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  #2261  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 5:00 PM
Truenorth00 Truenorth00 is offline
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Originally Posted by OtrainUser View Post
Well I just finished looking at GO Transit's financial statements from Metrolinx and noticed that they lose money about 16 million last year providing commuter service to the GTA and the GTHA. I don't see how it's possible for MOOSE to make money when the populations they want to serve are alot smaller.
MOOSE plans to make it up by moving millions of people to the exurbs and having them all "voluntarily" pay sufficient taxes to MOOSE to generate a profit. Totally sensible./s

Property powered rail does work. In dense cities, where rail operators can collect premium rents from property adjacent to a station. See Hong Kong, Japan, etc. Even they aren't arrogant or ignorant enough to suggest this would work as a rural settlement scheme.
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  #2262  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 5:13 PM
Truenorth00 Truenorth00 is offline
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Originally Posted by acottawa View Post
I understand there are railfans out there who are desperate to get any railway built anywhere.
I think some of these railfans prefer talking to anything actually getting built. Moreover, it's quite interesting that their love of a mode of transport has surpassed any consideration of sustainability or land use. "Who cares about sprawl and emissions? We'll get choos-choos to watch!" After the discussions here I'll never see pure railfans as urbanists or environmentalists again.

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Originally Posted by acottawa View Post
And I understand there are rural property owners desperately hoping this is their meal ticket, so no matter what statistics or logic are presented they will continue to support this initiative.
Are there really any such owners in the Ottawa Valley? I can understand going east to CRT to some extent. But there's so much land within the city's boundaries that it'll be several lifetimes before exurban development is necessary. And that's the best case scenario. It's not clear at all if continued sprawl would be allowed or preferred to that extent. Or that Ottawa will always have the population growth to keep growing that much. I'd say the folks banking on this kind of payout (if there are any) must be ignorant.

On the other hand. If you're near Smith's Falls, you might just luck out with VIA HFR if that comes to pass.
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  #2263  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 5:24 PM
OtrainUser OtrainUser is online now
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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
MOOSE plans to make it up by moving millions of people to the exurbs and having them all "voluntarily" pay sufficient taxes to MOOSE to generate a profit. Totally sensible./s

Property powered rail does work. In dense cities, where rail operators can collect premium rents from property adjacent to a station. See Hong Kong, Japan, etc. Even they aren't arrogant or ignorant enough to suggest this would work as a rural settlement scheme.
The question is then what happens if people don't want to pay the taxes since they only live in those places for cheaper cost of living. My guess is the whole plan would fall apart.
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  #2264  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 5:36 PM
JohnnyRenton JohnnyRenton is online now
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The question is then what happens if people don't want to pay the taxes since they only live in those places for cheaper cost of living. My guess is the whole plan would fall apart.
Or if property values don't rise as much as expected. Or if people simply avoid Moose towns as prices go up in favour of places where housing prices haven't risen. Or if people who work in Ottawa just have no desire to move out that far. Or if the service is so slow, relative to a car, or even a bus, that no one uses it. Or not enough people move to these places? Etc, etc...

On another note, I almost want to start calling it Poverty Powered Rail. If the plan actually pushes up housing prices as it anticipates, it is only going to start cause housing affordability issues to the people who live and work in those small communities, and might already be at the margins, or who are looking to buy a home and cant afford it.
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  #2265  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 7:21 PM
Charles5 Charles5 is offline
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@Joseph Potvin

In your literature concerning Property Powered Rail and other articles and papers on the MOOSE proposed network, you have talked about 'splitting' the increased value of the property (the 'uplift') between the property owner and MOOSE.

I always interpreted the meaning of 'split' as a 50/50 split, however I recently came across an article in which you proposed to split those profits 20/80 between MOOSE and the respective companies.

A 20/80 split would require a 2.5 times greater increase in property values to generate the same level of revenue for MOOSE that a 50/50 split would. This of course has significant implications on the operation of your proposed network.

Can you please advise how you see the uplift in property values being split?


Edit: I just re-read the article and I'm a little uncertain now if I've interpreted it correctly. The exact wording is as follows: "mOOse Inc. will make its money by proposing to split profits that these businesses (20/80) split between themselves and the company respectively."

Does this mean that MOOSE is taking 20%, thus resulting in the requirement for a much greater property uplift to generate the necessary revenue?
Or does it mean that MOOSE is taking 80%, thus resulting in the property owners having to hand over a much greater portion of their profits, leading in my mind to a reduced inclination to hand over any money.

