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NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby hobbyguy » Aug 27th, 2017, 4:01 pm

I would suggest the way to encourage folks to use transit is to make it actually feasible. Nobody wants to sit on buses for 2-3 hours each way to get to work and back.
We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Louis D. Brandeis

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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby mikest2 » Aug 27th, 2017, 4:55 pm

I see these vans regularly in Washington State, it would be a whole lot quicker and more direct than a bus. Fifteen passenger vans (four would be the same capacity as a bus) for people that live close to each other, and work in the same area. Might be a lot cheaper than coaches and drivers.
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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby hobbyguy » Aug 27th, 2017, 7:39 pm

I really think the first step is dedicated bus lanes. Easy to spend an hour - hour and a half driving to get from Langley to Sky Train and then not enough parking. So when I had to go downtown, I drove. Dedicated bus lanes to Sky Train stations would expand coverage, and then dedicated bus lanes to key areas of employment - like Annacis Island, Granville Island, River Road strip, Richmond industrial area. Dedicated bus lanes to SFU, BCIT, and UBC, plus to the airport.

As I said before, dedicated bus lanes are the cheapest investment alternative, plus drivers/buses in dedicated bus lanes get a LOT more passenger miles - so cheaper operating too. You get so much more out of a bus and driver, probably wouldn't have to buy many more buses or hire many drivers.
We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both. - Louis D. Brandeis

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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby 36Drew » Aug 27th, 2017, 8:43 pm

hobbyguy wrote:Dams truly in the lower mainland:

Buntzen - 73 MW
Stave Falls - 91 MW
Ruskin - 105 MW

By comparison, the Revelstoke dam is 2,480 MW

So ya, without the rest of the province the lower mainland goes dark.


That's more generating capacity than the Okanagan has. So without any of the province, Kelowna goes dark. Your point being, what, exactly? Want to start talking about how fighting BC Wildfires is funded, as well? You'll be hard-pressed to find anyone west of Hope who even knows where Joe Rich is. I doubt you'll hear anyone suggest that only those who benefit from having the fire fought should be the ones paying for it. How about the Okanagan Mountain Park fire? Or how about highway maintenance? How much does it cost to salt and sand the provincial highways of the Okanagan? Why would anyone in Vancouver care about the drive-ability of those roads in the winter? You know, the highway between Kelowna and Vernon? Maybe there should be a toll on that slice of road, since the only ones who use it are the locals?

As for power generation in the lower mainland - that map is from BC Hydro's own website, and is their definitive definition of "power generation in the lower mainland". I'll go with theirs versus yours, thanks. So that's a total of 1104 MW according to, you know, the people that actually generate power.
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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby rustled » Aug 27th, 2017, 10:06 pm

^^Might want to double check their site, 36Drew. That's not quite how BC Hydro describes that map. Here's their definition:
Where: The south coast, Lower Mainland and the Fraser Valley, stretching from Bridge River (near Lillooet) to Port Moody in the Lower Mainland.
Not being familiar enough with the area, I'd be interested in knowing if you feel the south coast and the Fraser Valley (Lilloet to Port Moody) would logically be included in the area we're discussing, the area most affected by the tolls the NDP promised to remove.

Thread seems to have gone off on a tangent, but what we were exploring is how much the promise to remove the tolls may have affected the vote in the population-dense Lower Mainland, what that promise will cost the rest of B.C., and how to determine what's fair in terms of how the various regions contribute to infrastructure in each others' regions. I've never lived in the Lower Mainland or the surrounding area. Living in a northern region, as well as the interior, it it was pretty clear the Lower Mainland wasn't particularly concerned with (or even aware of) how the decisions they made would affect the rest of the province. It's always been a topic of interest to me.

If the promise to eliminate tolls had a particularly strong influence on voters, and that's what swung those traditionally Liberal ridings, it's interesting to consider the repercussions for them (another form of penalty for driving to get commuters onto public transit?) and for the rest of the province (paying more to support Lower Mainland commuters, while we continue to wait for our own public transit options.)

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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby 36Drew » Aug 28th, 2017, 5:27 pm

rustled wrote:^^Might want to double check their site, 36Drew. That's not quite how BC Hydro describes that map. Here's their definition:
Where: The south coast, Lower Mainland and the Fraser Valley, stretching from Bridge River (near Lillooet) to Port Moody in the Lower Mainland.


Not being familiar enough with the area, I'd be interested in knowing if you feel the south coast and the Fraser Valley (Lilloet to Port Moody) would logically be included in the area we're discussing, the area most affected by the tolls the NDP promised to remove.


Port Moody is one of the three cities in the "Tri-Cities" area comprised of Port Moody, Coquitlam, and Port Coquitlam. Yes, it's logically included in the area we're discussing. Lillooet is a bit of a stretch - but BC Hydro seems to count it. However, the point was somebody said there's zero power-generation in the Lower Mainland, which is patently false.


rustled wrote:Thread seems to have gone off on a tangent, but what we were exploring is how much the promise to remove the tolls may have affected the vote in the population-dense Lower Mainland, what that promise will cost the rest of B.C., and how to determine what's fair in terms of how the various regions contribute to infrastructure in each others' regions.


The OP was not exploring how much the promise to remove tolls affected the vote - His was a "Why should the rest of the province have to pay for Vancouver's bridges" diatribe. That's a simple question - because 60% of the BC population (the Lower Mainland) pays for infrastructure that benefits the few. It's public infrastructure and public services. Nobody suggests that only Okanagan municipalities should foot the bill for, say, the Okanagan Mountain Park Fire. Imagine the impact to the area surrounding Kelowna if each pass on the bridge were to add $3.00 to each commute. Imagine if every Vernonite that working in Kelowna had to for out an extra $1500/year to drive over the new bypass in Winfield.

