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How and when was the public inquiry established?

The public inquiry was established on December 16, 2021, to investigate the circumstances in the procurement, delivery and operations of Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit system that led to issues that have had a negative impact on the people of Ottawa including breakdowns and derailments leading to a systemwide temporary shutdown and raised concerns from the public about the safety of the system.


What is the purpose of this Commission?

There have been breakdowns and derailments on Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit system (OLRT1). The provincial inquiry will look into the commercial and technical circumstances that led to these issues. The Commission will also make recommendations to help prevent these issues from happening again for this project and future infrastructure projects in Ontario.


What is the timeline for the Commission’s inquiry?

The Ottawa Light Rail Transit Commission is investigating the commercial and technical circumstances that led to issues with Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit system.

The Commissioner has released his decision on who will be participating in the Commission’s public hearings. Read the Order on Applications for Standing and Funding here.

The Commission will hold public hearings in Ottawa from June 13, 2022, to July 8, 2022, at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law – Common Law Section, in its Ian G. Scott Courtroom.

The list of witnesses for the public hearings, the list of over 90 witness examinations conducted by the Commission and the schedule for the public hearings are now available on the Commission’s website.

In addition, the Commission also held two public meetings on May 25 and 26, 2022, at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., where members of the public had the opportunity to share their views and make statements. The meetings were recorded and can be watched in their entirety here.

The Commissioner will deliver a final report to the Minister of Transportation containing his findings, conclusions and any recommendations on or before August 31, 2022 or, if the Minister of Transportation agrees in writing, no later than November 30, 2022.

The Commission updates the website regularly to keep the public informed on the latest developments on the Commission’s investigation, including the next steps in the inquiry process.

Anyone can contact the Commission at info@OLRTPublicInquiry.ca or by calling 1-833-597-1955 if they have any general enquiries or to submit information that will serve the investigation.



Why is the Commission calling for participation from the general public?

As Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit system project impacts many in the City of Ottawa, the Commission values the public’s input and encourages them to get involved in the process.

Members of the public had the opportunity to share their views and make statements during public meetings that were held on May 25 and 26, 2022, at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The meetings were recorded and can be watched in their entirety here.

Anyone can contact the Commission at info@OLRTPublicInquiry.ca or by calling 1-833-597-1955 if they have any general enquiries or to submit information that will serve the investigation



When will the hearings be happening and how long will they last for?

The Commission will hold its hearings in Ottawa from June 13, 2022, to July 8, 2022, at the University of Ottawa’s Faculty of Law – Common Law Section, in its Ian G. Scott Courtroom. The hearings schedule is available.



Who can participate in the public hearings?

The Commissioner has released his decision on who will be participating in the Commission’s public hearings. Read the Order on Applications for Standing and Funding here.

The list of witnesses for the public hearings, the list of over 90 witness examinations conducted by the Commission and the schedule for the public hearings are now available on the Commission’s website.

Anyone can contact the Commission at info@OLRTPublicInquiry.ca or by calling 1-833-597-1955 if they have any general enquiries or to submit information that will serve the investigation.

Visit the Ottawa Light Rail Transit Commission’s website to learn more about the Commission’s mandate and to receive the latest updates on the public inquiry.



Are the hearings open for the media and public to attend in-person?

The hearings will be open for the public and media to attend and watch.

The public can watch the hearings via livestream in English, French or both in large auditoriums near the hearing room in Fauteux Hall (57 Louis Pasteur). The public are advised to take the elevator or stairs until floor 3 to access the auditoriums, which have three language options.

  • English Room # 351
  • French Room # 359
  • Bilingual Room # 361

The livestream will be made available on the Commission’s website in both English and French.

The media will have onsite access to the press room adjacent to the hearing room to watch the hearings (100 Thomas More Private)

The hearings will also be broadcast on Rogers TV, channels 470 in English and 471 in French.

Further details on the public hearings including the list of witnesses for the public hearings, the list of over 90 witness examinations conducted by the Commission and the schedule for the public hearings can be found on the Commission’s public hearings page on its website, which will be updated regularly with the latest information and details on the hearings.



Why are witnesses allowed to testify remotely?

Witnesses will be allowed to testify remotely to increase the efficiency of the Commission’s public hearings.


How many people were in attendance at the public meetings?

The Commission thanks the over 70 members of the public who attended onsite and the 12 members of the press who also were in attendance, as well as the nearly 1,000 people who watched the livestream and the thousands of people who watched on television on Rogers TV. The Commission is grateful for all the speakers who talked during these meetings, onsite, by video or by calling. All these testimonies and opinions will help the Commission to continue its investigation.



What is the responsibility of the Commissioner?

As Commissioner, Justice Hourigan has a mandate to investigate the questions posed in the Terms of Reference, including the procurement, delivery and operations of Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit system (OLRT1). He will also be responsible for delivering a report of the Commission’s findings, including recommendations to help prevent the issues identified from happening again.


When will the Commission be required to deliver its final report and recommendations?

The Commission is mandated to deliver a final report to the Minister of Transportation containing its findings, conclusions and any recommendations on or before August 31, 2022 or, if the Minister of Transportation agrees in writing, no later than November 30, 2022.


What does Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit (OLRT1) system include?

Stage 1 of the Ottawa Light Rail Transit system includes the following features:

  • A 12.5-kilometre line along the existing Bus Route System (BRT) corridor from Blair Road in the east to Tunney's Pasture in the west;
  • A tunnel through the downtown core; and
  • 13 stations, including three underground stations.


What is an Order in Council?

An Order in Council (OIC) is a government order recommended by the Executive Council and signed by the Lieutenant Governor.

While they have a wide variety of uses, OICs are most frequently used to:

  • set up agencies, boards or commissions;
  • appoint people to agencies, boards or commissions and set their salaries;
  • bring laws (or parts of laws) into effect;
  • appoint provincial judges and certain senior public servants;
  • create advisory bodies and appoint special advisors; and
  • assign legal responsibilities to government ministers.

OICs can be new or they can amend or cancel previous OICs. They must be approved by the Executive Council (the Premier and Cabinet Ministers) and are not legal until they are signed by the Lieutenant Governor.