Even Your Auditor General Seems To Have Done His Sums On The Back Of Envelopes

Let us hearken back to the days of yesteryear and remember Zwei’s take on the AG’s audit of the Evergreen Line was.

SkyTrain cheaper than LRT, not a chance unless it was deliberately designed to be so!

As one overseas expert succinctly put it; “”Even your Auditor General seems to have done his sums on the back of envelopes.”

March 28, 2013

March 29, 2013

April 18, 2013

May 24, 2013

Sadly, the AG’s office was mislead about light rail and still refuses to admit they were wrong

Weai??i??ve released a progress audit on changes made since our 2013 report, Audit of the Evergreen Line Rapid Transit System.


Since 2013, Partnerships BC and the Ministries of Transportation and Infrastructure, and Finance have been working to implement the seven recommendations from our original report. We reviewed their progress and found that they have fully implemented five of the seven recommendations.


All three organizations have taken steps to better document project reviews and analysis, and the Evergreen Line project team has developed a performance management plan that details how the Lineai??i??s performance will be measured against the projectai??i??s original goals.


The first outstanding recommendation concerns governmentai??i??s Capital Asset Management Framework, and recommends that the Ministry of Finance implement a plan to improve guidance for future projects. While the ministry has made updates to the framework, the ones that will address our recommendation are included in its project plan, but have not yet been implemented.


The other outstanding recommendation targets the due diligence around developing and reviewing business cases for projects. Partnerships BC and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure have completed their work, and once the Ministry of Finance reviews project planning and approval guidelines, we will likely consider the recommendation fully completed.


We will continue to monitor the Ministry of Financeai??i??s progress.


There should always be complete information about the costs, benefits and risks to be managed when making decisions about capital projects. This is especially true for high-cost, large-scale projects like the Evergreen Line.


Our original audit looked at the quality of information provided to Treasury Board while planning the Evergreen Line. We expected to find more evidence of due diligence from government agencies, and that Treasury Board received more information given the large scale and the $1.43 billion cost of the project.


Watch our short audio/visual summary of this report.


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2 Responses to “Even Your Auditor General Seems To Have Done His Sums On The Back Of Envelopes”
  1. !? says:

    I am going to assume you are not taking bets they will follow through on this with the George Massey tunnel replacement project.

    Zwei replies: The port authority wants a deeper channel to allow Panama and Cape Max. bulk carriers, tankers and colliers up the river. The bridge will be built no matter the cost and the river will be dredged, despite what the MoT says.

  2. eric chris says:

    John Doyle was a good man who was coerced by the powers that be to let the crooks who created the business case for the Evergreen Line (EGL) off the hook. If you have enough money and power in this world, it isn’t hard to put pressure on an individual, mafia style. About $2.4 billion was spent to build and integrate the EGL with the Expo Line (EL). The EL has a potential capacity of about 15,000 pphpd with only the young and fit allowed to jump on and off the s-strain, 500 people per s-train every two minutes, no grannies or strollers allowed, no heavy coats and everyone in t-shirts. Practically, about 13,000 pphpd is all that the EL will get you.

    Supposed planners at TransLink built the EGL to extend the Millennium Line (ML) by 11 kilometres east out to the sticks in Coquitlam. Forests are being destroyed and farm land is being devoured for developers to get their hands on cheap land which they can’t get in Vancouver.

    “Reasons for EGL”
    First, politicians paid for the EGL (by taxing people in every city in Canada) for their developers buddies who wanted the EGL so that the developers could market their homes and condos in Coquitlam (with parking spaces for cars) as being within a stone’s throw from Vancouver on s-train taking 45 minutes to transport you to Vancouver if your car breaks down and you need to take public transit. Of course, the reality is that it takes 90 minutes but most people don’t know what they are getting themselves into with the long bus trips and delays to the s-stain hubs. They get sucked into the fantasy of being so close to Vancouver and yet so far away, and most everyone ends up buying a car to abandon public transit in time.

    If the tram line would have been built (rather than the EGL) for a pittance of maybe $400 million to quadruple the capacity the public transit, it would have been too slow and would have only served short distance commuters. Developers would have lost their marketing pitch to get people to live in the sticks (Coquitlam) and ride fast s-train into Vancouver.

    Second, SNC Lavalin has a lousy reputation and can’t win jobs in a fair bidding process. Going with s-train basically gave the EGL contract to SNC Lavalin which teamed up with the supplier of s-train (Bombardier). Over the decades, SNC Lavalin might make billions of dollars in fees to “maintain and operate” the EGL. It was rigged and John Doyle must have understood this. He’s no idiot.

    “Fallout of EGL”
    Right now, on the EGL, the schedulers at TransLink can only run short s-trains carrying about what the previous transit buses, which the EGL replaced, carried. If they run long s-trains holding 500 people, passengers on the EGL won’t be able to transfer to the EL which does not have the extra capacity to carry added passengers from the EGL. Extension of the ML east with the EGL did not increase capacity of public transit into Vancouver. It was a waste of money for SNC Lavalin and developers to make money. This will haunt TransLink’s directors and CEO who are trying to pull the same scam to extend the ML west along Broadway in Vancouver. Stay tuned for the fallout.

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