Originally Posted by PacificNW
Is downtown Vancouver, B.C. still not serviced with a freeway?
No and thank god for that. Back in the late 60s and 70s (or it might be 70s and 80s, either way I wasn't there back then), there was a huge plan for freeway expansion in the Greater Vancouver area. As the city was growing, many planners and professors believed that freeway expansion was the way to fix our congestion and traffic problems in Vancouver. Transportation planners often used models such as Portland and LA.
The plan was to build a freeway from the Northshore (Hwy 1, which is the only highway that goes through Vancouver City) underground or above water to Downtown, then underground Downtown to Yaletown. Phase two of the project [sort of a vision] was to have a freeway go on Cambie street to Richmond connecting with Hwy 99.
Tunnel Option/Bridge Option
Interchange at Waterfront
I can't imagine what will happen if Vancouver continued on this freeway. We would probably not see Yaletown, Cambie-Heritage Blvd, and Gastown. Now JordanL, I understand why you think this way. As a matter of fact, when I started posting at SSP, I thought the same.
Source: US Department of Transportation Freeway expansion only solves congestion in the short-term, not in the long run.
Looking at Seattle, I-5 is heavily congested throughout the day and WSDOT continues expansion to relieve these problems. Only as of recently, they realize this isn't the way to go. Even though they continue expanding I-5, often, it's for high occupancy vehicles. When I was in Portland, I noticed congestion was horrible
at many interchanges and junctions. Then I noticed that there were no priorities given to higher occupancy vehicles, for carpoolers and transit users? If there is any freeway expansion, it should only be for adding HOV lanes, and Bus Queue Jumpers
. Transit and carpooling is not really an alternative to commuting if you are still stuck in the same traffic as everyone else.
Source: TANK Bus
Portland has been mainly focusing on light rail expansion for a while now. This isn't a bad thing, but it's not good either. I think Portland really needs to start a Bus Rapid Transit network and further improve their frequent transit netowkr, trying to connect as many communities and possible. It's far cheaper to have than LRT, and BRT can be easily converted to LRT should there be demand for it.
Then, there is biking! JordanL, have you ever tried to get to work with a bike before? It's magical. Portland's a national leader when it comes to biking developments, particularly with the new bike boxes and new bike routes. Many trips under 5 km can be made with biking, even trips under 10 km.
Basically, Portland needs to adapt this kind of guideline (from the greatest priority to the least)
6) Single Occupancy Vehicles
I'm half dead right now so I don't really know what I'm typing makes sense... zzz...