BFAST releases transit survey results,Endorses Meed Ward for mayor.

News 100 blueBy Staff

October 3rd, 2018


BFAST’s news release earlier today said City Council defeated a motion to provide a pilot project for free fares for seniors by a vote of 6-1. The actual result was 4-3, with Mayor Goldring and Councillors Meed Ward and Lancaster in favour.

Bfast Transit group logoBurlington for accessible Sustainable Transit (BFAST) says the results of its candidates’ survey on transit policy could mean a change for the better. The group surveyed all Burlington mayoral and council candidates and endorsed Marianne Meed Ward for mayor.

“Marianne has been in the trenches, fighting for decent transit service in the face of a wall of opposition,” said Doug Brown, BFAST chair. “While the other candidates are not necessarily hostile to transit, Marianne’s record speaks for itself.”


Bfast survey a

Bfast survey b

Transit - unhappy customer

An unhappy transit user venting before the Director of Transportation Vito Tolone and Mayor Goldring.

BFAST welcomed the priority that both mayoral city council candidates are giving to transit in their survey answers and platforms.

“We were pleased at the fresh perspectives many of the candidates brought to the issue,” said Brown. “We sincerely thank everyone for their participation and congratulate them for participating in the electoral process as candidates.”

Thirty-three of the 37 candidates favoured establishing transit service before new developments were built. Twenty-nine favoured a pilot project offering free transit for seniors during off-peak hours, a proposal the present council defeated 6-1.

The survey results, and BFAST’s recommendations, are public at

Transit wkshp = Edwardth = Mayor with cell

Joey Edwarth, President of Community Development Halton, Mayor Goldring and on the far right Doug Brown of Bfast. Mayor is checking out a transit cell phone app.

The survey was conducted by email in late August and early September. All 37 of the mayoral and council candidates submitted responses. In some cases, the responses came with extensive comments, which BFAST published in full. Email addresses for the candidates were obtained from the city’s election website.

BFAST, established in 2012, is a citizens’ group that promotes public transit in Burlington. It is the lead organizer in the annual Transit Users’ Forum, delegates to city council and staff, provides information to transit researchers and works with other community groups to improve Burlington’s transit system.


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2 comments to BFAST releases transit survey results,Endorses Meed Ward for mayor.

  • steven craig gardner

    wonder how this will all be paid for is the extra gas tax enough? Will that mean the city will become even worse for the primary mode of transportation for now and future the car? What if we do all sorts of new transit and the buses are all empty will it be reviewed in few years and then cuts made to under used routes?

    • Tom Muir


      Good questions. Short answer – gas tax not enough. Woodruff has data on the costs right now per passenger and what it might cost to expand. I can’t remember these right now, so maybe can can chime in.

      Future primary mode of transportation, based on all available empirical evidence (observed facts continuing to build up as we speak) will always be cars, is the short answer.

      Longer answer with some explanation -, despite wishful thinking, and stupid Mayor talk about there being “fewer cars” in the OP future, no other alternative modes can replace all the existing and additional cars sufficiently to make a real dent in growing numbers of people (intensification based or not) bringing along more cars as a rule.

      And we must not forget that more people density, more people per hectare, means more transport and other supply trucks are needed per hectare, compared to the lower density now.

      It is nonsense talking about this growth producing a reduction in the number of cars and trucks that already exist.

      There is no transportation plan – just wishful thinking “phony baloney”, as Lisa Kearns so insight-fully sees it for what it is – that has any evidence-based policy, some factual data, to show any different. It’s like shut your eyes and make a wish. Read the Summer 2018 City Talk pamphlet for yourself to see what is in store in this imaginary world.

      A little more answer – walk and bike and bus all you want, but most people basically have to drive to survive in Burlington and surrounds. It’s called needs and distance and time and family and so on in reality.

      Commercial and jobs are being threatened or destroyed by City policy allowing conversion to tall condos as we speak, so walk and bike to what?

      Empty buses I see a lot of. I saw one yesterday heading towards Aldershot high school – it runs part of the day. Why do we need more capacity if it will be empty? It’s expensive the way it is being run at present.

      Years ago, for this reason, they cut my bus, the Aldershot route down Townsend Ave to downtown, which I used daily to get to the hospital and then walk the rest of the way to work in winter. I biked the rest of the year. This cancelled route alternative thus became a disjointed, transfer needy, and longer walk, so it didn’t work for me.

      Isn’t the way it used to be for me just what the City dreams about? I did it, so I’m in favor, but what City Hall has in mind doesn’t work for me – it doesn’t pencil out.

      The only cure for the uncertainty in whether people will actually ride the bus is to make the ride something like Doug Ford’s “Buck a Beer”. How about a “Buck a Bus”. Seniors for free whenever is a no-brainer.

      I suggest putting Doug Brown in charge to first of all streamline and optimize what we have, staff up the present need, and go from there. I worked with Doug for many years and he is a capable engineer and could get the job done if City Council really wants it done.

      Besides, he probably already has a draft plan in mind. That’s what the engineers like him I worked with did every day. Pencil out something that will likely work.