Transport Action Canada
Welcome to Transport Action Canada
Transport 2000 Canada, the nation's leading citizen transportation advocacy group, is now Transport Action Canada. The name may be new, but our mission remains the same since our founding in 1976: to seek sound transportation policies, practices and services which improve the quality of life for all Canadians.

Please update your contact lists with our new name and new website address: www.transport-action.ca. Also, please note our updated contact information.

Transport Action in the media - April 2016
David Jeanes is featured in an interview concerning the 3 April 2016 Amtrak collision with a backhoe. CTV News: Amtrak train hits equipment on track; 2 workers die
Various recent letters
Some recent communications from Transport Action:

CAPT March 2016 - Algoma Passenger Train Clarification
The Coalition for Algoma Passenger Trains (CAPT) is anxious to clarify some confusion resulting from a recently published article about the status of the Algoma passenger train. As CAPT's representative on the Algoma Passenger Train Working Group, Linda Savory Gordon reports that very positive progress is being made to resume the passenger train service on the ACR line. Over the past few weeks, under the initiative of Missanabie Cree First Nation's Chief Jason Gauthier, the working group has been working on a very exciting proposal. As soon as the relevant parties have finalized their input, a media conference will be called to announce the plans.

We feel very optimistic about the reinstatement of the passenger train sometime this spring. The disruption of passenger train service has been very difficult for property owners and businesses and a failure to resume passenger train services would be devastating. The Algoma passenger train is important to the region's economy and employment both because of it's past socio-economic impacts, but also because of underdeveloped and neglected potentials both for First Nations and the broader economy and employment.

Source: CAPT media release 7 March 2016

Recent Newsletters
Some other recent newsletters and supplements are available:

Transport Action Atlantic's letter to the new Transport Minister
Transport Action Atlantic recently wrote to federal Transport Minister Marc Garneau regarding passenger rail, particularly the need to support the Toronto-Vancouver Canadian route. The full letter is available here.
VIA Passenger Rail is Worth Saving
Former MP Bruce Hyer's commentary "Why VIA Passenger Rail Is Worth Saving" in the Huffington Post calls for improved frequencies and renovation of VIA's The Canadian route.
February 2016 Newsletter
Transport Action's February 2016 newsletter is now available online.
Transport Action urges passenger rail investment
Transport Action calls on the federal government to consider passenger rail renewal. See press release, 18 January 2016
40th Anniversary of Passenger advocacy group
Transport Action Canada was founded in early 1976 in Ottawa under the name Transport 2000 Canada, uniting its efforts with those of the Regina/Saskatchewan Rail Committee in the spring of that year. We have recovered some texts from that era, and they will be published in the TAC newsletter during 2016, the 40th anniversary year:

First Transport 2000 Newsletter, The Bulletin, vol. 1, number 1, 8 October 1976
(Transport Action 30-3, July-August 2008, page 2, David Jeanes)

Transport 2000 Canada's First Publication

Recently, among old files, I came across Transport 2000's The Bulletin, vol 1 no 1! It was addressed to me as a member and mailed 8 October 1976 with an 8-cent stamp of Canadian and ancient Greek torchbearers and an Anik Satellite, for the games of the XXI Olympiad in Montreal. It began as follows:

A Word from the President "I am pleased to contribute this short piece for our first publication, especially as I think that we have not been able to keep in touch as much as we should have with our members."

"This bulletin will begin to fill in that gap in communications, and no doubt succeeding numbers will inform and delight us in no less measure." ...

We shall publish the complete article in our newsletter TransportAction.

Harry Gow, President, Transport Action Canada

December 2015 Newsletter
Transport Action's December 2015 newsletter is now available online.
VIA Rail supports COP21 climate change pledge
VIA Rail joined 65 other international railway operators to support the International Union of Railways' Railway Climate Responsibility Pledge in support of the recent United Nations COP21 climate change summit in Paris.

Why VIA Rail Took the COP 21 Pledge (VIA Evolution, 4 Dec 2015)

VIA Rail pledges to take action on climate change (news release, 30 Nov 2015)

UIC Director General Jean-Pierre Loubinoux participates in the United Nations Climate Change negotiations COP21 (UIC eNews #477, 8 December 2015)

Transport Action comments on SMS and rail safety
Transport Action Canada's submission to the Federal Railway Administration (FRA) concerning Safety Management Systems (SMS) (October 2015)
The VIA 1-4-10 Plan
Transport Action's report on The VIA 1-4-10 Plan is now available. [UPDATED Feb 2016]
July 2015 Newsletter
Transport Action's July 2015 newsletter is now available online.
CAPT Update - May 2015
The Coalition for Algoma Passenger Trains has a May 2015 update

Remembering Bert Titcomb
Long-serving Transport Action volunteer Bert Titcomb, who over the years served as national office manager, newsletter editor, and corporate secretary, died peacefully on May 13th after suffering a heart attack on May 3rd. Bert, who was 81 and in good health, had lived an active life, playing tennis and exercising regularly. He leaves his wife Mariette and three sons. As a professional engineer, Bert had personal experience in the rail industry, working for some years at the Swiss locomotive manufacturer, SLM. He had recently developed a new hobby of oil painting railroad subjects and in March had joined the Ottawa Railway History Circle. He was also a member and former secretary of the Bytown Railway Society. His last volunteer effort for Transport Action was helping to man our booth at the Ottawa Train Expo on April 26th and he had attended the Railway Association of Canada's Rail-Government Interface Conference on our behalf on February 26th.

