Canstar Community News - ONLINE EDITION

Rapid Transit — believe it when you see it

  • Print

In one of my all-time favourite episodes of The Simpsons, a smooth-talking, sharp-witted character insists to the people of Springfield that he has "sold Monorails to Brockway, Ogdenville and North Haverbrook, and by golly it put them on the map."

This is what came to mind when the city unveiled its plan for the second phase of the Southwest Transitway; the $600 million, seven-kilometre corridor to be completed by 2019, extending south from the existing corridor that runs from Queen Elizabeth Parkway to Jubilee Avenue in Lord Roberts.

Like the North End, formidable barriers cut off Lord Roberts and Riverview from the rest of the city — the Red River to the north, east, and south and the rail yards to the west. The main artery, Osborne Street, runs right through the centre, connecting the south end of the city to South Osborne’s better-known relative, the Village, and downtown.

As recently as 2001, census data shows that up to a third of Lord Roberts residents had low incomes.

Area residents now enjoy several alternative modes of transportation and services on top of regular bus routes, such bike paths and, for people who could use a car once in a while, there is a creative car-rental service with affordable yearly memberships and hourly rates as low as $2/hour run by the Peg City Car Co-op.

There is also, of course, rapid transit.

But the site of the existing corridor, where a condo complex is expected to rise, lies barren and separate from the community.

The most noticeable thing on the lot is a placard of Mike Holmes standing with his arms crossed.

Like our fictional friends in Springfield, we live in a city with potholes that can swallow cars and are investing in alternative infrastructure. Maybe the monorail story came to mind because, like many Winnipeggers, I, too, can easily succumb to pessimism.

But maybe we have reason to do so, given the confusion and mismanagement surrounding other public works. 

Clearly we need better public transportation to connect the city, and to ensure that people from all neighbourhoods have affordable and efficient access to economic opportunities and leisure.

We also need to better integrate transportation and infill housing into existing communities.
Unfortunately, it takes years to fully develop, and won’t simply disappear if it fails like in the cartoons.

In the meantime, a mixture of options is helpful, and the two communities flanking the south end of Osborne provide a template for localized solutions.

Andrew Braga is a community correspondent for South Osborne.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

This Just In Twitter bird

  • HeraldWPG

    @HeraldWPG: Elmwood correspondent Bertha Klassen brings some perspective to the tough winter season ow.ly/vPabE #cbn 12:02 pm on Apr 20

Readers‘ Choice Awards

Best Of Winnipeg Readers Survey

Make your choice in the Canstar Community News‘ Best of Winnipeg Readers‘ Choice Awards

Vote Now

Poll

Do you think cameras should be allowed in Manitoba courtrooms?

View Results

View Related Story