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Translink Buzzer Blog

Poetry in Transit interview with Joanne Arnott

 

Photo courtesy of SFU

Photo courtesy of Joanne’s blog

Poetry in Transit is a partnership with the Association of Book Publishers of British Columbia. Now in it’s 18th year, the program aims to profile talented British Columbian and Canadian poets and provide our customers with poetry to read on their commutes.

Joanne Arnott’s “Wild Seeds” currently one of 20 poems on the system. She took time out of her busy schedule to do this quick interview with us about the poem and herself!

Who is Joanne Arnott?
I am a poet, activist, mother, editor, blogger. I am a correspondent with many diverse writers, and other types of people, and I write up my notes in the form of poetry and essays. I am a synthesizer, noting patterns in the world and seeking to balance the world through word and deed.

Would you be able to tell us a bit more about your poem? What were the inspirations behind it?
“Wild Seeds” is a long poem. I had an intense experience of bonding with a new partner, and many visions and dreams about babies and pregnancy, despite a conscious awareness that pregnancy in the physical realm was not possible. Over the years, I had the experience of love-bonding leading to child-bearing, six times this occurred, and in some sense, my bodymind was deeply challenged to understand other possible outcomes.

At the same time, a couple whom I loved and had spent time with over two decades, was called upon to face illness and death together. I felt very moved to be a small part of the process, to be a part of the intimate web of vitality and witness to the transformative time of passage. I learned a great deal about “how to be” by witnessing the great grace with which both the dying person died, and the surviving partner fostered her loved one through this massive time of change. How she called upon others to support the processes of living, dying, mourning.

The Gulf Islands are referenced in this excerpt, and the poem brings these great questions of birth, death, love—both couple forms of love and the great webs of our friendships and relatedness—into focus.

How would you classify your style of poetry and writing? What inspires you?
My writing is intimate and embodied, engaged, sometimes playful, sometimes wry, sometimes mournful. Free verse that’s informed by music and the speaking voice, often engaging with ideas and a way of seeking how to articulate what is: in writing nonfiction, that intimacy is always there, ‘this is what I think,’ ‘this is what I wonder.’

What’s a ‘great’ poem for you?
A great poem is, for me, satisfying. It is musically or imagistically or in a storytelling way, a whole, and that may be as swift as haiku or as ponderous as a book-long navigation. It is a form of writing or orating that is closely akin to song, or something else more akin to type-setting. What makes it great is its capacity to do what it set out to do, to meet its own goals. If it lingers in the mind, if it settles in the body, if it calls me back: these are possible signs of greatness.

Who’s your favourite poet and/or somebody that has heavily influenced your work?
When I was young I read “Within the Barbed Wire Fence” by Takeo Ujo Nakano. This is a powerful text that presents prose and poetry in such intimately woven circumstance, revealing the importance of truth and the ways that poetry and prose can each articulate aspects of life. It is a Canadian story such as I had never encountered before. Places that I knew, and places I did not know: feelings that I knew, and experiences I did or did not have: this book connected me to my Canadian life and to Canadian literature in a way that other books had not, and showed a way to be or to write that honoured with courage the precise truths of a life.

What does Poetry of Transit mean for you?
It is a relief to find a bit of poetic information nestled amidst the contact numbers and attention-seeking advertisements, a kernel of poetic information as a way to introduce whole new realms (a book, a poet, a way of conceiving of the world) into the ongoing journey.

Poetry of Transit might mean the astrological unfoldment of the ever-new. It may be the rhythmic experience of routines that have the always fresh grace-notes of something unique, something that helps to distinguish one rush hour from the next, or one season for another sample of the same season, lived years before.

Do you take transit? If so, what’s your favourite mode?
I tend to live my life within walking distance of my home. When I venture further, I take public transit. Canada Line, SeaBus, Sky Train, bus routes that branch and web: all good.

