Did TransLink Design Surrey’s Light Rail To Fail?


Surrey’s rejection of light rail in favour of SkyTrain with hardly a whimper from TransLink and without any rebuttal to the mayor of Surrey spurious claims about LRT, makes me think TransLink purposely designed light rail to fail in Surrey.

There is an established SkyTrain Lobby within TransLink that plays very dirty when it comes to transit planning and the lack of response during the Surrey election over the cacophony of erroneous claims  is telling.

Zwei was always dubious with Surrey’s light rail planning and early on, calling it a poor man’s SkyTrain. Even strong proponents of Surrey’s LRT, were beginning to worry two years go when I was asked to write letters in support of light rail, but not to criticize the project itself.

The politically popular, SkyTrain for Surrey folks, with a well choreographed anti LRT pitch, laced with false information; fake news; cherry-picked comparisons and pure SkyTrain propaganda soon made their presence felt.

TransLink remained silent and let SkyTrain for Surrey chip away at ten years of planning with their litany of bogus claims.

Where was TransLink CEO, Kevin Desmond during this critical time??

So now ten years of planning and $70 million of taxpayer’s monies have been wasted (love the term “sunk costs”) and planning must start all over again.

Building SkyTrain to Surrey will not take a car off the road, simply because so few people living near the SkyTrain Line are actually going to Vancouver: there isn’t the ridership to support a SkyTrain. Yet, the political bamboozle continues, with nary a word from TransLink.

Where was the argument that SkyTrain operates very poorly in the snow, and snow it does between Fleetwood and Langley.

Zwei has been told, that one of the considerations for the TTC to abandon SkyTrain, was its poor operation in snow.

This poses an important question.

TransLink’s CEO’s  lack of leadership over the Surrey “flip-flop” was more than disturbing, which makes me wonder if Desmond was hired to oversee the LRT project’s failure?

His actions now are more than suspect.

So, for the next decade or so, no rapid transit for Surrey and when the guideway is built and that is still a big if, they may not be any vehicles to operate on it because Bombardier had abandoned production of the ART SkyTrain cars years earlier!


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