Somerset Ward candidate Canning supports Uber in new Ottawa landscape
Oct. 6, 2014—Martin Canning, a city councillor candidate in Somerset Ward, announces today that he is supporting technology firm Uber and its peer-to-peer ride service app in downtown Ottawa.
Uber is an example of the innovation and creativity that’s evident in a growing new Ottawa landscape, says Canning. “I’m running to make Ottawa the most liveable, affordable and sustainable city in the country. Uber’s expansion into the Ottawa market is consistent with the values of my campaign, and the community is clearly in favour,” says Canning.
Uber began as a high-end transportation service, but has expanded to a lower-cost and affordable alternative to local taxi services. UberX, now available in Ottawa, allows people to become micro-entrepreneurs, allowing for increased economic opportunity and job creation in our community. This will result in more affordable transportation choices for Somerset Ward residents, a key commitment in Canning’s platform, the New Ottawa Plan. According to current pricing models, an UberX rider could save 40 per cent off a standard taxi fare.
“We need a city-wide dialogue encouraging a more affordable tax and pricing system, and greater fairness for taxpayers,” Canning says. “UberX could be the catalyst we need to start having this conversation.”
If elected, Canning will work alongside City of Ottawa advisory committees and other city-wide stakeholders to lead a policy options paper exploring the value of tax and pricing reform options, for example distance-based transit fares, and submit it to the Transit Commission, relevant committees, council and provincial representatives.
Canning’s platform also includes an important emphasis on safe transportation for all, especially women and other marginalized genders. Uber and its drivers must follow rules and guidelines to ensure they meet minimum safety standards as well as adhere to City of Ottawa bylaws. “Uber must not be allowed to violate rules, but perhaps it’s time those rules are changed,” Canning says. “We need to embrace innovative ideas and start-ups and encourage new ways of thinking about our economy and community’s needs. It’s time for a serious discussion on these topics.”
If elected, Canning will work with council, residents and Uber to move toward a practical and sustainable solution for the community on this initiative.