Last edited by Charles5; Jan 10, 2019 at 8:08 PM.
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  #2266  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 7:22 PM
Truenorth00 Truenorth00 is offline
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Originally Posted by OtrainUser View Post
The question is then what happens if people don't want to pay the taxes since they only live in those places for cheaper cost of living. My guess is the whole plan would fall apart.
Among the many questions investors area probably asking Mr. Potvin.

Would you pour tens of millions into a scheme with such shaky revenue guarantees?
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  #2267  
Old Posted Jan 10, 2019, 7:36 PM
Truenorth00 Truenorth00 is offline
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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
Or if property values don't rise as much as expected. Or if people simply avoid Moose towns as prices go up in favour of places where housing prices haven't risen. Or if people who work in Ottawa just have no desire to move out that far. Or if the service is so slow, relative to a car, or even a bus, that no one uses it. Or not enough people move to these places? Etc, etc...
I think we're getting to why no investor takes this plan seriously. Nobody with any actual money takes this much risk. And in this case, the sheer demographic change involved makes it such a laughable proposition that financing the feasibility study would be tossing millions away.

Take away this whole discussion of rail. Imagine a real estate developer coming to you as an investor and suggesting that he's going to make you a profit by facilitating moving hundreds of thousands of residents to towns that have few thousands today. And he's going to do this in a metro area of about a million today. Oh and your revenue stream is based on businesses in this town voluntarily paying a tax to his transportation company, a cut of which you get as an investor. Would you think this was a sound proposal worth spending millions studying or laugh him out of your office?


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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
On another note, I almost want to start calling it Poverty Powered Rail. If the plan actually pushes up housing prices as it anticipates, it is only going to start cause housing affordability issues to the people who live and work in those small communities, and might already be at the margins, or who are looking to buy a home and cant afford it.
If Potvin ever actually succeeded though in diverting residents away from Ottawa to the extent necessary for this scheme, prices in the city itself would start going down though. At that point, why would anybody move to the middle of the woods unless they want land. That's why I say this all about facilitating sprawl to line developer's pockets.

Quite telling though that even developers aren't willing to fund his feasibility study.
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  #2268  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2019, 2:19 PM
JohnnyRenton JohnnyRenton is online now
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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
I think some of these railfans prefer talking to anything actually getting built. Moreover, it's quite interesting that their love of a mode of transport has surpassed any consideration of sustainability or land use. "Who cares about sprawl and emissions? We'll get choos-choos to watch!" After the discussions here I'll never see pure railfans as urbanists or environmentalists again.
On one hand, I think you are right, and often think some railfans would be better off focusing their attention on pushing for a rail museum, or maintaining blogs, rather than getting involved with discussions around modernizing rail in Canada.

On the other hand, very few people, at the moment, are stepping up to offer a different kind of voice on passenger rail issues.

Rail advocacy in Canada still feels very fringy. I think part of that comes from decades of stagnation or cuts to passenger rail service, and a general feeling of hopelessness about that changing in the future. It is filled with people who want passenger rail to return to majestic days of CP Passenger Cars rolling through the Rockies, those who want to see super fast high speed trains everywhere, and those that just want something, anything, to be built, even if it doesn't make sense, or uses 60 year old equipment.

And for the most part, there haven't really been many pragmatic, thoughtful, forward thinking voices push forward a different, more progressive stance, in rail advocacy. Rail fans haven't really had that many different perspectives to consider (yes people can, and do, look at European models, which can be valuable, but I am referring to voices that take the Canadian culture and context into perspective).

I get peoples frustration, which leads to a willingness to just settle. When I was a kid, I had a CN Turbo train book, and saw one (in VIA livery), in person. They seemed so futuristic (and if you have never seen the CN Turbo Train promo video on YouTube, click here and take the time to watch it. It is Canadian optimism at its finest and most fabulous). When I was three I remember looking out the front window of a driverless, Mark 1 test vehicle as it drove around the test track at the UTDC plant in Millhaven. Even the LRC had some sense of looking to the future. And then that was it. For decades nothing happened, and suggestions of bringing back 60 year old equipment became a "forward thinking idea". It was pretty bleak.

And in the context of the NCR, it isn't hard to see how it could still look like the dark days are coming when short lines are collapsing, branch lines no longer have a purpose. And the car oriented planning of the 60's that Ottawa pursued in a big way, have made changing those patterns expensive.