Peer into your crystal ball, and tell us what you see for yourself in the future.
I see an impending role as poetry editor for a literary magazine: I see many trips to many poetry gatherings throughout the Lower Mainland, from Dead Poets Society at Vancouver Public Library to Surrey Muse at the Surrey Public Library, and from Cottage Bistro to the Heritage Grill. I see a visit to Nanaimo for the Cascadia Poetry Festival in the spring. I see the official opening of the North Number One Road Pump Station public art project, in Richmond, with school children, elders and artists, and city officials and staff all mingling by the side of the river: hoping for a sun-filled day.

Is there anything you’d like to add or share?
Cultural workers are often economically vulnerable, and poets not the least.

It is greatly affirming for young people to see the work of their parents showcased on public transit.

Metis and other indigenous poets and artists are the strong creative threads through all of our regions, connective tissue in a cultural sense, rooting the tumble of Canadiana to the specificity of this place.

Your time is much appreciated Joanne! You can find more of her work at joannearnott.blogspot.ca and join the Poetry in Transit conversation using the hashtag #PoetryInTransit.

Links and Tidbits – April 3, 2015

Links and tidbits is our semi-regular roundup of interesting fodder about transportation from the last few weeks or so. If you have links to contribute, put them in the comments, or email us.

Is this why no one uses MapQuest anymore?

Yikes! Is this why no one uses MapQuest anymore?

»   Take a peek behind the scenes at SkyTrain control.

»   Seattle bases bus fares on income

»   CBC tests the most popular Metro Vancouver commutes.

»   Western Pennsylvania transit pioneer honoured.

Strangers ARE nice! Check out the video to prove it! I would love a shoulder to sleep on during my commute some days. Wouldn’t you??

»   What do you think of THIS cycling adventure in Japan?

»   Paris uses effective infographics to keep riders informed of closures.

Watch the opening of the 2.27-mile tunnel under Twin Peaks in San Francisco.

»   Creating a mass transit app for a city that doesn’t have mass transit.

»   Here’s how matatu drivers in Nairobi get passengers to choose THEIR ride!

»   Haaaaaaaaaaave you met Etti-Cat?? This fancy feline is the NYC 1960s subway mascot.

»   You can even buy Etti-Cat’s book!

»   Check out some NYC transit etiquette posters from the 1940s and 50s, pre-Etti-Cat.

»   Free WIFI on buses in Portugal

»   Vaping on transit? The new debate.

»   Waste not, want not! The first bus run on… well… click here and find out!

»   No phone chats or video game beep beep boops! GO transit considers quiet zones on buses.

»   Windsor adds pink bus to fleet to raise money for Breast cancer research

»   From subway to runway, fashion meets transit!

A man struggles with his telepathic powers… that seem to occur only while riding the L train in Chicago.

»   A rare look into the Plymouth subway in England that was filled up over a decade ago.

»   Have you seen this? This prank is terrifying and NOT. COOL.

»   One of the first Canadian-developed Apple watch apps comes from Montreal and it’s for transit!

»   Yo-Yo Ma endorsed subway busker promotes Bach in the subway, a worldwide musical movement!

»   Is it acceptable to shave on transit? How about putting on make up? Is public grooming OK on commute?

LA Metro gives us a play-by-play for escalator etiquette!

»   DC commuter takes her X2 bus experiences to the big screen.

»   Buzzer reader Devon compiled  a list of amazing transit and transportation systems for his bucket list. Check it out! Thanks for sharing, Devon!

»   Commuters in Hangzhou, China enjoy 3D ads on their subway cars.

»   Gloucestershire regiment honoured on stage coach buses.

»   Long lost NYC subway design map found and restored.

»   6 degrees of transportation – Kevin Bacon takes the subway and loves it!

»   While I don’t recommend jumping into old subway tunnels, these pictures are pretty epic!

»   Lost dog take transit around the city. All together now… AWWWW!

»   Pricey but cool. Would you pay to take this bus?

TransLink’s Pet Peeves are making headlines!

