We’ve lagged behind for too long and we want our fair share: Councillor Linda Annis
Councillor Linda Annis says it’s time for Surrey to catch up after years of “transit neglect” when it comes to transit investments. She wants provincial election candidates in the nine Surrey ridings to commit to “dollar-for-dollar” spending when it comes to Surrey and Vancouver.
“If you’re going to spend a dollar in Vancouver you’d better be spending a dollar in Surrey,” said Annis. “If TransLink and its provincial and federal partners are looking at spending up to $3.8 billion on a line to UBC then they should spend just as much in Surrey, including $3.1 billion from King George SkyTrain Station to Langley City Centre. But they should also be looking at transit that connects our growing neighbourhoods.”
Annis said about $1.63 billion is committed to the SkyTrain extension from King George to 166 Street in Fleetwood, but Surrey needs to play catch up when it comes to transit.
“This isn’t about cutting transit investments in Vancouver, it’s about ensuring an equal commitment for our city,” added Annis. “The SkyTrain extension to Fleetwood is really the first major transit investment in Surrey in 30 years, and that’s just not good enough. At the same time, if we’re serious about solving the affordable housing issue, you need transit, and frankly Surrey is the best place to make that sort of investment. We are already more affordable here than in Vancouver and better transit means more access to affordable housing and the best place to do that is right here in Surrey.”
Annis said transit is key to developing and connecting the city’s growing neighbor hoods and for far too long, Surrey has lagged behind Vancouver in spite of the city’s continued growth.
“Right now, our residents spend twice as much time in their cars as Vancouver residents and we do far more commuting than Vancouverites,” added Annis. “We want people to be able to live and work right here at home and that means more transit and faster investment commitments from TransLink and its provincial and federal partners. So, if there’s a transit dollar for Vancouver we want to make sure there’s an equal dollar for Surrey, and that starts by getting commitments from our nine Surrey MLAs.
Our city has 10 per cent of the province’s MLAs and frankly they all need to work as hard as possible for our city to make sure we get our share. That hasn’t always been the case. Waiting 30 years for some sort of transit improvement is too long, we’ve been patient too long. This election, I want our voters to put provincial candidates on the spot by asking them if they support dollar-for-dollar transit spending in Surrey and Vancouver, ensuring we have a chance to catch up on what’s been owed to this city for far too long.”
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