A 10 per cent increase in bus service in Metro Vancouver is promised as part of a first phase transit expansion plan, if approved by mayors in November.

A 10 per cent increase in bus service in Metro Vancouver is promised as part of a first phase transit expansion plan, if approved by mayors in November.

Public’s chance on TransLink’s transit expansion plan

Small hikes in property tax, fares proposed, creation of new development charge if Metro Vancouver mayors vote in favour

TransLink’s plan to expand transit service – funded by an increase in TransLink property taxes and fares as well as the creation of a new development cost charge – has now gone out for public comment.

Metro Vancouver mayors will vote on the plan in November.

It would provide for a near-immediate expansion of transit service, including more frequent SkyTrain, buses and SeaBuses early in 2017, and new B-line express bus routes in future years along with increased West Coast Express capacity.

The first phase of the 10-year vision would also advance the design of future new rapid transit lines in Surrey and along the Broadway corridor in Vancouver.

Open houses on the plan (all from 4 to 8 p.m.) are set for Oct. 18 in Maple Ridge (ACT Art Centre lobby), Oct. 19 in Vancouver (Collingwood Neighbourhood House multipurpose room), Oct. 20 in Surrey (Chuck Bailey Rec Centre), and Oct. 24 in Richmond (Kwantlen Polytechnic University – Melville Centre for Dialogue room A).

For more details on the plan, including benefits for each sub-region, and a feedback questionnaire see tenyearvision.translink.ca. Oct. 31 is the deadline to comment.

An average home assessed at $678,000 would pay $190 a year in dedicated property taxes to TransLink next year (an increase of $3 over and above the automatic annual increase for TransLink of about $2) and that would increase a further $3 a year thereafter.

For a $1 million property that translates to $285 in TransLink property tax in 2017 with $4 annual increases.

The most discomfort with the plan and its property tax increases so far have come from mayors of cities with high land values, such as West Vancouver.

Under the plan, the average business assessed at $2.6 million would pay $3,021 next year and see the TransLink property tax rise a further $45 each year.

The proposed fare increases would require riders who now pay $2.10 for one zone of travel with stored value on a Compass card to pay $2.20 in 2017 and $2.40 by 2019. One zone monthly passes would climb from $91 to $98 over the same period.

Details of the planned development cost charge are still to be determined, but TransLink has suggested it would aim to raise up to $20 million a year by charging $700 to $2,000 extra on new housing units and $0.50 per square foot on new commercial buildings.

The TransLink plan suggests developers would aim to pay less for land in response, and not simply add simply increase their prices for new homes.

“There would be no negative impact on housing affordability” at the rates contemplated, it says, adding fees could be reduced or eliminated for certain types of affordable housing.

The new plan for transit expansion follows the defeat of a referendum last year on a 0.5 per cent regional sales tax to fund what was then a one-third regional share requirement.

Since then, the federal government has pledged to cover half of capital costs, reducing the regional share to 17 per cent.

Phase One 10-Year Vision Public Consultation Display Boards by Jeff Nagel on Scribd

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Flip City’s Elise Van Harmelen at the 2017 Langley Invitational at the Langley Events Centre. Flip City is one of 11 local sports groups getting COVID relief funding. (Langley Advance Times files)
Langley sports clubs get COVID relief funding

The province is giving cash to groups hit hard by shutdowns

The first tree – a Sitka spruce – in the second phase of Fort Langley’s Memory Grove was planted on the morning of Thursday, Jan. 21. (Kurt Alberts/Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Second phase of Memory Grove planted at Fort Langley

The first trees started going into the ground on Thursday, Jan. 21

B.C. MInisterial Order 425 and the list of permitted exemptions to wearing face masks in retail businesses and other public spaces. (B.C. Government website)
LETTER: Langley newspaper criticized for doing story on maskless encounter

Local letter writer shares opinion on video of unmasked man in grocery store

Two schools in the Langley School District have reported COVID-19 exposures. (Joti Grewal/Langley Advance Times)
Two Langley schools added to COVID-19 exposure list

Public Health will only contact those who were exposed

Jessica Simpson speaking to Langley Township council as a delegate in 2019. (Township of Langley/Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Health privacy breach claimed by controversial Langley woman

Jessica Simpson is suing Fraser Health over an alleged breach in her health info

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

A specialized RCMP team is investigating a suspicious trailer, which might have connections to the illicit drug trade, found abandoned outside a Cache Creek motel. (Photo credit: <em>Journal</em> files)
Police probe U-Haul trailer linked to illicit drugs left outside Cache Creek motel

Hazardous materials found inside believed to be consistent with the production of illicit drugs

Premier John Horgan leaves the podium following his first press conference of the year as he comments on various questions from the media in the Press Gallery at B.C. Legislature in Victoria, B.C., on Monday, January 13, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
Interprovincial travel restrictions a no-go, Horgan says after reviewing legal options

The B.C. NDP government sought legal advice as concerns of travel continue

Gem Lake Top, at Big White Ski Resort, seen at Jan. 8. (Big White Ski Resort)
Big White cancels $7.3M in lift tickets, accommodations due to COVID-19 orders

Since November, the ski resort has been forced to make several changes

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

Most Read