LRT incentive for businesses, good for region’s residents
After much consideration, the budget for Waterloo Region’s Light Rail Transit (LRT)system has been finalized and a contractor has been selected to move forward with construction of the massive project. The final budget pegs the overall cost, including construction, operation and maintenance, at $1.7 billion over the next three decades.
There has been some debate as to whether the LRT is necessary or in the region’s best interest. However, that debate should now be put to rest as it is moving forward as a certainty. With elections coming up and the LRT’s potential as a divisive issue, this development should be a non-issue once campaigning begins. The community needs this and, excluding the King St. closures required for construction, both residents and businesses will benefit in the short and long term.
The proposed transit corridor will improve service for KW residents and improve travel to Cambridge. Businesses will be attracted to the area, even more so than before, as time-efficient mass transit can deliver employees to work safely, economically and on time.
There is a strong desire to improve connectivity between KW and Toronto, and the LRT will contribute to an improved transit connection. Connectivity to Toronto and within KW is important for future entrepreneurs and existing businesses.
In addition, the LRT contributes greatly towards the future of KW as a tech hub to rival the notorious Silicon Valley. As businesses migrate to KW and the residential demographics change accordingly, local public opinion will be increasingly favourable of the LRT.
If you would like a say in the future of the LRT, contribute the discussion in a forward-thinking way and influence the next stages of development. It will be a long process, and although the region is confident construction will be on schedule, there are still several years for residents, tech companies and small business owners to have their voices heard.