Three levels of government are partnering up to provide $6.6 million for Manitoba public transit but senior governments varied in their support for Winnipeg’s rapid transit plans.
The feds will cover 50% of the projects announced Friday, about $3.1 million, while the province pays $1.5 million and municipalities cover about $2 million.
The vast majority — 33 of 43 — of the projects funded Friday go to improve Handi-Transit vehicles and supports across the province, which were welcomed by a seniors advocate.
Pam McConnell, a co-ordinator of Transportation Options for Seniors, said the funds will prevent the isolation of older adults who can no longer drive themselves. Without senior government funding, McConnell said smaller communities often can’t afford to buy or replace a Handi-Transit van, which can cost about $100,000.
“It’s critical for older adults that we’ve encouraged to age in place in rural Manitoba and they make up almost 30%, in some places, of the population,” McConnell said.
Canada’s Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr said Winnipeg’s exclusion from the list doesn’t prevent additional funding for pricey items like rapid transit in Manitoba’s capital.
“There will be many, many more announcements to come,” Carr said.
The feds say $82.8 million of a federal Public Transit Infrastructure Fund will head to Manitoba over the next 11 years, which likely wouldn’t…
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