Transit in the News – April 3

A weekly section about transit making headlines around the globe. Have an article you want to share? Comment below or email us.
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Bus lane construction in New Market, Ontario loses local supporters with delays affecting businesses.

The National Bus and Rain Union in Ireland will decide on strike action regarding potential privatization of transit services.

TTC says they’ve learned from their mistakes with over-budget Spadina Subway extension.

Over 100 stations now connected to WIFI in NYC subway system.

Washington Metro will roll out new subway cars on April 14.

Delhi Metro launches new app to give riders reward points when reloading their smart cards.

Canadian cities lobby Ottawa for more public transit funding.

Hamilton transit union votes 95% in favour of strike action.

Abu Dhabi bus passes to be automated starting May 15.

Transit Watch program launched to help stop crime in Surrey, BC.

Riders in Melbourne, Australia now able to use Google maps to plan trips.

What mass transit could learn from luxury buses.

Four-year-old in Philadelphia boards bus alone at 3 am to get a slushie.

Winnipeg doesn’t have enough buses to keep up with ridership.

Montreal’s Honoré-Beaugrand bus terminal gets a redesign.

If you’re looking for interesting facts and fun stories about transit, check out our monthly Links and Tidbits series.

The April 2015 issue of the Buzzer is now on the system

The April 2015 issue of the Buzzer is now on the system!April-2015-Buzzer

Much of it is dedicated to the Spring Service changes that begin to take place on April 13.

There are seasonal and permanent changes to routes AND times so be sure to check out all the updates.

There is information on the Transportation and Transit plebiscite and station and elevator upgrades at Metrotown station.

We’ve also included a new series about TransLink and its operating companies called The Facts Matter.

As always, we have our favourites – Contest Corner, Back Issues and Coming Events!

Happy reading! Pick it up today on the bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express or you can download it here.

The next issue of the Buzzer will be out in June 2015.

***CORRECTION***
The URL found for The Facts Matter is incorrect. The full URL is: http://www.translink.ca/en/About-Us/The-Facts-Matter.aspx

We apologize for any confusion to our readers and riders!

Employees from TransLink’s family of companies and unions raised over $275,000 for United Way

Translink United Way

Photo (L to R): Lara Mickel (TransLink), Doug Allen (Interim CEO, TransLink), Merrilee Ashworth (TransLink), David Black (President, COPE 378), Michael McKnight (CEO, UWLM), Shawn Francis (Executive Officer, Unifor 2200; CMBC), Kathy Pereira (CMBC), Alicia Doyon (COPE 378, CMBC), Cathy McLay (CFO, TransLink), Jim Hopkins (BCRTC).

Thanks to the hard work and dedication of employees in the TransLink family, our 2014 donation to United Way of the Lower Mainland topped $275,000!

Employees from TransLink, B.C. Rapid Transit Company, Coast Mountain Bus Company, Transit Police, COPE 378, CUPE 4500, CUPE 7000, Unifor 111, and Unifor 2200 contributed their time and generously donated to support United Way’s programs and services.

For more information on how contributions to United Way are helping make a difference in the lives of so many in our community, visit United Way of the Lower Mainland’s website at uwlm.ca.

All aboard the 66 FVX!

fvx_spider_map-blueBC Transit has a new express service travelling through Chilliwack, Abbotsford and Langley.

The 66 FVX (Fraser Valley Express) kicks off on Monday, April 6th, with free rides to celebrate this new service.

The 66 FVX will provide a limited stop express service across the Fraser Valley, and a connection to the TransLink transit system in Metro Vancouver.

Final stop for the 66 FVX is at Langley’s Carvolth Station, offering passengers the option to extend their travels by purchasing TransLink fare and boarding a TransLink bus.

The 66 FVX will operate 17 round trips on weekdays and four trips on Saturdays.

The route connects to local transit service in Chilliwack and Abbotsford, offering more options for commuting, getting around town, and improved access to the University of Fraser Valley Campuses in Abbotsford and Chilliwack.

