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January 23, 2017

Between now and 2041, the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area is forecast to grow by more than three million people.

Managing this growth requires careful planning as well as significant investment in our road network, transit services, sidewalks and bike lanes.

This letter is a special invitation to serve as a member of our Residents’ Reference Panel — a special body that will help advise Metrolinx this spring on the development of the next Regional Transportation Plan.

Metrolinx is a provincial agency that works to improve the coordination and integration of all modes of transportation in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

The Regional Transportation Plan is an important document that lays out our vision for improving transportation as well as our infrastructure priorities for the next twenty-five years. These priorities shape how the region develops as well as the transportation options and services available to you.

Our first plan, published in 2008, led to the expansion of the PRESTO fare card, increases in GO train service including all-day, two-way service on the Lakeshore corridor, the start of construction on the Eglinton Crosstown line, new Bus Rapid Transit services in York Region, the opening of the Union Pearson Express train, and the launch of our regional trip planning tool, Triplinx.

Now as we prepare our next plan, we are reaching out to residents across the region to help ensure that our new priorities will respond to the needs of all users of the transportation system.

Whether you travel by car, take transit, use special mobility services, walk, or cycle, this invitation is a special opportunity for you to help shape the future of the region.

You don’t need to be a ‘transit expert’ to participate. Your perspective as a resident who lives and travels within the region matters most.

As one of 36 members of the Residents’ Reference Panel on the Regional Transportation Plan you will:

  • Learn about the region, its residents and future growth;
  • Consider the impact of the largest rapid transit expansion in the region’s history; and
  • Develop recommendations concerning transportation priorities for the next 25 years.

You are one of 10,000 households in the region randomly selected to receive this invitation. It is valid for any member of your household, aged 18 and older, who lives at this address.

The 36 members of the Reference Panel will be randomly selected from the pool of residents who volunteer.

We will provide lunch and refreshments, as well as childcare and eldercare subsidies, and hearing or visual assistance as required.

You do not need to be a Canadian citizen, and there is no cost to participate.

Panelists must be able to attend all five full-Saturdays in March, April, and May:

  1. March 11, 2017
  2. March 25, 2017
  3. April 8, 2017 (half day)
  4. April 29, 2017
  5. May 13, 2017

Your participation is very important to the success of the Regional Transportation Plan. This is a special opportunity to become better informed, contribute your perspective, and serve your community.

We hope you will volunteer to join us.

Sincerely,

Bruce McCuaig
President and CEO, Metrolinx