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  #361  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 7:52 PM
Marshsparrow Marshsparrow is offline
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Do it now!
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  #362  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 8:59 PM
zzptichka zzptichka is offline
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5 million $ is something
For years it seemed like they didn't have a penny behind them
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  #363  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 9:12 PM
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The funding commitment from a Chinese company means that effectively the Chinese government would have ownership of the line. Having commuter rail lines back in use would be great, but is that worth eroding our sovereignty?
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  #364  
Old Posted Jul 17, 2017, 10:32 PM
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The funding commitment from a Chinese company means that effectively the Chinese government would have ownership of the line. Having commuter rail lines back in use would be great, but is that worth eroding our sovereignty?
Its a private sector project (for now). Who cares who owns it
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  #365  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:07 AM
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The funding commitment from a Chinese company means that effectively the Chinese government would have ownership of the line. Having commuter rail lines back in use would be great, but is that worth eroding our sovereignty?
A big part of Trudeau's desire for an Infrastructure Bank includes foreign money coming into Canada. I doubt any company or investment firm will put up money if they have no options for ROI. Without ownership, they cannot manage projects to earn their money back. It's what we wanted, apparently.
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  #366  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 7:53 AM
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I guess that we can move this project from the long 'riiiight' category to the short 'sure'
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  #367  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 12:06 PM
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Mr. Fergus said it can be good for the environment if people live in densely built suburbs with commuter rail within walking distance.
Generally in North America, people move out to exurbia to have more space, not to live in densely built enclaves, and especially not next to train tracks. It's a twee romantic fantasy that some want to transplant from Europe where old villages are already densely built to been with. Take a ride in Montreal's Vaudreuil-Hudson line, despite being active for over a century, there is very little TOD around its stations.

After Stage 2 of the Confederation line is complete, there will be so much developable TOD-potential sites for years. Even today, people aren't clamouring to buy at the Place de Gouverneurs development adjacent to Cyrville Station.
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  #368  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 1:45 PM
lrt's friend lrt's friend is offline
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Generally in North America, people move out to exurbia to have more space, not to live in densely built enclaves, and especially not next to train tracks. It's a twee romantic fantasy that some want to transplant from Europe where old villages are already densely built to been with. Take a ride in Montreal's Vaudreuil-Hudson line, despite being active for over a century, there is very little TOD around its stations.

After Stage 2 of the Confederation line is complete, there will be so much developable TOD-potential sites for years. Even today, people aren't clamouring to buy at the Place de Gouverneurs development adjacent to Cyrville Station.
Yes, Commuter rail in the Ottawa area will be based on Park n Ride lots serving a wide area. Most live in exurbia to have a bit space and peace and quiet rather than urban living. There is some modest potential for medium density housing in some of the bigger towns. Infrequent commuter trains are not the basis of building TOD.

Even in Ottawa itself, there is a somewhat limited market for density and people will choose to live in areas where the amenities are best. Cyrville does not provide those amenities. This is a problem when it comes to our expectations for TOD especially in the east end where the Confederation Line follows the Queensway. Most of these locations lack amenities other than light rail itself and most stations are located in pedestrian unfriendly locations .
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  #369  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 2:20 PM
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The funding commitment from a Chinese company means that effectively the Chinese government would have ownership of the line. Having commuter rail lines back in use would be great, but is that worth eroding our sovereignty?
The MOOSE model doesn't include track ownership, but rather leases access to the lines from the line owners. That's from their Business Model on their website here.
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  #370  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 3:03 PM
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Imagine if you could live in a charming town like Almonte or Arnprior and get to downtown as conveniently as if you lived in Orleans? I would take historic town any day over soulless suburb hell
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  #371  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 3:27 PM
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Imagine if you could live in a charming town like Almonte or Arnprior and get to downtown as conveniently as if you lived in Orleans? I would take historic town any day over soulless suburb hell
Just look at Rockland, Kemptville, Carleton Place and Arnprior. The popularity of these towns is going to turn them into soulless suburb hell with a cluster of big box stores on the periphery sucking the life out of a quaint old business district. It all becomes the same because that is the purpose of these big box stores. Build crap surrounded by massive parking lots with aim of taking over as close to 100% of market share as possible, and they generally succeed. The only saving grace for Almonte (until more people discover it) is that it is off the main highways. Almonte will not be on commuter rail as the line was pulled up in the last 5 years and did not come directly to Ottawa anyways.
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  #372  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 4:38 PM
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Imagine if you could live in a charming town like Almonte or Arnprior and get to downtown as conveniently as if you lived in Orleans? I would take historic town any day over soulless suburb hell
Limoges 2030:

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  #373  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 5:22 PM
Uhuniau Uhuniau is offline
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The funding commitment from a Chinese company means that effectively the Chinese government would have ownership of the line. Having commuter rail lines back in use would be great, but is that worth eroding our sovereignty?
In what way would sovereignty be eroded?

Canadians own all kinds of things in other countries, including China.
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Enjoy my taxes, Orleans (and Kanata?).
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  #374  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 9:41 PM
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Ambitious regional railway plan attracts investor attention

Blair Crawford, Ottawa Citizen
Published on: July 18, 2017 | Last Updated: July 18, 2017 4:43 PM EDT




An ambitious plan to connect the National Capital Region by a commuter rail system using old or abandoned rail lines has attracted the attention of foreign investors who have agreed to the first step in a feasibility study.

