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Greater Victoria, BC News

ARTICLE

Date ArticleType
2/13/2014 Published Article
Moving Our Economy - Regional Transportation Solutions

Growing and streamlining efficient transportation systems is an integral part of economic growth and long-term planning for the south island. An efficient transportation system is key to economic prosperity for our region; however, the Capital region’s unique characteristics, location, and alternative modes of transportation pose growing challenges.

Population growth alone has slowed the flow of traffic significantly at peak hours of the day. We have already seen double-digit growth in the last five years in both Langford and Sooke, with 30 and 18 per cent population increases respectively. With population projections pegged at over 450,000 people throughout the Capital region by 2036 connecting our communities will likely get more difficult if not addressed soon.

Inefficient transportation systems not only affects commuters, it affects businesses each and every day. When transportation is not flowing, it impedes economic activity and has the potential of driving investment dollars elsewhere. Our community’s continued economic prosperity is dependent on the smooth flow of transporting goods, commuters, as well as the three million tourists that visit each year. More must be done in the area of integrating modes of transportation while investing in infrastructure and service delivery.

Transportation planning and integration is complicated by transportation corridors that cross not only the multiple physical boundaries of our communities but also the overlapping responsibilities of municipalities, the Ministry of Transportation, and the Capital Regional District. We need to work together in a coordinated effort to improve transportation and ensure long-term prosperity in the region.

In order to address Greater Victoria’s growing transportation needs we must implement a regional approach to transportation. Not only for roads, but also bridges, transit, and bike paths. As one of The Chamber’s four pillars of good governance, The Chamber advocates for stakeholders to work together to deliver services in the most efficient and effective way. This includes supporting the creation of a regional transportation authority as well as identifying regional infrastructure priorities. Efficient and effective transportation systems are an important part of building our quality of life in Greater Victoria and a large part of continuing our work in making our vibrant community the best it can be.

Bruce Carter CEO, Greater Victoria Chamber of Commerce

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