BC Transit is responsible for coordinating the delivery of public transportation in British Columbia outside of Metro Vancouver.

The 66 FVX has its own fare system, separate from TransLink and other BC Transit services in the Fraser Valley; transfers are not issued on the 66 FVX. The FVX service is not included in the UPASS program.

Get more information about BC Transit’s 66 FVX, including schedules and fares here.

April showers bring… spring service changes!

april_svc_change_fbWarming up to weekend getaways and fun around town? TransLink’s transit services are changing to get more people to more places!

Beginning April 13, you can expect increased trips heading out to White Pine Beach, SeaBus and Tsawwassen Ferry, and fewer trips to post-secondary schools. There are also NEW trips during peak hours on some popular routes!

Services changes can be found on our website. Even if you don’t see your route listed, service changes can affect many routes, so use TransLink’s trip planner to double check if your route has changed.

Highlights

  • Increased midday service to UBC on the 49. All trips will now travel all the way to and from UBC.
  • NEW trips on the 640 during PM peak period service to better serve Delta’s Tilbury Business Park community.
  • Marine Drive Station bus loop is back in service, returning the 3, 10 and 17 to their regular routes and providing direct connection to the Canada Line.
  • Seasonal service on the 150 to White Pine Beach from May 2 to Labour Day.
  • Increased service on SeaBus, with trips every 15 minutes on Sundays and holidays, and increased trips to two each hour, on the 620 to Tsawwassen Ferry.
  • NEW trips on the 351, 402 and 410 to reduce overcrowding during peak periods. These are made possible by shifting resources from routes that currently have low customer demand.

Learn about all the travel choices in your community by visiting TransLink’s TravelSmart program for information, resources and tips.

How else can you stay in touch? Sign up for Transit Alerts at translink.ca/alerts, visit translink.ca, follow @TransLink or call Customer Service at 604.953.3333.

TransLink turns Sweet 16!

Celebrating 16 years of TransLink!

Celebrating 16 years of TransLink!

Oh my, how we’ve grown in 16 years!

TransLink and its operating companies are very proud of where we’ve been, where we are and where we’ll be able to go in the future.

TransLink is unique among North American transportation agencies by being responsible for a fully integrated transportation system across land, rail and sea.

Here are 16 things we’re very proud of:

1. Providing transit to hundreds of thousands of riders across the region every single day! Ridership is up 80 per cent since 2000 and passenger trips have grown by 127 million.

2. Opening the Golden Ears bridge. A one kilometre, six-lane bridge that crosses the Fraser River connecting Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows to Langley and Surrey.

3. Celebrating 35 years of SeaBus in 2012 and our brand new Burrard Otter II introduced December 2014.

4. Creating the Central Valley Greenway together with the municipalities that it runs through. That’s 24 kilometres for cycling, jogging, walking, wheelchairs, skateboarding and rollerblading!

5. Coast Mountain Bus Company’s continued work towards becoming more environmentally efficient. They have received a 2014 Corporate Leadership Award from the Canadian Urban Transit Association for facility upgrades that significantly reduced the consumption of electricity and natural gas and the associated emissions of greenhouse gases. They also were honoured with a 2014 TechGREEN Award from Applied Science Technologists & Technicians of BC for reduced electricity and natural gas consumption. Annual greenhouse gas emissions were reduced by 531 tonnes or 7 per cent of its facility emissions.

6. Our fantastic customer service! From SkyTrain attendants and transit operators out on the system to Customer Relations and our number one Customer Information Twitter team!

7. Keeping our riders safe with Transit Police’s exceptional accessibility with their On Duty app, See something, say something!

8. Being one of BC’s Top Employers for 2015!

9. Finding $240 million in efficiencies between 2012 and 2014.

10. Integrating the Canada Line to serve more than 122,000 riders on weekdays. More than 200 million passengers have used the Canada Line since it opened five years ago!

