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Oh, boy. The moment has come for this guy to start facing the music. Robert Pickton's trial could end up getting sensational by the international news media and could put the Canadian justice system in the negative light. Yes, it seems the world is watching this scenario because of another Canadian trial went through the same media circus recently and this particular one could take a couple of years to go through the whole process:

Link: CBC: Pickton Pleads Not Guilty As Jury Selection Begins

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Hey, guys, are you going to go to that new Tiffany's store that was just opened today? You want real luxury items, then come to this place. Toronto was the only Canadian city to have one, until now. This, according to the owners of the name, should make Vancouver one of the greatest shopping city centers in the world:

Link: Vancouver Province: Tiffany's Corner Of Vancouver

The Vancouver store is predicted to bring in 5% of the company's sales; a testament to the wealth in this city.

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Me too! But everything there is so expensive. Isn't like starting thing $95 or seomthing along the lines like that...?

Oh, offtopic, but are the forum's bold italic underline fonts, etc not working?

Not yet, deasine. In order to use such functions, you need to type the specific URL command for it for now. For example, for bold type, YOU need to type like this "[ b ]" at the beginning and "[ / b ]" at the end. In between, this is where you want your statement in bold type. Remember, I just separated the in-quotes like that, so I would not accidently create it and to show you here. And, those in-quotes are all together "in one" and individual. For italics, use the letter "i" here and the letter "u" for underline.

Anyway, it looks like you guys over there are going to have some repeat of that wacky weather again. I hope you guys are ready for it, if it does come.

Edited by Guardian
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No School

I had no school yesterday because of no power =P (vancouver) But the school across from us had power so they had to go to school!! teehee... lol... =P

BC Storm-Global National



Now there is two cm of snow outside...

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Rail revival dream won’t die

By Jeff Nagel

Black Press

Dec 17 2006

It appears technically possible to run a rapid transit rail service from Surrey’s Scott Road SkyTrain Station all the way to downtown Langley.

But it would be tricky and expensive.

Those are the key findings of consultants hired by TransLink to take a first look at the feasibility of reopening passenger rail service on the old electric interurban rail route, which linked Vancouver to Chilliwack until it was shut down in the 1950s.

Rough cost estimates range from $350 million for a diesel-powered heavy rail system with nine stations to $700 million for an electric light rail system that would be more frequent and allow 16 stations along the 27-kilometre route.

The study by DRL Solutions Inc. shows possible station locations and assumed frequent service – not the peak-only service offered by the West Coast Express from Vancouver to Mission.

The concept so far hasn’t been at the top of TransLink’s vision to serve projected growth in Surrey and Langley.

“It wouldn’t stand out as our first choice,” said Graeme Masterton, TransLink’s program manager of transit planning.

Instead, bus rapid transit, eventually replaced by light rail lines, are eyed for King George Highway and 104 Avenue, and potentially the Fraser Highway and Highway 1.

But reviving the historic interurban route has captivated rail fans and gained momentum.

Surrey city council voted this fall to hire its own project manager to explore a community rail option on the route. A volunteer group is restoring old interurban cars in hopes of launching a heritage run for tourists.

And even TransLink has said all ideas are on the table as it works with locals to draw up a new South of Fraser area plan to chart the future of transit as the sub-region grows from 600,000 now to one million by 2031.

“We said, ‘Okay, let’s have a look’,” said TransLink spokesman Ken Hardie. “What would it take to make it happen?”

A lot, it turns out.

The consultants tabled a long list of challenges:

- Railway operators may oppose the passenger rail idea, fearing it will hinder freight runs. The study assumes local Surrey freight trains would run at night only and trains that don’t stop locally will be rerouted via another line.

- The route through Surrey is flanked by two lines of B.C. Hydro transmission poles, which would be costly and complex to move if the line must be double-tracked.

- Heavy and growing congestion on the segment of the CPR line that would be used from Cloverdale to Langley.

- Tightened regulations are expected to run passenger service on a route shared with freight trains.

Advocates of the interurban route are undeterred.

“We did not see anything that was a show stopper,” said former Surrey and Langley Township planner Terry Lyster, who is a member of VALTAC (Valley Transportation Advisory Committee).

“Those are large numbers,” he said of the cost estimates. “But the numbers to build new crossings of the Fraser River are much larger.”

He noted the per kilometre costs are less than a quarter of construction costs for TransLink’s new $1.9-billion Canada Line or $1-billion proposed Evergreen Line.

Getting a fair shake in transit spending is one of the motives at play – some see TransLink sucking plenty of money out of Surrey and Langley residents and investing most of it in deluxe transit systems north of the river.

“They’ve run out of money and they’ve done nothing for the South of the Fraser area,” charged Peter Holt, executive director of the Surrey Board of Trade.

He and others suspect the transportation authority has engineered the study to inflate the costs and squash the interurban rail route aspirations.

Lyster also believes a community passenger rail service along the line can be started at less cost than projected.

They argue double tracking the existing Southern Railway of B.C. line through Surrey isn’t necessary as long as there are lots of stations with sidings where passenger trains would allow freight trains to pass.

