Metrolinx Deception: Use of Alternative Facts to Dismiss Merits of Any Alternative
TORONTO, Oct. 14, 2021 /CNW/ - The Thorncliffe Park community is asking residents and supporters to join them for a protest of Metrolinx's deceptive decision to dump a train yard in their community this Saturday.
SaveTPARK is a youth and community based, grassroots movement to save Thorncliffe Park from Environmental Racism and an unfair process that takes advantage of a marginalized community by dumping a train yard in one of the GTA's most densely populated neighborhoods. The group seeks to prevent systemic bias that exist when placing the worst part of infrastructure projects and influence Metrolinx to move the train yard to an appropriate location.
Metrolinx plans to build a train yard known as the Maintenance and Storage Facility. The purpose of the yard is to service, repair and wash over 200 rail cars 24/7 for the Ontario Line. The proposed location of this train yard is directly next to 30,000 residents living in high rises and will displace over 1,000 local jobs at small businesses. It will take away important community space that that this neighborhood does not have and take away the vibrancy and identity of the community. It will have a devastating impact on the economic and social foundation of this already vulnerable community – residents who are not equipped with the right information, connections or resources to challenge large scale projects such as a train yard.
Based on evidence reviewed, Metrolinx has lied to the Province and has used manufactured data and shifting criteria to justify the placement of a train yard in Thorncliffe Park.
JOIN OUR RALLY
DATE: Saturday, October 16th, 2021
TIME: 2:00 pm (ET)
MEETING LOCATION: 45 Overlea Blvd (corner of the parking lot across Food Basics, near Petro Canada), followed by short march to 2 Thorncliffe Park Drive.
Show our strength in numbers and march with SaveTPARK on Saturday, October 16th to show your support to move the train yard from Thorncliffe Park.
Additional Information: www.SaveTPARK.ca
**Here are the Facts**
Some of the key elements fueling the protest are as follows:
1. The SaveTPARK "Move the Train Yard" Petition was launched on April 29, 2021 and by July 2021 received over 10,000 signatures. The petition drew parallels to environmental racism and demonstrated that Thorncliffe Park was the path of least resistance.
2. In a 60 plus page analysis, SaveTPARK critiqued Metrolinx Site Selection Document and used a scoring system to evaluate Metrolinx's site selection process. This evaluation showed Thorncliffe Park to be the least favorable site for the train yard.
3. Using Metrolinx's criteria, SaveTPARK suggested an alternative site that meets the requirements for trains, did not change the path of the Ontario Line and significantly minimizes job displacement to approximately 150 compared to job losses of over 1,000 in Thorncliffe Park.
4. To reject SaveTPARK's alternative site, Metrolinx changed their criteria in an effort to discredit SaveTPARK's alternative. Some examples of shifting criteria include:
positioning the Ontario Line in such a way to reduce available property at the alternative site
changing the distance between the rail banks (groups of tracks) from 10 meters to 18 meters in order to reduce the available property
changing the distance between the rail lines within the rail banks from 5.2 meters to 5.8 meters in order to reduce the available property
creating a new setback requirement on lands that have been in use for decades, Metrolinx introduced a 50 meter setback in an area where the setback is 15 meters, thereby reducing the available land
5. Using City of Toronto Employment Survey data, the number of local jobs to be lost in Thorncliffe Park is over 1,000 (30 plus small businesses). While Metrolinx continually states that they will relocate the businesses in Thorncliffe Park, there is NO real estate in Thorncliffe Park to relocate these businesses – simply ask the businesses that are being impacted if Metrolinx has found them space.
6. Does eliminating Transit Oriented Development (TOD) and placing a train yard next to a station and within 800 meters from 30,000 people make any sense?
7. Thorncliffe Park deserves the same TOD opportunities that have been afforded to other communities, such as the East Harbour, the Mr. Christie/Parklawn site, Woodbine, and Liberty Village. Placing a train yard on 15 acres of land in Thorncliffe Park eliminates the opportunity for over 2,000 residential dwellings that would provide affordable home ownership opportunity, jobs in range of 1,400 to 1,800, work, community and recreational space.
SOURCE Save TPARK
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