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Evergreen Line: North East Sector LRT


mr.x
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1) i was always in favour of this LRT project going away, SkyTrain instead.

2) if they can't find more than the $600 million they already have (total LRT cost is $800+ million, they have yet to find another $200 million), then build SkyTrain with what you can get from $600 million. A second future phase would later mean more stations on the first phase segment and the extension to Coquitlam City Centre.

3) when the M-Line is extended to Broadway, stations will for sure be located at Finning (False Creek Flats), Main Street & Broadway, Cambie & Broadway (major transfer to Canada Line), Oak Street & Broadway, and Granville and Broadway. The City and Translink have agreed to this. The guideway would be built underground on 10th avenue (because there are huge utilities under Broadway such as the GVRD trunk sewer, would be expensive to remove and build elsewhere), but station entrances would be located on Broadway.....only small escalators and staircases as well as ramps will be needed as 10th avenue is on a higher elevation than Broadway. A station at Arbutus is in question. Otherwise, the remaining M-Line commute to UBC would be by rapid bus......SkyTrain to UBC is for now too expensive, perhaps when there's a lot more ridership an extension would be justified.

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EVERGREEN LINE LIKELY TO BE CANCELLED

The project is likely to be dead. Construction costs has escalated to over a billion (up from $800 million) if we attempt to complete it by December 2009. Translink is proposing to extend the completion date to September 2011 to bring the cost down to $953 million but given that would involve a much longer construction time and Kevin Falcon has indicated he does not want any construction during the Olympics, which will mean it likely will not be permitted. Also, unless they secure the funding gap for the $953 million and get this "approved regardless of the outcome" by October, given that Kevin Falcon is going to kill Translink by spring of 2007, I doubt this GVRD driven rail transit project is going to see any light of day.

Nevermind $953 million, they couldn't even find $800 million. Currently, only $600 million in funding has been secured.

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Yeah, although I think transportation in BC is really important, I don't think Falcon is doing a good job. If any one of the BC Liberals (go BC Libs), I think Falcon should leave.

I still prefer SkyTrain over LRT.

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I know we all know this, but this is an update in today's 24 Hours Newspaper:

TransLink's revenue falling short of demands

By IRWIN LOY, 24 HOURS

TransLink is now short $380 million in its bid to build the northeast Evergreen line.

That's $150 million more than its most recent estimate, and it's not clear where the shortfall will be made up.

Current estimates have the rapid transit line's budget pegged at around $1 billion. TransLink has committed $400 million in funding, while the province has promised $170 million.

Mayors in the region's northeast sector recently lobbied the province for more, but Transport Minister Kevin Falcon has pooh-poohed the idea.

Any additional funds from cash strapped TransLink will come at the expense of other projects.

Already the Evergreen, connecting Burnaby, Coquitlam and Port Moody, appears to have taken a backseat to the Canada Line.

Both were supposed to have been completed for 2009, but now TransLink staff are recommending the Evergreen be set back to 2011.

They say the original 2009 completion date is too aggressive.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Cut the Evergreen Idea and do think about it later. Spend money on the most important project know, the Canada Line, extend their platforms. Just do an enhanced B-Line for know. With more buses, and with better Bus Shelters (like the ones on #98 route), create bus only lanes, etc.

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^ the LRT would've been quite slow though....35 minutes, no faster than the 97 B-Line....only advantage is a larger vehicle capacity. they've eliminated all of the train traffic signal priorities.

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all the same its a shame if they cancel the project. The main reason why i like the evergreen line is because they can easily extent it any where they want in the north east sector. Of course a skytrain line would be much faster.

instead of building an overpriced streetcar line, why not just expand the 97 B-line....buses can go anywhere!!

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Perhapes the way to save the project is build it through the south option? I seem to remember when they were considering building it there were two alignments available. It would be faster since it would go along the cp rail tracks(not in traffic as much), and no expensive tunnel too. I think they axed the south option because it missed port moody or something. Anyhow its probly still an option though i doubt that translink would do it.

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Perhapes the way to save the project is build it through the south option? I seem to remember when they were considering building it there were two alignments available. It would be faster since it would go along the cp rail tracks(not in traffic as much), and no expensive tunnel too. I think they axed the south option because it missed port moody or something. Anyhow its probly still an option though i doubt that translink would do it.

True, but again, this would have to go through public consultation process, berucracy, and all that political stuff. Either way, I still prefer SkyTrain rather than LRT.

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True, but again, this would have to go through public consultation process, berucracy, and all that political stuff. Either way, I still prefer SkyTrain rather than LRT.

either way public consultation and bureaucracy would still have to happen.

