Vision for Surrey light rail transit. (Submitted photo).

Surrey mayor says light rail announcement for Surrey ‘final piece of puzzle’

“It’s going to be a real game-changer for Surrey,” Hepner told the Now-Leader.

Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner is lauding Friday’s announcement that the provincial government and mayors’ council has agreed on a plan to fund the “regional share” for phase two of a 10-year transportation project featuring construction of light rail in Surrey-Newton-Guildford.

She’s calling it the “final piece of the puzzle.”

“It’s going to be a real game-changer for Surrey,” Hepner told the Now-Leader after the announcement. “Really exciting. We’ve been trying to close that gap for several months now. This gap is what we really need to have finalized.”

Hepner expects construction to be fully underway in 2019.

Surrey Board of Trade is also pleased.

“Our rationale is that Surrey is the destination, not a thoroughfare to somewhere else,” said SBOT CEO Anita Huberman in a release. “Studies have shown, including the Surrey Board of Trade’s most recent Surrey Road Survey, that over 70 per cent of all car trips in Surrey, stay in Surrey. The demand for more transit increases annually, as Surrey is becomes the hub of the South Fraser region.”

Huberman said as the project moves forward, there will be work done with the business community to “ensure they are prepared for the transition.”

“We are planning four business-focussed workshops to go over the project plans in as much detail as possible, and work with impacted businesses on how they can continue to serve their clients over the next two to three years,” Huberman added.

See also: Metro mayors to hike transit fares, property taxes to pay for transit projects

Friday’s announcement is being characterized as “the largest transit and transportation investment in Metro Vancouver history,” according to a TransLink media bulletin that says the plan will cover light rail for Surrey, construction of the Millennium Line Broadway Extension, “significant” upgrading of Expo-Millennium lines, an eight per cent increase in bus service and improvements to sidewalks, bikeways, multi-use paths and roadways.

To deliver on these projects, the mayor’s council is proposing to use $1.6 billion in fare revenue, a two per cent increase in transit fares over two years beginning in 2020 (a five to 15 cent increase to adult and concession transit fares and $1 to $3 increase to adult and concession monthly passes), $15 cents per hour increase for average $5 per hour parking, a $5.50 increase in property taxes per average households each year beginning next year, and a $300 to $600 per unit increase to development cost charges on new residential developments.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

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

Comments are closed

Just Posted

UPDATE: Pedestrian dies after being hit by bus in uptown White Rock

Collision occurred July 3 at North Bluff Road and Johnston Road

Intent of killing at centre of Surrey man’s West Kelowna murder trial

B.C. Supreme Court Justice Allison Beames is anticipated to return with her decision in August

PHOTOS: South Surrey tractor project evokes ‘$1-million smile,’ helps connect neighbours

Retired Surrey firefighter Ron Henze began project for friend’s dad to fill time during pandemic

Surrey man facing charges related to child pornography

Elazar Reshef, 52, has worked in the Delta School District

13 new B.C. COVID-19 cases, Langley Lodge outbreak ends

Health care outbreaks down to four, 162 cases active

Greater Vancouver home sales start to tick up, with prices holding steady

Residential sales last month reached 2,443, a 64.5 per cent jump from May

Langley Lodge’s deadly outbreak declared over

Fraser Health and long-term care home administrator confirm Friday declaration

Alberta health minister orders review into response after noose found in hospital in 2016

A piece of rope tied into a noose was found taped to the door of an operating room at the Grande Prairie Hospital in 2016

B.C.’s major rivers surge, sparking flood warnings

A persistent low pressure system over Alberta has led to several days of heavy rain

B.C.’s Indigenous rights law faces 2020 implementation deadline

Pipeline projects carry on as B.C. works on UN goals

Search continues for person seen floating in Coquihalla River in Hope

Rescuers halted the search Thursday night as darkness fell

‘Mind boggling’: B.C. man $1 million richer after winning Lotto 6/49 a second time

David O’Brien hopes to use his winnings to travel and of course keep playing the lottery

Most Read