But people sometimes fail to see the progress that has, and is, being made. If you look at GO it has spent the last 15 years buying up rail lines, building expensive rail to rail grade separations, upgraded the Georgetown corridor in a big way, has been extending its network, double tracking sections, preparing for electrification, and getting the network ready to become a real, regional rail network. It will be a pretty massive transformation of a network that hadn't really changed since the mid 1900's. It has had to do that through various reigns of governments, and it started long before there was a critical mass of public desire for a radically better GO. And then you VIA HFR, which doesn't really have much public resistant, would be a radical step forward for the agency, and has a decent chance of being approved this year.

And if you look at the list of all the local, inner city transit projects, that have taken place in Canadian cities in the past decade, and what is coming in the next decade, you see that a staggering amount is actually taking place in that realm.

For the NCR and its rail lines being abandoned, it actually doesn't matter in the slightest. Whether track is ripped up, or remains, will not affect the future of rail in the Ottawa, Gatineau, and beyond the NCR one bit. When passenger rail expansion starts to take place in the NCR, any old infrastructure would have to be ripped out anyways to allow for modern lines to be built. Just as the Confederation Line ripped out nearly every remnant of the Transitway before it was built.

If I had to make a guess, I would say it will be 5 or 10 before the discussion of regional/commuter rail in the NCR really starts in any kind of meaningful way (Ottawa needs to keep focused on LRT, and Gatineau potentially has LRT plans of its own that will need to be executed). By that point, GO will look different than it does today, and provide a real world, Canadian, example of what modern regional/commuter rail can look like. This is going to give a new model for people to look to, and emulate, instead of focusing on rehashed, tired, rubbishy ideas.

So all that to say that I get where railfans are coming from, but I also don't worry about them since their influence on any real world decisions is marginal at best. Instead I would rather focus on being at the vanguard of a new, modern, pragmatic, and Canadian approach to passenger rail services. Structural and economic change isn't fast, and there have needed to be some big changes (especially in the rise and resurgence of urban living in Canadian cities) for a rail revival to happen. The growth of rail has already started, though it is just Chapter 1 in the story of modern rail. And if there is anyone out there who can find ways to reduce the capital costs of building new lines, not only will that person or group potentially make piles of cash, but holy cow could it ever launch rail forward in a big way.
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  #2269  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2019, 4:27 PM
lrt's friend lrt's friend is offline
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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
On one hand, I think you are right, and often think some railfans would be better off focusing their attention on pushing for a rail museum, or maintaining blogs, rather than getting involved with discussions around modernizing rail in Canada.

On the other hand, very few people, at the moment, are stepping up to offer a different kind of voice on passenger rail issues.

Rail advocacy in Canada still feels very fringy. I think part of that comes from decades of stagnation or cuts to passenger rail service, and a general feeling of hopelessness about that changing in the future. It is filled with people who want passenger rail to return to majestic days of CP Passenger Cars rolling through the Rockies, those who want to see super fast high speed trains everywhere, and those that just want something, anything, to be built, even if it doesn't make sense, or uses 60 year old equipment.

And for the most part, there haven't really been many pragmatic, thoughtful, forward thinking voices push forward a different, more progressive stance, in rail advocacy. Rail fans haven't really had that many different perspectives to consider (yes people can, and do, look at European models, which can be valuable, but I am referring to voices that take the Canadian culture and context into perspective).

I get peoples frustration, which leads to a willingness to just settle. When I was a kid, I had a CN Turbo train book, and saw one (in VIA livery), in person. They seemed so futuristic (and if you have never seen the CN Turbo Train promo video on YouTube, click here and take the time to watch it. It is Canadian optimism at its finest and most fabulous). When I was three I remember looking out the front window of a driverless, Mark 1 test vehicle as it drove around the test track at the UTDC plant in Millhaven. Even the LRC had some sense of looking to the future. And then that was it. For decades nothing happened, and suggestions of bringing back 60 year old equipment became a "forward thinking idea". It was pretty bleak.

And in the context of the NCR, it isn't hard to see how it could still look like the dark days are coming when short lines are collapsing, branch lines no longer have a purpose. And the car oriented planning of the 60's that Ottawa pursued in a big way, have made changing those patterns expensive.

