West Vancouver votes against dedicated bus lanes on Marine Drive
Published Monday, March 11, 2019 8:57PM PDT
Last Updated Tuesday, March 12, 2019 9:21AM PDT
TransLink is being forced back to the drawing board after West Vancouver's city council voted against installing dedicated bus lanes on Marine Drive.
Council voted Monday evening on the proposal for a B-Line through the Ambleside neighbourhood.
The previously planned route's priority bus lanes drew heavy opposition from residents who said the bus-only lanes would impact traffic and take away street parking.
Local businesses were concerned about the impact of losing those parking spots. After rallies, protests and months of debate, those opposed to the new lanes were celebrating the decision.
Nigel Malkin, who led many of the protests, told CTV News local business owners believed it was a done deal.
"We managed to get the bus lanes and parking loss of the table, which is a pretty big success," he said Monday night.
Coun. Craig Cameron said the main issues also included routing near a school.
TransLink and West Vancouver city planners will now work to find a new route, which may include an extension.
The future route is what Cameron calls a compromise.
"It's going to be an ongoing process. It's a complex problem, it's not going to be easy to fix," he told CTV.
He said staffers will work with the community to determine the B-Line's final stop. Cameron said what council decided was to explore alternatives into Ambleside.
"I think it's very important that we try to get the B-Line into Ambleside because I think it will be a benefit for the businesses. I think it will give people an option other than the car," he said.
The motion suggested ending the B-Line bus route at Park Royal Shopping Centre, but Cameron said council unanimously agreed to keep looking at extending it further.
"That could mean that it goes to 15th, or 17th or further, to 21st, to the community centre - but provided we don't have bus priority lanes in the commercial area and we minimalize the parking loss," he said.
Cameron said an extension past the mall would "open future possibilities in a way stopping at PR doesn't."
Correction: A previous version of this article stated that the Monday evening vote was to stop the B-Line at Park Royal.