Zwei attended the streetcar symposium on Wednesday and came out with a great sinking feeling – TransLink just doesn’t get it. The event itself was very well put together, with ample food and drink, but there was little discussion about streetcars, but a lot of back-slapping by the various agencies and bureaucrats attending. The symposium was derailed and for good reason too, I beleive.
What was it all about? To my well practiced eyes the event was an infomercial for Bombardier Inc. (they were well advertised) to sell Flexity trams to Vancouver for their $90 million tourist streetcar line. Why not purchase much cheaper second hand trams from Europe? No one has ever thought of that in a Bombardier town.
The symposium was mostly a tedious event with most speakers dancing around the topic of streetcars with, “oh no, they are not light rail“, responses. What is even more worrisome is that TransLink hasn’t a clue about light rail or even streetcars and continue their well honed mantra that LRT can’t carry more than 10,000 persons per hour per direction and that streetcar’s capacity is even less! of course this TransLink nonsense is to keep the SkyTrain option alive for Vancouver’s Broadway UBC Line.
Lesson for TransLink – Light Rail can carry over 20,000 pphpd! Of course TransLink knows this, but ignores it and continues to squander millions of dollars on pointless transit studies favouring SkyTrain metro or even a $80 million skyride to SFU!
As for Rail to the Valley and our ground breaking report? Nope, never, Nada; never heard of the group nor read the study; haven’t a clue what TramTrain is but; “we’ll have a look in Wikipeada……”.
Professor Patrick Condon summed up the days events; “They are talking about stations and land development, they just don’t get it.”
Zweisystem’s advice for the South Fraser Region, secede from TransLink and the sooner the better as TransLink is incapable of planning for affordable LRT and continues to dream in “SkyTrain”.
Stephen Rees also attended the meeting and even though he said he wasn’t going to post to his blog about it, he has. It is worth while to see his view on the day.
Tags: Abbotsford, Broadway Follies, Broadway light rail, C-train, Chilliwack, Evergreen Line, infrastructure, interurban, Karlsruhe, Langley, light metro, light rail, LRT, Rail for the Valley, skytrain, streetcars, study, Surrey, track-sharing, tram, tramtrain, transit, Translink, UBC, UBC SkyTrain, Vancouver