The province on Friday announced $790,000 and $500,000, respectively, for transit projects in the City of Kawartha Lakes and the towns of Cobourg and Port Hope.
Laurie Scott, Minister of Infrastructure and Haliburton-Kawartha Lakes-Brock MPP, announced $790,000 for the municipality’s transit infrastructure projects.
Those projects for Lindsay Transit — which has three routes in the town — include:
- Five new replacement buses
- A new bus route and transit hub expansion following completion of area’s northwest trunk
- Seven bike racks on conventional buses
- Additional bike routes
- Updated transit software
- Repurposing of a soon-to-be vacated ambulance site to become a bus maintenance facility
“These transit projects will make a real difference in people’s lives,” said Scott. “Better public transit creates stronger communities. It helps people spend less time commuting to work and home, and more time doing the things they love with those they care about most.”
The projects are part of the municipalities’ long-term transit plan. They’ll be nominated under the Public Transit stream of the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program (ICIP) for further funding. The ICIP is a federal fund that supports municipalities to repair or build critical infrastructure.
City of Kawartha Lakes Mayor Andy Letham says Lindsay Transit has 20,000 riders annually. Transit expansion has been a priority for the municipality, Letham says, but existing issues and infrastructure needs have to be met — and the provincial funding will help.
Todd Bryant, manager, fleet and transit for the City of Kawartha Lakes, says the funding is a significant step to help modernize the fleet and services.
“This funding helps improve capacity, safety and access and as well as facilitate our Lindsay transit master plan,” he said.
Also Friday in Cobourg, Northumberland-Peterborough South MPP David Piccini announced the Ford government is investing more than $500,000 in two transit and road infrastructure projects in the towns of Cobourg and Port Hope. The projects are being nominated under the public transit, rural and northern streams of the ICIP.
The province is providing $413,443 to the Town of Cobourg for the replacement of three buses as well $88,157 to the Town of Port Hope for specialized transit service expansion and accessibility improvements at bus stops.
“Building and maintaining great roads, bridges and transit infrastructure, will help people who rely on our roads and public transit to get to work and home safely,” said Piccini. “We are working closely with our municipal partners, families and businesses to build needed infrastructure in our community.”
The projects are now with the federal government for final funding decisions as they are reviewed for eligibility under the ICIP program. Some projects could begin as soon as this fall. If approved, the nominated projects will be eligible for total funding of more than $1.5 million from the federal, provincial and municipal governments.
“These initiatives promise to make a real difference in people’s lives and we’re excited to get shovels in the ground,” said MPP Piccini. “Now it’s up to the federal government to approve them.”
Port Hope Mayor bob Sanderson and Cobourg Mayor John Henderson said the investments are important for their transit services.
“Reliable and sustainable public transit is a priority for the Municipality of Port Hope and today’s funding announcement will ensure that we can continue to deliver this important service while providing greater efficiencies for our residents,” said Sanderson.
Added Henderson: “Together, as a community, neighbouring municipalities and levels of government we are all working hard to invest in vital transit projects. Like all municipalities we are striving to meet the new accessibility standards set by the province, and I assure you the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program funding announced by MPP David Piccini today to replace three of our town buses will be well-used. Transit is a vital part of our community and a social responsibility that we will continue to address.”
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