And some say it could be done even more cheaply just as far as Cloverdale, truncating the more complex leg to Langley.

“It can technically be done,” said Allen Aubert, one of Surrey’s two representatives on TransLink’s South of Fraser planning committee. “I think it’s fairly positive.”

He sees a community railway powered by hydrogen fuel cells that could be a demonstration project in time for the 2010 Olympics, drawing support from the government’s Hydrogen Highway initiative.

“It could be quite unique and completely pollution free,” said Aubert.

One hydrogen fuel station already exists. It’s run by B.C. Hydro’s Powertech Labs in Surrey and is located on 88 Avenue, precisely where that road intersects the old interurban line.

TransLink and local rail advocates agree on at least one thing: people mainly need to move between neighbourhoods in Surrey and Langley, not commute to downtown Vancouver.

That’s backed up by TransLink research that shows more than 85 per cent of trips by residents south of the Fraser stay within the region.

Twice as many people commute from Surrey to Langley or vice-versa than go to downtown Vancouver.

Those stats persuaded TransLink that what’s needed isn’t a peak-hours only commuter service geared solely to get Surrey and Langley residents to the SkyTrain and on to Vancouver.

TransLink officials promise more work to explore the potential of the interurban route. The next step, to happen by the end of 2007, is to estimate potential ridership and revenue – key elements for determining the viability of a service.

Because higher density development would surely follow a light rail line, TransLink will also be looking to Surrey council for guidance.

Opposition from city hall would likely sink the route, officials hint, while strong support could catapult it into serious contention.


Heavy Rail – Diesel


- $363 million.

- Same as West Coast Express, with engines at each end of the train.

- 30-minute peak service. Hourly service off-peak.

- 40-minute run time, including stops.

- Nine stations.

- Peak hourly passenger capacity: 1,608.

Heavy Rail – Diesel Multiple Units:

- $356 million.

- ‘Budd’ cars, each self-propelled by diesel.

- 30-minute peak service. Hourly service off-peak.

- 40-minute run time, including stops.

- Nine stations.

- Peak hourly passenger capacity: 1,504.

- Project may be reliant on only a single supplier of cars.

Light Rail – Diesel Multiple Units:

- $592 million.

- Each articulated car self-propelled by diesel. Similar to Ottawa’s O-Train.

- 15-minute service.

- 42-minute run time, including stops.

- 16 stations.

- Peak hourly passenger capacity: 3,240.

- Top speed isn’t as fast as heavy rail, but light rail cars accelerate and brake much faster, cutting travel time and allowing more station stops.

Light Rail – Electric Multiple Units:

- $697 million.

- Each car with own electric power. Similar to light rail lines in Calgary, Portland.

- 15-minute service at all times.

- 42-minute run time, including stops.

- Nine stations.

- Peak hourly passenger capacity: 2,048.

- Electric option would be greenest solution.

Some costs like acquiring property, engineering and environmental studies aren’t included. But there is an extra 30 per cent for contingency.


The route runs initially southwest from the Scott Road SkyTrain station to the Scott Road corridor, then angles southeast to Cloverdale and east to Langley.

The following station sites were tentatively identified:

- Terminus at Scott Road SkyTrain station. Passenger rail trains to arrive at same level as SkyTrain.

- Three stations (only one if heavy rail is chosen) near 120 Street between 100 Avenue and 88 Avenue.

- Stations at 128 Street and 84 Avenue, 132 Street near 79th (light rail only), King George Highway and 72 Avenue, 144 Street at 68 Avenue (light rail only) and 152 Street at 65 Avenue.

- Two stations in Cloverdale near Highway 10, at 168 Street and 176 Street.

-In Langley, two to five stations on two different possible routes, depending if heavy or light rail is chosen. The light rail option shows five stations through the downtown core, ending at Kwantlen University College. The heavy rail route runs further north, closer to Langley Bypass and the Willowbrook Mall.

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It has been planned as such for that long? Geez, I thought it was in the 1980s that they first planned the idea of trying to connect Langley to Greater Vancouver in such a manner.

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I would prefer extending SkyTrain from King George Station to Willowbrook Mall via Fraser Highway. Many parts can go at level as there are many parks and undeveloped areas. Stations (from Willowbrook Mall):

- Willowbrook Mall

- 64th Avenue

- 184th Street

- Pacific Highway

- 188th Street

- 160th Street

- 88th Avenue

- 152nd Street

- Future 148th Street

- King George

- 7 min. per train

BUT that won't happen, so I prefer the O-Train method...

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in my opinion, SkyTrain should be extended 3-5 more stops in Surrey, and then a new LRT line should be built from the new SkyTrain terminus.

building 27-km worth of SkyTrain but not practicle. That would cost more than the Canada Line. And we're talking about building in open farmland. We'd have one huge mass undercapacity, money losing line.

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Bus to SkyTrain starts Monday

The long-awaited bus line to SkyTrain starts next Monday morning at rush hour.

That's when the new No. 791 takes off from Haney Place Mall and goes west to Braid SkyTrain station in New Westminster.

