Brampton council approves LRT route for Main Street; Downtown Re-imagined put on hold

Brampton council approved prioritizing the light rail transit (LRT) route for Main Street as part of the Brampton Transit Network Plan and put a hold on the Downtown Re-imagined (DR) project.

Highlights from the LRT motion include:
• Revising the Brampton LRT Extension Study and making any required updates to the original Hurontario-Main LRT Environmental Assessment, including the study and consideration of an underground tunneling option,
• Using Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) as the technology for Kennedy Road and McLaughlin Road and consider extending those alignments further north and/or south,
• Studying rapid transit options from the Brampton GO Station to Mayfield Road on Main Street as contemplated in the Transportation and Transit Master Plan (TTMP),
• Reporting back on an implementation strategy for a downtown Mobility Hub.

The DR project is being put on hold for a number of reasons, including:
• The cost of the tender has come in higher than estimated,
• Uncertainties around the cost of utilities and an underground channel,
• New development plan opportunities in the downtown core,
• Projects in the downtown core have been modified as a result of the provincial funding cancellation for the university,
• Current design for DR precludes an LRT down Main Street as per previous council’s decision.

“I am happy that council was united in their stand to provide value for money to our taxpayers,” said Mayor Patrick Brown. “Our united goal for the Brampton described in the 2040 Vision includes a modern and effective joint surface and tunnelled LRT transit plan. This will help to ensure that Brampton can attract future economic investment from national and global organizations looking to invest in the GTA region, something we need for a prosperous Brampton. By taking a pause on Downtown Re-imagined, we will ensure that we do it right the first time and move forward in an efficient and responsible manner.”

“This a good opportunity for us to evaluate all of the projects that are planned within the downtown,” said Harry Schlange, Chief Administrative Officer, City of Brampton. “We’re maintaining momentum with some upcoming initiatives, and we’re now better able to plan a holistic approach to our commitment to the revitalization of our downtown.”

Some of the future initiatives include the potential redevelopment of the downtown transit terminal and the Heritage Theatre Block and a Centre for Cyber Security.

Current initiatives include:
• Centre for Innovation
• The Chang School of Continuing Education (two courses on cyber security starting January 2019)
• A new pilot incubator hub (expected to open Spring 2019)
• Expansion of Algoma University

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