Re: Surrey LRT estimate climbs $460 million, March 9.
The City of Surrey quietly released a new cost estimate for LRT, and we now see it rise close to $500 million.
Regular readers may recall my letter in the PAN last year stating the city is grossly underestimating costs when compared to costs of similar LRT systems (LRT argument not about cost, May 29, 2015 letters).
Even this new estimate is on the low side.
The mayor is pushing this project at full steam, yet – as PAN disclosed – a business case for Surrey LRT has not even been completed.
Notably, just days before the new Surrey cost estimate, the mayor of Edmonton, in response to significant traffic congestion created by its city’s new LRT – which is at-ground, as is Surrey’s proposal – stated he wants any future lines to go under or over major intersections.
Surrey taxpayers deserve better, and given the soaring price tag, potential for tens of millions of annual operating losses and significant debt, a referendum should be considered.
Steven Feldman, Surrey