Originally Posted by jhausner
The article while polar and attempting to be controversial, does have a point. I hear it constantly from people on the "transit or nothing" religious debate that driving isn't faster but it isn't just about that. For many it is also the convenience. It's difficult to stop and get groceries on the way home. Or get a phone call during work asking you to be somewhere for dinner. Or having a lot of flexibility when you can get to work or leave work.
My girlfriend works downtown and takes Canada line to work every day. It’s great and she could make the argument she doesn’t need a car as many of her friends do. But she doesn’t. Why? Because like many of her friends who don’t admit it, she uses my car at least once a day be it going to get groceries, being picked up from work by me to go to Burnaby to visit friends, going out to visit my parents, or just heading somewhere in a timely fashion that is easier by car compared to 2 sky-trains, 4 buses, and 6 transfers.
Living a transit only lifestyle only really works in downtown Vancouver and even then often only works with single young people who have single friends living in the same area. Living in metro-Vancouver as a family with kids without a car though is very near crippling.
That's just reality.
If we were as dense as Hong Kong or New York where people often live and die in a 10 block square, then cars may go the way of the dodo. But in Metro-Vancouver we're a good 100 years away from anything of that sort. So the truth is cars are needed and won't go away. We need to try to reduce car usage though as best as possible though.
Focusing on getting rid of them completely or making it such a black and white religious debate of CAR _OR_ TRANSIT is just ridiculous and counterproductive and in that sense I agree with the article, leave us car drivers alone.
Come on. It is only anti transit people that are saying that it is all or nothing. A common tactic is to paint people on the other side as being extreme. Sure, transit doesn't work for everyone all the time but nether does driving. There are a lot of people who can't drive or don't want to drive everywhere for everything. But don't pretend that the choosing or being forced to drive because of lack of other alternatives doesn't have many negative impacts on many people, including drivers themselves. Governments do have the responsibility to protect people from the actions of others. In a growing region, it is just not affordable or practical for people to drive everywhere for everything, that is why it is critical to improve transit. Just look at the tolls for the new bridges. $6 dollars a day in tolls is far more costly to drivers than a $2 gas tax for transit.
Unfortunately, opinion pieces like that in the Province that resort to all sorts of ridiculous rhetoric is exactly the time of black or white religious type of argument that you claim not to like.
For example, a 2 cent gas tax is hardly going to "to tax people out of their vehicles" and to claim that it is an "attack on individual rights" is absurd. As the tax is less than 2% of the cost of gas, if it has an impact, it would only be that people drive 2% less. So one out of 50 days, they don't drive.