11. Celebrating 25 years of SkyTrain! Our system is one of the most cost-effective light rail systems in North America, beating out Portland, San Diego, Los Angeles and New Jersey.

12. Spending over $145 million from 2012 and 2015 on Major Road Networks and cycling projects across the region.

13. Serving 1.6 million people a day on bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express during the 2010 Vancouver Olympics!

14. The opening of the Millennium Line from 2002 to 2006 to serve 250,000 riders each weekday (along with the Expo Line) with an on-time service delivery performance rating of 95.46%.

15. To make it easier for cyclists to use and connect to the transit system, the entire bus fleet is equipped with bike racks.

16. Being a part of the new Evergreen SkyTrain extension constructed by the province that will connect Coquitlam to Vancouver via Port Moody and Burnaby.

Want to know more about how TransLink came to be?
Read our story: The Road Less Travelled.

The Facts Matter: A new series about TransLink and its operating companies

facts_matter_buzzer_header

TransLink's main areas of responsibility

TransLink’s main areas of responsibility

We have a new section on our website we’re excited to share: The Facts Matter.

Unlike most transit authorities in North America, TransLink’s mandate is more than just public transit. Besides the conventional buses, HandyDART, SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express fleets, we’re also responsible for the Major Roads Network, five bridges, cycling infrastructure and transit police.

Of course, readers of this blog know all this. But not everyone is as informed as Buzzer readers ;) .

What many aren’t familiar with are the details about how our public funds are spent in order to fulfill our mandate. That’s why we’ve added these facts to our website and are sharing them on social media and the transit system.

 The Facts Matter page on the TransLink website is a great resource for many of the questions our riders ask us on a regular bases. The facts on this page include:

  • How TransLink spends taxpayers’ money
  • How TransLink compares to other transit authorities
  • How others, including our customers, describe TransLink’s performance
  • How TransLink keeps costs down
  • CEO compensation
  • A breakdown of TransLink road and cycling investments by each geographical region in Metro Vancouver

As a public institution, it’s important to us that the public is informed about what TransLink does with public funds. Below is a breakdown of the how we spent your money in 2014.

TransLink's investments in transportation in 2014

TransLink’s investments in transportation in 2014

Our 2014 total fleet number
So how do our 2014 investment numbers translate into the our vehicle fleet numbers?

Currently we have more than 2,100 vehicles in our different fleets. Follow this link to find the specific numbers of each vehicle fleet as of 2013. Our fleets fluctuate in size throughout the year and we audit the fleet numbers every two years. So we won’t have 2014 numbers until 2016.

Over the next few months, we’ll be posting and delving into the different facts in this series.

As always, we encourage your questions and will try our best to find answers for you.

Do you know someone who has questions about TransLink and how we invest in the transportation needs of Metro Vancouver? Please share these facts with them and encourage them to post a comment!

 

 

Transit in the News – March 27

A weekly section about transit making headlines around the globe. Have an article you want to share? Comment below or email us.

newspaper-568058_1280
Maritime Bus says this winter season has been extremely challenging.

The weather wreaks havoc on the ferries in Cape Breton.

University of Winnipeg students rally for better bus service.

A long-awaited bus stand serving many in Uppinangady, India is being built.

Rapid bus system construction is underway in Cambridge, Ontario.

NYC MTA raises fares.

TTC wants to hire outside contractor to finish Spadina subway extension.

Who takes transit to work in Metro Vancouver?

Public transit boosting research on air quality and climate change.

Amsterdam is offering free transit for failed asylum seekers.

Minnesota’s BRT is held off until 2017 due to funding.

TTC commute comes to a halt due to environmental spill.

Fluid leak on Vancouver bus, no delays or passengers involved.

Passengers escaped a bus swallowed by a sinkhole in Brazil.

GO joins Milton Transit to test door-to-door bus service.

Edmonton hoping their Metro LRT will still open as planned this spring.

Subway surfers caught on camera in NYC.

