Canada and Ontario invest in modern, accessible public transit infrastructure for Thunder Bay residents

Posted On Thursday August 27, 2020

The health and well-being of Canadians are the top priorities of the Governments of Canada and Ontario. But the COVID-19 pandemic has affected more than our personal health. It is having a profound effect on our economy.

That is why our respective governments have been taking decisive action to support families, businesses and communities, and we continue to look ahead to see what more can be done.

Ontarians need help getting safely to work and home, getting to appointments, to shop and to conduct business. Strategic investments in sustainable public transit and active transportation infrastructure play a key role.

Marcus Powlowski, Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay−Rainy River, and the Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay−Superior North, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities; along with the Honourable Laurie Scott, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure; and His Worship Bill Mauro, Mayor of the City of Thunder Bay, today announced funding for 13 public transit projects in Thunder Bay.

Four transit hubs will be upgraded, and a new one built, with widened sidewalks, automatic doors and heated shelters. The hubs will improve accessibility and make it easier for riders to catch their bus. The purchase of four conventional buses will help make the transit system more reliable, while 14 new specialized paratransit buses will provide accessible, door-to-door service for passengers who need more assistance. In addition, 40 new bus shelters and several hundred new mobility pads will also improve accessibility. A new electronic fare management system will make payment simpler through reloadable smart cards.

Together, these projects will improve the quality, safety and convenience of the transit system. The upgrades will also help pedestrians and cyclists more easily connect to their bus and community.

The Government of Canada is investing over $10.4 million in these projects through the Public Transit Infrastructure Stream (PTIS). The Government of Ontario is contributing more than $8.5 million, while the City of Thunder Bay is contributing over $6.6 million.

 

Quotes

“Modern public transit infrastructure allows Canadians to get around their communities more easily and affordably. The investment in upgraded transit hubs, new buses, and a simpler payment system for riders in Thunder Bay will improve the quality of life for residents. These projects are an example of how working together with our provincial and municipal partners can improve communities now, and in the future.”

The Honourable Patty Hajdu, Minister of Health and Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay−Superior North, on behalf of the Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities

 

“All through high-school I would go to judo practice twice a week at Lakehead University. I would have to take first the Crosstown to downtown Westfort and then transfer to the Mainline in order to get back to my grandmother's house. I spent hours in the winter standing there, waiting for each bus, freezing. I am therefore especially pleased to be involved in building heated bus shelters. Many residents in Thunder Bay rely on public transit to get around each day. These investments with our partners are helping make our city more liveable and sustainable, now and into the future.”

Marcus Powlowski, Member of Parliament for Thunder Bay−Rainy River


“This is an exciting day for transit riders and residents in Thunder Bay. Ontario is investing more than $8.5 million in thirteen new public transit projects. These projects will provide residents with more access to public transit, connecting people to jobs safely and efficiently. With today’s announcement, these eight projects can move from shovel-ready to shovels moving.”

The Honourable Laurie Scott, Ontario’s Minister of Infrastructure

 

“This investment is transformative. Not since Thunder Bay Transit became the first transit agency in Ontario to be 100% accessible back in 2007 has there been a multi-year investment in our service as consequential as this. Together, we will make transit safer and even more accessible with new hubs, new buses, an electronic payment system, and many other improvements touching on virtually every aspect of transit.  We are grateful to the Governments of Canada and Ontario for partnering with us to improve the whole transit experience for the people of Thunder Bay.”

Bill Mauro, Mayor of the City of Thunder Bay

Quick facts

  • Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the Government of Canada is investing more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.
  • $28.7 billion of this funding is supporting public transit projects, including $5 billion available for investment through the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
  • Ontario is investing $10.2 billion under the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to improve public transit; community, culture and recreation; green, and rural and northern community infrastructure.
  • To support Canadians and communities during the COVID-19 pandemic, a new stream has been added to the over $33-billion Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program to help fund pandemic-resilient infrastructure. Existing program streams have also been adapted to include more eligible project categories.
  • The COVID-19 Resilience Stream will help other orders of governments whose finances have been significantly impacted by the pandemic by increasing the federal cost share for public infrastructure projects.
  • The Canada Healthy Communities Initiative will provide up to $31 million in existing federal funding to support communities as they deploy innovative new ways to adapt spaces and services to respond to immediate and ongoing needs arising from COVID-19 over the next two years.
  • The Government of Canada has invested more than $7.9 billion in over 2,600 infrastructure projects across Ontario under the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan.
  • Across the province, Ontario is investing more than $7.3 billion in public transit infrastructure over 10 years through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.

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