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GEO 793 (23)

Transportation Dilemmas Textbook Notes.docx

3 Pages

Course Code
GEO 793
Cynthia Mason

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Transportation Dilemmas - The Toronto region sees two different but interrelated movements:  Goods  People - The region is strategically situated at the crossroads of rail & roads networks that connect it to:  Northern Ontario  Quebec  Atlantic Canada  Western Canada  The US & Mexico - The Toronto region dominates the rest of Canada from the perspective of transport, while at the same time there are serious inadequacies in its transport infrastructure - While the buses of the public sector Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) operate long past their normal life expectancy on potholed public streets - There are serious transportation problems in the Toronto region, it is also a region that is, in some respects, very well served by transportation: the underfunded TTC manages to carry 1.3 million passengers every work day; when the region‟s 5 million residents go to the supermarket, they find it well stocked with food; it has the largest and busiest airport in the country, a network of superhighways, large intermodal rail yards, state of the art warehouse and distribution centers, a port, an extensive public transit network in its center, and a well organized transport sector - As air travel among global cities have increased and the number of flights between then continues to multiply, it is not surprising that the new geography is centred at Pearson International Airport, by far the busiest airport in Canada in terms of passengers, aircraft movements, and cargo handled - Surrounding the airport, thousands of hectares of land are occupied by single-storey industrial buildings in the cities of Toronto, Mississauga, Brampton, and Vaughan - The railways have attempted to recapture market share by offering quick turn-around intermodal facilities and by promoting rail as an alternative to traffic-clogged highways - Canadian Pacific Railways (CPR) operates two intermodal rail facilities in the Toronto area - Toronto Pearson International Airport: “gateway” produces jobs directly and indirectly and creates ancillary business around the airport specifically and in the entire region more generally  Pearson is Toronto‟s major transportation feature  It provides access to 60 cities in the US  Person is governed by the Greater Toronto Airport Authority (GTAA) under a private not-for-profit model  This model was adopted with the intention of freeing the decision-making process from the influences of governments as well as shareholders - Economic development officials see the importance of trade - An automobile region which, despite the impending crisis in Big Three car manufacturing, produces (and exports) cars far in excess of its own domestic market (Ontario has passed even Michigan as a location for auto assembly) is also characterized by extensive car ownership and use - The suburbs have built almost entirely on the logic of automobile transportation for everyday work and play - Urban regions are in competition to attract global capital & are therefore building globalized superstructures (for ex., airports) to accommodate international trade - Such globalized superstructures are interlinked with localized transportation & transit systems that serve the everyday needs of the resident population - New rhythms & scales of production, exchange and consumption have affected urban geography in the Toronto region - This new geography is centred at Pearson Airport (Canada‟s largest airport) - The area around Pearson is occupied by industrial buildings & crossed by a web of superhighways (for ex., the 407) & major arterial roads - Highways have replaced rails as the main avenue
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