But people sometimes fail to see the progress that has, and is, being made. If you look at GO it has spent the last 15 years buying up rail lines, building expensive rail to rail grade separations, upgraded the Georgetown corridor in a big way, has been extending its network, double tracking sections, preparing for electrification, and getting the network ready to become a real, regional rail network. It will be a pretty massive transformation of a network that hadn't really changed since the mid 1900's. It has had to do that through various reigns of governments, and it started long before there was a critical mass of public desire for a radically better GO. And then you VIA HFR, which doesn't really have much public resistant, would be a radical step forward for the agency, and has a decent chance of being approved this year.

And if you look at the list of all the local, inner city transit projects, that have taken place in Canadian cities in the past decade, and what is coming in the next decade, you see that a staggering amount is actually taking place in that realm.

For the NCR and its rail lines being abandoned, it actually doesn't matter in the slightest. Whether track is ripped up, or remains, will not affect the future of rail in the Ottawa, Gatineau, and beyond the NCR one bit. When passenger rail expansion starts to take place in the NCR, any old infrastructure would have to be ripped out anyways to allow for modern lines to be built. Just as the Confederation Line ripped out nearly every remnant of the Transitway before it was built.

If I had to make a guess, I would say it will be 5 or 10 before the discussion of regional/commuter rail in the NCR really starts in any kind of meaningful way (Ottawa needs to keep focused on LRT, and Gatineau potentially has LRT plans of its own that will need to be executed). By that point, GO will look different than it does today, and provide a real world, Canadian, example of what modern regional/commuter rail can look like. This is going to give a new model for people to look to, and emulate, instead of focusing on rehashed, tired, rubbishy ideas.

So all that to say that I get where railfans are coming from, but I also don't worry about them since their influence on any real world decisions is marginal at best. Instead I would rather focus on being at the vanguard of a new, modern, pragmatic, and Canadian approach to passenger rail services. Structural and economic change isn't fast, and there have needed to be some big changes (especially in the rise and resurgence of urban living in Canadian cities) for a rail revival to happen. The growth of rail has already started, though it is just Chapter 1 in the story of modern rail. And if there is anyone out there who can find ways to reduce the capital costs of building new lines, not only will that person or group potentially make piles of cash, but holy cow could it ever launch rail forward in a big way.
There is one problem with what you are saying. Once rail tracks are actually removed, it is really hard for them to be laid again. We see those routes re-purposed or even built on. When road upgrades take place, grade separations may be removed on a former rail corridor, whereas if the track remains in place, this is unlikely to happen.

My memory goes back a long way, and I recall just a few years before we started planning the O-Train in the 90s, we were pulling up track between Ottawa and Carleton Place. Even then, Lowell Green was campaigning against it on CFRA. Instead of turning it into a recreational trail, the track should have remained for future commuter rail. Now, nobody is realistically considering that corridor. There will be far too many NIMBYs.

The conversion of the Transitways is not comparable since it was an active transporation corridor. Once a transportation corridor is abandoned completely, it is very hard to get it back.
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  #2270  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2019, 5:31 PM
JohnnyRenton JohnnyRenton is online now
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Originally Posted by lrt's friend View Post
There is one problem with what you are saying. Once rail tracks are actually removed, it is really hard for them to be laid again. We see those routes re-purposed or even built on. When road upgrades take place, grade separations may be removed on a former rail corridor, whereas if the track remains in place, this is unlikely to happen.

My memory goes back a long way, and I recall just a few years before we started planning the O-Train in the 90s, we were pulling up track between Ottawa and Carleton Place. Even then, Lowell Green was campaigning against it on CFRA. Instead of turning it into a recreational trail, the track should have remained for future commuter rail. Now, nobody is realistically considering that corridor. There will be far too many NIMBYs.

The conversion of the Transitways is not comparable since it was an active transporation corridor. Once a transportation corridor is abandoned completely, it is very hard to get it back.
But if they hadn't pulled up that track, would that have made any difference Would there actually be trains on the line today, or would it have sat rotting for 20 years? How long do you wait before ripping up tracks on an abandoned line? 5 years? 15 years? 40 years? You cant hold on to every rail line, forever, on the off chance it might be used again, one day, several decades, or generations down the road.

Not to say that some pre-planning for regional rail shouldn't start to take place in the next 1 - 10 years. It definitely needs to be on the radar. But the corridors being abandoned, and ripped up in some cases, are not the end of the world.
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  #2271  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2019, 11:25 PM
CityTech CityTech is online now
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Originally Posted by lrt's friend View Post
There is one problem with what you are saying. Once rail tracks are actually removed, it is really hard for them to be laid again. We see those routes re-purposed or even built on. When road upgrades take place, grade separations may be removed on a former rail corridor, whereas if the track remains in place, this is unlikely to happen.

