Update: You asked. We reported

March 11, 2015 at 5:20 pm


In order to publish journalism that helps our audience make an informed choice on the referendum ballot, we partnered with PlaceSpeak, an online public consultation forum, where readers can pose questions for our reporters to investigate.

Here you’ll find a summary of all the responses we’ve reported on. Please check back here for updates as we continue to respond to your comments and questions.

1. Requests for more information about TransLink

Questions that have been raised include who will have control over allocation of the new funds and how TransLink will be held accountable. This is an issue that’s been reported on in the media quite extensively. We are putting together an article that points to reporting and resources that offer a nuanced response, which we’ll publish the week of April 27th.

2. How does the transportation system in Metro Vancouver perform in comparison to other municipalities?

People have asked if we’re getting a good deal compared to other cities and how others have dealt with transit improvements. These are very important issues to bring up, and also complex comparisons to make. We’re currently researching exactly what the best performance indicators we should be digging into, and the nuances of how they should be analyzed. We will publish an article addressing these issues during the week of May 4th.

3. What are other funding sources for transportation?

This will be addressed in a piece coming out in a couple of weeks, including what other funding sources are assumed in the Mayors’ plan for expansion. In the meantime, those who asked specifically about other funding options the mayors considered can find a breakdown and more information in the Mayors’ Council Plan, starting on pg. 108.

4. What will my municipality get with the proposed plan?

Many questions came in about specific impacts to locales around Metro Vancouver. “Chapter 2.1 How does Metro Van move?” addresses how the proposed developments are tied to accessibility and developments in the region:

Our data analysis of mobility around Metro Vancouver reveals that the region is unique in how people travel from one place to another; more than 30% of all trips leave the areas or “sub-regions” they started in and don’t travel into the region’s center, as is the case in most cities. This means that any transportation developments happening in any one locale will affect the others.

In that piece, we argue that it doesn’t make sense to base our vote on what the city we live in is set to get out of the proposed funding. Langley residents will feel the impact of light rail in Surrey. Many people from Burnaby will take the Broadway subway. Since our movements occur in an interconnected system, rather than being contained within isolated cities, we’ll all notice as our neighbours in North Vancouver or Coquitlam or Richmond change how they move.

Also, a quick response to a question that came in from Bowen Island regarding how the vote will affect its residents. In looking at how future investments will impact certain parts of the region, we’ll factor in what each area is getting in addition to how people from different parts of Metro Vancouver commute and therefore how they will be impacted by investments outside their home base. We have data for the region’s travel behaviour by subregion, but Bowen Island is grouped in with the rest of the North Shore, so we’re looking for sources of data that give us more specific information. Hang tight.

We want to continue producing relevant, helpful information for you. Please let us know what else you want to know by visiting PlaceSpeak.

Please get in touch with us if you have any more questions or want to learn more. You can also tweet to us @Discourse_Media.


About the Author

Nelly Bouevitch

Nelly is a community engagement specialist and reporter at Discourse Media. Currently finishing her Master's at the school of Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University, Nelly researches, writes and reports on sustainability and urban planning.