PRIME Minister Justin Trudeau and Premier John Horgan on Tuesday announced more than $3 billion in federal and provincial funding for two major rapid transit projects in Metro Vancouver: the Broadway Subway project and the Surrey-Newton-Guildford Light Rail Transit project.
The Broadway Subway project will add 5.7 kilometres and six stations to the line, bringing frequent and reliable SkyTrain access to one of the most congested transit corridors in Metro Vancouver, according to a press release.
The Surrey-Newton-Guildford Light Rail Transit project (LRT) will create the first light-rail transit system in British Columbia. With 11 new stations along 10.5 kilometres of street-level track, the LRT will provide much-needed transit services in underserved areas, connect and revitalize communities, and make it easier to travel across the Lower Mainland.
The press release said these projects will create thousands of good, middle-class jobs during construction. Once completed, they will meet current and future transportation needs, reduce traffic congestion and air pollution, and create more livable, connected communities.
Trudeau said: “Bringing light rail to Surrey will transform the city, connect communities and make getting around the Lower Mainland faster and easier. The Broadway Subway will also go a long way in reducing commute times and transit overcrowding, and making Vancouver’s SkyTrain even more convenient and accessible. Our government will continue to listen to communities, and make historic investments in the infrastructure they need, today and tomorrow.”
Horgan said: “Rapid transit is key to helping people get where they need to go quickly, so we can meet the needs of a growing region. Cutting traffic and getting people and goods moving faster will unlock economic growth, while making our communities more affordable, accessible and clean.”
* The Government of Canada will contribute $1.37 billion to the two projects, the Government of British Columbia will contribute $1.82 billion, and Translink, the City of Vancouver, and the City of Surrey will contribute $1.23 billion.
* The Broadway Subway will be able to move 5,100 more passengers per hour, per direction than the existing B-Line bus service it will replace, increasing capacity by 250%. It will also be built to accommodate additional future capacity increases.
* In Surrey, the Light Rail Transit project will take people from one end of the line to the other in approximately 27 minutes. The line will operate within dedicated train-only lanes on the road, allowing the trains to bypass traffic queues, making it an attractive public transit choice.
* Federal and provincial funding for these projects is the result of a new funding agreement signed by the governments of Canada and British Columbia in the spring of 2018, under the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan. The plan will see $3.917 billion in federal dollars invested in British Columbian infrastructure over 10 years.
* Through the Investing in Canada infrastructure plan, the Government of Canada will invest more than $180 billion over 12 years in public transit projects, green infrastructure, social infrastructure, trade and transportation routes, and Canada’s rural and northern communities.
* Of this funding, $28.7 billion will support public transit projects, including $5 billion that will be available for investment through the Canada Infrastructure Bank.
* The Broadway Subway, with an estimated budget of $2.83 billion, will be funded and delivered by the Government of British Columbia, with contributions from the Government of Canada and the City of Vancouver.
* Development of the project to this point was managed by TransLink and included considerable planning, technical work and consultation. The Province, as the owner of the existing SkyTrain system, will carry TransLink’s work forward in delivering the Broadway Subway project.
* Upon completion, it will be fully integrated into the regional transportation network and operated by TransLink.
* The funding breakdown for Phase 2 is:
– Government of Canada: $888.4 million
– Government of British Columbia: $1.82 billion
– City of Vancouver: $99.8 million (in-kind land contribution)
* Additional funding of $17 million was provided toward the full project cost under Phase 1 of the Mayors’ Vision plan.
* The Province will be using a design-build-finance (DBF) model to build the Broadway Subway.
* The project will go to procurement this fall, and construction is anticipated to occur between 2020 and 2025.
* The line will be built to extend the existing SkyTrain line from VCC-Clark Station, entering a tunnel at the Great Northern Way Campus, and continuing as a subway to Arbutus Street. Six underground stations will be built: one at the Great Northern Way campus, and five along Broadway Avenue (Main Street, Cambie Street, Oak Street, Granville Street and Arbutus Street). It is estimated that this project will result in 7,190 direct jobs and support economic and urban development within the region. The project will also help create thousands of indirect jobs (estimated at 5,270) for businesses that support and supply the construction activities.
Anticipated travel benefits:
* The 99 B-Line between Broadway/Commercial Station and the University of British Columbia is currently the busiest bus route in Metro Vancouver with about 500,000 passengers routinely bypassed by a number of full buses during peak periods.
* B-Line passengers can currently take up to 30 minutes per trip, which is expected to increase to about 50 minutes in the future due to the bypassed buses and heavy traffic congestion on this major commuter route.
* Once opened, and regardless of the time of day or traffic conditions, the commute from Commercial Broadway Station to Arbutus Street will only take 11 minutes, saving the average commuter over 30 minutes a day or 120 hours per year.
* The line is expected to serve an average 140,000 passengers per day.
Surrey-Newton-Guildford Light Rail Transit
* The Surrey-Newton-Guildford LRT project, with an estimated cost of $1.65 billion, will be funded and delivered by Translink, with contributions from the Government of Canada.
* TransLink will be using a design-build-vehicle supply-finance-operate-
* The funding breakdown for Phase 2 is:
– Government of Canada: $483.8 million
– TransLink / Regional: $1.12 billion
* Additional funding of $43 million was provided towards the full project cost under Phase 1 of the Mayors’ Vision plan.
* The project will go to procurement this week, with construction expected to occur between 2020 and 2024.
* The 10.5-km LRT line will operate from Surrey City Centre east along 104th Avenue to Guildford Town Centre, and south along King George Boulevard to Newton Town Centre, with 11 stops.
* It is estimated this project will result in about 3,960 direct jobs during project construction. It will also help create thousands of indirect jobs (estimated at 2,350) for businesses that support and supply the construction activities.
Anticipated travel benefits:
* The LRT will operate in dedicated lanes at a frequency of every five minutes during peak periods.
* People will be able to travel from Guildford to King George Station in approximately 27 minutes.
* The conservative estimate is that by 2045, customers will save about 16 minutes. Time savings are expected to increase over time as motor traffic volumes increase.