Municipal Elections - November 19
Municipal elections across BC are being held on Saturday, November 19. Take this opportunity to let your local candidates know that you oppose the Highway 1/Port Mann Bridge expansion.
- Get to an all-candidate's debate and ask questions of your local candidates about this issue!
Upcoming all-candidate's debates...
- Community Livability Forums in Vancouver and Surrey: Hosted by SmartGrowth BC, Better Environmentally Sound Transportation, BC Sustainable Energy Association, and Tenants Rights Aaction Coalition.
- Vancouver date: Wednesday, November 2nd, from 7-9pm at the Segal Room, SFU Harbour Centre, 515 W. Hastings St. RSVP to email@example.com
- Surrey date: Wednesday, November 9 at the Theatre, SFU Surrey Tower, 13450 - 102nd Street, Surrey. In association with the Fraser Valley Conservation Coalition and the Surrey Environmental Partners. RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Hastings-Sunrise Election Meetings: for more information contact the Hastings Community Centre at 604-718-6222
- Candidates running for Council: November 7
- Candidates running for Parks Board: November 14
Provincial Politicians to write to...
Elected Officials from the May 17 BC Provincial Election to follow-up with on the Highway 1 Expansion...
Also - now that the Federal Government has weighed in committing money to this project, they need to hear from you!
You can write to your local MP
- find out who your local MP is and what his/her contact information is.
Definitely write to Federal Minister of Transport - Jean Lapierre, who made the federal announcement to a Surrey Chamber of Commerce meeting, Lapierre.J@parl.gc.ca
Federal Minister of Industry - David Emerson, Emerson.D@parl.gc.ca
Also - municipal elections are coming up in November - get out there early to let candidates know this issue is important to you!
Consider sending one or all of these politicians an e-mail asking them their position on the #1 Highway and Port Mann Expansion issue. Below is a sample text - feel free to cut and paste, and be sure to add your own comments as well as your complete name and contact information:
Dear Elected Representative:
I am writing to you today to express my concern over the BC provincial government's plans to expand the #1 Highway and 'twin' the Port Mann Bridge. I understand that this initiative is currently priced at $1.4 Billion, a number which greatly concerns me because the evidence is clear - we can not build our way out of congestion.
Currently, not a single bus crosses the Port Mann Bridge and up to 73% of vehicles are single-occupancy at peak hours. This is a completely inefficient way of moving people through our region. If just 10% of commuters joined a 2-person carpool, and a bus crossed the Port Mann Bridge every 5 minutes, congestion could be reduced by up to 25%. We could avoid years of delays in construction, and put tax-dollars towards long-term solutions to the very real issue of congestion.
I would urge you to do everything in your power to stop the highway expansion, look at the alternatives, and listen to the people.
I look forward to your response outlining your position on this issue.
(don't forget to include your full name and contact information)
For more information on this issue, take a look at the following resources:
- The Priorities for Environmental Leadership in BC campaign. It was put together by a coalition of the province's 12 leading environmental groups. They have identified four key challenges facing the province (including the highway expansion issue) and solutions they would like to see addressed in the upcoming provincial election. Find out more by clicking on the link above.
- It seems that all the major parties agree that you can't build your way out of congestion...read this Vancouver Sun article published on Earth Day to see how we can all agree in principle, but not in practice.