On an average day, there are hundreds of thousands of trips daily on Metro Vancouver's public transit system. Whether you take the Expo Line from King George to Waterfront, the 99 B-Line from Commercial to UBC, the SeaBus from Lonsdale Quay to Downtown Vancouver, ride a bike down 41st Avenue, or drive your vehicle over the Port Mann Bridge every morning, you use Vancouver’s extensive transportation network.
However, the current public transit system lacks three key things: the ability to handle current capacity, lack of service options to rural and suburban areas, and sustainable funding to provide for future growth.
In order to meet the increasing demand in ridership, we need a sustainable and equitable regional funding solution to fund our public transit system.
As current mechanisms are either drying up (like the gas tax) or aren't currently deployed (such as the vehicle levy), public transit in Metro Vancouver is at the tipping point. If we continue down this path of increasing costs with shrinking revenue and funding, our transit system will be unable to function even at current service levels, with the potential for more service cuts across the board and the cancelation of any needed future infrastructure projects.
The real root of the problem lies with decision makers in Victoria. When the Mayors of Metro Vancouver colectively agreed that a new funding formula is needing, politicans in the provincial government left them flapping in the wind without any consultation or even discussion. Officials are unwilling to sit down at the table and work with each regional partner to find a collective and agreeable solution, instead, opting to work in different silos. If our world-class public transit system is to continue to serve the people of Metro Vancouver, this type of activity cannot be allowed to continue.
At the end of the day, the people of Metro Vancouver have a choice: do we want to have public transit that serves the region as our population grows or are we satisfied with the status quo?
It’s time to Get OnBoard.
Visit us online at: getonboardbc.ca
Like us on Facebook: facebook.com/getonboardbc
Follow us on Twitter: @getonboardbc.ca
I am endorsing the Get OnBoard BC coalition and ask all stakeholders in our transit system to work with the coalition to make our transit system sustainable and effective.
I also pledge to support candidates that publicly indicate, by the 2013 provincial election, they support a sustainable funding model for public transit in Metro Vancouver, regardless of party affiliation.
Will you get on board with me?