ARMCHAIR MAYOR: Fewer cars, more transit options would invigorate Ottawa

By Brigitte Pellerin, Ottawa Citizen, October 9, 2018

On Oct. 22, Ottawa residents elect a new city council. To help local candidates as they campaign, the Citizen features some ideas that would make the city a better place. Today, Brigitte Pellerin makes the pitch for fewer cars downtown – and hints at how that can be accomplished.

Driving to my house near the Civic Hospital, I am confronted with a beast. 

Construction. They’re widening the Queensway again. I want to scream. 

I am no urban engineer. But I get around enough, in various cities across North American and the Unite Kingdom, to notice something important: Every time a road gets widened to ease congestion, more people use it. Resulting in … more congestion. Until the road looks like Highway 401 in Toronto or the Capital Beltway around Washington: a giant, smelly, incredibly frustrating parking lot. 

We need to stop widening roads and otherwise “improving” our road infrastructure, and pronto. By putting an immediate moratorium on it. We’d save ourselves a whole bunch of money that we could spend moving people around in much more efficient and environmentally friendly ways.

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