Trudeau Invests $15b in Public Transit
The prime minister, together with ministers Jonathan Wilkinson and Catherine McKenna, announced a new $15 billion dollar investment for national public transit projects. The new funding will be allocated over the next 8 years, and coincide with an additional $3 billion per year starting in 2026 from a new permanent Public Transit Fund.
The federal government was quick to point out that public transit will be defined as traditional vehicles like buses, trains and subways, but will also include pedestrian walkways, cycling infrastructure and other active transportation. The Public Transit Fund was described as a "reliable source of funding" so that municipalities and local governments could enact long term planning.
Green Party of Nova Scotia leader Thomas Trappenberg was pleased by the announcement, adding "This is good news, because now we can begin to consider a bigger vision for transportation infrastructure, and not just think in terms of potholes and sidewalks." Nova Scotia is severely lacking in public transportation options outside of town centres, with rural areas essentially without any public options.
The prime minister reiterated the fact that Canada is a world leader in public transit vehicle manufacturing, with companies making electric buses in three provinces that can provide made-in-Canada solutions and keep this spending in the domestic economy.