My memory goes back a long way, and I recall just a few years before we started planning the O-Train in the 90s, we were pulling up track between Ottawa and Carleton Place. Even then, Lowell Green was campaigning against it on CFRA. Instead of turning it into a recreational trail, the track should have remained for future commuter rail. Now, nobody is realistically considering that corridor. There will be far too many NIMBYs.

The conversion of the Transitways is not comparable since it was an active transporation corridor. Once a transportation corridor is abandoned completely, it is very hard to get it back.
It's a shame because if you look at a map of abandoned/former railway corridors in Ottawa, there's actually quite a few that would be perfect for commuter rail.

There's the Carleton Place line you mentioned. The track now used for the Trillium line used to continue through Greely, Osgoode, and Kemptville. There was a line that split off the VIA mainline around Walkley and went straight to Russell and Embrun and onwards to Cornwall. A darn shame because Carleton Place, Kemptville, and Russell are some of the fastest growing exurban towns. I remember seeing an old map (from the early 1900s I think) with all three of those lines on it and if I recall correctly they all travelled in almost perfectly straight lines to reach Carleton Place, Kemptville, and Russell too.
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  #2272  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2019, 11:34 PM
lrt's friend lrt's friend is offline
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It's a shame because if you look at a map of abandoned/former railway corridors in Ottawa, there's actually quite a few that would be perfect for commuter rail.

There's the Carleton Place line you mentioned. The track now used for the Trillium line used to continue through Greely, Osgoode, and Kemptville. There was a line that split off the VIA mainline around Walkley and went straight to Russell and Embrun and onwards to Cornwall. A darn shame because Carleton Place, Kemptville, and Russell are some of the fastest growing exurban towns. I remember seeing an old map (from the early 1900s I think) with all three of those lines on it and if I recall correctly they all travelled in almost perfectly straight lines to reach Carleton Place, Kemptville, and Russell too.
And the first track to go which went right through Rockland, arguably the most viable commuter route. Of course, that was lost so long ago, it could not possibly have
been saved.

I brought up the Carleton Place route because there was actual debate at the time about using it for commuter trains. It was already on the public radar and it was already known to have a substantial population within the short term.
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  #2273  
Old Posted Jan 11, 2019, 11:41 PM
lrt's friend lrt's friend is offline
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But if they hadn't pulled up that track, would that have made any difference Would there actually be trains on the line today, or would it have sat rotting for 20 years? How long do you wait before ripping up tracks on an abandoned line? 5 years? 15 years? 40 years? You cant hold on to every rail line, forever, on the off chance it might be used again, one day, several decades, or generations down the road.

Not to say that some pre-planning for regional rail shouldn't start to take place in the next 1 - 10 years. It definitely needs to be on the radar. But the corridors being abandoned, and ripped up in some cases, are not the end of the world.
Just think of the track between Greenboro and Leitrim. Left to rot for 20 years but the important thing is that leaving the tracks in place, means that it would not be re-purposed and many have suggested just that right on this discussion board. Sure, some track needs to go, but we need to do a little better at long-term planning so that this kind of valuable infrastructure is not permanently lost. Let's hope we do not lose the cross-town tracks, and then spend 10 or 100 times as much to build a parallel route.
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  #2274  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 2:47 AM
Truenorth00 Truenorth00 is offline
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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
On one hand, I think you are right, and often think some railfans would be better off focusing their attention on pushing for a rail museum, or maintaining blogs, rather than getting involved with discussions around modernizing rail in Canada.

On the other hand, very few people, at the moment, are stepping up to offer a different kind of voice on passenger rail issues.
This is the same nonsense we see in the political sphere. Where someone with facts and someone with fantasy are both given equal weight.

"Next on CNN. We'll have a Nobel-winning Climate Scientist debate a climate change denying flat Earther."

This kind of "debate" doesn't serve the wider public well.

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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
Rail advocacy in Canada still feels very fringy. I think part of that comes from decades of stagnation or cuts to passenger rail service, and a general feeling of hopelessness about that changing in the future. It is filled with people who want passenger rail to return to majestic days of CP Passenger Cars rolling through the Rockies, those who want to see super fast high speed trains everywhere, and those that just want something, anything, to be built, even if it doesn't make sense, or uses 60 year old equipment.
Exactly. These are people who don't give a shit about building healthy, sustainable communities. They are people who are turned on by tracks and rail ties. No different than a gearhead who argues for unfettered auto mobility. Just a different flavour of that.

