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No vote needed to kill Transit City: Ford

by Jonathan Jenkins
City Hall Bureau

There’s no need for city council to rubber-stamp his decision to kill the $8.1-billion Transit City light-rail plan, Mayor Rob Ford insisted Tuesday.

“There was never a vote on council for Transit City,” Ford said, after emerging from a 20-minute meeting at Queen’s Park with Premier Dalton McGuinty.

“If there was, I’d like to see one.”

Ford repeated his position that the city wants subways — not less expensive light-rail lines.

“Our subway plan is to go underground,” Ford said. “That’s what we campaigned on, that’s what the people want.

“They don’t want streetcars; they don’t want another St. Clair, which was a disaster.”

Coun. Adam Vaughan said Ford is mistaken as council has affirmed its support for Transit City more than once.

“I remember two very distinct motions at the time for an overall environmental agenda that went through council unanimously,” Vaughan said.

“There was an endorsement of Transit City as a plan and there was a direct order to the TTC to start preparing documents for (evironmental assessments) on the individual lines. All those EAs came back to us.

“There’s been a vote one every single one of those things.”

McGuinty said after the meeting that the city will now have to bring forward a new transit plan for his government to review.

“I made it clear to him that we’re not about to force a transit plan on the council that they’re not prepared to accept,” he said.

“It’s also clear to my mind that the new council is very intent on building new transit, and so are we.”