If you’re looking for interesting facts and fun stories about transit, check out our monthly Links and Tidbits series.

Metro Vancouver: Hollywood North

Film crew on Hastings Photo courtesy of  John Biehler

Film crew near Hastings St. during a night shoot
Photo courtesy of John Biehler

When I saw the news that Ryan Reynolds was heading home to film the Deadpool movie AND the amazing reboot of The X-Files (hopefully to be filmed here again as well) was going forward I got super excited!

I love that I have lived in two major Canadian cities that have become the backdrop for so many TV shows and movies.

Personally, whenever I see a street filled with trailers and film equipment, my interest is instantly piqued!

I usually wonder 3 things:

1) What is being filmed?
2) Have I seen it?
3) Is Charlie Hunnam hanging around and does he want me to be his new bestie/girlfriend?? (Hey, a girl can dream).

With a mix of throwback and current favourites, here are 10 shows that were filmed right here in Metro Vancouver!

Have you seen any of these familiar faces or others around town? Any celebrity encounters on transit?

Once I sat across from Ben from Felicity (Scott Speedman) on the TTC.

But my claim to fame by association was really the impromptu chat I had with Malcom McDowell downtown Toronto. He said I was lovely and gave me free signed merch for my dad and I! THAT. WAS. COOL.

Don’t forget transit! Check out buses, SkyTrains and even stations stealing scenes in these past Buzzer blog posts.

You can always see who is filming where, around the region at  YVRShoots and take a peek at what’s filming this spring and summer, while you’re at it!

**Great news for all Roald Dahl fans, Steven Spielberg is directing a new movie version of The B.F.G. being filmed right now!!!**

Transit in the News – March 20

A new weekly section about transit making headlines around the globe. Have an article you want to share? Comment below or email us.

newspaper-568058_1280

Here in Metro Vancouver, voting has begun in the Transportation and Transit Plebiscite.

NDP leader Thomas Muclair says in Toronto speech that transit is a top priority in the GTA.

GO Transit is expanding the rapid line to Barrie, Ontario.

Donations of transit passes in Edmonton help give homeless youth a leg up.

Britain’s first bus run entirely on biomethane gas enters service this month.

NYC’s Port Authority bus terminal’s future is up for debate.

Officials reject plan to revamp Port Authority bus terminal.

Taipei City Government announced that the Taipei West Bus Station will be demolished.

Outlying UK counties are suffering as a result of bus cuts.

The Otago region in New Zealand will see new “super stop” bus hubs.

Students living in Villarasampatti, part of the Erode district, petition for better bus service.

Chicago starts construction on the bus rapid transit lanes in The Loop.

Study shows Scarborough LRT would attract more development than subway extension.

A $26 million dollar Federal grant allows Jacksonville, Florida’s rapid transit project to continue.

City Leaders in LA say public transportation is the key to a livable city.

Michigan mass transit funding is centre stage before the vote of Michigan Proposal 1.

Government launches bus pilot program in metro Manila.

TTC fires managers over Spadina subway extension budget overages.

Tokyo remembers. 20th Anniversary of deadly Sarin gas attack on Tokyo subway system.

If you’re looking for interesting facts and fun stories about transit, check out our monthly Links and Tidbits series.

Jane’s Walk: Connecting Communities

Get to your neighbourhood and strengthen your community May 1-3

Get to know your neighbourhood and strengthen your community May 1-3

“Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody, only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.”- Jane Jacobs

On May 1st to 3rd you can participate in a free Jane’s Walk in the area you live, work or play and discuss what matters to you!

Jane’s Walk helps knit people into strong and resourceful communities.

The festival is inspired by urbanist and author Jane Jacobs who believed in walkable neighbourhoods, urban literacy, and cities planned by and for the people.

Although she was never formally trained as a planner, she wrote one of the most influential books on city planning, The Death and Life of Great American Cities.

