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TheStar: Toronto BikeShare program kaput

“From the city’s perspective, it looks like it’s come to its end,” said Glenn De Baeremaeker (Ward 38, Scarborough Centre). “We tried to shake the bushes and look under rocks and try every … combination we could to assist that very worthwhile, small, non-profit group. “But the city just has nowhere it could fund it from,” he said.
The Toronto Star

Here’s a simple idea from a guy (me) that apparently an entire city bureaucracy with recently granted funding powers can’t come up with to support a “very worthwhile, small, non-profit group”:

The Toronto Parking Authority takes in over $90 million dollars in revenue every year from parking spaces in this city – with a profit of about $40 million (source: 2005 TPA Annual Report – PDF Format)

To produce $80,000 – you could add a 0.2% increase to parking fees. That’s 1/5th of a penny for a $1/hour parking spot. 3/5ths of a penny for the city’s most expensive spots which are $3/hour.

Oh, and this idea adds to the cost of operating a private motor vehicle in Toronto – don’t we want to be The Greenest City in North America? I don’t think we do – because there’s a ton of simple solutions to provide cheap and plentiful bikes to all Torontonians, but no politician seems to want to think about it for a couple minutes.

  • John Spragge

    I wish some of our so-called allies on city council would have the guts to say what they obviously believe: that they don’t consider this enough of a priority to take the civic heat for it. They’ll take the photo-ops and make the speeches, but actually do anything, which would mean taking money away from what we spend on automotive infrastructure, which would mean real heat from drivers, that won’t happen.

    I’ll say this again, we have to hold the feet of our supposed allies in the fire. If they believe what Rob Ford does (and has the guts to say out loud), they should say so and have done. If they don’t, then let them understand that when I ride under the Dundas underpass or through Bloor at Ossington, I don’t want speeches from the politicians who say they support me, I don’t want photo-ops with bicycle helmets, I want real measures that will make my ride safer and more comfortable. Right now we have bike speeches by David Miller and bike policy by Case Ootes.

  • Val Dodge

    I can find the money, even if De Baeremaeker can’t: take Rob Ford’s unused $53,000 office budget, mix in the $12,000 raise that David Miller got this year, and top it off with the $20,000 we’re spending on catered dinners at council meetings. Enjoy.