London's city council finalized decisions about bus rapid transit (BRT) Tuesday after settling on routes and scraping the Richmond Street tunnel.
BRT's been a hot topic within the city for months, but after Monday night’s lengthy six-hour debate on BRT, councillors came to a quick decision Tuesday night.
The final BRT route selected includes the following:
- Richmond Street will act as the northern BRT corridor through downtown with a ground-level rail crossing and dedicated bus lanes.
- One of the two BRT lines planned for King Street was moved to Queens Avenue, creating a 'couplet' system.
- Several corridors were approved: north to Masonville Place through Western University, east to Fanshawe College, south along Wellington Road to White Oaks Mall and west to Wonderland Road/Oxford Street.
- City of London staff will explore options for bypassing the ground-level rail crossing on Richmond Row; councillors will evaluate these options at a later date as part of a separate assessment and business case.
Although this portion of transit talks has concluded, there's sure to be a lot more debate as specific details of BRT continue to be fleshed out over the next few months and years.
Ward 6 councillor, Phil Squire, noted that there is still much more work to be done and everyone needs to work together to make the best of this plan.
Councillors also noted the importance of getting out information about the new transit system to Londoners. A subsection of the final motion stated that multiple diverse options will be explored to communicate the BRT developments.
Mayor Matt Brown summed up the BRT discussion: "BRT is happening in London."