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Get Moving BC Press Release

Get Moving BC

For Immediate Release

October 31, 2007

 

GET MOVING BC CALLS ON THE PROVINCE TO FULLY FUND THE EVERGREEN LINE

Vancouver, B.C. – Fear that the Evergreen Line will be pushed aside in favour of an extension to the Millennium Line has prompted Get Moving BC to call on the Provincial Government to fully fund the Evergreen Line and get the project underway now.

Last week, while giving his Keynote Address to the NPA’s Annual Fundraising Dinner in Vancouver, Mayor Sam Sullivan stated that “completing the Millennium Line is the City of Vancouver’s top transit infrastructure priority,” adding that “we will get it done.”


Sheri Wiens, a spokesperson for Get Moving BC , says the group is not opposed to extending the Millennium Line and would like to see that project move forward, but not at the expense of the Evergreen Line.  Get Moving BC and the people of the Northeast sector simply want to see the Evergreen Line built before any consideration is given to building a Millennium Line extension.


“Our biggest fear,” says Wiens, “is if the Millennium Line gets built before the Evergreen Line, it could leave POCO, Pitt Meadows, Maple Ridge and Mission out of the rapid transit picture for many years to come – and that’s just plain unacceptable.”


Plans for the Evergreen Line call for a light rail line extending from Lougheed Mall in Burnaby to Coquitlam Centre.  However, the project remains in limbo because—even though the line is scheduled for completion and service commencement in September 2011—there is still no word on the balance of funding needed for the project.


“Evergreen has been on hold for way too long now,” says Wiens.  “The Provincial Government needs to step up to the plate and fully fund this project, and they need to do it now—it can’t wait any longer.”


Wiens, a Vancouver business person and a resident of Mission, says the scope of the Evergreen project must also be expanded to account for population growth that has occurred since the project was first envisioned over a decade ago.  She says the Evergreen Line has been on the back burner for so long now that it has to include an immediate extension to Port Coquitlam; with fast-tracked plans to extend the line across the new Pitt River Bridge to Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge and eventually to Mission.

“Building the Evergreen Line is as important in a balanced transportation system as expanding capacity across the Fraser River and across the Port Mann Bridge,” says Wiens.  “The Evergreen Line is essential, and we can’t put this project off any longer.”

Wiens believes that if the Province would commit to fully funding the Evergreen Line, it could be in operation ahead of schedule, possibly even in time for the 2010 Winter Olympics.


The TransLink board approved plans for the Evergreen Line in principle in October 2004.  When completed, the Evergreen Line will serve the people in one of the fastest growing areas of the Lower Mainland—the Northeast Sector.

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Get Moving BC is dedicated to holding governments accountable for a balanced transportation system and was formed to provide a voice for the majority of Greater Vancouver residents who support improving our roads, bridges and transit systems.   

For more information please contact Get Moving BC’s media desk at 604-678-5567 or by email at info@getmovingbc.com

Online References and Attachments:

·          www.GetMovingBC.com

·          Transcript:  Mayor Sam Sullivan’s Keynote Address to the NPA Annual Fundraising Dinner, October 23, 2007 http://www.npacaucus.ca/mayor-outlines-record-of-accomplishment.html

·          The Evergreen Line: http://www.translink.bc.ca/EvergreenLine/default.asp

From Mayor Sam Sullivan’s Keynote Address to the NPA Annual Fundraising Dinner: October 23, 2007

“To support EcoDensity, we are advocating for new transit investments like the Millennium Line completion and new down town street car.

Earlier today we held our first roundtable meeting on the Millennium Line.  There will be more to come, but tonight I want to confirm for you that completing the Millennium Line is the City of Vancouver’s top transit infrastructure priority.  We will get it done.”

Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan - October 23, 2007