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Leadership Surrey Dialogue: Transportation Future

October 6, 2015

On September 30th, Lee and Mohan attended the Surrey Board of Trade’s Leadership Surrey Dialogue: Surrey’s Transportation Future event, with a focus on next steps for Surrey to improve its transit and transportation system.

Three young innovators were recognized for their contributions to improve the future of transportation in the region followed by a panel of speakers who discussed the immediate, mid-term and long-term transportation needs of Surrey.

Mayor Linda Hepner spoke at this occasion and announced her commitment to providing light rail transportation to Surrey despite the failed translink referendum. According to her, light rail is a more viable option for Surrey as the initial capital investment would be $1 Billion less than equivalent extension of the skytrain service. The route of the transit connection is to be from Fraser Heights to Newton exchange through the Guildford area. She listed some form of mobility pricing as the likely method to deliver the regional share of funding for the $2.1-billion light rail network.

The former BC premiere Michael Harcourt urged Surrey to be bold as far as implementing the vision of transportation and to avoid any half measures. He stated that it rested on the government’s shoulders to make the hard decisions regarding funding for transportation rather than initiating a referendum to get answers.

SFU City Programme Director Gordon Price opined that Metro Vancouver had lost a fantastic opportunity to come to terms with its transportation deficiencies, when they voted no in its Transportation Referendum. He supported the Mayor’s plans for a light rail for Surrey but warned that in reality, the light rail operating costs would end up higher than projected and force transit service cuts elsewhere in the region. He too firmly opposed the idea to hold any referendum to decide the process of funding transportation improvements.

For a recap of the event, click here to have a look at some of the photos.