One of the objectives of our regional growth strategy, Metro Vancouver 2040: Shaping our Future, is to coordinate land use and transportation so that people, goods, and services can be moved safely and efficiently throughout the region.
Moving Goods and Services for Regional Economic Prosperity
The combined efforts of the public sector (including the federal and provincial governments, TransLink, Port Metro Vancouver, and local governments) and the private sector have resulted in a significant number of road and rail infrastructure investments primarily intended to support the movement of goods in Metro Vancouver. This work is illustrated in one of our Maps of the Month, which shows over 41 major infrastructure improvement projects in the region since 2005. The map also illustrates the relationship between goods movement, which is an important piece of our regional economy, and land use.
The latest major transportation project completed in Metro Vancouver was the South Fraser Perimeter Road in 2013. Another major road investment, the George Massey Tunnel Replacement project, is slated to commence construction in 2017. The last 10 years of investments in road and rail infrastructure will serve our region’s economy for decades to come.
Improved road infrastructure is as important to the region’s residents as it is to the regional economy because it facilitates the safe and efficient movement of passenger vehicles. However, in terms of moving people in a livable region, it is only one piece of the puzzle. We now have the opportunity to invest in the broader transportation needs of workers, students, and families in Metro Vancouver.
Moving People in a Livable Region
The Mayors Council Transportation and Transit Plan complements investments over the past decade in the movement of goods by focusing on transit and road improvements to more efficiently move Metro Vancouver residents around the region. This plan could reduce future congestion by 20 percent, allowing drivers and transit users to save 20 to 30 minutes a day on commutes through some of our region’s most-congested corridors.
Drivers would spend less time stuck in traffic, and improved transit services would offer a real alternative to driving. Transit users would benefit from new and more-frequent bus service, improved HandyDART service, and an expanded Skytrain and light rail system. The plan could also enhance walking and cycling as safer, more viable options for moving around.
By 2040, we expect an additional million residents to come to our region, which highlights the urgent need for a regional transportation system that supports the movement of both goods and people. An effective and efficient transit system will better connect people and jobs, benefit goods movement, and serve a prosperous economy now and in the future.
This is part of a series to highlight the connection between investing in transit and achieving the goals of our regional growth strategy. These stories will demonstrate the long-term benefits of planning for growth and investing in transit for communities across our region.
Chair – Metro Vancouver