Comment 52507

By realitycheck (anonymous) | Posted December 02, 2010 at 11:59:44

Some people were asking what I meant by viable when I asked if LRT would attract enough fare-paid riders to make it viable. Let me clarify. While the lion's share of the LRT's capital costs will be covered by Metrolinx, there will be an annual operational cost associated with running the LRT after it has been built. The question that Metrolinx will have for this city before writing a cheque to build the LRT is whether it can fund its operation. In order to answer that, we need to see what the estimated operational costs will be and how thoses costs will be covered.

As we have seen in recent news articles, HSR's current budget is already hard-pressed to meet the ridership needs on its buses as it is. The new LRT needs to generate enough income to cover its operational costs or else it will become an additional strain on a transit operational budget already at its breaking point. The city must demonstrate that there will be an increase in fare-paid ridership and other LRT-related revenue streams sufficient to cover the operational costs associated with the LRT system. This is what I mean by viability.

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