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  NEWS RELEASE 

For Immediate Release

2008OTP0003-000020

Jan. 14, 2008

Office of the Premier

Ministry of Transportation

 

TRANSIT PLAN TO HELP B.C. REACH GREENHOUSE GAS TARGETS

 


VANCOUVER – Premier Gordon Campbell and Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon unveiled a $14-billion public transit plan to be completed by 2020 today. It is a key measure in the Province’s greenhouse gas reduction plan, touching every region of the province.

 

            “Our new plan will double transit ridership by increasing choice for people around the province, with new fleets, green technology, new lines and new innovative services like RapidBus BC,” Campbell said. “The plan focuses on safe, comfortable, reliable services that will highlight green technologies and will reshape our communities by encouraging integration of work, home and recreational activities. It provides people with the choices they need to make a difference.”

 

“One new transit line was committed to in each of the previous three decades; this plan delivers three lines in the next decade,” said Falcon. 

 

The plan calls for $14 billion in investments, including $11.1 billion in new funding, with the Province committing $4.75 billion, and the remainder from partners, including the federal government, TransLink and local governments.

 

Increased security measures will enhance transit safety. Electronic gates and closed-circuit cameras will be installed at rapid transit and new RapidBus stations. A smart-card system for rapid transit and buses, which users can reload at vending machines or on the Internet, will be implemented.

 

“This plan will provide fast, reliable, green transit that acts as a catalyst to change the nature and form of all our communities – urban, suburban and rural,” said Campbell. “As more and more British Columbians live and work near transit, urban form will shift, which will lead to lower energy use, increasing energy efficiency, and a lighter environmental footprint.”

 

A cumulative total of 4.7 million tonnes in transportation greenhouse gases (GHG) will be reduced by 2020. The GHG savings will be about the equivalent of parking all the cars and light trucks in Metro Vancouver for a full year by getting British Columbians out of their cars and onto transit.

 

The plan calls for:  

 

“The transit plan sets out innovative, integrated, customized solutions for individual communities to keep people and goods moving efficiently in B.C. as part of our broader transportation strategy,” said Falcon. “Increased transit will allow people more choice, and often time savings. For example, during peak periods, transit riders travelling between Coquitlam Centre and Vancouver International Airport can save more than an hour every day compared to drivers.”  

 

The Transit Plan complements other key provincial transportation initiatives such as the Cariboo Connector, Trans-Canada Highway upgrades like the Kicking Horse Canyon, roads to support the mountain pine beetle harvest, and projects in Metro Vancouver such as the Gateway Program. This announcement is in addition to the recently announced $180-million investment establishing rapid bus service over the Gateway Program’s twinned Port Mann Bridge. 

 

For more information or a copy of the Provincial Transit Plan, visit
www.th.gov.bc.ca/Transit_Plan/index.html  on the Internet.

 

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 1 backgrounder(s) attached.

 

 

Media

contact:

Tamara Little

Communications Director

Ministry of Transportation

250 387-7787

250 889-1825

Dale Steeves

Communications Director

Office of the Premier

250 387-6605

 

For more information on government services or to subscribe to the Province’s news feeds using RSS, visit the Province’s website at www.gov.bc.ca.