Headline News By Andrew Pinsent 519 Views

Leaders of Ottawa Transit Commission continue to criticize citizen transit commissioner

As frustrations continue over problems with Ottawa’s new Light Rail Transit system and reliability of OC Transpo bus service, the Vice-Chair of the city’s Transit Commission took to Twitter to complain about a citizen commissioner’s comments and commentary on the service.

Alta Vista Ward Councillor Jean Cloutier tweeted on Sunday that Sarah Wright-Gilbert, a voluntary member of the Transit Commission, should 'reflect on her objectives' when it comes to helping Transit and airing her public criticisms, calling them 'unproductive.

Since the launch of the LRT and the overhaul of bus service, Wright-Gilbert has used her position and Twitter account to highlight frustrations transit riders have been dealing with. As a fellow daily transit user, the un-elected commissioner has been quite blunt about customer’s needs and the failures of OC Transpo.

Nearly two weeks ago, Transit Commission Chair Allan Hubley sent out an internal City of Ottawa email, arguing that negative comments about the light rail system in the media and online were not helping to fix any of its issues.

Wright-Gilbert responded with a statement of her own in that case, but did not respond to Cloutier on Twitter this time. She did, however, send the following written statement to OttawaMatters.com:

"While I find Councillor Cloutier's comments disappointing, they are unsurprising, given the tone that has been set by Chair Hubley and Mayor Watson, with respect to Commissioner's speaking publicly about the issues facing transit users.