Newspaper article The Canadian Press

John Tory's and Jennifer Keesmaat's Stances on 5 Issues in Toronto's Election

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

John Tory's and Jennifer Keesmaat's Stances on 5 Issues in Toronto's Election

Article excerpt

Tory's and Keesmaat's stances on 5 Toronto election issues

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Toronto goes to the polls Monday to vote for their favourite among three dozen candidates running for mayor. However, polls suggest no candidate poses a major threat to incumbent John Tory. His biggest threat is Jennifer Keesmaat, the city's former chief planner, who entered the race mid-summer after Premier Doug Ford's council-cutting decision threw the campaign into chaos.

Here are their stances on some of the issues facing Toronto:

Housing

Tory has said if he is re-elected, he plans on building 40,000 affordable rental units over 12 years.

He proposed an "affordable housing secretariat" to co-ordinate the city's activities on the issue, and has suggested introducing affordable housing development plans alongside every major infrastructure project in the city.

Keesmaat said she plans to build 100,000 housing units over the next 10 years in an effort to tackle the lack of affordable rentals in Toronto.

She has also proposed a rent-to-own program financed by a surcharge on luxury properties that would target Torontonians who are struggling to transition from the rental market. The program would have tenants pay monthly instalments that goes towards a down-payment to eventually purchase the home for a set price.

Transit

Keesmaat wants the construction of the TTC subway relief line to be built three years earlier than the scheduled completion date of 2031. She has also said that she would make the downtown King Street pilot project, which restricts cars from travelling through a busy stretch of the road, permanent.

To address road safety, Keesmaat said she would reduce speed limits to 30 km/h on all residential roads and redesign intersections and school zones.

Tory touted his track record on transit and noted that under his leadership, Toronto city council approved the Transit Network Plan, which includes the creation of the relief line -- a plan critics say doesn't go far enough to reduce congestion in the city's downtown core. …

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