MOOSE CONSORTIUM’S TEN URGENT STEPS TO SOLVE THE
GREATER NATIONAL CAPITAL REGION’S TRANSIT PROBLEM
Version 0.1.0 – Contact: Joseph Potvin, Director General <firstname.lastname@example.org>
1 - PUBLIC SAFETY
Immediate Steps to Assure Public Safety, and Public Recourse to Compensation
Dedicated public safety management, safety assurance compensation policy, and prompt retro-fits.
A) A passenger hazard reporting system via phone app, and via kiosk at every station.
B) Public safety review by comprehensively certified safety professionals of stations, approaches, trains, tunnels, maintenance facilities, etc. with transparent reporting and response.
C) Urgent installations (non-slip surfaces, methods to avoid people falling on tracks or in front of buses, sheltering, water drainage, railway switch heaters, signalling, video monitoring), with an ‘Ombuds Office’ which would also facilitate passenger insurance when reasonable.
2 - CAPABLE TRAINS & TECH
Prepare Three Options for Early Acquisition of Trains of Proven Reliability
Only equipment with a proven “track record” for the NCR climate will be considered.
A) Examine options for industry-proven trains (Diesel trains can run inside tunnels with an exhaust extraction system.)
B) Train supplier to provide turn-key operations and maintenance (as done in Montreal and Toronto).
C) Assemble an advisory panel of experienced operations personnel from rail transit operations in other municipalities with similar weather conditions.
3 - RESPECTFUL COMMUNICATIONS
Public Right to Know, Collaborative Situational Awareness, Standards of Ethics and Compliance
Default “open data” policy, and integration with MASAS.
A) Formalize the public’s right to know as a key tenet of operations, as both a policy commitment and a genuine service.
B) Contribute pro-actively to the Multi-Agency Situational Awareness System (MASAS).
4 - FEDERAL REGULATION
Strong Legal Action to Restore Federal Regulation and Enforcement
Revoke Transport Canada’s regulatory exemption for the Confederation Line, which enabled the City of Ottawa’s failed experiment in self-regulation.
A) Public process to convince the federal Minister of Transportation to rescind the “Transport Canada Delegation Agreement” (dated 1 October 2011) which has allowed the City of Ottawa to self-regulate the east-west LRT line, even though all other OC Transpo and STO operations are federally regulated.
B) Pursue ‘Writ of Mandamus‘ actions as required to ensure that transportation regulatory authorities genuinely fulfill their public sector mandates where their failure to do so, or past violations of the law, are compromising GNCR passenger rail transportation development potential.
C) Proactive steps to keep the public informed of all such legal actions, to ensure public access to all documentation, and to respond to questions or concerns.
5 - NEW FINANCING MODEL
‘Rail-Powered Property – Property-Powered Rail’ (RPP-PPR) Open Market Development Model
No requirement for additional federal, provincial or city financing, debt or taxes. No requirement to raise passenger fares.
A) The “Rail-Powered Property – Property-Powered Rail” Open Market Development Model is a market-led approach in which property owners, investors and developers create a network of “Linked Localities” with high quality passenger rail connectivity.
B) New technology and ‘smart contracting’ are used to link railway revenue to actual property value increments reasonably attributed to the provision of train service at a scale which can liberate rail finance from dependence upon government subsidies, public debt, taxes, and exclusivity.
C) In a positive feedback loop, the availability and quality of the rail service drives property value, and property value drives the return on investment.
6 - SERVICE CONTINUITY
Restoration of All Major 2018 Bus Routes Under New Authority
OC Transpo and selected private sector bus companies under an interim independent authority.
A) Immediate steps for a business continuity plan to eliminate transit disruption and stress.
B) Immediately shift dependence away from a fundamentally flawed LRT design and implementation.
C) Hire rather than purchase additional buses for immediate 2018-class service restoration, because this would be an interim arrangement.
7 - NCC ROLE & 50-YEAR PLAN
Implementation Agreement with National Capital Commission (50-Year Plan)
Project management office hosted and monitored by NCC, but led by Moose Consortium.
A) Take steps that will give effect to NCC’s legal prerogative and federal paramountcy concerning GNCR transportation.
B) Develop an explicit implementation timeline for GNCR Transit, based upon the NCC’s 50-Year Plan
C) Take into account the full scope of the NCC’s mandate, and the full scope of the NCR’s role as Canada’s Capital.
8 - RE-FRAME GNCR TRANSIT
No more piecemeal planning. The population here lives and works ‘regionally’.
Design for the Greater National Capital Region as a single integrated distributed metropolitan urban-rural area.
A) GNCR-level transportation consortium: OC Transpo and STO invited to be consortium members.
B) $50M Restoration/Retrofit of Prince of Wales Bridge, including separate cycling and pedestrian trails.
C) Incorporate the interests of the entire Eastern Ontario / West Quebec region, including semi-rural and rural towns.
9 - COLLABORATE WITH UNIONS
Transition and Target Agreements on Amicable Terms with all Affected Unions
Respectful, immediate, and optimal target agreements for unions directly and indirectly affected.
A) Negotiated transition plan and creation of an optimal long-term labour-employer relationship.
B) Quarterly planning and issue management workshops.
C) Exploration of options for profit-sharing and other creative, mutually beneficial arrangements.
10 - LEGAL NON-AGGRESSION PACT
Mutual Legal Non-Aggression Pact to Pre-Empt Litigation; ‘No-Fault’ Financial Arrangement to Eliminate RTG’s Role
Each conflict within the boundaries of this pact shall be decided by a mutually-agreed arbitrator within a two-week period.
A) Terminate the RTG contract(s) with a fair, negotiated financial arrangement. Use the courts if necessary.
B) Set a high-powered team of lawyers and systems engineers to work on resolving obstacles to an elegant whole-region transit solution.
C) Proactively address any delays and complications that would postpone resolution.
Canada’s Greater National Capital Region is an integrated community in terms of employment, business, access to services, post-secondary education, recreation, culture, social and family networks, ecological landscape, and other factors.
The social vitality and economic resilience of this region through the coming decades would be greatly enhanced by cost-effective, prompt, comfortable and ecologically sound passenger rail service integrated with other transit, cycling, pedestrian and automobile infrastructure.
Improved whole-region mobility complements economic, environmental and social objectives, and creates new opportunities for the entire spectrum of households, businesses and visitors.
Moose Consortium is formed by a dozen companies actively arranging to finance, develop and operate a commercial passenger rail service on 400 km of existing track. Bi-level trains will traverse Ottawa and Gatineau, and will operate out to six semi-rural towns throughout the Greater National Capital Region (NCR).
We are planning a safe, affordable, comfortable and sustainable passenger railway to integrate the urban and rural areas in a manner that is fully complementary with the existing municipal transit systems and other commercial transit services.
Our plan is based upon a self-financing strategy for the development and operation of all the systems and extensions required for a metropolitan-scale passenger railway without dependence upon any public debt or taxes.
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Moose rail will generate 100 square kilometres worth of sustained property value enhancement. Each train station will be an autonomous business in the Moose “Linked Localities” Consortium. In order to be provided train service, participating owners and investors in commercial and residential property around each station would need to agree to split the increase in after-tax net income and realized asset value, which will be independently determined in a standardized commercial formula.
No legislative or regulatory changes at any level of government whatsoever are necessary for Moose Consortium to bring this passenger rail system to life. However a private sector initiative of this type does depend on the several public sector stakeholders understanding that the interprovincial nature of the Moose rail project triggers clause 92.10(a) of the Constitution Act of 1867 which provides our plan a clear path through an otherwise very complex multi-jurisdictional matrix.