By TheOttawacker

There used to be dozens of them....

They used to be dozens of them, waiting in the cold, for the bus to appear on the horizon.

And then they started dropping off, one by one. Not coronavirus or the flu, though, just the City of Ottawa's inability to provide a bus or rail service.

I think the LRT fiasco in Ottawa has had enough coverage - but in case you are interested or have been watching more interesting things of late, here is a quick summary.

The City council decided to splunk several billion dollars on a light rail system. Thus far, thus good.

The system was designed and built by a company that didn't meet the technical requirements. The trains the city bought don't work so well in cold weather (not to matter, this only happens for 5-6 months per year). The train stations have been made too small for the expected number of passengers: this means people have to queue on the road (again, sometimes it is -30 or -40 outside), on the stairways, or cram onto platforms designed for less than half that number of people. The City decided that instead of adding the train system to its transit solution, it would replace existing buses with the train system, thus forcing people to take the train. The City then sold the buses it had been using.

When, against all odds, the train system stops working (the trains are so temperamental, that if a passenger holds open a door for someone trying to get on or off, it can cause the train to break down completely, thus bringing the whole train network to a halt for hours), there is no back up. There is no alternative. People have to just... wait. Or walk.

There are occasional bus routes. But because the City has now had to deplete these to run buses alongside the train system so when the trains stop working (which happens every day, like EVERY DAY), the people heading into the downtown core can get to work... the buses are so infrequent and full that they can not pick up passengers.

It is a complete shambles. OC Transpo is the name of the local transit authority. The OC stands for Organizational Chaos. 

So how do the City managers deal with this? They deny anything is wrong and give phase 2 of the light rail project to the same company.

Truly, we are led by donkeys.

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