Mr. Campbell Responds to the Rail For The Valley/Leewood Report With Deciet

Gordon Campbell has a very bad reputation for not telling the truth, in fact he is a habitual teller of very tall tales.

The Premier’s statement in the following article, ” But you know the operating costs of the SkyTrain are about 50 per cent a year less than with light rail. And the ridership is two and a half times greater with SkyTrain.“Ai??Ai??is a complete falsehood!

A 1996 comparison with Calgary’s C-Train LRT shows that the Expo Line costs 40% more to operate than Calgary’s LRT (both about the same length), yet the C-Train carries more passengers!

“Mr. Campbell, to restore your credibility, please provide the same type of – accurate – data for SkyTrain as can be found on the Calgary Transit website for its light-rail system.”

Operating costs, Calgary C-Train (2006).

  • Vehicle Maintenance costs: $13.9M (2006)
  • Station Maintenance costs: $2.8M (2006)
  • Right of Way Maintenance costs: $2.9M (2006)
  • Signals Maintenance costs: $2.4M (2006)
  • Average annual power costs: $4.8M (2006)
  • Annual LRV Operator wages: $6.0M (includes fringe benefits of 21.57%) (2006)
  • Total – $32.8 million
  • A 2009 study done by UBC Professor Patrick Condon also showed SkyTrain as being very expensive to operate and inAi??Ai??his study, SkyTrain had the highest cost to operate than any other transit mode in the study, which reflects much higher operating costs.

    Mr. Campbell’s other statement that ridership is two times and half a much as LRT’s is pure fiction, both SkyTrain and LRT have the same potential capacities. To remind everyone, capacity is a function of headway & train length. This comment from the Toronto Transit Commissions 1980’s ART Study sums up SkyTrain potential capacity:

    Ai??Ai??”ICTS (which SkyTrain was called at the time)Ai??Ai??costs anything up to ten times as much as a conventional light-rail line to install, for about the same capacity; or put another way, ICTS costs more than a heavy-rail subway, with four times its capacity.”

    There is no independent study that shows that SkyTrain attracts more ridership than LRT, in fact at-grade/on-street light railAi??Ai??tends to be very goodAi??Ai??for attracting ridership.

    There are other erroneous claims being made in the article and they will be dealt with later.

    Mr. Campbell demeans himself with such claims, as he continues to demonstrate that truth is not in his lexicon. SkyTrain was built and will be built for reasons of political prestige andAi??Ai??not what is best for the transit customer or the taxpayer. SkyTrain has failed to find a market domestically,in the USA and in Europe because it is both more expensive to build and more expensive to operate than its chief competitor modern LRT.

    Mr. Campbell, Rail for the Valley demands honest debate for the future of transit in the region, not your half baked statements based on fiction, to pursue your political aims.

    Oh, what tangled webs we weave, when we first practice to deceive“, Mr. Campbell,Ai??Ai??your tangled webAi??Ai??of anti-LRT propaganda stops here, next time, deal in fact.

    Burnaby News leader

    By Jeff Nagel – BC Local News

    SkyTrain detractors should consider the benefits of the technology and not focus solely on the lower cost of building new rapid transit lines with at-grade light rail, Premier Gordon Campbell said.

    “It does cost less in capital A?ai??i??ai???Ai??Ai??it costs about $150 million less,” the premier said in an interview with Black Press, referring to price estimates for the Evergreen Line to Coquitlam.

    “But you know the operating costs of the SkyTrain are about 50 per cent a year less than with light rail. And the ridership is two and a half times greater with SkyTrain.”

    The decision to make the Evergreen Line a SkyTrain extension rather than a separate light rail line will ultimately move more people, faster at lower long-term costs, he predicted.

    Campbell spoke Thursday, two days after the release of a new study from advocates who say a 100-kilometre light rail line from Surrey to Chilliwack can be opened on existing railway tracks for less than $500 million, compared to $1.4 billion for the 11-kilometre Evergreen Line.

    Several mayors, including Surrey’s Dianne Watts, have lobbied for light rail for future lines.

    Also critical to any transit expansion in the Lower Mainland, the premier said, is to ensure cities concentrate growth along transit corridors to support use of new lines while also making neighbourhoods more livable for walking and cycling.

    “You can’t have an urban transit system at rural densities,” he said. “You have to actually give yourself a chance for transit to make ends meet.”

    Campbell signed an accord with Metro Vancouver mayors Sept. 23 promising to explore a multitude of methods to raise more cash for transit expansion.

