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No decision yet from Queen’s Park on whether Hamilton will operate its own LRT

Hamilton's billion-dollar proposed LRT is expected to feature 17 stops across 14 kilometres.
Hamilton's billion-dollar proposed LRT is expected to feature 17 stops across 14 kilometres. City of Hamilton

There’s no sign of clarity on a key light rail transit (LRT) related question in Hamilton.

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne has not given a definitive answer on whether the province will agree to Hamilton’s request to operate and maintain the city’s proposed 14-kilometre LRT line.

READ MORE: Transportation minister staying ‘open-minded’ on whether HSR should run Hamilton LRT

Wynne said only that “we’re reviewing it” and that “we want the system to work the very best for Hamiltonians.”  She made the comments during a media event at the Sackville Seniors Centre on Tuesday morning.

READ MORE: HSR director questioned about morale as driver absenteeism soars

City councillors made their request for operational control, through the Hamilton Street Railway (HSR), during a meeting in August.

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Wynne also steered clear of speculation that soaring absenteeism among HSR’s drivers, which has reached 19 per cent and resulted in an average of 23 “no show” buses per day in October, could harm the city’s request.

READ MORE: How could HSR issues affect city bid to operate LRT?

Construction of Hamilton’s LRT line, from Eastgate Square to McMaster University, is to begin in 2019 and continue until 2024.

The issues facing the HSR are likely to be a dominant issue during Wednesday evening’s regular meeting of Hamilton City Council.

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