ARI GOLDKIND INTRODUCES MORE THAN A MAP
My name is Ari Goldkind, and I’m running to be your mayor. I’m also walking, taking the TTC, driving and cycling to be your mayor.
My transit plan is called More Than A Map for one simple reason: people are tired of seeing transit plans full of lines on a map that never get built and that don’t reflect the true realities of transit network expansion. My plan is honest with you about what it will take to create a true world-class transit network.
More Than A Map is the product of three months of exhaustive research, consultation, and creativity by my campaign team and transit experts. Transit is the backbone of our city, and Toronto urgently needs to get moving on building a next-generation transit network — starting by reaching under-serviced areas in the suburbs and opening up economic opportunities, and gradually connecting the entire city.
By 2024, Toronto will welcome another 250,000-300,000 new residents. And if we don’t start moving on real transit expansion right now, we will go from being a congested city to a paralyzed city.
While other plans you’ve seen paint a simplistic financial picture of tracks, tunnels and stations — and what I believe are wildly optimistic projections — More Than A Map factors in the entire picture:
- Essential new infrastructure such as new multi-mode transit hubs and overpasses that will open up the city for new routes.
- Upgrading existing stations so they can accommodate new lines.
- Vehicle purchases.
- Storage and maintenance facilities.
- Surveying and environmental assessments for future builds.
- Bus service increases to keep people moving during major construction projects.
- State of good repair and accessibility upgrading of existing stations & infrastructure.
- Operational cost increases associated with a major expansion of the TTC rapid transit network.
The funding strategy for More Than A Map is a balance of short-term financial realities, ambitious long-term targets that I believe we can reach with real leadership and vision, and gradually increasing what we can invest into our transit system over time by engaging various stakeholders such as other levels of government, Metrolinx, our regional municipality partners, and developers. Funding a project of this scope starts with making sound business cases and putting our own money where our mouths are. The financial numbers in my plan also account for contingencies.
I start with the premise that while the numbers are big, the average yearly investment is less than half of the 6-11 billion dollars in direct economic costs of congestion and gridlock we lose every single year, in addition to quality of life costs.
More Than A Map is inspired by plans such as Transit City and The Big Move that experts who know far more about transit than I do spent years researching, costing and developing. My plan includes many of those proposals, along with bold new thinking that’s based on my own research and expert engagement over the last seven months. There are so many things for which I am so grateful about the experience of this campaign, and the opportunity to learn about our transit system from professionals, grassroots experts and everyday users is near the top of the list.
There is a companion piece to More Than A Map called Deep Transit. It reveals the ideas and knowledge I have gained over the last many months; about the relationships between transit, housing, the environment, energy, education, and innovation. I hope you will engage Deep Transit to share my view of the bigger picture of transit and how it could improve all of our lives once we fully commit to it.
I am proud to put More Than A Map in front of the city. My team took our time to put a transit plan and vision forward that you can clearly understand and believe in. Let’s start small, think big and work together to build the transit system Toronto needs and deserves. Thank you or taking the time to think of transit in Toronto as more than a map.
October 20, 2014