    He said mayors are free to put on the table even contentious options like a vehicle levy or forms of road pricing, which the agreement notes can help shape how people choose to travel.

    But he cautioned the key is to deliver good transit services that work and not merely try to use tolls or other fees to deter driving.

    “You can’t punish people into transit,” he said. “People use the Canada Line because they love it. It meets their needs.”

    Asked about public concern over the potential tolling of all three Fraser River bridges out of Surrey, Campbell downplayed the issue, saying the province determined in advance residents supported tolling the new Port Mann Bridge to deliver congestion relief.

    “There’s always going to be someone who says ‘I don’t want to do it,'” he said, but cited the time savings for users of the Golden Ears Bridge.

    “Think of the opportunities for connecting families, for moving goods.”

    He said an “adult conversation” is required on the options to fund TransLink for the future.

    Other parts of B.C. need transportation upgrades too, he said, adding the province will be hesitant about steering money to TransLink that deepens B.C.’s deficit or makes it harder to fund health care.

    “If there was a simple answer it would have been done a long time ago.”


    9 Responses to “Mr. Campbell Responds to the Rail For The Valley/Leewood Report With Deciet”
    1. Jim says:

      Gordo is a [edied for legal reasons], and the people of BC are stupid for electing him 3 times.

      Zweisystem replies: I fully understand your feelings. What the Premier is practicing in the “Goebbels Gambit”, where a lie is repeated so many times in the media, that the public believe it is true.

    2. Grant G says:

      Great jobs people…I hate to say I told you so…..Nothing will change until this bunch is removed from office…

      I would like to share a whopper Campbell blurted yesterday, I have the quote in my last post….

      Gordon Campbell september/24/2010…”We lowered the hst from 13% to 12% and that cost our provincial treasury $800 million dollars” snip

      Campbell can`t stop fibbing, he is so used to saying anything and not being challenged by the media..Canwest/cknw/CTV…

      You fine folks, like me and a large growing group, are now calling on Campbell to back it up or retract.

      Keep up the pressure…Thanks, you have spawned a new post for me, I will have it up later today!


    3. Jim says:

      I understand your reason for editing, but my statement of opinion is not slander, I am legally entitled to hold whatever opinion of him I want. I suppose I should have said, “in my opinion”.

      I agree with Grant, we can’t expect anything to happen until the “fiberals” are removed.

      Zweisystem replies: I error on the side of caution. I have been a victim of libel chill three times from BC Transit and TransLink in past years and I would not like to be made an example of! You should have seen my first draft of todays post!

      A belated thanks to Charlie Smith who gave me a short course to avoid libel and slander.

    4. Jim says:

      No problem, I appreciate it. :)

    5. Justin Bernard says:

      “an urban mass transit system is not suitable for rural densities” Someone is giving Mr. Campbell some bad advice, or making sure the Skytrain status quo is maintained. Tram-Train is perfect for the low density regions. I have a feeling you guys are stuck with the Gateway Project with it’s tolls.

    6. David says:

      I use Canada Line because when I first started commuting from my current location the #17 didn’t go all the way to Waterfront. Thus I was forced to get myself either to Granville or Cambie and Canada Line won the battle by offering a smoother ride and shorter travel time.

      The #17 is back to running it’s full route and total travel time to Waterfront is virtually identical to my current method of walking to Cambie transferring to CL.

      I enjoy my walk to/from Cambie so in nice weather I’ll stick with CL, but I’m going to try out the trolley this afternoon and if all goes well I’m going to spare my shoes and ride the bus on rainy days.

    7. Jim says:

      Things “might” change once Gordon is gone, I’d say that’s the only hope.

    8. Doug says:

      While I agree that Gordo has gone to far, told too many lies, and will continue to do so, the alternatives scare me even more. Maybe if the NDP could find a strong leader they may have a chance.

      Skytrain has been a hugh waste of cash and doesn’t meet capacity needs as it is, let alone expanded. The trains are full after the first 2 stops during rush hour in the morning.

      Zweisystem replies: The problem of overcrowding is because TransLink cascades every bus rider it can on the one trunk SkyTrain Line. Instead of two or three main routes going east/west and north/south, TransLink in its infinite wisdom has created only one trunk line going in each direction.

    9. Jim says:

      Everyone seems to be afraid of NDP governments, I believe it is based on lies and propoganda from big business and the “liberal” government. The BC liberals have been far worse from what I’ve read. Everyone who hates and is afraid of an NDP government seems to leave out facts to support just how bad they are. I would like to point out that this “liberal” government has a very bad track record, it’s just no one paid attention before the HST simply because they weren’t the NDP.

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