Wednesday, April 16, 2008

metronauts mcmaster may 3

Metronauts pave the way of the future

Special to The Hamilton Spectator (Apr 16, 2008)

Metrolinx is releasing a long-term regional transportation plan this fall, and the transit body wants to know what you think about it.

It's launched a new project called Metronauts to include the general public in transportation discussion and planning.

Metronauts is a joint effort between Metrolinx (formerly the Greater Toronto Transportation Authority) and the Toronto Transit Camp community, a grassroots movement that started online with the goal of improving the TTC, then organized its own brainstorming event last year.

A series of informal Metronauts gatherings will be held across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton areas -- including an all-day event in Hamilton on May 3 -- to get the public's thoughts on transportation.

Topics at the first Metronauts meeting held in Toronto on April 5 included social networking, cycle paths, sidewalks and improvements to train stations.

Area residents can also join the debate online. On the Metronauts website, launched March 25, site members can share their thoughts on the drafts of the regional transportation plan, or other transportation ideas, in the conversations section. Membership is free.

Metrolinx has plans to add an interactive map function so members can virtually trace out their ideas for bicycle routes, new sidewalks, and extra roads, lanes and bus routes in their city, said Colleen Bell of Metrolinx.

The Hamilton meeting will be held at McMaster University from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more details, see the Metronauts website (

Hamilton residents can also attend the Metrolinx public meeting on June 26 from 4 to 9 p.m. at the Hamilton Convention Centre.

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