The suggestion (by others) that there are "alternate crossings" across the Fraser River are borne of ignorance and lack of any experience commuting in the GVRD. There's already a large volume of traffic that has diverted from the Port Mann bridge to the patullo bridge in order to avoid the tolls. That's lead to an increase in accidents(*) and a massive slowdown in traffic... and now Translink wants to build a replacement bridge based on those expanded numbers. It was also suggested this new bridge will be tolled. The George Massey tunnel is also to be replaced with a bridge, and it was planned to toll this bridge as well.

(*) Note: Semi-trucks drive over the Patullo. The bridge has a nasty curve at either end. Semi-trucks regularly cross lanes and squeeze out other traffic. It's a FusterCluck.

Not all traffic is commuter traffic. A lot of it is commercial and business traffic. There's also a good number of commuters that travel from the far end of the valley (Aldergrove, Abbotsford, Chilliwack) - far beyond the reach of Translink. Many do park in Mission and take the train (real train, not Skytrain) in, and then transfer. However, one has to weigh the costs of all-day parking and a monthly fare against the costs of commuting (about $400/month for parking and a monthly train ticket).

rustled wrote:I've never lived in the Lower Mainland or the surrounding area. Living in a northern region, as well as the interior, it it was pretty clear the Lower Mainland wasn't particularly concerned with (or even aware of) how the decisions they made would affect the rest of the province. It's always been a topic of interest to me.


Again - 60% of the BC population lives between the water's edge and Hope. That's nearly 3 million of a total population of 4.5 million. Let's put this into a slightly different perspective. I'm certain I can find comments on this forum suggesting that any service shortcomings or added expenditures that Islanders suffer is a trade-off that they make for living on the island, apart from the rest of the BC population. There's been plenty of discussion surrounding ferry service over the years.

Kelowna got a new bridge. Lake Country-Vernon got a new highway. Fintry has had upgrades to Westside Road. Highway 97 between Peachland and Summerland has been upgraded. I've been away for 4 years now, so I'm certain there's been additional improvements - but it's not like the Okanagan hasn't received its fair share of infrastructure upgrades to support a rather small population - some of those upgrades being very specific and local (*cough*Fintry*cough*)

rustled wrote:If the promise to eliminate tolls had a particularly strong influence on voters, and that's what swung those traditionally Liberal ridings, it's interesting to consider the repercussions for them (another form of penalty for driving to get commuters onto public transit?) and for the rest of the province (paying more to support Lower Mainland commuters, while we continue to wait for our own public transit options.)


Did that influence voters? Damned straight it did. Translink has no business "owning" bridges and roads. Would you be okay with BC Transit owning and operating the W.R. Bennett Bridge? You want to fix-the-stupid? Demand that the BC Government (I don't care if it's NDP/Libs/Greens/Cons) actually take ownership of and responsibility for management of public transportation infrastructure. Demand that our government leaders don't blow a wad of cash on a fancy and unproven bridge design (those ice bombs are real, btw...). Demand that those building our infrastructure don't engage in waste that allows for a 33% budget overrun (*cough*Golden Ears Bridge*cough*).
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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby rustled » Aug 28th, 2017, 6:29 pm

I can see why you'd suggest including Port Moody with the Lower Mainland.

You are quite correct in that there is somewhat more than zero power generation in the Lower Mainland. I'll leave it to those who are truly passionate about precisely how much more than zero to do the math.

Yes, I can see your perspective on how important it is to recognize how much more of the population of B.C. lives in the Lower Mainland area than in all the vast area east of Hope.

Thanks for your suggestions. Personally and in terms of my sense of civic responsibility, demands around tolls and public transportation infrastructure are rather low on my radar. That's not to say it's not important. To my mind, there is an incredible amount of waste due to bureaucracy, mismanagement and over-regulation in most areas of government. Each successive government cleans up some of it and creates more of it, largely because that's what voters seem to demand: more services provided by the government, more regulatory involvement from their government, less personal responsibility, less individual responsibility for our neighbours, and far less individual responsibility to consider, at all, any of the folk who live in the nether regions of this vast province.

There's a lot of infrastructure inequity as a result of the population imbalance you've clarified for us, and the distances involved, and I'd suggest transportation inequity's no easier to "fix" than the inequities we see in health services, education services, welfare and disability services, the delivery of energy, etc.

Your response here shows me that yes, there certainly are folk who would see tolls on the infrastructure they use as an important enough issue to determine how they'll vote. Thanks for the insight.

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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby LordEd » Aug 29th, 2017, 5:52 am

https://www.biv.com/article/2017/8/mood ... -negative/
An analyst at that branch of Moody’s Corp. (NYSE:MCO) released a statement on August 28 saying, “the government’s plan, as an isolated action, is credit negative as it will increase taxpayer supported debt and remove a dedicated line of revenue for debt repayment.”

Analyst Adam Hardi went on to say that “we assume this action will be taken in addition to other actions to be announced in the upcoming September budget update. Any ratings impact would therefore need to take into account other possible measures that would be announced at that time.”
So will the ndp have a plan in the budget update? No need hobby, we know your answer.

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Re: NDP removing tolls on Vancouver bridges

Postby Dizzy1 » Aug 30th, 2017, 8:51 pm

Good - shouldn't have been any to begin with.
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