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Nov 17, 2023
NORTH VANCOUVER – North Shore Connects is applauding the Mayors’ Council decision to formally endorse the Metrotown-Park Royal Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line as a prioritized corridor for investment.
The Metrotown-Park Royal BRT was the highest-scoring regional route under consideration due to the immediate demand it will satisfy from ridership and its ability to provide access to major employers and housing. The new BRT corridor will make it easier for people to live, work and play without delay as it will alleviate congestion through Burnaby, Vancouver, and across the North Shore.
Recognizing that the communities along the Metrotown-Park Royal BRT line are in need of a fast and competitive way to move through this busy corridor, TransLink has further announced that the R2 RapidBus will immediately be extended from the Phibbs Exchange to Metrotown. North Shore Connects further applauds this service enhancement and look forward to working with TransLink on the implementation as BRT planning and implementation proceed concurrently.
Important Metrotown-Park Royal BRT benefits include:
North Shore Connects partners are committed to working together to ensure the continued prioritization of the Metrotown-Park Royal BRT line and to secure the needed funding. In the coming days, North Shore Connects and the North Shore Chamber of Commerce will be hosting an event to bring stakeholders together to build further support for the Metrotown-Park Royal BRT.
In 2021, North Shore Connects released an economic impact study that focused on the benefits of a Burrard Inlet Rapid Transit (BIRT) investment for the North Shore, the Metro Vancouver region, as well as provincial and national economies. The study found that rapid transit to the North Shore would have an annual travel time saving of $500 million, and provide North Shore residents with access to more than 175,000 new job opportunities.
North Shore Connects believes that everyone deserves to move safely and efficiently on, to and from the North Shore. The partnership is focused on reducing congestion, supporting livable and connected communities, strengthening regional transportation, and growing the economy.
For more details about North Shore Connects visit: northshoreconnects.ca
North Shore Connects is a partnership between the District of West Vancouver, Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Úxwumixw (Squamish Nation), City of North Vancouver, District of North Vancouver and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation) that formed in 2021. City of North Vancouver Mayor Linda Buchanan is currently the Chair and spokesperson for the partnership.
The R2 Marine Drive RapidBus route between Phibbs Exchange and Park Royal entered service in spring 2020. BRT is different from TransLink’s RapidBus service in that it is traffic separated and has signal priority; has fast and convenient boarding to minimize the amount of time the bus remains stopped; and specialized vehicles that enable high passenger capacity. Vehicles would be electric or produce zero-emissions with advanced driver assistance controls, ensuring a smooth ride.
Chair of North Shore Connects, Mayor Linda Buchanan, City of North Vancouver:
“Everyone knows that congestion on the North Shore has reached a tipping point. We need a new option that allows people to move safely and efficiently. That’s why I am incredibly pleased that TransLink’s Mayors’ Council has endorsed a rapid transit connection between Park Royal and Metrotown as a priority investment. While we have been identified as a priority, and planning has begun, funding still needs to be secured. We need people across the region to join the call for Burrard Inlet Rapid Transit because it will make it easier for all of us to get around, regardless of how you choose to travel. Making your voice heard is more important now than ever before.”
The Hon. Jonathan Wilkinson, Member of Parliament for North Vancouver:
“As the Member of Parliament for North Vancouver, I know that transportation is a top-of-mind issue for our community. That is why I am pleased to support the proposed Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) corridor from Metrotown to Park Royal. The corridor will not only alleviate traffic congestion by taking cars off the road, but it will also drive economic growth here on the North Shore and across the Lower Mainland while working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. By offering a more accessible rapid and reliable transportation option, the BRT will empower our residents with sustainable and efficient mobility, ensuring that commuting can be convenient and sustainable for all.”
The Hon. Bowinn Ma, Member of Legislative Assembly for North Vancouver-Lonsdale:
“The challenges of getting to, from, and around the North Shore are frustrations that people across the region can appreciate. Building off of the work and recommendations of the Integrated North Shore Transportation Planning Project that I was honoured to lead in 2018, there’s been growing recognition that the North Shore needs to be next for a rapid transit solution that serves people throughout our communities. I’m thrilled to see that the Mayors’ Council has now prioritized this long overdue project and I look forward to continuing to work with our partners to see it through.”
Mayor Mark Sager, District of West Vancouver:
“I have heard from people across the North Shore who want to see solutions to significant congestion and unpredictable travel times. Collaborating with our partners, including the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, the Squamish Nation, the City of North Vancouver, and the District of North Vancouver through North Shore Connects, I am grateful to the TransLink Mayors’ Council for recognizing the pressing need for a rapid transit connection between Park Royal and Metrotown. This will reduce congestion, grow our economy and strengthen regional connections.”
Council Chair Khelsilem, Squamish Nation:
“The North Shore encompasses diverse communities, including three Squamish Nation communities. Introducing Bus Rapid Transit to our region is a major step toward enhancing our communities’ overall quality of life. We are proud to collaborate with all North Shore governments to forge better access to employment, essential services, and community ties. Developing a North Shore Bus Rapid Transit connection represents a significant investment that will generate positive transformation throughout our region.”
Mayor Mike Little, District of North Vancouver:
“I strongly urge senior levels of government to prioritize investment in BIRT, as we know this initiative will bring one of the biggest positive impacts to the greatest number of people. Traffic congestion is a critical issue for residents of the North Shore and those who commute here for work and school. Businesses and local schools face recruitment and retention issues because of the challenges with commuting to and from their sites. Directly improving our regional congestion problems not only supports better access to jobs for people, but it also supports the overall health of our region.”
Chief Jennifer Thomas, Tsleil-Waututh Nation:
“səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh Nation) is pleased to see the Bus Rapid Transit Program moving forward in a good way. Safe, quick, and reliable transit is vitally important to our Tsleil-Waututh community, to keep us connected to the wider community and to transport us to and from work and school.”
Mayor Mike Hurley, City of Burnaby:
“The Burnaby to North Shore rapid transit route would connect some of the fastest-growing neighbourhoods in Metro Vancouver, particularly Burnaby’s Brentwood and Metrotown Town Centres, unlocking the potential for incredible economic growth and tourism opportunities across the region. The Burrard Inlet Rapid Transit project addresses a significant gap in our existing transit system and it needs to be a priority for our region moving forward.”
Mayor Ken Sim, City of Vancouver:
“We are super excited to see this rapid transit corridor between Park Royal and Metrotown that will provide a greater connection to the entire region. This new connection to the North Shore will help reduce the congestion we see today.”
Research and Communications Specialist, Office of Mayor Linda Buchanan, City of North Vancouver