Tolls could be coming off Golden Ears Bridge soon.

No more bridge tolls opens potential doors for tourism, business

More traffic flowing over Golden Ears and Port Mann Bridges since Sept. 1

It is closing in on two months since the new provincial NDP government removed the tolls from the Golden Ears and Port Mann bridge crossings, and Tourism Langley is looking to build on the free trips across the Fraser River.

Acting executive director Mun Bagri said the elimination of the tolls has opened dialogue between Tourism Langley and neighbouring communities on the other side of the Golden Ears Bridge, as well as in Metro Vancouver.

Bagri said the removal of the tolls, “along with recognition of the match our tourism products (have) with the demographics of these communities has promoted positive conversations with our stakeholders in regards to connecting with these markets.”

“The removal of barriers, of various forms, can always benefit both visitation as well as partnership opportunities with our fellow Metro Vancouver destination marketers to promote the region and work together expand the reach of our campaigns, as travel between our stakeholders is now toll free,” Bagri added.

Businesses in communities like Maple Ridge, Coquitlam, Burnaby and Vancouver now can offer tours and transportation packages to visit our Tourism and accommodation providers with one less cost to factor in, Bagri noted.

“This is still in the early phases, but we are excited with the conversations that are beginning to happen and the new faces that are looking to come to the table to work together throughout all of Metro Vancouver,” he said.

Meanwhile, local business improvement associations (BIAs) say it’s too early to tell what kind of impact the toll removals have had, one way or the other.

Walnut Grove BIA executive co-ordinator Lorrie Lace said some Maple Ridge businesses are “looking to becoming members for the simple fact now that they can open up their businesses more to our area.”

Businesses in Maple Ridge want to make their presence known to potential shoppers in Langley, Lacey said.

The Walnut Grove BIA has a meeting coming up on Nov. 16, when members will discuss the new developments in Langley Township as well as other issues, such as tolls being taken off the local crossings.

“Our goal is to talk about whether or not people are seeing an increase in business with the toll being gone,” Lacey said. “At this point we all haven’t gotten together since the tolls (have been taken off the Golden Ears Bridge) so we haven’t had a chance to really discuss that.”

In Langley City, Downtown Langley Business Association executive director Teri James said “we’re definitely monitoring it.”

“I think it’s more impactful for the commuters than it is for shoppers,” James said. “We’re hoping to see an uptick.”

James said the City is “definitely” going to include Maple Ridge in all its Christmas promotions.

“There’s a market (there) now that there’s no tolls,” she said.

In Maple Ridge, that community’s Business Improvement Association’s executive director Ineke Boekhorst said the merchants there haven’t seen a noticeable difference in business to date.

“In my own personal (experience) I go more to Langley now, and I wasn’t before,” she said. “I don’t do a lot of shopping in Langley because I like shopping local.”

Boekhorst noted that while it’s been status quo amongst the Maple Ridge shopkeepers, they have noticed a lot of new faces in their stores, which is a possible indicator of customers from outside the city boundaries.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Signs at a new COVID-19 testing and collection centre at 14577 66th Ave. in Surrey. It was relocated from an urgent primary care centre near Surrey Memorial Hospital. This new centre allows for up to 800 tests per day, which is 550 more than the previous centre, according to Fraser Health. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
More than 200 new COVID-19 cases linked to Fraser Health region: Dr. Henry

Provincial health officer appeals to people to keep gatherings small

/ Kevin Mills Photo
BC NDP leader tours through downtown Mission

John Horgan talked to local business owners, accompanied by candidates Pam Alexis and Bob D’Eith

Mia Gill, with cousin Gavin Nahal, presents a cheque of just over $1,400 for the pediatrics unit at Abbotsford Regional Hospital. (Submitted photo)
Teen presents birthday cash to Abbotsford Regional Hospital for 8th year

Mia Gill has been donating to pediatrics unit every year since 2013

Jodie Fedun said her brother Jarrett Whitford hasn’t been heard from since early September, and his bank card was last used in Hope. (Submitted/Facebook photo)
Police spot missing Alberta man on video, in Hope

Family have not heard from Jarrett Whitford, 31, since early September

The Vancouver Canucks and Abbotsford’s Jake Virtanen have agreed to a two-year deal with an average annual salary of $2.55 million. (@Canucks Twitter photo)
Abbotsford’s Jake Virtanen, Vancouver Canucks agree to two-year deal

Two sides avoid arbitration, Virtanen will receive average annual salary of $2.55 million

Actor Ryan Reynolds surprised a Shuswap family with a special birthday message to their son who was worried he’d be alone on his 9th birthday on Nov. 24. (Tiffanie Trudell/Facebook)
Ryan Reynolds text almost gives away Shuswap boy’s birthday surprise

Deadpool actor helps remind eight-year-old Canoe resident he’s not alone

Vancouver police reactivated the search for Jordan Naterer Thursday Oct. 22. Photo courtesy of VPD.
Mom of missing Manning Park hiker believes her son is waiting to come home

‘He’s going to come out of a helicopter and say ‘what took you so long?”

Environment Minister George Heyman, Premier John Horgan and Energy Minister Michelle Mungall announce that B.C. Hydro is proceeding with construction of the Site C dam, Dec. 11, 2017. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)
Site C actions, costs won’t be known until after B.C. election, Horgan says

Peace River diverted for construction of reinforced dam base

One of the squirrels who ended up having their tails amputated after getting them stuck together with tree sap. (Facebook/Wild ARC)
Squirrels recovering from tail amputation after sap situation near Victoria

BC SPCA Wild ARC says squirrels will be released back into wild, fifth sibling was euthanized

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read