MPA Major Research Papers

Date of Award


Degree Type

Major Research Paper

Degree Name

Master of Public Administration


Political Science


Kane Faucher

Geographical Areas

British Columbia, Ontario


This paper will argue for changes in the corporate structure of transit authorities in Ontario by contrasting their effectiveness in producing intermunicipal transit with British Columbia’s transit authorities. It is well established that transit is correlated to many benefits: socioeconomic opportunities, increased quality of life, boosting the local economy, and reducing the environmental impact of transportation. However, one area of neglect within Ontario has been the development of intermunicipal transit within Ontario outside of the Greater Toronto Area. British Columbia proves that with a centripetal authority structure (power towards the centre), transit organizations can be adaptive and cooperative. Ontario’s centrifugal authority structure (power away from the centre) is less adaptive, antagonistic, and can result in some transit authorities refusing to cooperate with others. While there are practical barriers to development, like determining who should pay for what, it is clear that the corporate structures from the local and provincial levels do not help negate these obstacles. The presence of these barriers then leads to the conclusion that Ontario has an inefficient corporate structure for overseeing the development of intermunicipal transit and should seek to reform it in some way to encourage cooperation or to consolidate under fewer transit authorities. Ultimately, this report will answer why the Province of Ontario and local transit authorities have been slow to develop intermunicipal transit routes and offer suggestions to improve.