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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
And for the most part, there haven't really been many pragmatic, thoughtful, forward thinking voices push forward a different, more progressive stance, in rail advocacy. Rail fans haven't really had that many different perspectives to consider (yes people can, and do, look at European models, which can be valuable, but I am referring to voices that take the Canadian culture and context into perspective).
Part of the reason is that pragmatic voices get drowned out with nonsense about, "Why can't we have exactly what the Europeans have?" See Paul Lanagan and his constant trashing of HFR as inadequate, as a great example.

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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
If I had to make a guess, I would say it will be 5 or 10 before the discussion of regional/commuter rail in the NCR really starts in any kind of meaningful way (Ottawa needs to keep focused on LRT, and Gatineau potentially has LRT plans of its own that will need to be executed). By that point, GO will look different than it does today, and provide a real world, Canadian, example of what modern regional/commuter rail can look like. This is going to give a new model for people to look to, and emulate, instead of focusing on rehashed, tired, rubbishy ideas.
How many cities of a million have such massive exurban/suburban rail systems? GO isn't something for Ottawa to emulate, because it will be several lifetimes before Ottawa needs to even start something like that. In the meantime, there's a lot of LRT expansion that needs funding. Something a lot of posters miss: opportunity cost is a real thing.

If in 5-10 years, we start talking about "regional rail" before every one of the major suburbs has LRT, then I hope citizens consider voting out those irresponsible politicians. We still will not have LRT to Stittsville and a good chunk of Kanata in a decade. A lot of our city inside the Greenbelt will still not have decent rapid transit access. And you think we'll be talking about regional rail? Maybe if Doucet is mayor....

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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
So all that to say that I get where railfans are coming from, but I also don't worry about them since their influence on any real world decisions is marginal at best.
The danger is their "common wisdom" catches on. See "subways, subways, subways" and the Fords in Toronto.

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Originally Posted by JohnnyRenton View Post
Instead I would rather focus on being at the vanguard of a new, modern, pragmatic, and Canadian approach to passenger rail services.
I'm hoping people regularly riding the LRT starts changing how we talk about rapid transit in Ottawa. Even if some of the folks in this thread won't change their pro-sprawl anti-urban mindset.
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  #2275  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 3:01 PM
JohnnyRenton JohnnyRenton is online now
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This is the same nonsense we see in the political sphere. Where someone with facts and someone with fantasy are both given equal weight.

"Next on CNN. We'll have a Nobel-winning Climate Scientist debate a climate change denying flat Earther."

This kind of "debate" doesn't serve the wider public well.
I tend to think of it as being closer to the Monty Python sketch in which it is election night, and there are the regular candidates, and then there are the silly candidate. Except that in this case, the only one that has turned up for the election are silly candidates.

Though it makes me cringe when someone like a Lanagon gets any kind of attention or credibility, the way to counter that is for the centrist, pragmatic, people oriented voices to get out there and seek the same kind of attention that the fringe/antiquated voices do.

[QUOTE=Truenorth00;8433975]Exactly. These are people who don't give a shit about building healthy, sustainable communities. They are people who are turned on by tracks and rail ties. No different than a gearhead who argues for unfettered auto mobility. Just a different flavour of that.

That is a great way of putting it.

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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
Part of the reason is that pragmatic voices get drowned out with nonsense about, "Why can't we have exactly what the Europeans have?" See Paul Lanagan and his constant trashing of HFR as inadequate, as a great example.
Programatic voices also have to be more creative in how they get peoples attention. It is easy for someone like Lanagan to get attention because what he is proposing/pushing for is flashy, exciting, wicked fast, and all kinds of ghee whiz technology. That kind of future is sexy without even trying to be sexy, where as trying to get people excited about more pragmatic, people based solutions, is less exciting and dramatic, at least at first glance.

Looking at it critically and honestly, there is a lot more that pragmatists/centrists can do in order to get the public interested in realistic, value for money, people focused, but still dramatically modernized rail systems. Websites, podcasts, letters to the editor (I know that isn’t what it once was), public events or meetings, etc. People like Lanagan get attention because they want it. Other viewpoints need to do the same.

