models.
The GPO and GPC remain committed to publicly funded transit, which compliments private sector models. The Green Party is committed to exploring all options for expanding rail service rapidly to address climate change, move people efficiently and increase public access to transit.
Mike Schreiner, Leader of the Green Party of Ontario:
“We support exploring innovative ideas to rapidly scale up transit options for moving people efficiently and affordably. The Moose concept of bringing passenger rail to the National Capital Region is a unique approach that is worth exploring. If successful, it could revolutionize the way passenger rail is funded, freeing governments to fund additional public services."
Jean-Luc Cooke, Green Party of Canada Critic for Small Business and Entrepreneurship:
"Rarely does an infrastructure project come along that asks for zero dollars from the federal government. All Moose has requested is that existing federal mandates for interprovincial rail regulations be followed. The Green Party of Canada is committed to making our cities more livable and Green MPs will help breakdown barriers to getting projects like this going."
Joseph Potvin, Director General of Moose Consortium Inc.:
“We are delighted to have the provincial and federal Green Parties expressing a common vision for better transit. We look to all parties and sectors to seek innovative solutions for sustainable funding to increase access to transit in the region.”