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An LRT that's paved on top? Radical design tweaks to unite left and right

Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail/Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail



Reeling from Thursday's emphatic 24-19 vote against a Sheppard subway, city council's right wing has a new tactic: compromise. Ford allies have begun to reach across the aisle in the hopes of ensuring the Sheppard LRT can share the road with cars – and still keep traffic moving. The question now is, which compromise will win? Let the war begin.

The Hoover Cannon LRT

Proposed by: Mike Del Grande

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"Picture it: You're stuck in rush-hour traffic on Sheppard when you see a big crowd of people about to get on the train. But the LRT doesn't stop. Instead, a giant hose comes out from the top and vacuums passengers up. At the same time, a huge artillery barrel emerges from the back of the LRT and fires the passengers who want to get off into giant nets by the side of the road. Meanwhile, the LRT – and the cars behind it – keep clipping right along."

Supported by: Paula Fletcher

"We're also looking at the possibility of retrofitting the balconies of public-owned high rises with cushions so that residents can be fired directly into their units."

The Pave-Over

Proposed by: Denzil Minnan-Wong

"This is just like it sounds – an LRT with a road on top. There would be a ramp at each end so that cars drive on and off. That way, when an LRT stops to pick up or drop off passengers, the traffic doesn't."

Supported by: Josh Matlow

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"And there's this unexpected bonus: If two LRT's going in opposite directions pass each other, the cars on top would be able to do U-turns – but they'd have to be quick."

The LRT Stretch SUV Limo

Proposed by: Doug Ford

"We're talking serious luxury, folks, not to mention neon under-lighting, free champagne, and live sports in HD. The best part is limo drivers aren't overpaid union hacks – a lot of them actually have some pretty crazy stories."

Supported by: Adam Vaughan

"For years now in the Entertainment District, we've seen 20-passenger elongated Hummers. I don't think it's much of a stretch – pardon the pun – to take that up to 350 passengers, which is what an LRT can accommodate. And I think it's high time transit users experienced levels of comfort traditionally found in the private sector."

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The Turbo Moving Sidewalk

Proposed by: Mayor Rob Ford

"I was on my way home from work yesterday wondering why we should have to make room on the road for LRTs. What about the sidewalk? Then it hit me: What if the sidewalk was the LRT? I'm talking about a huge moving sidewalk, like those ones they have at Pearson but way faster and much, much longer. For residents of Scarborough, this could mean never having to walk anywhere again, which is a dream I think all Torontonians share."

Supported by: No one.

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