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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
How many cities of a million have such massive exurban/suburban rail systems? GO isn't something for Ottawa to emulate, because it will be several lifetimes before Ottawa needs to even start something like that. In the meantime, there's a lot of LRT expansion that needs funding. Something a lot of posters miss: opportunity cost is a real thing.
I am not suggesting that Ottawa emulate GO in the sense that it launches many heavy rail commuter lines. The GTA is a totally different region and economy at a totally different scale. I was more referring to the idea that in 10 years time GO won’t just look like a clunky commuter system. It will be a regional rail system. It will have a number of different services, with a number of different trains. It will have a number of lines electrified. A lot of new stations will be built. It will be the first Canadian example of what a modernized regional rail system can look like. Sometimes it takes seeing something in your own backyard to realize what can actually be done, and when it comes to potential rail investments/projects in the NCR, it is going to have an influence on what people start to see as possible, and want for themselves.

That said, I one hundred percent agree that LRT expansion should be the top priority for at least the next 15 - 20 years, and possibly longer. I can talk about theoretical commuter rail in the NCR all day long, but LRT is Ottawa’s future, today.

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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
If in 5-10 years, we start talking about "regional rail" before every one of the major suburbs has LRT, then I hope citizens consider voting out those irresponsible politicians. We still will not have LRT to Stittsville and a good chunk of Kanata in a decade. A lot of our city inside the Greenbelt will still not have decent rapid transit access. And you think we'll be talking about regional rail? Maybe if Doucet is mayor....
Talking about it and planning for it are different than putting it out in to the public as a serious proposal. Again, I agree that the real focus, and where the money needs to go, once all 3 phases of the LRT are done, is into a phase 4 and 5, and for the city to launch another 10 years of LRT construction.

And when I am suggesting that in 5 - 10 years there could be talk and planning of commuter, I don’t mean public open houses showing of presentation boards. Im thinking that maybe the city has a small committee starting to investigate the idea of expanded rail in the NCR, perhaps also working with the NCC, Gatineau, and VIA. The kind of early stages planning that wouldn’t take money away from LRT, and wouldn’t take media attention away from it either (sort of like the planning and unsexy projects GO was looking at and pursuing in the late 90’s and early 2000’s). And planning at a level that someone who is super keen on following the very early stages might be able to follow it and get some information on what is being discussed, but where the public at large, and even the media, would have little interest in it.

If you want to look at it another way, commuter rail doesn’t really make sense until LRT has pretty much been pushed as far out from the city centre as it can go. And it will be at least 20 years, if not longer, before that becomes a big issue.

I will also clarify that when the rail network starts to be expanded in the NCR, I don’t think it will be commuter rail that leads that, it will be intercity rail.

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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
The danger is their "common wisdom" catches on. See "subways, subways, subways" and the Fords in Toronto.
Common wisdom (or “common sense” to use a throwback some people might remember very well) is always going to be a pervasive threat. Politics will always have some degree of impact on transit planning, which I can be a very troubling thing at times. Those battles will never go away. All you can do is try to understand where they are coming from (to a point) and see if there isn’t a way to bring them into the fold, instead of just smashing them.

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Originally Posted by Truenorth00 View Post
I'm hoping people regularly riding the LRT starts changing how we talk about rapid transit in Ottawa. Even if some of the folks in this thread won't change their pro-sprawl anti-urban mindset.
LRT, especially phase 2 and 3, will be a game changer. Even the simple fact that part of the new system is in tunnels, signalling just how urban Ottawa has become in some parts, is going to get people to think about the city differently.

Ottawa essentially had half a century where the city was designed solely around the car. There is a lot to overcome as a result of that (but also a surprising number of opportunities). When it comes to Ottawa becoming more urban, more sustainable, less car oriented, its transition is still relatively new. If the city where a person, this would be the awkward teenage years where it is constantly changing, and trying not to get shoved into lockers by the other cities (that last part was nonsense, but I couldn’t help myself).

