The ION Story
Planning for the future
The Region of Waterloo has been planning for rapid transit for more than a decade
The Region must manage growth Current population: 550,000 4th largest community in Ontario 10th largest community in Canada 2031 estimated population: 742,000
Align with Provincial Legislation Places to Grow Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe
Project history and milestones 1976: Creating a central transit corridor is presented in the Regional Official Policies Plan 2000: The Region of Waterloo assumes responsibility for public transit 2003: Council approves the Regional Growth Management Strategy, including a rapid transit system 2006: Ontario's Places to Grow Plan is released, including a rapid transit system in Waterloo Region 2009: Council approves LRT as the preferred technology as part of the Phase 2 Rapid Transit EA 2010: Ontario commits $300 million to rapid transit in Waterloo Region; Canada commits up to $265 million 2011: Council approves LRT for Waterloo Region in two stages along with a funding strategy for the service www.rideION.ca
Why we need ION ION will: Help contain urban sprawl and ease traffic congestion Protect environmentally-sensitive areas Preserve farmland and the rural lifestyle Move people, by creating transportation choice
Without ION, the Region will require 500 new lane kilometres of roadways, at a cost of $1.4 billion ION reduces the need for new roads by 40 per cent or $500 million
In the cities What's in it for me?
New business, residential and commercial developments create prosperous and connected communities A new transportation choice ION helps the community balance daily car and transit use Traffic congestion reduced New employment opportunities
In the suburbs What's in it for me?
The need to expand roads is reduced Infrastructure required to provide Regional and/or City services is reduced Expanded crosstown travel available with more convenient new iXpress routes Increased local bus service with improved frequencies One fare for all GRT and ION services for easy transfers
In rural areas What's in it for me?
Encouraging development in existing built-up areas will protect the Region's agricultural lands The region's unique rural lifestyle will be preserved Countryside is protected, thereby helping to support local food production ION helps reduce greenhouse gases Urban development helps protect the region's groundwater
Building ION in Waterloo Region
Overall network redesign by Grand River Transit Goal is to create a seamless, efficient and easy-to-use transit system Common fare payment system for both GRT and ION Expanded iXpress services Victoria/Highland (planned for 2015) Ottawa (to come) Maple Grove (in place) University (in place) Phased-in ION aBRT service
Regional transportation master plan
Trails: ION stops are located within close proximity to the region’s vast network of multi-use trails
King/Victoria Transit Hub: With connections to ION, GRT, GO Transit and VIA rail (Hub lands owned by Region of Waterloo)
Roads: Over the next 10 years, the Region has committed $860 million for major road expansions and improvements
Community Building Strategy: Framework for development along the Central Transit Corridor (shaping the community) www.rideION.ca
Since the Region began providing transit in 2000 Overall rider