Rapid bus a go, despite lack of funding source

Vice-chair of TransLink Mayors' Council says using property taxes not ideal, but possible

Peter Fassbender

Peter Fassbender

Nobody knows where the funding will come from yet, but a rapid bus will be crossing the new Port Mann bridge and using the Langley Park and Ride, says B.C.’s Transportation Minister Blair Lekstrom.

“The last time we met with the minister, he said clearly to build the Port Mann, a bus lane and the park and ride and to not have a rapid bus makes no sense whatsoever,” said Langley City Mayor Peter Fassbender, who is vice-chair of the Mayors’ Council for TransLink.

“We still have a $30 million gap and we still have the outcome of the audit where we may find additional savings,” Fasssbender said.

“Either way, the minister said he will work with us to find a way to get the rapid bus running. After all, the province put in significant money on the Number One for dedicated bus lanes, and not to use them?”

Not to mention the province’s multi-million dollar Park and Ride and Transit Exchange at 202 Street interchange, including a dedicated underpass for the rapid bus to get onto the freeway.

Fassbender said the rapid bus won’t just be used by Langley residents. There are plenty of people commuting to Langley for work.

Fassbender is so passionate about the rapid line that he is even willing to “kick in property tax for the next two years.”

“I would support that even though I don’t want to use property tax as the way to fund TransLink,” he said.

He said there needs to be a sustainable, long term plan to fund TransLink.

He is still an advocate of road pricing (tolling) over using property tax.