Metro Vancouver cities aren’t the only ones participating. There are over 100 cities worldwide hosting their own walks!

Check out a Burnaby Jane’s Walk from last year!

Guess what? YOU can lead a tour, too! Don’t be nervous, you don’t have to be an expert.

Use these simple steps to lead a Jane’s Walk:

      1. Decide what you want to talk about

2. Plan out a route by going for a walk

3. Enter your walk on janeswalk.org

4. Get the word out to friends, neighbours and anyone you might want to attend your walk!

Orientation Sessions

Thursday March 19th
5:30-6:30
Translink - 400 – 287 Nelson’s Court, New Westminster

Monday March 23
5:30-6:30
Mt Pleasant Library   - #1 Kingsway

Thursday April 16th
5:30-6:30
Mt Pleasant Library - #1 Kingsway

Take a look at some ideas to get you brainstorming:

  • History – Past & Present
  • Health and Happiness
  • Architecture
  • Stroller Walks for Parents and Tots
  • Public Space
  • Family Walks
  • First Nations Heritage
  • Accessibility and Walkability
  • Redevelopment & Urbanization
  • LGBTQ community
  • Live Music Venues
  • Nature in the City
  • Public Art and Theatre
  • Urban Gardens
  • Sports, Recreation & Health
  • Community Development
  • Being a Newcomer in a Community
  • Transportation
  • A Local Literary Tour

So source your stories and talk to your neighbours and local residents. You can even ask them to be a stop on your walk!

You can also head to your trusty local library to absorb a wealth of knowledge about the area and theme you’re interested in.

Walks should be about 1.5 hours with anywhere from 6 to 10 stops along the way.  When planning your walk route, keep accessibility in mind. Such as transit, public washrooms and parking.

Don’t forget to promote your walks on social media using some of these hashtags: #janeswalk #janeswalkmetrovancouver #TravelSmart

Get more information at travelsmart.ca and janeswalk.org.

Transportation and Transit plebiscite: Voting begins

plebiscite vector

Voting takes place from March 16 to May 29

Today marks the beginning of the Transportation and Transit plebiscite. Voting packages will be mailed out to all registered voters. You have until May 29th to cast your vote.

Here’s the gist: One million new residents are arriving in Metro Vancouver over the next 30 years. We need to get our transportation system ready for growth — and lots of it!

So Metro Vancouver registered voters are being asked  to decide if they support the 0.5% Metro Vancouver Congestion Improvement Tax.

The tax would be collected with the provincial sales tax.

The Mayors’ Council released this message to residents today.

You can see the plan and more information on the Mayors’ Council website.

Whatever you decide, make your voice heard and vote! To register or update your information, contact Elections BC at  or call 1-800-661-8683.

Important Dates

March 16 – 27

Voting packages mailed to registered voters.

March 16 – May 15

Voters may ask for voting package.

April 13

Plebiscite Service Offices open for local ballot drops and general plebiscite information. Be sure to check here for locations.

Midnight, Friday, May 15

The time to ask for a voting package ends.

8 p.m., Friday, May 29

Close of voting. All voting packages must be received by Elections BC by this date and time in order to have your vote count.

The Golden Ears half marathon and 10K run is happening again this weekend

Hey buzzer readers!

The Golden Ears Half and 10K is happening again!

The Golden Ears Half and 10K is happening again!

The fifth Golden Ears Bridge Half Marathon and 10K race is happening on Sunday March 15, 2015, and TransLink is very excited to be supporting it again!

Both races will go over the Golden Ears Bridge, crossing on the east side and then coming back on the west side. Traffic control measures will be in place on either end of the bridge while race is taking place, so keep that in mind if you’re driving in the area.

Proceeds from the race will go to the School Meal Program in the Langley School District and Friends in Need Food Bank in Pitt Meadows. If you want to cheer the runners on, the Half Marathon begins at 8:30 a.m. and the 10K starts at 9:15 a.m.! Visit the Peninsula Runners site for more info.