Monday, February 11, 2008

Delta, Surrey BC Gateway Project Insanity: Complain to your MLA!

Both Environment Canada and Health Canada have issued reports that are critical of the Gateway Project that includes the twinning of the Port Mann Bridge and creation of a perimeter road through parts of Burns Bog in Delta BC. The federal reports say the provincial government has not shown any evidence that freeway expansion will solve traffic congestion.

Independent transport economist Stephen Rees says one of the obvious mistakes made by the province is not making a train line to the Valley a priority. "If you want to see transit oriented development, you have to have the transit first. Not as an afterthought or a promise, or a possibly 'we'll get around to it when there's enough people', which is what we're hearing from the province."

Rees says the cost benefit analysis done by the province would not be acceptable as a term paper from a first year student, let alone justify the expenditure of billions of dollars of public funds.

Health Canada says the province has released artificially low air quality impact estimates. In its report of a Gateway Project study on air pollution, Health Canada says "the misdirected focus of this assessment is inappropriate and may be misleading to the general reader."

Rees says the BC government now needs to rethink this Gateway proposal, "And work towards a truly sustainable regional transportation and land use plan with municipal and regional governments. This requires putting transit first."

For more information, visit LivableRegion.ca or GatewaySucks.org or Stephen Rees's Blog.