I can’t understand why the city would be happy to incur $15M in a one-time termination cost when that sum would pay for the next three years commitments to regional transit. It’s much like the decision to spend $45M to demolish the Coliseum in order to create another piece of vacant land that won’t be worth a tenth of that (as if we don’t have enough vacant land in the city). Why not give that 400,000 sf of enclosed space to Lions Gate or some other studio looking for high ceiling sound/set space for free and let them turn it into something that generates money instead of swallowing it?
Back to transit – you have to wonder if that decision might involve something more than the cost of a few transit routes. It’s my understanding that both Edmonton and the County of Strathcona are looking at new bus barns/maintenance facilities and that Edmonton is looking at a location on the south side. While conceptual design is fairly well advanced, it’s also something that is not particularly site specific. The preferred location may be acceptable for Edmonton’s bus network but it’s far from the only acceptable south east location and it’s not particularly amenable to servicing a regional network.
Perhaps I’m a conspiracy theorist but this will be another quarter of a billion dollar project that the city will be on the hook for alone but it will remain a municipal union site. From a selfish viewpoint, I can understand why they would not want this “moved up” to being a regional facility even if that would potentially save all of the stakeholders a lot more in both capital and operating costs than two stand-alone facilities.
My guess is that Edmonton will “revisit” participation in regional transit after ground has been broken and the appropriate territories are protected and we and our neighbors can both spend a quarter century or so paying the price. Regional transit delivery is about more than just a few bus routes...