The Usual Suspects Shill for a Yes Vote for the Upcoming TransLink Referendum

Yikes, the Vancouver Sun is at it again, blindly shilling for a yes vote in the not yet announced TransLink referendum. This only makes me guess that internal polling shows that a yes vote is far from certain.

All the usual suspects, the B.C. Federation of Labour; The B.C. Board of Trade; and the various post secondary student societies are on the stump begging voters to approve the TransLink referendum, even before anyone knows what the question will be. Even the University of Victoria’s Norman Ruff displays his naivety about transit and transit issues, talking about American transit referendums.

Note to Ruff: In the USA all financing for transit investment is approved by voters on a regular basis; all transit referendums or ballots, first go through the scrutiny of honest public debate and many do not pass. Transit referendums in the USA are not a one shot deal as the TransLink referendum will be.

But the chorus of big business and big labour, supporting the referendum is one of self interest as many members of B.C. board of Trade stand to make handsome profits from a yes vote and big labour will get more members and more union money onAi?? major transitAi?? investment. The students of course, get almost free transit with the U-pass, with now over 110,000 issued.

Oh, by the way, is this the same B.C. Board of Trade which shilled for the Canada Line, which costs were spiraling so out of control and that the line was so truncated that stations are small with 40 metre to 50 metre long platforms which can only accommodate two car trains and was at capacity when built?

That the Canada line is well patronized is an illusion as bus customers are forced to transfer onto short 2 car trains. Let us not forget that the Canada line is operating standard heavy-rail multiple unites or EMU’s on a grade separated railway and is not compatible in operation with the Expo and Millennium Lines.

The Canada Line’s capacity is restricted

due to 40m to 50m long station platforms

which can only accommodate 2 car trains.

Note to the B.C. board of Trade: From documents in the Susan Heyes lawsuit against TransLink; the Canada Line’s real cost was in excess of $2.5 billion and that the presiding judge, Pittfield, called the Canada Line P-3 a “charade”. An F.O.I. from 2012 shows that TransLink paid the operating consortium $145 million in annual operating costs, operating costs that are two to three times higher than comparable transit lines.

Speaking of the U-Pass, TransLink never discloses how many are actually being used and what is the cost to the taxpayer? It is also a strange coincidence that TransLink’s cash flow problems started with the U-pass!

So here is what the Vancouver Sun; The BC Board of Trade; the B.C. Federation of Labour; and post secondary students do not tell you, that the main reasons for TransLink’s financial malaise is an adherence to the light-metro operating philosophy and the continued planning with SkyTrain and/or light metro, which is proven to cost more to build, maintain and operate, than LRT and a plethora of cheap fare U-Passes, without any audit what so ever determining the cost to the taxpayer.

TransLink and the usual suspects want the status quo: screw the taxpayer for more money and keep doing the same thing over and over again, expecting different results.



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