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Coun. Gilbert Johnson is interim chair of the Queens Care Society. He says the group scheduled a third meeting because very few showed up for the first one in Liverpool.
LIVERPOOL - When the Region of Queens Municipality and the Queens Care Society hosted a public hearing on the feasibility of a transportation system in Queens last week, hardly anyone showed up.
That may have been because the Liverpool event, held at Queens Place Emera Centre, was scheduled for 10 a.m.
So they’ve planned another one – this time for 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 25.
Gil Johnson is interim chair of the Queens Care Society, which is partnering with the region on a transportation needs feasibility study. That study was announced in November. The consulting firm WSP Canada is carrying out the study, but it needs public input.
Johnson says the group thought the Liverpool meeting would be well-attended, but the 10 a.m. time didn’t seem suitable to most people.
A similar meeting in North Queens the same day saw a good turn out, he says.
The poor attendance in Liverpool led the group to organize a third meeting in the evening, that will allow WSP to gather input in time to prepare its report by early February.
“The public asked for it,” he says. “From that perspective, they’ve asked and we’ve accommodated, and we’re going to get the advertising out there as best we can. In hindsight, 20-20 hindsight, you know how that works.”
He says it’s really important for the public to voice their needs.
“We’ve learned it’s a very complicated process, that’s what we’ve learned, but there’s no cookie-cutter solution, we’ve said this all along, and what we’re doing, we’ve got a couple of different models that could work.”
Queens is only one of two counties in Nova Scotia without public transportation.
“It’s a big county but our roads are like octopus tentacles off of a centre spot versus if you were running up and down the Valley, you could run up and down that main corridor. But with ours there’s no preconceived model until we hear from the public.”
Johnson says any public transportation plan that does come to Queens will take years to implement.
“This is not a quick fix. Those transportation systems across the province are all in different stages of being implemented. We’re in the infancy stage is where we’re at.”
The Jan. 25 meeting will be held at Queens Place Emera Centre at 6:30 p.m.