Saturday, May 31, 2008

Transit safety

Ottawa just voted for a $4 billion light rail plan (though I'll believe it when I see it). Toronto, Montreal, Calgary and Vancouver have already made some serious improvements to their public transit system. One problem remains, at least in Calgary, Ottawa and Toronto: dealing with the various scum who prey on transit riders. Recently, someone has taken to pushing people into the Toronto subway. It's a repeat of attacks about twenty years ago that caused the death of a woman. In another attack at about the same time, a friend of mine, Danielle Crittenden, was pushed onto the Toronto subway tracks but escaped before a train arrived. In Ottawa, one of the main bus transitway stops is on Rideau Street at the centre of the little drug and killin' zone that was exposed recently by Toronto Sun writer Christina Blizzard. Calgary has the same problem at one of its important transit hubs. I doubt the potential of public transit will ever be known until people believe they can ride it in safety and comfort.

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