Tuesday, September 11, 2007
VICTORIA - The B.C. Liberals have issued a comprehensive defence of their plan to widen Highway 1 and twin the Port Mann Bridge, saying it will bring almost $4 billion in benefits and have a "negligible" impact on regional air quality.
The government's case is set out in four volumes of material, released last week as part of an application to the environmental assessment office for approval of the project.
The Liberals propose to build the estimated $2-billion project via a public-private partnership, with five years of construction and a 35-year operating agreement all financed by tolls on the bridge crossing. The government submission argues the project will benefit the economy through improved movement of goods, commuters through reduced congestion, and the region through improved transportation.
It calculates a net benefit of $3.8 billion over the 35-year operating agreement, even after discounting the cost of construction.
While that cost-benefit analysis relies on a number of debatable assumptions, the most controversial part of the submission is likely to be the report on regional air quality and greenhouse gas emissions.
By MARIA SAPORTA
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Published on: 05/28/07
Vancouver, British Columbia - To metro Atlantans, congestion is a dirty word.
But when a delegation of 117 regional leaders recently visited this Canadian city, they were introduced to a whole new concept.
"Congestion is our friend," said Larry Beasley, former city planning director for Vancouver, who has been recognized worldwide as helping create a new urban model. "Density is good."
Metro leaders were exposed to a vastly different approach to growth and development during the 11th annual LINK trip, organized by the Atlanta Regional Commission, short for "Leadership, Innovation, Networking, Knowledge."
Vancouver's strategy of density and transit is a stark contrast to the Atlanta region's road-oriented sprawl.
In the 1970s, Vancouver residents waged a 10-year battle to keep freeways from its urban core. They successfully defeated a plan that would have run a highway through its Chinatown and run along its downtown waterfront.
Now a traffic light at the edge of city limits signals that the interstate from Tijuana to Canada has come to a stop and is now a city street.
June 11, 2006
Alice Munro's Vancouver
By DAVID LASKIN
IN Alice Munro's Vancouver nobody eats sushi. Nobody jogs along the seawall or browses Granville Street galleries or shops for organic herbs at the Granville Island market. Ms. Munro, the 74-year-old Canadian whom the novelist Jonathan Franzen dubbed "the best fiction writer now working in North America," set a handful of her marvelous short stories in the damp British Columbian metropolis, and the urban geography is so exact you can practically map the city off her fictions. But though the addresses match, the vibe is unrecognizable. Young but hopelessly uncool, lustful without being sexy, dowdy, white, blind to its own staggering beauty, Ms. Munro's Vancouver is an outpost where new wives blink through the rain and wonder when their real lives are going to begin.