For commuters, it will save changing buses at Coquitlam Centre and mean only one bus to worry about. But they won't break any speed records getting there. Travel time for the rush-hour only service is estimated to take almost an hour. That's partly because the bus will make 16 stops in Maple Ridge, 12 in Pitt Meadows and another five west of the Pitt River Bridge as it travels along Lougheed Highway via the Mary Hill bypass.

Initially, the bus will run just during rush hours, every 30 minutes. The first bus out of Haney Place Mall will be at 4:35 a.m. and the last bus to leave Braid SkyTrain station is 7:20 p.m. The route out of Maple Ridge will follow Dewdney Trunk Road west to Maple Meadows Way, turn south, then go west on Hammond Road to Harris Road and back on to Lougheed Highway.

Maple Ridge Mayor Gordy Robson has criticized the route, saying it should be an express service straight along the highway with limited stops.


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Those are nice-looking trains. Anyway, mr.x, what is going on over there with your PM function? I can read your messages, but you cannot read mine? That's really strange.

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Those are nice-looking trains. Anyway, mr.x, what is going on over there with your PM function? I can read your messages, but you cannot read mine? That's really strange.

yea, it's weird. i can send pm's, but i can't read your pm nor my old pm's.

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yea, it's weird. i can send pm's, but i can't read your pm nor my old pm's.

Okay. That is just too weird for me. You may want to ask GBModerator about that. Anyway, just as a hint about what I have been trying to ask you, perhaps I could e-mail VANOC about a suggestion of mine.

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yea, it's weird. i can send pm's, but i can't read your pm nor my old pm's.

Okay. I have sent the e-mail message that I have been trying to get to you. I hope you see it this time.

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Thousands of trees blown down in city jewel

Cleanup in aftermath of big blow could take years, park workers say

Glenda Luymes, The Province; with a file from Canadian Press

Published: Monday, December 18, 2006

The buzz of chainsaws drowned out squirrel chatter in Stanley Park yesterday as crews cleared trees toppled in Friday's devastating early morning windstorm.

But while the park's main roads are expected to be opened tonight, it could take months -- even years -- to complete the cleanup.

"The jewel of the city is damaged," said park worker Jess Coomes, gesturing at an ugly mass of tangled trees, branches and bushes near Prospect Point. The timber once hid an ocean view, but yesterday the water was clearly visible.

"It's heartbreaking," said Coomes. "I don't know if it will ever be the same. This used to be forest. Now it looks like a clearcut."

Thousands of trees -- some more than a century old and dating to the days of Lord Stanley himself -- were felled by the wind, which changed direction a number of times and brought gusts of more than 100 km/h.

The wild weather also caused a small landslide west of the Lions Gate Bridge, burying a small section of the seawall in mud and woody debris. "The damage is unbelievable," said park supervisor Eric Meaghre. "I've worked here 34 years and I've never seen anything like this -- not even close."

Veteran forestry worker John Martin said the blowdown sent the park back to "Square 1," adding: "The worst of it is, we were just starting to get the park in good shape. We'd taken out a lot of diseased trees and done all new plantings. Now we have to start all over."

About 40 workers helped with the cleanup yesterday, some cutting short vacations to lend a hand.

The crews' first priority is opening the park's access roads by clearing the fallen trees and testing standing trees to make sure they remain rooted. Once the roads are clear, workers will start to tackle the seawall and trails. The site of the small landslide needs to be analyzed before any work can proceed.

Vancouver parks board chairman Ian Robertson said the cleanup cost won't be known until January, but some of it could be recouped by giving logging companies contracts to clear the fallen timber.

He said logging "might be the most cost-effective way to manage the cleanup. We don't have a contingency fund for this type of damage."

After the eastern portion of the park was opened yesterday morning, park-goers were able to see the devastation for themselves.

"It's horrible, just a disaster," said Karen Doglioni as she collected fallen greenery to decorate her home for Christmas. "I thought just a few trees had fallen down, but this is really sad."

Coomes said park workers checked on the known squatters in Stanley Park and all were "OK."

- Hydro crews continued to work at restoring power to customers across B.C. yesterday. About 28,000 homes remained without power, compared with 77,000 just 12 hours earlier. About 250,000 homes were originally without power following Friday's storm.


- - -


Friday's windstorm has drawn comparisons to Typhoon Freda, a freak storm that sent trees crashing onto cars along the Stanley Park causeway in October 1962.

One woman was killed and 42 others were trapped as violent winds flung giant fir trees across the road, according to an old Province newspaper article. People left their cars and began to run for safety, while police and firefighters tried to restore order. The historic storm also led to widespread power failures and looting in damaged Vancouver shops.

Typhoon Freda cost about $750 million in damage -- about $5 billion in today's dollars.

© The Vancouver Province 2006

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Stanley Park Report, Global News:


It's so ugly now... Global has used their chopper Global 1 (not in report) to take pictures over Stanley Park. It's not the same one as before...

Two died from storm:



Next system arriving on Weds. with winds that are going to be look at. It will not reach the wind speeds like last the last storm.


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