SW BRT back in front of Transportation and Transit Committee

The controversial Southwest Bus Rapid Transit project will be back before the Transportation and Transit Committee at City Hall Wednesday.

Administration will present a 92-page document with detailed answers to 62 questions posed by citizens at the April 20 meeting.

While the voices against the project remain strong, those who support the BRT are starting to push back.

Ready to Engage spokesperson Alan Hallman says there are still a number of concerns and calls the project an ill-conceived waste of taxpayer money.

For example, the new configuration of 14 Street and 75 Avenue proposed by council would see 36 buses an hour going through the intersection outside Rockyview Hospital.

“There’s one entrance, strip malls have three or four entrances, so people that are sick that are trying to get to the hospital quickly, 14 Street is going to be wall-to-wall traffic and it’s going to be a safety concern getting into this hospital,” he argued.

Hallman adds the project was passed five years ago and the economic conditions for it aren’t there anymore.

His group will be asking council to shelve the project on Monday.

But Dexter Bruneau, Vice President of the Mount Royal University Student Association, argues the project will be a huge benefit, especially to students.

“So that we can give access to the students south of Glenmore Trail the opportunity to come on to campus in a cost-effective and timely manner,” he said.

Bruneau argues it can take students as much as two hours to get to school using transit with the current configuration, but the Southwest BRT could cut that in half.

The only other option is to drive.

“The parking on campus is scarce and fairly expensive,” said Bruneau.

Faculty members have also signed a letter addressed to council saying they too are behind the project.

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