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KILL THE PROJECT. I looked at the open house poster boards again and it looks like only 2 or 3 intersections will have LRT traffic signal priority. That's down from nearly every intersection with LRT signal priority in the plans earlier this month!

That would mean the Evergreen Line, an LRT, would be no better than the existing 97 B-Line's rapid bus end to end travel time of 35 minutes. The Evergreen Line will also likely take 35 minutes. What an overpriced streetcar.

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That was obvious from the start... just enhance the rapid bus service

not really. the original plans called for complete traffic signal priority which would've gived the line a 20 minute travel time. that was my borderline for whether or not i would support the project (obviously, i would prefer SkyTrain).....but once they said a few intersections wouldn't have traffic signal priority i've been dead against the line. and now, nearly all intersections aren't traffic signal prioritized.

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  • 2 weeks later...

July 27, 2006

Evergreen Line - Project Status

July 19, 2006 TransLink Board Decision:

At its July meeting, the TransLink Board voted to 'extend' the construction period for the Evergreen Line. This extension will reduce the estimated cost of the project by $107 million because certain costs involved with an accelerated construction schedule, including the need to purchase two tunnel boring machines instead of one, will be eliminated.

Media reports quote various officials as endorsing this decision:

Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon called TransLink's decision to bump

the finish date "wise... given the construction cost pressures." "To go into

with a major project right now probably wouldn't be in the best interest of

all the marketplace taxpayers funding it," he said.

NDP house leader Mike Farnworth, Port Coquitlam- Burke Mountain MLA

said he understands why the construction dates have to be re-jigged

Tri-City mayors Maxine Wilson, Scott Young and Joe Trasolini said the

2007-'09 timeline was aggressive and the costs too high. As a result,

construction will begin in 2007 and end in 2011 - and the cost will still be

$153 million more than the original budget.

Construction on the project is still planned to start basically on schedule in September of 2007, but with the Board's decision, the line will be completed and in service by September of 2011 instead of December of 2009.

Cost and Financing:

Work on the 'preliminary design' of the Evergreen Line is wrapping up, with a round of open houses scheduled for September to give the public an opportunity to see how the project has been shaped by three rounds of consultation. The updated cost estimate for the line is $953 million -- this is after the savings of $107 million that resulted from the decision to extend the construction period.

Currently, TransLink has committed $400 million -- an amount that the GVRD approved adding to our debt cap. TransLink will require $40 million in revenue per year to service

this debt. The province has committed $170 million. This leaves a funding gap of $383 million, and discussions continue on additional provincial and/or federal funding for the project.

October 2006 Board Meeting:

In October, the Evergreen Line project is due to come back to the TransLink Board for an approval to proceed. Prior to this meeting, TransLink will provide senior governments

With a comprehensive business case for the project in order to attract the required funding.

TransLink Chair Malcolm Brodie says the Evergreen Line is a priority and all efforts will be made to get the extra funding in place so that the project can be built.

And notice Translink changed their website a little bit:

http://www.translink.bc.ca/

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  • 1 month later...

Latest LRT design adds $20 million

By Sarah Payne The Tri-City News

Sep 15 2006

TransLink’s latest plans for the Evergreen Line could send it underground to pass through the Lougheed Highway/Pinetree Way intersection — and add another $20 million to the price tag.

It makes sense from an urban design perspective, but the added cost comes at a time when faith in the system’s fruition is faltering. Its in-service date has been pushed back two years to 2011, and now the provincial and federal governments are asking to see a business case before they’ll decide whether to help close the now $400-million funding gap.

And when TransLink staff present their preferred design to the board on Oct. 18, they’ll also be asking for up to $20 million to embark on the detailed design phase.

Port Moody Mayor Joe Trasolini, a TransLink board member, balked at the prospect of shelling out more money when the entire funding picture isn’t laid out, and was outraged about requests for a business case — what he considers a “stall tactic.”

“What if [the board] doesn’t approve to fund the detailed design phase, because the whole funding package is not in place? It’s a very real possibility.”

Determined that the northeast sector will not be passed over again for rapid transit, Trasolini has stated he’ll prevent any new development in Port Moody unless the line is built, and he won’t spend another $20 million for detailed design without more encouragement from the federal and provincial governments that they’re taking the need for Evergreen seriously.

“The reason to build the Millennium Line from Lougheed Town Centre to Vancouver depended in a major way on ridership coming from the Evergreen Line. That should defuse any excuse for the need for a business plan.”

The business case is all over Tri-City, he added, evident in the traffic on St. John’s Street, the Newport Village high-rises and Coquitlam’s plans to build a new city of 30,000 on its slopes.

