Mississauga LRT News

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We know you're not all on board the light-rail train, but it's coming.

According to a recent city press release, Mississauga staff reported to council today on milestones for the controversial Hurontario LRT project. The project has been, despite the usual concerns, an exciting one for many members of council and the mayor is pretty pleased with the progress.

"We are pleased to see this public transit project progress to the next stages," said Mayor Bonnie Crombie. "Each aspect of this City building initiative will come together to ensure the success of the project. Mississauga looks forward to working with Metrolinx to further this transit project in the months to come. The LRT is one of the keys to our city's future. It will build and connect our city and make it easier for people to choose transit. It will grow our economy and provide a new and reliable form of transit."

A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Metrolinx, Mississauga and Brampton (you might recall that Brampton has been holding out on the project for some time) has been negotiated with "key terms, timelines and conditions for the project."

The MOU defines:

* Metrolinx's role as owner and developer of the project with responsibility over scope, budget scheduling, planning design and construction, property acquisitions and public consultation;
* Municipalities role in supporting Metrolinx in the delivery and implementation of the project by, among other actions, minimizing and/or streamlining municipal approvals where possible;
* Management of real estate matters and transportation management between Metrolinx and Mississauga; and
* How Metrolinx will work with the municipalities to assign the Public Realm Amount included in the project budget.

Naturally, all parties have to reach consensus on how this undertaking will be carried out and responsibilities have been divvied up accordingly. The MOU outlines the LRT's governance and dispute resolution process and includes a Real Estate Services Protocol that outlines the services Mississauga will provide to Metrolinx as the transit company works to lock down property for the monumental project.

Working groups comprised of both city and Metrolinx staff were created to discuss such issues as property, utility location, traffic, infrastructure and design.

The city broke down what's changed since their last LRT update, issued earlier this year:

* The City of Mississauga has retained consulting services to provide the city with strategic advice over the next two years on the project in engineering, streetscape, stop architecture and integrated public art.
* The Hurontario LRT Ad-hoc Council Working Group, formed of Members of Council and staff, has met three times to discuss the project. Updates were also provided on Mississauga's interests in stop design, streetscaping and public art.
* The Planning and Building Department is proceeding with a report to council to set a process for collecting contributions from developers for streetscape upgrades to the public boulevard along key municipal corridors, including Hurontario Street. This will ensure the applications for new development promote ridership and enhance the public spaces of the HLRT.
* Metrolinx held a workshop on June 21, 2016 to explore and identify design opportunities by looking at stops from other cities, including public art. The workshop was also used to develop a common understanding in defining the priorities, principles and requirements for the HLRT.

Just in case you've forgotten some pertinent details, the Hurontario Light Rail Transit project will span 20 clicks along the Hurontario corridor and connect Mississauga and Brampton. The line will serve 22 stops with connections to GO Transit's Milton and Lakeshore West rail lines, MiWay, Brampton Zum and the Mississauga Transitway. The project will be funded by the province to the tune of $1.4 billion and is part of Ontario's Moving Ontario Forward plan.

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