shoes, lrt, brt, transportation, walking,

LRT/BRT | Not the time to waste on cheap shoes


Until last year, I almost never spent more than $30 on a pair of shoes. Like t-shirts and jeans, I figured spending more on shoes probably didn’t give me a whole lot of extra value—they’re just rubber and fabric that cover my feet, right? Why would I spend more?

Related: LRT vs. BRT – What is the difference?

I’d never noticed as a child because I was kind of outdoorsy and walked everywhere (I still walk everywhere), but my shoes never lasted very long. For years, I was replacing a $30 pair of shoes every couple of months. But last year I was convinced by a trusted friend to spend a little extra, so I doubled my comfortable limit and bought a pair of shoes for $60.

Three things happened:

1. They lasted longer. In fact, I’ve had those shoes for about a year now and I still wear them out. They’re my dancing shoes. However, I will admit they are getting close to retirement. After all, I am a furious dancer.

2. I was more comfortable in them, and could walk longer with less frequent pain. They were healthier for my legs and back.

3. I started getting complimented on my shoes. Friends and even strangers would stop in the hall to tell me they liked them. Not to sound superficial, but my aesthetic value went up. I was nicer to look at, or at least just caught people’s eyes.

For the sake of my argument I would like to tell you that now I never spend less than $60 on a pair of shoes, but I would be lying. I am still frugal and of course look for the least expensive shoes in the store that still suit my needs. They need to be long lasting and efficient for more than a just a little while. They need to be comfortable and healthy. And, honestly, I want them to look good.

Now is not the time for Hamilton to settle on cheap shoes.

Yes, LRT will be twice as expensive as BRT, but we know that LRT will properly suit our city’s needs, not just now but for the long term.

BRT has been called a short-term compromise, but what that really means is spending $500 million now, then another billion (or more) in the future when we come to our senses and accept that we need LRT.

BRT is not as comfortable or as health for our city’s environment as LRT would be, and adding more combustion engine exhaust to our sky would be a crime to all the hard work we have done to clear Hamilton’s lungs.

And as we know, LRT is handsome to visitors and investors, and attracts economic development—much more so than BRT. We can make an example of our city as ambitious, and ready to go the distance.

If I may use a shoe pun: Just do it!

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