“It’s unfortunate that TransLink staff would ask the board to approve $20 million when they’re not sure of the funding.”

Trasolini indicated he’ll vote against TransLink staff’s recommendations unless there are more funding assurances.

“How would it look, further down the line, if the funding is not there and we’ve gone and spent $20 million for detailed design? It’s put me in a very awkward position... and I’ll be thinking long and hard before I spend one more dollar of taxpayer money.”

Costs for the light rapid transit system linking Coquitlam and Burnaby through Port Moody, have spiralled to $970 million (with Coquitlam’s underground portion), or $170 million more than originally anticipated, but TransLink staff are optimistic that their presentation to the board Oct. 18 will be successful.

Case to continue

Funding for the Evergreen Line is still at $400 million from TransLink, and $170 million from the B.C. government.

Sheri Plewes, TransLink’s vice president of capital management and engineering, said funding is available from the Municipal Integration Fund, which the province and TransLink contribute equally to, and the business case is just a matter of putting the information that already exists into a format that’s used by governments to make such significant decisions on spending.

“It’s within our capital to continue working on the detailed design,” she stated. “We’ve come to a place where we can have serious, fact-based conversations with the federal and provincial governments; this is not the time to lose momentum.

“We’re saying to the board, ‘Don’t lose faith now.’”

In 2003, the Evergreen Line from Lougheed Highway onto Pinetree Way was supposed to be grade-separated — either along an elevated track or below ground. Keeping it at grade, and travelling in the middle of Lougheed, was and is considered too much of a traffic disruption.

TransLink now considers the elevated option too visually unappealing, and is promoting the below-grade plan. Heading eastbound, the train would be travelling at-grade in the centre of Barnet Highway and would duck underground before the Johnson Street/Mariner Way intersection.

It would then angle slightly to pass Johnson on the south side of Barnet to a “sunken plaza” type of station at the TransLInk bus loop and West Coast Express station, similar to the Burrard Street SkyTrain station. The train would dip again to go underneath Pinetree, and continue underground before popping up near Lincoln Avenue.

“It would be difficult to mix the train and car traffic at Lougheed and Pinetree,” said Paul Lee, transportation manager for Coquitlam. “It’s the busiest intersection in Coquitlam... so underground is the preferred way to go.”

Coquitlam Mayor Maxine Wilson agreed.

“TransLink has conveyed to us it’s slightly more expensive but it’s the least invasive approach, and it maximizes our ability to have traffic flow through that intersection. I’m pleased they think it’s the design we need.”

Coquitlam council recently voted to push for a 2009 completion date, despite its $107-million price tag; Wilson voted in favour of the motion and later acknowledged while it’s unreasonable, it’s also a good pressure tactic.

“I’m very confident the funding will be available in fall 2006; we’re counting on James Moore (Port Moody-Coquitlam-Port Coquitlam MP) to help us secure funding and our local MLAs to help in the partnership with the province. Our residents have waited long enough, and we don’t want to be pushed aside again.”

Group lobbies for SkyTrain rather than light rail

Brooke Larsen, Coquitlam Now

Published: Thursday, September 21, 2006

COQUITLAM - Council should ditch light rail transit in favour of SkyTrain technology, according to members of Citizens for Appropriate Evergreen Transportation.

"I believe this council is getting what we call 'streetcar mentality,' " CAET representative Douglas Mazur said during a presentation.

Mazur said CAET members are worried about cost overruns in the proposed light rail line serving Coquitlam and Port Moody, adding he believes SkyTrain technology is cheaper.

"How can you continue to spend money [on light rail] when the funds are unsecured?" Mazur asked council. "Spending continues unabated to the point of no return."

Mazur also worried about the effects of street-level rapid transit on vehicle traffic, particularly in the case of emergencies. "We wonder who has the right of way, a fire truck or a streetcar?" he asked councillors.

Coun. Lou Sekora told Mazur he had "learned a lot" from the presentation.

Council gave its unanimous support earlier to a resolution urging TransLink to open the Evergreen Line in 2009.

The resolution also calls on the provincial government to contribute about $600 million to the $953-million project.

The Evergreen Line will come before the TransLink board for approval again in October.

© The Vancouver Sun 2006

Light rail wrong for GVRD technology

Re: "LRT debate continues," Wednesday, Sept. 6.

Because we have visited Strasbourg and many European cities is not a reason that we are so certain that light rail transit (streetcars) is wrong for our GVRD technology. Those attractive old cities seem to be well served by the rail and overhead wire system. Closer to home, however, Portland ratepayers recently turned down a referendum that was to extend their streetcar system.