In 10 years time, all 3 phases of the LRT will be done, and there will have been another decade of urban building which will revitalize and strengthen existing neighbourhoods, and create new ones. Projects like Zibi will really start to make the city interesting and dynamic. Ottawa will never explode or see building booms in the same way that Toronto has (though never say never). But Ottawa has already started to look and feel different than it did even just at the start of the 2000’s. In another decade, it will be hard for all but the most stubborn, stuck in the past, people to not see the city and the value of the LRT network, differently.
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  #2276  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 3:16 PM
JohnnyRenton JohnnyRenton is online now
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Originally Posted by lrt's friend View Post
Just think of the track between Greenboro and Leitrim. Left to rot for 20 years but the important thing is that leaving the tracks in place, means that it would not be re-purposed and many have suggested just that right on this discussion board. Sure, some track needs to go, but we need to do a little better at long-term planning so that this kind of valuable infrastructure is not permanently lost. Let's hope we do not lose the cross-town tracks, and then spend 10 or 100 times as much to build a parallel route.
Even if the tracks were ripped out there aren't any threats to this right of way. Ottawa has been interested in it since the early 2000's. Tracks or no tracks, that corridor is safe.

I agree that at some point in the near future there needs to some long term planning consideration for what to do with the various abandoned, or to be abandoned lines. But first, Ottawa needs to get LRT phases 2 and 3 underway, and Gatineau needs to work out its transit future. Once Gatineau does that, and once Ottawa knows where its network will go in phases 4 and 5, then you can actually start to make really good assessments on what lines may or may not be needed to start tieing the region together, one day.

Last edited by JohnnyRenton; Jan 12, 2019 at 4:23 PM.
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  #2277  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 6:00 PM
Joseph Potvin Joseph Potvin is offline
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Originally Posted by Charles5 View Post
@Joseph Potvin In your literature concerning Property Powered Rail and other articles and papers on the MOOSE proposed network, you have talked about 'splitting' the increased value of the property (the 'uplift') between the property owner and MOOSE. I always interpreted the meaning of 'split' as a 50/50 split, however I recently came across an article in which you proposed to split those profits 20/80 between MOOSE and the respective companies.... Can you please advise how you see the uplift in property values being split?
This apportionment would be annually negotiated between the owners of stations in Linked Localities and MOOSE. They would have no interest in underfunding the train service that generates the income and asset value they participate in. In earlier years I'd anticipate the larger proportion to be allocated to MOOSE, gradually declining in proportion until the majority remained with the station owners. The formula used by MOOSE will be based on actual property lease and sale transactons, but the ways that station owners raise those funds will be on diverse models, as they prefer to design.

Joseph Potvin
Director General | Directeur général
Moose Consortium (Mobility Ottawa-Outaouais: Systems & Enterprises) | www.letsgomoose.com
Consortium Moose (Mobilité Outaouais-Ottawa: Systèmes & Enterprises) | www.onyvamoose.com
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  #2278  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 7:08 PM
Allandale25 Allandale25 is online now
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How does this news impact what Moose wants to do?

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottaw...-O5v9DpPfqtQ68
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  #2279  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 7:51 PM
Charles5 Charles5 is offline
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Originally Posted by Joseph Potvin View Post
This apportionment would be annually negotiated between the owners of stations in Linked Localities and MOOSE. They would have no interest in underfunding the train service that generates the income and asset value they participate in. In earlier years I'd anticipate the larger proportion to be allocated to MOOSE, gradually declining in proportion until the majority remained with the station owners. The formula used by MOOSE will be based on actual property lease and sale transactons, but the ways that station owners raise those funds will be on diverse models, as they prefer to design.
What happens when MOOSE's expenses are greater than 100% of the 'uplift' from property lease and transactions? Would MOOSE take up to 100% from the station owners and have the railway operations run a deficit, or would they expect the station owners to be the ones to run a deficit so that the train is fully funded?
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  #2280  
Old Posted Jan 12, 2019, 8:21 PM
Joseph Potvin Joseph Potvin is offline
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Originally Posted by Allandale25 View Post
How does this news impact what Moose wants to do?
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottaw...-O5v9DpPfqtQ68
Variants of our plan for refurbishment of the PoWB include an LRT line cantilevered off the west side, in which case the separated pedestrian and cycling paths would be cantilevered off the east side, bike lane above, pedestrian lane below.

It's not yet clear what proportion of their funds would be assembled from developer fees around stations, but at $80M per km, Gatineau's current plan will be politically hard to allocate funds to, I reckon, even within Gatineau, where it would still leave more populous eastern Gatineau households with choosing between Hwy 50 and Rapibus.

Joseph Potvin
Director General | Directeur général
Moose Consortium (Mobility Ottawa-Outaouais: Systems & Enterprises) | www.letsgomoose.com
Consortium Moose (Mobilité Outaouais-Ottawa: Systèmes & Enterprises) | www.onyvamoose.com
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