A letter writer believes that the high cost of travel on the new tolled Port Mann Bridge will shift gridlock to other Fraser River crossings.

A letter writer believes that the high cost of travel on the new tolled Port Mann Bridge will shift gridlock to other Fraser River crossings.

The new road to gridlock

Jeff Nagel’s article on estimated toll revenue (The Leader, Feb. 25) sparked a bit of frustration with me.

The people who “throw” these estimated numbers together I can assume are very well-paid “higher purpose people” who do not live east of the new bridge, and will not face the $206 after tax dollars fleeced from their pockets every month, just for the right to go to work in Burnaby or places west.

I work and live east of this crossing, so I actually feel sorry for those who will lose $1.40-$1.75 per hour before taxes just to get to work.

It seems like a small amount until you tell yourself that it will cost every person a nice holiday in Maui every year – or a decent little RRSP contribution.

I’m going to make some predictions. I predict a shift in employment to places east of the bridge.

I predict many drivers will shift to crossing at the Pattullo and Alex Fraser Bridges to avoid the tolls, even if it means sitting listening to their radios in jammed traffic – not that I’d call the Pattullo Bridge a reasonable alternative.

I predict the usual double-talk by TransLink when upon finding these estimated crossing levels are not met, that vehicle levies, increased home tax surcharge or some other unavoidable fee (unlike tolls) will be introduced to offset the loss in revenue.

And of course let’s not forget that there’s no guarantee this shiny new bridge will stop the rush hour backlog that will still be there, and that Pattullo and Alex Fraser Bridges’ rush hour will be turned permanently into Port Mann gridlock.

So… sit in your car in a free line-up or sit in a line-up you’ll have to pay to join in on.

Canada’s national link, Highway 1, tolled. Only in Metro Vancouver.

Steve Gurry, Surrey

 

Toll all crossings

Re: Proposed tolls on Port Mann and Pattullo Bridges and present toll on Golden Ears Bridge.

As Surrey residents and sometime users of all three bridges, may we add our suggestion to the chorus of voices crying out?

We suggest that all the Lower Mainland bridges be tolled at a very low rate, i.e. $1 to $2.

This would distributed the pain evenly to all Vancouver area residents rather than punish only certain areas.

As it is now, Maple Ridge and Surrey residents are finding ways to circumvent the Golden Ears toll. The unanticipated low number of users are proving this. I think that the future will prove to be the same for the Pattullo and Port Mann bridges.

If only Golden Ears and Port Mann Bridges are tolled, drivers will congest Surrey to find a toll free path to Vancouver.

Lorraine and Fred Kortsch

 

Recycling project

Re: Moving the Port Mann Bridge. I think this is a great idea.

I don’t know which engineering firm would handle the project, but perhaps when they are finished doing it, they could go to Egypt and move the pyramids closer to Cairo.

As it is now, it takes almost a half hour taxi ride to go see them.

I haven’t worked out all the details, but I’m pretty sure a giant balloon could handle the job.

W.H. Ross, Surrey

Surrey North Delta Leader

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