City’s new fire chief announced


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Winnipeg has a new fire chief.

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/03/2014 (3231 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

Winnipeg has a new fire chief.

City hall announced Thursday John A. Lane, formerly chief of the Prince George, B.C., Fire Rescue Service, will assume command of the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service effective April 14.

Lane had been chief in Prince George, a community of about 72,000 people, for two years before he quit in August.

John A. Lane

Lane succeeds Reid Douglas, who the city let go in the fall.

Deepak Joshi, acting chief administrative officer, made the announcement in an email to city hall staff, members of council and staff of the Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service.

Lane, with more than 32 years of experience as a firefighter and paramedic, had been with Prince George Fire Rescue since 2005, where he was hired as the deputy chief of administration and later deputy chief of operations. Before that, he had been an EMS district chief with the Toronto Fire Services.

Alex Forrest, president of the Winnipeg firefighters union, said his members are looking forward to working with Lane. “We look forward to working with Chief Lane and we’re going to do everything we can to work with him to build this as a bigger and better department.”

Forrest said Lane’s extensive background as a paramedic within the Toronto fire department will prove beneficial to the WFPS, adding he’s not concerned Lane is moving from such a small community to one of the country’s largest cities.

“He came out of the Toronto system, the biggest (fire) department in Canada,” Forrest said. “He’s more than capable of dealing with a large department such as ours. I have nothing but confidence that he will be very successful.”

Fielding rallies anew against bus rapid transit

Coun. Scott Fielding revived his campaign against bus rapid transit, calling on the public to demand money be spent on roads instead.

Standing beside the railway tracks that cross Waverley Street Thursday morning, Fielding said the $600 million set aside for the second phase of the bus rapid transit corridor would be better spent on road repairs, new roads and expressways.

“As a city we need to prioritize how we’re spending money,” Fielding said. “There isn’t money to do everything.”

Fielding launched an online petition at his website,, and said he’s asking the public to tell “the politicians, insiders at city hall that we need to address infrastructure, make that our No. 1 one priority.”

Fielding said he doesn’t oppose rapid transit, just that he believes Winnipeg should have other priorities.

Fielding has never supported funding bus rapid transit and voted against both the first and second phases of the corridor that will link downtown with the University of Manitoba campus.

Fielding said the $600 million for the second phase of the rapid transit corridor, which also includes replacing the Jubilee underpass and extensive drainage work, could actually climb higher with unexpected costs associated with the relocation of rail lines along the corridor.

Mayor Sam Katz told council Wednesday it’s unknown if rail lines need to be relocated to accommodate the expansion of the rapid-transit corridor. However, Katz said Winnipeg’s share of the project would remain at $225 million, with Ottawa and the province picking up the outstanding costs.


Junos force detours around big show’s site

Motorists travelling east on downtown Portage Avenue will face a major detour around the MTS Centre this weekend — courtesy of the Juno Awards.

It starts Friday night, when all eastbound lanes in the one block directly in front of the downtown arena will be closed to traffic from 9 p.m. Friday to 2 a.m. Monday.

Crews will be installing the traditional red carpet in front of the MTS Centre, where the awards ceremony is taking place Sunday night.

The red carpet will be inside an enclosed structure with a closed private viewing area.

City hall says there will be no public viewing of the red carpet arrivals.

To get to the other side of the MTS Centre, motorists will have to turn north onto Hargrave, east along Ellice, south onto Donald and left again back onto Portage Avenue.

The detour gets worse the day of the ceremony. All eastbound lanes of Portage Avenue will be closed beginning at Kennedy Street to Donald, from 4:30 p.m.-11:30 p.m., to accommodate the limousines dropping off the celebrities.

Other streets surrounding the MTS Centre will also be temporarily shut down Sunday:

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