CALGARY (660 NEWS) – It’s called the Green Line, but all the arguing over red ink has made some people blue in the face.
Following some changes to the LRT, Mayor Naheed Nenshi now expects overwhelming support from council to build the multi-billion-dollar-project.
On Monday, some revised recommendations came out for the first stage of the project including a bus rapid transit (BRT) system for the north portion of the project which will be switched over to LRT once more money is available.
Meantime, construction will commence on the southern part of the expansion project.
Councillor Jyoti Gondek expressed her support for this realignment saying in a tweet, “This is what I have fought for over the last two years. I am 100 per cent in support of this direction.”
However, not everyone is happy with the decision to hold off on crossing the Bow River.
The Calgary Alliance for the Common Good believes council is playing politics and ignoring the transit needs of those in north Calgary.
It said any project failing to cross the Bow River would be yet another way people in the under-served north get short-changed.
That frustration is being echoed by Calgary-Nose Hill MP Michelle Rempel.
In a release, Rempel said she’s sent a letter to city council stating how the mismanagement of the project has impacted people in north-central Calgary.
“The uncertainty surrounding the project and its alignment have left many residents in my community to question their trust in their Council regarding the commitment to bring reliable rapid transit to the area. I have heard from residents that they are also feeling devalued and that decisions on the project are happening to them, not with them due to a lack of consultation on changes in scope and priority,” said Rempel.
She goes on to say that completion of the line would address the massive infrastructure deficit her community has faced and help reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
“The decision is now in the hands of Calgary’s City Council, as is the accountability for the management and outcome of this project. I encourage all Councillors to do what is right on behalf of the taxpayers and residents of these communities.”
Meanwhile, a phone poll commissioned by Project Calgary surveyed just over 1,600 people and showed around 70 per cent are in favour of the project and that it needs to be built to the north and south.
— Calgarians for Transit (@YYCforTransit) June 15, 2020
Project Calgary also said it’s necessary to get the Green Line to 16 Ave. north as many BRT buses are already overcapacity.
Council is expected the debate stage one of the Green Line project during its regular council meeting Tuesday afternoon.