Highway Plans Challenged
11 April 2005 - Citizens Concerned with Highway Expansion released figures today that challenge the Provincial Government's rationale for expanding Highway #1. The figures demonstrate the basis for developing realistic alternatives to highway expansion.
Volunteers measured the use of the #1 Highway at the Port Mann Bridge by counting the numbers of vehicles during rush hours and weekends. Counts indicate that 930-1200 vehicles use the #1 Highway at the Port Mann Bridge every 15 minutes during rush hours. An additional 840 vehicles travel the route every 15 minutes on weekends.
Of these vehicles:
• 65-73% are single-occupancy vehicles on weekdays;
• 28% are single-occupancy vehicles on weekends;
• 12-13% are commercial vehicles.
No public transportation options exist for crossing the Port Mann Bridge – not a single bus crosses the route. Between Surrey and Vancouver, the Sky Train currently operates at approximately 33% of its designed capacity.
There are feasible options for reducing congestion without building new bridges or expanding highways:
• One bus carrying 50 passengers every 5 minutes would reduce congestion by 12-18%. That's a reduction of 600 cars every hour;
• If 10% of Port Mann motorists would car pool, even with only one other person in order to qualify them for the High-Occupancy Vehicle lane, congestion could be reduced by 370 to 480 cars per hour.