Traffic on major routes is often congested, and readers have some suggestions for addressing the problem. (File photo)

Traffic on major routes is often congested, and readers have some suggestions for addressing the problem. (File photo)

LETTERS: Offering solutions to road woes

Editor: The time for action is now long past due


Re: Commission investigates how to charge motorists, Jan 19.

My blood was boiling when I read this article with the paragraph: “Money raised through the new methods could help fund necessary transportation improvements like the new Massey Bridge and Pattullo replacement, the commission said.”

I heard practically the same wording from politicians back East in the late ’50s when gas tax was introduced and people were furious. After a few years of the gas tax, so much money had accumulated from the gas tax and not being used for what it was intended for, then politicians created the ‘general revenue’ account.

So now my argument is, politicians want new bridges, new overpasses, road maintenance, road improvements, then get the funding from the ‘general revenue’ account.

Serge J. Gendron, Surrey

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It seems incredulous the words “user pay” are absent from all reporting regarding the traffic nightmare that plagues the Lower Mainland of B.C., and will get progressively worse unless and until an agreed solution is achieved.

The time for action is now long past due.

To suggest travel by road, especially in one- and two-occupant vehicles, is a right is now absurd; it is a luxury we can no longer afford except for those who are wealthy.

To be able to travel in your own private car with the air-conditioning set at the precise temperature you alone wish, listening to the music you prefer, free from the obese person who chooses to sit next to you on the bus or train or the loudmouth on their phone or the smelly vagrant is indeed a luxury and the costs must be borne by those who can afford it.

The cost of public transit is determined by how frequently and how far you travel. The same frequency- and distance-style charges should be charged on all main thoroughfares throughout the Lower Mainland. Plus, a graded rate should apply to the type of vehicle, i.e. a two-door BMW convertible should pay a far less rate than the mammoth dual dump truck and trailer that causes much more road damage on each and every trip.

Premier John Horgan made a grandiose election promise to eliminate tolls on two bridges. All he proved, instantly, is that to toll one bridge and not another is stupid.

Now he is elected and must quickly figure out how to replace the millions of dollars in lost revenue and, at the same instant timeframe, fund the desperately needed improvements in public transit throughout the Lower Mainland ASAP!

The obvious answer is that each and every user must pay for the amount of transit each uses. In other jurisdictions who have successfully implemented this system, it is called user pay.

The feds are already willing and able to contribute and await submission of projects they can contribute to. Not only will this reduce the frustrations of all travelers it will substantially reduce the constantly increasing pollution of our planet.

And so I ask, wWhy is the press not pressing the premier to instantly commence negotiations with the other three levels of jurisdiction to implement a user-pay solution that has been proven effective in many jurisdictions elsewhere?

Don Findlay, Surrey