Article THE MISSISSAUGA NEWS City moving ahead with buses Joseph Chin Jun 3, 2006 The City of Mississauga isn't idling its engine waiting for Ottawa to come through with money for Mississauga's Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) project. With $63 million from the Province already in the bank, City officials are moving ahead. They have created a BRT project team and are going to push the federal government for funding. Hiring a project manager is the first step, and that person's priority will be to get Ottawa to loosen its purse strings, said Martin Powell, the City's commissioner of transportation. City officials are banking on Ottawa kicking in a one-third share of the $185 million project price tag. Mississauga will pick up the final third of the cost. The City hopes to have the BRT running by 2011. "Given the scale of (the) project and the time frames for completion, it is highly desirable that we begin work as soon as possible. There is considerable work to be done in obtaining federal funding as well as completing the land acquisition deals, obtaining the necessary approvals and procuring a contract for the design and construction of the BRT," said Powell. "This work requires the dedicated resources of a project director and core team to be in place in order to advance these proposals." Start-up costs for the City's BRT office are estimated at $640,000. The budget includes $250,000 for an environmental assessment, $150,000 for a business case and $100,000 in staff expenses for the balance of 2006. The BRT would see buses-only lanes run from west Mississauga along Hwy. 403, Eastgate Pkwy. and Eglinton Ave. to Renforth Dr. In time, the BRT will offer links to Kipling subway station to the south and Pearson International Airport to the north. The City will be responsible for management of the BRT along municipal roads, while the Province, through GO Transit, will oversee sections that run along Hwy. 403. A study estimates that in five years the Mississauga portion of the BRT could attract nearly 10,000 passengers an hour during rush hour. "The BRT is a key project conforming to the relevant urban and regional planning policies for the City of Mississauga, the Region of Peel and the Province of Ontario, including the proposed growth plan for the Greater Horseshoe," said Powell.