Moose Consortium envisions building a privately financed rail system with six branch lines stretching to Bristol, Wakefield and Montebello on the Quebec side, and Arnprior, Smiths Falls and Alexandria on the Ontario side. The system would be connected interprovincially by the Prince of Wales Bridge which crosses the Ottawa River at Lemieux Island.

In a letter of intent on July 1, a consortium of investors with ties to China, India, Singapore and elsewhere, agreed to offer “financial resources” and “technical expertise” to move the project forward. But no amount of money will be promised until investors have had a chance to review Moose’s ground work, said Mir Ali, president of Consortia N.A. which partnered with LeMine Investment Group on the letter of intent.

The consortium of foreign investors has given itself 120 days to determine if the project is solid enough to begin a full feasibility study.

“To move forward on a project of this size we need backup information. What’s the population? What’s the condition of the tracks? What are the agreements with the track owners? There’s a whole lot of things that need to be in place,” Ali said.

“We are also skeptical. It’s a very good project, technically. Connecting all the communities is well and good … (but) It’s a long shot. It won’t happen overnight. It has a lot of challenges.”

Moose — the name comes from Mobility Ottawa Outaouais: Systems and Enterprises — is the baby of Joseph Potvin, a 58-year-old economist who views the unused rail lines as an untapped resource. In 2011, he sat down with four friends to brainstorm.

“We looked at a map of existing railways and said here’s what we have. What can we come up with?”

Potvin’s vision is for the system — 400 kilometres of tracks and 50 stations — to be completely privately funded. Commuter rail increases property values, the theory goes, and a portion of that increased value would be used to finance the railway. It’s a modern version of how railways used to be financed, he said, with towns paying the railway company to build a station and provide access. Raising the money privately sidesteps much of the red tape involved in running a railroad in the National Capital Region with its multiple levels of government and jurisdictions.

But the outside-the-box business model has had trouble attracting interest. Ian Lee, a professor at Carleton University’s Sprott School of Business, likens it to “snake oil.”

“I’m a numbers guy and I look at how many people there are and I can’t see the numbers adding up,” Lee said.

“It’s not that I’m opposed to mass transit, but it’s very, very expensive. They say it’s going to drive up the property values so much it’s going to pay for itself. No, it’s not.”

Rail companies typically have enormous capital expenses, Lee said, with around 20 per cent of their revenue going to maintain their tracks and rolling stock. “We’re talking billions of dollars. Not millions, billions,” Lee said.

Moose has additional problems with some of its lines: the tracks to Bristol, Que., were removed several years ago while the line north of Wakefield was plagued by the washouts that permanently sidelined Wakefield’s steam train.

Nor has Moose made friends with the City of Ottawa after complaining to the Canadian Transportation Agency when the city ripped out tracks at the Ottawa end of the Prince of Wales Bridge during LRT construction. The city isn’t about to turn the bridge over to a private company.

“The City includes the rail line over the Prince of Wales bridge within its Transportation Master Plan (TMP) as part of the long-term transit network,” said Vivi Chi, the manager of transportation planning, in an email to the Citizen.

“This northerly extension of the Trillium Line to Gatineau will need to be developed at a future date because as per the TMP, the City’s current priority is the first two stages of the Confederation Line and the Trillium Line extension to Riverside South. The City has not received a detailed service plan from Moose to review at this point.”

And yet, it’s the cross river link that Moose’s new investors see as key to the project, said Ali of Consortia N.A.

“It cannot be done unless there is one section that economically makes sense to take it up first,” he said. “That is from Gatineau to Bayview. It’s also the most expensive one because the Prince of Wales bridge requires $50 … $60 … $70 million in capital expenditure.”

Despite the obstacles, Potvin remains undaunted. People in the National Capital Region didn’t give up on railroads, he said. The railroads were stripped away in the 1950s-era redesign by urban planner Jacques Gréber. Potvin sees a future commuter who rides into downtown Ottawa from Arnprior, heads up to Wakefield after work for a show at the Black Sheep Inn, then heads home to Arnprior, all by commuter train.

“Rail did not fall out of use,” Potvin said. “Rail was taken out of use.

“I’m an economist. It bugs me when I see perfectly valuable resources sitting there unused.”

bcrawford@postmedia.com
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http://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-...stor-attention
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  #375  
Old Posted Jul 18, 2017, 11:14 PM
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Maybe we should just merge Rural Commuter Rail thread with the MOOSE thread.
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  #376  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2017, 12:14 AM
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Originally Posted by Horus View Post
The MOOSE model doesn't include track ownership, but rather leases access to the lines from the line owners. That's from their Business Model on their website here.
Thanks, that's good to know.
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  #377  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2017, 12:16 AM
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In what way would sovereignty be eroded?

Canadians own all kinds of things in other countries, including China.
China does not allow any non-Chinese citizens to buy any properties.
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  #378  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2017, 1:35 AM
bradnixon bradnixon is offline
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I'm all for expanding transit but this proposal is... odd.

Isn't it a bit presumptuous to claim half the Trillium line corridor as part of their plan? Do they somehow expect to be able to share those tracks with the Trillium line trains?
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  #379  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2017, 1:47 AM
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If China wants to pay for this (and probably lose gobs of money) then more power too them.

People who move to rural areas to commute to Ottawa tend to be looking for a combination of three things: more land, lower prices and/or fewer neighbours.

The business model Moose is pushing requires higher densities (less land, more neighbours) and homeowners to pay the capex (higher prices).

I don't know how they can reconcile this.
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  #380  
Old Posted Jul 19, 2017, 2:05 AM
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China does not allow any non-Chinese citizens to buy any properties.
But they do allow foreign investment as long as the public and the state benefit from it.
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