The Regional Transit System

The ‘Usual Suspects’ have lined up to deliver Subway-and-Towers along what they call the ‘Broadway Corridor.’ Yet, what is really needed is a Regional Transit System capable of delivering a rapid supply response putting houses-on-lots in sufficient numbers to End the HOUSING CRISIS.


There is an affordable, sustainable—and immediately available—option for a Regional Transit System linking the North Shore, Vancouver, Surrey, Chilliwack and places in between that must be considered as a first priority in the Metro Vancouver-Fraser Valley regions (shown as a Blue Line in the map above).

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Hong Kong Demands 民主—Democracy

STORMTROOPERS  (Bloomberg Photo)

UPDATE 15 SEPTEMBER: Political turmoil engulfing this global financial center showed no signs of abating as tens of thousands of pro-democracy demonstrators marched Sunday in defiance of a police ban, with many venting their anger at Beijing just two weeks before China celebrates the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic.

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Hong Kong: Fighting in the Streets, Troops Massing on the Border, Airport Swarmed by Protesters

28 July 2019—China’s woes multiply as demonstrations in the streets of the Hong Kong ‘special zone’ continue for 8 weeks in a row. In the former British Colony residents have grown uneasy that the Communist government in Beijing will reneg on their promises of freedom and human rights for Hong Kong citizens.


In what began as demonstrations to stop an extradition bill, concerns have now seen as engulfing the core ‘one country, two systems’ rule that will see Hong Kong joining China in 2047 without ‘special concessions.’ People of Hong Kong have taken to the streets to protest the sky-high housing prices and to make a show for free & elected government.

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Translink Rejects Fraser Valley Interurban as a Replacement for Skytrain… But, What Do the Numbers Say?

With house prices hovering 13x over median household incomes in Vancouver, what do Modern Tram systems offer that Skytrain cannot deliver? In just two words—Affordable Housing!!


In a report (see page 12 in the linked agenda document) presented at  Translink Mayors Council, June 2019, Translink summarily rejected the South Fraser Community Rail’s carefully wrought proposal for returning Interurban passenger service to the Fraser Valley. The report sees it as:

One of many ideas that will be included as part of Transport 2050 [review].

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The Whack-A-Mole Money Laundering Game and the Housing Crisis

It is high time all levels of government acted in concert to protect land values for all Canadians.

BC Finance Minister Carole James and Attorney General David Eby announce government action against money laundering [CBC News photo]

Releasing a government report that states that over CAD $7.4 Billion in money laundering is expected to have taken place in BC last year,  the Attorney General and the Finance Minster made news yesterday with their revelation of illegal monetary practices going unchecked in the province. Yet, they failed to announce a solution to runaway housing prices in British Columbia. With two-thirds or $5 Billion of the illicit cash changing hands in real estate, the report estimates the illegal transactions drove BC housing prices up 5% province wide.

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The Vancouver Subway Fight and the Housing Crisis

The right way to stop the UBC subway from being built is to demand governments act to end the Housing Crisis.

TOP: UBC TODAY | UBC + SUBWAY (LNV Webbimage, 2019)

Fifty-two years ago Council Meetings in Vancouver were loud and raucous affairs as people poured into Council Chamber to protest building a Freeway tearing into the heart of the city. Fifty-two years later a new fight is brewing. The city that once opposed a freeway must rise up to reject the UBC subway. The people must demand that politicians—up and down the Fraser Valley—fold transportation infrastructure spending into a plan to end the Housing Crisis.

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Translink ‘good’ urbanism

We have grown accustomed to seeing Skytrain blight the places it crosses. It is time to turn it around. Transit implementation should trigger street beautification, neighbourhood revitalization and—yes—affordable houses.

Translink CEO Kevin Desmond [photo Paul McGrath, North Shore News]

Reported this week, Translink is pitching a B-Line for the North Shore linking Park Royal shopping centre near the Lions Gate Bridge with the Phibbs bus exchange near the Iron Workers Memorial Bridge (at Second Narrows). Our analysis points to this service is a key component of a Total Transit Network (TTN) for the Lower Mainland, and a critical element in a Regional Strategy to end the Housing Crisis.

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Reforming the Agricultural Land Commission and our Fourth Level of Government

Three years after the Land Commission Act was passed in the provincial legislature, a new government removed critical elements in the visionary land policy. It’s time we put them back.

PREMIERS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA 1952 – 1986 (LNV Webbimage, 2018)

Dave Barrett (1973 – 1975); Bill Bennett (1976-1986); William Bennett (1952 – 1972)

The Laws of Economics know no censure. When House Prices in the GVRD—the corporate name for ‘Metro Vancouver’ per letters patent (12 June 1974)—rose by 12-times over 30 years the Laws of Economics admit but a single explanation: Land supply is over restricted in the GVRD.

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The Transportation Transect

The Transportation Transect shows the reach of transit technologies into the urban footprint. It also points the way towards achieving cities with a zero-carbon footprint.

We can map all the transportation technologies in use today on the rural-to-urban transect defined by Andres Duany using Patrick Gedes‘s Valley Section (1909) as a model.

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TTN: The Total Transit Network

One of the reasons to build a Regional Transit Nework is to solve transportation problems. The more important reason is to fix the ‘other’ problem—to access cheap land to build affordable houses thus crushing the housing crisis engulfing the region.

Update—October 2018: Douglas McCallum Back as Mayor in Surrey Complete with a Council Majority announces he will build Skytrain to Langley for the cost of LRT. Former Burnaby MP, Maratimer Kennedy Stewart is elected Mayor of Vancouver and announces a Skytrain Subway will be built to UBC.

The campaign promises of Surrey’s new Mayor don’t align with either the Transit Network or the Transit Pyramid  that informs it. Neither do the dreams of building a very expensive transit system to a university poised at far end of the Lower Mainland.

Modern Tram, not Skytrain, tops the Transit Pyramid delivering 3-times more capacity than Skytrain, at 12-times less cost of a UBC subway, or 6-times less cost than the Surrey-Langley Skytrain. Deploying the transit technologies featured in the Pyramid, the Total Transit Network runs on the surface where the gains accrue to the people in the neighborhoods rather than the tower developers.

Will the new Mayor of Surrey achieve greater gains for his community building 17.5 km of Skytrain or 105 km of Modern Tram for the same price? Will the new Mayor in Vancouver build a 12 km Broadway Subway or 144 km of Modern Tram instead? Will the Mayors focus their efforts exclusively on transit? Or will they also tackle the housing crisis?

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