By Lara Gerrits The Tri-City News
Jul 18 2007
Vague references related to the route of the proposed light-rail transit line floated around Coquitlam council chambers Monday night.
Although council’s official position on the matter is to push TransLink for a route along North Road through Port Moody to Coquitlam’s Town Centre, Coun. Mae Reid questioned why the words “transit-oriented” were used in the amended design guide for the Burquitlam and Lougheed neighbourhood area plans.
She said the wording could mean rapid transit, SkyTrain or “a really fast bus.”
“I hope that when they change the actual wording on these stations that it doesn’t have any other meaning... I just wanted to put that out,” Reid said at Monday night’s city council meeting. “We are expecting our LRT.”
Coun. Lou Sekora agreed and urged Mayor Maxine Wilson to disclose all information regarding the route of the proposed line so not to get Burquitlam’s “hopes so high.”
“We haven’t told the Burquitlam people that this light-rail transit may never be going through the area it’s supposed to be,” he said. “If something’s going to happen we should be up-front with them.”
During question period, when responding to a query about the route of the transit line, Wilson said, “This is in the hands of the provincial government right now,” and noted that all information is public.
She told The Tri-City News Tuesday that in a meeting last week with Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon, he conveyed a commitment to the LRT.
“He assured that it’s their number one priority for transit but they want to make sure that the business case is as strong as it can be before they take it to the federal government [for funding],” she said.
When asked whether she would support a southern route along Lougheed Highway near the Riverview Hospital grounds, Wilson said she has signed a letter endorsing the Port Moody route, “but the reality is, it’s with the provincial government now and we need to keep it on track no matter what.”
Other Coquitlam news:
The city of Coquitlam has pledged to cut its corporate greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2015 while making energy management a “priority.”
An action plan, prepared by consultant Hyla Environmental Services Ltd., outlined a number of recommendations to save emissions and some $4.2 million in energy over the next eight years.
Council voted unanimously to set a 30% emissions cutback goal as well as direct staff to consider a number of recommendations outlined in the report, such as increasing the capital budget for the city’s fleet by $160,000 annually to improve fuel-efficiency of vehicles.
Council also voted unanimously to contribute $5,000 towards the BC Sustainable Energy Association Climate Change Game project. Thirty workshops related to the game — which teaches students how to cut their eco-footprint — will be given in 2007/’08 in Coquitlam schools.
An open house will be held next Wednesday at city hall regarding an updated development cost charge bylaw.
Since 2004, the cost of construction and land acquisition in the Lower Mainland has increased significantly, which has resulted in the city under-collecting the funds from developers needed to complete its growth-related projects, according to a staff report. For the past six months, a city team has been working on a DCC bylaw update that will adjust the city’s rates.
The open house will happen from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., with a presentation scheduled for 7 p.m.