TransLink temporarily suspends Surrey-Langley SkyTrain public consultation

Sep 22 2020, 9:44 pm

The latest round of public consultation on the Surrey-Langley SkyTrain (SLS) project has been temporarily suspended, just days after it was launched.

A spokesperson for TransLink told Daily Hive Urbanized the third phase of public engagement for the SkyTrain extension has been paused during the provincial election period to ensure the public transit authority is compliant with BC’s election rules. The temporary suspension will not impact the timeline of the project.

The consultation’s online platform has been removed but will resume as soon as possible.

Last Friday, the public transit authority launched its public consultation on the designs of the four stations for the first seven-km-long stage of the project reaching Fleetwood.

After the weekend, on Monday, Premier John Horgan called a snap provincial election scheduled for October 24.

TransLink’s public consultation for the SLS project was originally slated to end on October 4.

The public transit authority’s separate ongoing online public consultation on the route options of the SFU Burnaby Mountain Gondola is unaffected and scheduled to end on September 30.

TransLink previously clearly stated its desire to have the entire 16-km-long, eight-station project built in a single stage by 2025 for reasons that include cost and logistical efficiencies. Both senior governments still need to approve the SLS business case to formally free up $1.6 billion in cancelled Surrey-Newton Guildford LRT funding for the SkyTrain project to at least Fleetwood. Another $1.5 billion in new funding is required for the remaining leg between Fleetwood and Langley Centre.

Whether it be an extension to Fleetwood or all the way to Langley Centre, procurement will begin in early 2021 for a construction start in 2022.

In this extremely early stage of the provincial election campaign, the parties have yet to release their platform on transportation infrastructure.

On Wednesday, the federal government is slated to deliver its throne speech, and it indicated earlier this year green infrastructure spending as an economic stimulus will be a major focus in this budget.

Kenneth ChanKenneth Chan

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