Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Discussion about the Pattullo Bridge and Roads

One of the things that I find interesting about our region is the small divide when it comes to discussions around transportation. When it comes to discussions about the provisioning of more transit, cycling lanes, and walking paths, there is universal support across the region, but there are some subtle differences though. In places like Surrey and Langley, you can build separated bike lanes and transit to your heart's content, but you must not take away a single inch of lane from the auto. In places like New Westminster and Vancouver, their citizens will allow the reallocation of road space. What makes New Westminster different from Langley City? Why can people North of the river have a rational conversation about our transportation system while in the South of Fraser, we still operating under the assumption that the more cars = good?

The only conclusion that I can think of is that because South of Fraser residents haven’t been exposed to good public transit and a complete cycling network, they don’t see the benefits of a diverse transportation system that puts a priority on active forms of transportation and transit. I bring this up because there is an event happening in New Westminster to discuss the future of the Pattullo Bridge.

In Surrey, the general consensus is to build the biggest bridge possible, but in New Westminster they are questioning every aspect of the bridge including the size and what effect it will have in their community. This was the same type of discussion that went on about the Lions Gate Bridge in Vancouver. The Province wanted a bigger bridge, but the citizens of Vancouver fought to keep it three lanes total with better sidewalks. Anyway, if you are interesting in a good discussion about the Pattullo Bridge...

A community forum is being organized by New Westminster residents Daniel Fontaine and Keith MacKenzie to discuss the future of the existing Pattullo Bridge.

Guest speakers Gordon Price and Prof. Anthony Perl from SFU will be in attendance. We also will have Jerry Behl, Transportation Engineer with the City of New Westminster on the panel.

Come join your neighbours to discuss what is possible for the existing bridge built in 1937. For more information about the forum, you can email pattullobridge@gmail.com. More information is at City Caucus.

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