Ward 2 Councillor Carella to Bring Formal Campaign to Federal Government
The issue: CP Rail Bridge
During the recent election campaign, a Ward 2 candidates meeting was held at the Woodbridge Public Library. Five of the six registered Ward candidates attended, including myself. One of the questions posed by the audience was how each of the candidates would deal with gridlock along Highway 7.
When it was my turn to address the question, I said there is only one real issue along Highway 7. That’s the CP Rail Bridge just west of Islington Avenue. The CP Rail Bridge is the reason why the highway narrows from six lanes to four from Kipling Avenue to Bruce Street. As a result, traffic gets jammed up in both directions.
But if that stretch of highway is to be widened to six lanes along the entire stretch, the CP Rail Bridge has to be widened first. So why isn’t the City of Vaughan, the Province of Ontario or York Region forcing the issue — particularly the Region, since Highway 7 is a regional road? In fact, its formal name is Regional Road 7. The reason why none of these levels of government are acting is because they have no control over the railroad. So who does? The federal government, according to our constitution.
If we want to press CP Rail to widen its bridge so that the Region can then widen its highway, pressure must first be applied to the level of government that controls CP Rail.
The solution: a formal petition
And how is that to be done? The simplest and, in fact, formally prescribed route is a petition to the federal government requesting that it force the issue with CP Rail. The problem is that the petition route is a difficult one to pursue as it is not user friendly. For instance, petitioners must formally sign the petition — online signatures are not accepted. In this day and age, that strikes me as unreasonably time consuming.
- The City should submit a formal petition (which requires 25 signatures as per the Parliament of Canada)
- Then actively seek, by any means possible, the endorsement of the petition from as many people as possible
This additional endorsement will show that people other than the 25 petitioners supports the intent of the petition. This can be done through an email, tweet, Instagram post or whatever it may be. These endorsements will be tallied and any cover letter that accompanies the formal petition will mention the total number of people who have endorsed the petition.
There is an upcoming federal election, which means now is the time to let the federal government know we want something in return for our support. Stay tuned as we roll out this process over the next few months. I will provide you with updates along the way.
Thank you for your support,
Visit the City of Vaughan’s website at vaughan.ca.