If the 11 kilometres of streetcar line are so right for us, then why did the 22 kilometres of Canada Line to YVR have to be SkyTrain? The cannibalization of the West Coast Express and other nonsense on inadequate ridership were untrue then (2004) as they are now.

As well, the ambiguous wording of Port Moody's referendum on this subject was interpreted to mean something it doesn't.

When the operations and maintenance costs (approximately six acres on Barnet Highway and a three-storey building) are budgeted and properly accounted for over the years, the results show that the per-rider cost is less expensive on SkyTrain. The cost of our Evergreen Line has wavered considerably over the last 18 months. Recently, it was set at less than $1 billion.

The provincial government has placed the governance of this under review. It has also asked for a business plan before it proceeds. It looks like it could take 18 months for anything to happen, so we mark time. There is no debate. Everyone knows that all we want is our democratic right. Let's start all over again, but this time, let's do it right.

Cliff and Hat VanAlstyne

Port Moody

published on 09/20/2006

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  • 3 weeks later...

New report being presented to the Translink Board regarding the Evergreen Line. Note that the diagram for the Coquitlam Central Station appears to include a switch for a branch to Port Coquitlam.

http://www.translink.bc.ca/files/board_fil..._06/4.4Case.pdf

And it includes this diagram of future transit lines/routes in the region - personally, I think use of the word "extension" for the M-Line west and Surrey suggests using the same technology (Skytrain). Note that the Evergreen Line Extension to Port Coquitlam is not on the diagram - so it would rank behind the other two extensions.

transitplans2006ih2.jpg

Note also this report regarding the purchase of 34 new MKII cars for delivery in 2009.

http://www.translink.bc.ca/files/board_fil...4.5SkyTrain.pdf

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Yes! finally! The diagram pretty much displays what i would like to see happen to transit in the GVRD as well. B-Line to SFU, Surrey Expansion, Skytrain to UBC. nice!

hopefully both the UBC extension and Evergreen Line will be entirely SkyTrain. for the future 41st Avenue and Hastings rapid transit lines, I'm thinking streetcar with traffic signal priority and possibly it's own lanes during peak hours. Also in planning, the Arbutus streetcar and a rapid transit line along the north shore of the Fraser River from Marine Drive Station to New Westminster Station.

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I was watching Global News today and it seems like there's a lot of pressure, finacially, being put on this line. Perhaps it will be cancelled for a second time :blink:

BTW > Those future lines look impressive! They will be an asset to our city when they are built. Do you guys think the Surrey line will be built first or the millenium line extension? Although I would prefer the mellenium line to be extended as it would personally be more of a use me, I think the Surrey one would be built first.

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I was watching Global News today and it seems like there's a lot of pressure, finacially, being put on this line. Perhaps it will be cancelled for a second time :blink:

BTW > Those future lines look impressive! They will be an asset to our city when they are built. Do you guys think the Surrey line will be built first or the millenium line extension? Although I would prefer the mellenium line to be extended as it would personally be more of a use me, I think the Surrey one would be built first.

Well, apparently the reason why Evergreen isn't SkyTrain is because it would take ridership away from the West Coast Express....and apparently, the WCE can't lose money/ridership or it will have to pay huge penalities to CN Rail.

The Millennium Line West extension will be built first.....the 99 B-Line can't hold it in much longer, it's already extremely congested even with 120-passenger buses departing every 60 secs at peak hours, carrying 60,000 people.

The Surrey extension most likely won't be SkyTrain, but will be a B-Line service at first and eventually streetcar/LRT.

Sullivan wonders why Broadway to UBC SkyTrain route requires further study

COQUITLAM (NEWS1130) - Vancouver's Mayor is wondering why more studies need to done regarding the need for SkyTrain down West Broadway to UBC. Sam Sullivan says the level of demand along the corridor seems obvious already. "What would stop us from just moving forward and getting into the design so that we can be ready as soon as possible when more funding should come?"

That's a sentiment being echoed by his Non Partisan Association colleague, Councillor Peter Ladner who says the project should move ahead full steam. "We should be pushing ahead, preparing ourselves, being ready if and when senior government funding arrives."

TransLink is planning a study on expanding SkyTrain to UBC and the research is expected to get underway in the new year. TransLink staff say a previous study of the corridor doesn't take into account ridership factors like the U-Pass and the Canada Line. SkyTrain was supposed to have been expanded west along Broadway by this year.

from news 1130.com

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Studies equals waste of money. It's obvious that the ridership would be high. The amount of people using the B-Line supports enough of it. M-Line ridership will heavily jump after the extension. Personally, I think this should be built with the Canada Line, but evidently, that won't happen.

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