Vancouver Becomes a Transit City for 17 Days
I wasn’t here. So I am not going to comment on what happened. But I think you should read John Calimente’s article in re:place Magazine.
My thought is now that we have shown that it can be done – why does it have to be confined to a two week sports festival? The biggest reason of course is money. There was a lot more capacity on the system. The photo the magazine chose to go with the article is of the the line up of the special VANOC buses – which were not – as I understand it – available to the public, so I do not think they count towards the additional transit. But that’s a nitpick.
The lane closures – and street closures – are also really important. Obviously there is more capacity than needed for single occupant vehicles, and when you start thinking about moving people, not cars, this is the sort of thing that is needed. Of course the same people who oppose any reduction in car movements are the same people leading the charge for the Olympics. They will now revert to type – and use the “well, that was different” argument. No, not really. Venues were spread about the city just as employment, schools and post secondary institutions are. There was an exodus (I was part of that) but that was compensated by the increase in visitors. Spread more through the day – but we could do a lot more about flexible work hours.
But it seems to me that the reported satisfaction with the Olympics needs to be retained in the future. The legacy ought not to be just the medals and the odd sports facility. It should be to a more livable city – where getting around is easier and fun. All the time. Which means we need a lot more transit service. Of all kinds.