The White Elephant Line

A white elephant is a possession which its owner cannot dispose of and whose cost, particularly that of maintenance, is out of proportion to its usefulness.

To recap, the Canada Line is not a true P-3, rather a mock P-3, where SNC Lavalin/Bombardier, bid against, SNC Lavalin/ROTEM.

Judge Pittfield who presided over the failed Susan Heyes lawsuit against TransLink, called the bidding process a “charade”.

The Canada Line is the only heavy-rail metro built in the world as a light-metro and being only able to operate 41 metre long, two car trains, has much less capacity than a modern tram costing a fraction to install!

At a minimum of $110 million to the SNC Lavalin lead consortium to operate annually, calling the Canada line a “White Elephant” is too kind!

The Canada Line can only operate 41 metre long two car trains, which is smaller than many trams on the market today. Thus the Canada line has less capacity than a modern tramway.

Surrey urged not to repeat Canada Line P3 mistake

Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan says Surrey must avoid repeating the costly mistakes made when the Canada Line was built as a P3 partnership now that the city is clamouring to build new light rail lines.

Corrigan has been pushing TransLink to disclose details of the Canada Line arrangement, which he says forces the transit authority to pay the private partner not just a higher interest rate than if it had borrowed directly but also additional inflationary and other adjustments.

Those payments cover the cost of operating the line as well as the $721 million in private capital  nearly one third of the $2.1-billion rapid transit line that was fronted by the partners after direct contributions from TransLink and senior governments.

The deal to secure and repay the “magic money” through the P3 has financially hobbled TransLink, leaving it unable to afford better transit service in the years since the Richmond-Vancouver line opened in 2009, Corrigan told the Metro mayors’ council Jan. 27.

For the rest of the story………….


One Response to “The White Elephant Line”
  1. Causa Causans says:

    It is beyond our belief that that the Canada line exists at all. building a metro, but designing it to carry less people than a tram is insanity.

    There are reports from our side of the pond how the government at they day did not understand transit application and wanted the Bombardier metro to win.

    What Vancouver has now is a very expensive metro costing at least 5times more than a modern tram equivalent, yet can only carry a limited amount of people.

    This is madness. What sane operating authority would spend 5 times more to achieve a transit system with about half the capacity of a tram?

    Madness is building White elephants.

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