Reality Can Be A Bitch – Two FastFerry Fiascos For Metro Vancouver

As of yet, there is no real cost estimate for the Broadway Subway and reality is setting in that it will be in excess of $3 billion, unless the scope of the project is reduced, as was done to the Canada line.

One persistent rumour I hear is that the Millennium Line subway extension to Arbutus will sport stations with 50 metre long platforms; long enough to be able to accommodate three car trains of MK 2 & 3 stock, but would limited capacity to about 9,000 to 10,000 persons per hour per direction. This also happens to be 5,000 to 6,000 less than the established minimum capacity that would rate a subway.

The item of the Evergreen Line’s disappearing act, lends credence to this rumour.

The problem with this is future generations will have to buck up big time to increase capacity, but Vision Vancouver’s developer friends will be happy that those expensive underground concourses built for a subway with their new buildings, will be put to use. “Pay to Play” at its best.

One wonders what sweet nothings, former Vision Vancouver Councillor and now adviser to the premier, Geoff Meggs, is whispering into Horgan’s and Minister of Transportation Trevena’s ear?

Could it be, that Meggs is gung-ho for mobility pricing to fund Vancouver’s Subway, even though both projects have all the makings of FastFerry fiascos number 2 and 3?

The NDP, do not read history and are doomed to reap the whirlwind of electoral consequences.

The NDP, always out of tune with the public may finally sign their political death warrant with the subway and mobility pricing to fund it, much to the glee of Green Party Leader Weaver and the future Liberal leader.

Memo to Derek Corrigan: Lean back and wait for the crushing financial numbers for the Broadway Subway and Surrey’s LRT and then wait a little longer until Bombardier abandons SkyTrain production, then tell the financial facts of life to municipal politicians.

The Mayor’s Council on Transit, the epicentre of TransLink dysfunctional operation, will be forced to take a more realistic view of regional transit planning and application.

New Mayors’ Council chair raises concerns over funding for transport projects

But Derek Corrigan says Metro Vancouver mayors ‘will see their projects go ahead’

CBC News Ai?? Posted: January 22nd 2018

Derek CorriganAi??says his fellow Metro Vancouver mayors shouldn’t worry about the future of transportation projects in the area under his tenure as Mayors’ Council chair.

But the mayor of BurnabyAi??remains concerned about how huge infrastructure projects like theAi??SkyTrainAi??Broadway extensionAi??and theAi??Surrey-Newton-GuildfordAi??LRT line will be funded.

ai??i??Some Lower Mainland politicians expressed concern whenAi??CorriganAi??was elected chair of the Mayors’ Council on Regional Transportation chair in December, with New WestminsterAi??Coun. PatrickAi??JohnstoneAi??calling him “transit regressive.”

CorriganAi??has been critical of many of the Mayors’ Council’s plans, saying they were “very ambitious”Ai??and predicting a “slow down”.

However, Corrigan told the CBC’s Early Edition host Steven Quinn that the mayors have nothing to worry about.

“I think the mayors will see their projects go aheadAi??and I think they’ll be done in a timely manner,” he said.

But Corrigan saidAi??there still exists a problem of funding the projects.

While the federal government has committed $2.2 billion for local transportation projectsAi??and the province has committed to fund 40 per cent of the capital projects, the municipalities have yet to fund the remaining portion, he said.

“We’ve got to find a way out of what is a very difficult situation before we can move wholeheartedly into the plan. And I’m being realistic about that,”Ai??said Corrigan.

He says the mayors have said over and over they do not want to seek money from property taxes, so they are discussing alternative funding sources from the province.

“I believe there areAi??solutions that we may be able to find, but at this stage we’re not able to discuss any of the alternatives that are being proposed,”Ai??Corrigan said.

Mobility pricing

Last week, the independent commission on mobility pricing released its report on the first phase of its mission to research how to change the way transportation is priced in Metro Vancouver.

It suggested possibilities includingAi??a fee to enter downtown VancouverAi??and charging drivers for distances travelled, with increased fees for some locations.

TransLink says mobility pricing ai??i??Ai??which refers to charging people for the use of roads, bridges and transit ai??i??Ai??would be used to reduce congestion, promote fairnessAi??and support investment in the transportation system.

Corrigan says since the public rejected the 2015 referendum on a $7.5-billion transportation plan from the Mayors’ Council, this alternative way to add taxes in order to finance the transit system will not be attractive to them.

“I don’t know if the government’s going to be interested in going into the next election proposing that there be a comprehensive tolling system around the Lower Mainland as a result of the mobility pricing commission,”Ai??said Corrigan.

“It sounds to me and it looks to me that this may be a significant way off. It’s not going to become a way to solve the immediate funding problems that we’ve got.”

The commission’s final report is due in April.


4 Responses to “Reality Can Be A Bitch – Two FastFerry Fiascos For Metro Vancouver”
  1. Haveacow says:

    I have no doubt that there is a plan to do something exactly like what you described Zwei. Unfortunately, it won’t work to well if the end goal is to reduce capital costs. The majority of the capital costs are in the tunnel itself and all the alarm systems, electrical, HVAC, elevator/escalators and CC (communication and computer) facilities in the station structures themselves. You can reduce their capacity and scope but you can’t get rid of them

    Zwei replies: As i believe what has happened to the Canada Line.

  2. Haveacow says:

    A 33 to 40 percent drop in capacity for at best, a 20-25 percent drop in capital costs. Not counting the loss in operational efficiency the smaller size platforms will forward onto the network itself. On top of the reduced capacity to financially pay for ongoing operations. I say either, they will pay for it all no matter what the cost or an improved but cheaper BRT/LRT scheme will appear.

  3. eric chris says:

    “Crashing Transit Demand for Rapid Transit to UBC”

    Maximum hourly demand for “rapid transit” service to UBC (99 B-Line) has crashed nearly 20% in the last decade to 1,660 people at last count in 2016 (Table 3.4 in the following link). Along Broadway, “daily” ridership touted as 100,000 ticks on the bean counter is irrelevant. Peak hourly demand measured in the number of revenue passengers matters. Presently, peak demand is paltry at less than about 2,200 people hourly for all the transit routes traveling along Broadway and ending at UBC (Table 3.4).

    Hourly person trips (people) at peak times for all 14 bus routes terminating at UBC fell precipitously from 8,033 people in 2014 to 7,185 people in 2016, at last count (plummeting 11% over two years). This is real and contradicts the prestidigitation over record “ridership” boasted by TransLink. Refer to Table 2.3 and Figure 3.3 in the following links, respectively.

    Most vehicle traffic to UBC occurs along SW Marine Drive. To “capture” potential drivers, SW Marine Drive is where more public transit needs to be planned and not along Broadway connected to University Blvd. as “planned”. Refer to Figure 2.7 in the following link.

    Riddle for the mayors deciding the funding for the “planners” at TransLink: if creating road space makes more people drive and taking the 99 rapid transit buses off Broadway to go with the subway frees up more road space on Broadway, won’t more people drive on Broadway like they did on Cambie Street when the rapid transit by bus was replaced with the subway? Yes? No? Don’t know?

  4. Dondi says:

    Mr Chris,

    On Table 3.4 I see your 1,660 B line trips westward to UBC during the morning peak hour in 2016, but no data for the previous years. Can you please point me to the latter? Likewise, are the Table 2.3 and Figure 3.3 that you cite the correctly numbered references?

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