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Letter to the Editor - Chris Tonks, Reeve, Township of York.

I have become somewhat concerned by the opinions expressed by some of your readers in the matter of Monorail in Metropolitan Toronto. First of all, I would like to say that most of the letters appear to have come from people who have drawn conclusions, based strictly upon the very lack of information and understanding that Reeve Singer, myself and many other elected representatives are insistent must be secured.

At no time have I or Mr. Singer demanded that Monorail replace the Bloor Street Subway. What we have said is: That in view of the enormous estimated cost of $200,000,000 (and using the precedent that the Yonge Street Subway exceeded its estimated cost so substantially that the Bloor route might readily exceed $500,000,000, and added to the already committed $1-billion capital works program of Metropolitan Council), it required all taxpayers to stop, think and ask themselves, “Where are we going?”, and insist to their elected representatives that all reasonable alternatives — whether it be inter-city use of our vast network of highways or be it by this most modern, versatile and low-priced system of Monorail — be completely and thoroughly investigated.

Some of your readers suggested that the matter of public transportation was strictly the responsibility of the TTC and I hasten to agree, but many people are not aware that the TTC is a body charged with providing public transportation without subsidy by the taxpayers. However, since the TTC cannot build and operate the subway without the assistance of the taxpayers, as one of their elected representatives it immediately becomes my business. Many of the statements of Mr. Lamport, an appointed public official, are so misleading and ridiculous that the taxpayers are more insistent than ever that the only way to really know the truth is to invite the representatives of Monorail Inc. to come to Toronto and, in conjunction with the engineers of the TTC, prepare a survey of the Bloor Street route, that might be extended to take in many other areas of Metro.

At the insignificant cost of something less than $1,000,000 per mile, established at the rate of one mile per month, switching and operating silently and efficiently on pneumatic tires, at the rear of or on the main streets, moving 60,000 people per hour, in single cars or trains gyroscopically controlled against any sense of sway, only 14 feet above the road — all of this, Monorail Inc. are prepared to substantiate. And their representatives will, upon completion of the survey, be prepared to attend any public meeting called to hear their explanation of how Metropolitan Toronto might very well save over $200,000,000.

In conclusion, I would like to say that it is my understanding that the time to complete the survey would not exceed six months. In the meantime, there is no holdup in the planning of the subway, which I understand will take approximately nine months to a year to complete. Therefore, there is no understandable reason why the Metropolitan Council should not be encouraged to thoroughly investigate this or any other worthwhile alternative.

—Chris Tonks, Reeve, Township of York.




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