THE Mayors’ Council on Regional Transportation and the TransLink Board joined forces on Monday to send a 90-Day Action Plan for Metro Vancouver Transportation to all parties and all newly elected MLAs in the region.
The 90-Day Action Plan calls on the new provincial government to be ready to make quick decisions over the summer and fall to formally fund the next phase of the 10-Year Vision for Metro Vancouver Transit and Transportation. Fast provincial action is needed to avoid costly project delays, and to put B.C. first in line for federal transit funding.
“This region has waited long enough for provincial action on the 10-Year Vision. Residents and businesses want to see the benefits of better transit and transportation now, and avoid the cost increases that come with more delays or referendums,” said Mayors’ Council Chair, Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson.
The 90-Day Action Plan describes five priority areas requiring government decisions by the fall:
* an immediate, formal approval of provincial funding for the Pattullo Bridge Replacement Project
* a 40% “fair share” provincial contribution new transit projects, including $2.2 billion in matching funding for South of Fraser LRT, the Broadway subway, and a $360 million share to upgrade the existing Skytrain system, and more bus service across the region
* legislating a new development levy for transportation, so that new development helps TransLink pay for more transit service to serve a growing population
* real collaboration with the region’s mayors to identify fair, affordable revenue sources to pay for the remaining share of the 10-Year Vision.
*eliminating the referendum requirement on Metro Vancouver transportation projects.
“TransLink and the Mayors’ Council have spent the past 18 months preparing these projects, and now we are looking to all parties to commit to work with us, in a true collaboration, to seal the deal by this fall so we start construction in early 2018,” said Robertson. “All parties need to recognize that Metro Vancouver’s transit and transportation investment needs must be front and centre as the government is formed and gets to work.”
“We look forward to working with the next provincial government and all parties, and getting to the table as quickly as possible to move ahead with these projects, so we can continue reducing congestion on our roads and overcrowding on our transit system,” added Board Chair Lorraine Cunningham.