Vancouver mayor proposes Sea to Sky Highway toll
Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson has a suggestion for solving TransLink's $130-million shortfall -- a toll on the Sea to Sky Highway.
The highway was recently upgraded for the Olympic Games at a cost of more than $600 million.
Putting a toll on the highway would free some much-needed transit dollars, Robertson said.
"We need to expand the transit network, there's no questions about that," Robertson said Friday. "We need better transit in Surrey and out into the Valley. We've got to get the Evergreen Line built. The only way we'll be able to finance that is with more sources, and I think it should come from transportation-based funding."
TransLink says it needs an additional $130 million a year to keep service at current levels, and an extra $275 million a year to expand it. TransLink has proposed fare hikes and a new three-cent gas tax. Without the additional funds, there will be cuts to service.
To get a toll on the Sea to Sky, the province would have to agree. Transportation Minister Shirley Bond said she wouldn't support it.
"I don't think that's a responsible way to actually look at how we're going to fund ongoing investments in transportation initiatives," she said.
Whistler Mayor Ken Melamed said those who use the corridor would be "totally opposed."
With a report from CTV British Columbia's Jon Woodward