LETTER: Not on the right track

I offer thanks to G.E. MacDonell for his history lesson on the Chilliwack interurban line ...

I offer thanks to G.E. MacDonell for his history lesson on the Chilliwack interurban line that carried passengers throughout the Fraser Valley and to Vancouver until 1950 (Abbotsford News, Feb. 27). I may not be “the province’s second foremost historian of the BCER,” self-proclaimed or otherwise, but I know a bad transit decision when I see one.

I understand that some people have nothing but contempt for light rail transit in the Fraser Valley. Fair enough  – it may never happen but ignoring the facts does not change the facts. Much has changed in the Fraser Valley since 1950 except that residents have been woefully under served by transit.

The Fraser Valley will continue to receive the bulk of our future population growth yet without viable transit alternatives we face gridlock on our undersized highways.

Transit planning should be driving the development in our region, not the other way around.

If we make real transit commitments now (including the permanence of rails in the ground) we can change our future reliance on the automobile to move people.

The new Fraser Valley Express bus seems designed for commuting to Vancouver, yet the design requires two transfers and at least 2.5 hours to reach downtown.

The western terminus in Langley is a bus loop that is not within easy walking distance to anywhere.

If moving people from Chilliwack to Vancouver is the point, then why not simply continue the trip to the Braid Street Skytrain station and also run a bus from Chilliwack to the Westcoast Express station in Mission.

Fraser Valley residents need real solutions to our transit problems. Never say never.

Don Davis, Chilliwack