Group asks Toronto residents to imagine a shorter commute
Published Wednesday, October 10, 2012 2:24PM EDT
Last Updated Wednesday, October 10, 2012 6:42PM EDT
What would you do with an extra 32 minutes in your day?
A group of transit change activists want Torontonians to answer that question, then help accomplish the goal by creating a faster, more efficient regional transit system.
The "What Would You Do With 32?" campaign launched Wednesday in downtown Toronto, with the goal of encouraging residents to "take bold action to accelerate investment in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area region's transportation network."
The campaign is a project of the Greater Toronto CivicAction Alliance, a group chaired by John Tory.
"We think there's an opportunity for a better life for everybody if we had a little extra time in each day," Tory told CTV Toronto at the event launch.
The group is championing the development of Metrolinx's plan for an integrated, regional transportation system, which they say would speed up the average daily commute by 32 minutes. The group also hopes to find creative ways to help pay for the transit system -- at a hefty price tag of $50 billion over 25 years.
"Given the shortfalls governments are facing, we need to be open to sustainable ways to raise funds that are dedicated to making this plan happen," says the group's website.
"There is a role for everyone in our quest to solve the transportation crisis. Leaders and residents across the region need to join the conversation, and be a part of the solution."
In a news release, the group said Toronto's transit system is among the worst in North America, and "it doesn't have to be this way."
"Every resident has a stake in fixing transportation in our area. It's time to involve them -- directly -- in making investment in our region a reality," the statement said.
The group is first asking people to think about what they would do with the extra chunk of time in each day, then submit their answer to the website.
"We want residents of the region to begin to imagine what life would be life with a better transportation system," said Mitzie Hunter, chief executive officer of CivicAction.
Once people have thought about the extra time they would gain in their day, and submitted their answers, the group is hoping they will be willing to get involved with the project, taking on responsibilities that range from spreading the word, to acting as a local leader and championing the project in their community.
A video on the site shows a number of people answering the question. Some said they would spend more time with family, exercise, or take their dog for a longer walk. One woman said she would read her Bible or Stephen King novels during the additional 32 minutes.
With a report from CTV Toronto’s Natalie Johnson