Bert came to the Ottawa office of Transport 2000 (as it was known then) in 1996, was corporate secretary until 2006, and newsletter editor from 1998 to 2007. He was also a member of the board of CRASH (Canadians for Responsible and Safe Highways).

UPDATE: Obituary, including details of a service celbrating his life scheduled for 30 May 2015 in Ottawa

VTPI update
Victoria Transport Policy Institute's Spring 2015 newsletter is now available. This includes new reports such as "Analysis of Public Policies that Unintentionally Encourage and Subsidize Sprawl", "Twelve Reasons to Support Vancouver's Transportation Tax", events and numerous resources for transport and planning.

See vtpi.org for more details about VTPI's work.

March 2015 Newsletter
Transport Action's March 2015 newsletter is now available online.
Annual General Meeting - 9 May 2015
Notice is given that the Annual General Meeting of Transport Action Canada will be held at "Le Restaurant Normandin" in Charny (QC) in the City of Lévis at 8041, avenue des Églises, at 1:00 PM on Saturday May 9th, 2015.

The meeting agenda will be published on the website of Transport Action Canada www.transport-action.ca and it will include the usual business and will be preceded by lunch at 12 noon at the restaurant and will commence with speakers: Jacques Vandersleyen, professor and (on screen) Bruce Campbell, Executive Director of the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives; on oil-by-rail safety. Harry Gow will chair the session and the question period.

A programme of visits to sites of railway interest during the week-end will be organised for those interested.

Information on accommodation will be published on the Transport Action Canada website and other local information is available from Mr. Louis-François Garceau of the Groupe TRAQ at info@groupe-traq.com

See this document for additional information on accommodations and other background.

2014 Newsletters
Here are the quarterly national newsletters as produced by Transport Action during 2014:
National Dream Renewed update
Transport Action Canada and its regional affiliates are campaigning to stop cuts to VIA Rail passenger train services with our National Dream Renewed Campaign. We advocate for improved rail passenger service based on the economic, environmental, and social benefits of the passenger train mode of travel. Canada is out of step with other G8 nations which are expanding and investing in passenger rail. The NDR website is www.nationaldreamrenewed.com

Two major studies supported by Transport Action are now available:

(13 June 2013) A Wedding Band of Confederation: Restoring Rail Passenger Service to Ontario's North Shore and Across Canada

(21 January 2014) Revitalizing New Brunswick's Rail Sector ( press release)

From our Distinguished Research Fellow
Dr. Barry Wellar is Transport Action Canada's Distinguished Research Fellow. He has provided numerous papers and presentations on transport-related topics, especially with a geographical viewpoint.

His latest papers (as of May 2015) are:

Speed Limits and Road Safety: Examples of Questions to Ask to Ensure the Safety of Pedestrians (May 2015)

Five Core Questions on Rail Safety (July 2014)

Also see his other recent papers:

Connecting Sustainable Transport and Municipal Tax Fairness through the Employment Requisite Fee (July 2014)

Best Practices Framework Needed for Sustainable Transit in Ottawa (originally published October 2006)

Follow this link to see a full list of his papers.

Dr. Wellar is also the director of Transportation Day of Geography Awareness Week, which demonstrates the many connections between geography and transportation.

Learn more about Dr. Wellar and his publications...

Are Trains For Canadians?
There are suggestions that Canada's national passenger train system could be replaced by privately operated cruise trains. But cruise trains are not the same as public passenger trains. While the private sector can be a valuable partner in enhancing our national passenger rail system, we must beware of any "fire sale" that would skim the most profitable business off to private corporations and leave Canadians without affordable, year-round train service.

Read the full brochure on the situation here, contact your Members of Parliament with your concerns, and join Transport Action to help us fight for sustainable, equitable and convenient public transportation for Canadians.

No Little Plan: Electrifying GO Transit
TRANSPORT ACTION CANADA and the CLEAN TRAIN COALITION have jointly released a rail electrification report for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA).

The report, entitled No Little Plan: Electrifying GO Transit, is written by Greg Gormick, a leading rail transportation and transit consultant and journalist. The report was jointly funded by the John McCullum fund of Transport Action Canada, and by the Canadian Auto Workers. It was commissioned to encourage the Government of Ontario to commit fully and promptly to a regional electric rail plan.

See the full press release (16 May 2011).

PDF versions of No Little Plan are available as follows - some of these files are large, please review the options and file sizes available before starting to download:

Complete report, high-resolution (LARGE FILE, 38.7 MB, PDF)

High-resolution report, as a 4-part download (when combined, will represent the complete report):

Part1 (9,6 MB, PDF)
Part2 (11.6 MB, PDF)
Part3 (11.3 MB, PDF)
Part4 (11.2 MB, PDF)

Low-resolution version:

Complete report (Low-resolution, 7.7MB, PDF)

Executive Summary:

Executive Summary only (3.0 MB, PDF)

National Dream Renewed campaign

Mission: Building support for Via Rail Canada and passenger rail service (including the Algoma Central and Ontario Northland Railways).

To donate to this campaign:

Learn more...
Suitcase Transport Action Canada is a non-profit organization whose primary purpose is research, public education and consumer advocacy. It promotes environmentally-sound transportation solutions and gets actively involved in a wide range of issues such as: public transportation, safety, accessibility, energy efficiency, protection of the environment, intermodal cooperation and government regulation.
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