Sustainable ideas for making transit work
“Buses should be free,” is quite a common thing you hear these days at bus stops or on the bus. Let’s face it, there are not enough buses going to lots of places in Whistler, like Spruce Grove or the west side road.
The other problem is that buses cost too much. For my family to go to the village and watch a movie the bus alone costs $11. That’s outrageous. It’s cheaper to drive the car.
A solution for this problem would be to make all the parking in the village pay parking, and to make the day skier lots cost money. Then this money could go towards new buses, free transit or just cheaper fares. This would also be the next step in our 2020 sustainability program. The village shuttle is a good example of how much more the buses would get used, because whenever I see a village shuttle it’s normally at least half full.
Thanks for considering this issue.
Suburban sprawl continues
There have been a few issues that continue to reappear in the newspaper that I would like to comment on and draw links between:
1. The B.C. government’s response to obesity.
2. The increasing pressures on public transit.
3. The pressures on Whistler’s housing.
In all the discussion about Canadian/B.C. obesity, nowhere have I seen even a mention of what I consider to be the biggest cause/obstacle to obesity: Suburban city design. For a simple definition of “suburban” development I propose: pretty much anywhere outside of say 750 metres of a supermarket requires one to drive or take public transit. More than 50 per cent of trips by car are less than one kilometre. One must also drive or take transit if they live further than walking distance from their jobs. Whistler was pretty good at creating compact liveable spaces.
But now Whistler has the suburb of Pemberton. In addition to its role as a suburb of Whistler, Squamish will, thanks to the millions in highway upgrades, soon be closer to downtown Vancouver than Langley. Neither town is anywhere close to having the requisite number of jobs to support the number of beds available. These are bedroom communities. Their residents must commute, likely by car, or retire. The bus will pick up the slack for those too poor to operate their own cars. Therefore the pressures on public transit are also a result of our devotion to the North American suburban ideal.