Today, Elections BC released the results of the Transit and Transportation referendum.
Metro Vancouver residents voted 62% no, 38% yes.
It’s disappointing, but I respect the choice that voters made.
I want to first thank you for all your support for better transit. Whether you knocked on doors, phoned your friends, canvassed at bus stops, tweeted your support – thank you. Vancouver had one of the highest levels of support, with 49% voting Yes.
There was a clear message from voters across the region that they value transit and recognize the urgent need to invest in service improvements --- but they lack confidence in Translink and its capacity to manage the necessary funds. The BC Government needs to address this.
It was unfortunate that the BC Government forced a referendum on transit, while other vital services like hospitals, highways and tunnels are appropriately able to secure predictable funding. Transit should be funded properly, just like any other important service.
But what’s done is done. Yes I’m frustrated, but as Mayor, I’m looking forward – because better transit is too important to give up on.
Metro Vancouver is set to grow by over a million people in the next 25 years, and these results don’t change the urgent need for major new investments in transit and transportation.
I am committed to ensuring the Broadway Subway is built. As North America’s busiest bus corridor, Broadway is in urgent need of more efficient public transportation, and I will continue to work with the Province and the Federal government to make this subway line happen.
But make no mistake: we need the Province to enable new funding to support investments in transit. Without it, the entire regional transportation network will decline.
I’m not going to stop championing better transit - in Vancouver and throughout the region - and I hope that you won’t either. There’s too much important work ahead of us.