Hamilton chamber continues to prepare for LRT construction

Hamilton's proposed LRT route runs from McMaster University to Eastgate Square.
Hamilton's proposed LRT route runs from McMaster University to Eastgate Square. CHML

The Hamilton Chamber of Commerce is launching another series of seminars to prepare businesses for light rail transit (LRT) construction.

The four-part series starts on Thursday evening with a session called “Countdown to Construction.”

Chamber President Keanin Loomis says it is planning on the basis that the $1 billion, provincially-funded project will proceed as scheduled, despite ongoing political questions.

The funding commitment was made by Ontario’s former Liberal government.

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There has been much speculation in recent months about whether the 14-kilometre LRT line between McMaster University and Eastgate Square will proceed under Premier Doug Ford’s new PC government.

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Loomis, a steadfast supporter of Hamilton LRT, notes that “if everything goes right, as I expect it will, we’re going to be facing construction next year.”

The construction is expected to happen over a period of about five years and Loomis recognizes there will be disruptions for businesses along the corridor, but he remains confident they will be “temporary” and “manageable.”

Metrolinx, based on the project’s latest timelines, is expected to award the contract to build Hamilton’s LRT in 2019.

The Hamilton Chamber of Commerce hosted its first, four-part LRT ready series last year, which included a road trip to visit Kitchener-Waterloo’s new line.

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