Just a matter of time for progress on transportation

Chemainus – I’ve seen several views expressed recently in your editorial pages about the viability of a renewed rail service on Vancouver Island.

I think “Island rail service” could be replaced with “Island transportation service” in these commentaries and the same basic opinions would still apply.

In other words, the provision of any kind of safe efficient transportation on Vancouver Island is either no longer feasible, or will take great effort and new foresight due to the machinations of various governments at all levels over the past half century.

We need look no further than BC Ferries, the Duncan strip, and of course, our decaying rail line to see just how far systematic government neglect has taken us into a deep hole.

I’m aware of the Citizen’s enthusiasm for the status quo where Highway 1 is concerned (Here’s to hoping expressway idea really is dead, editorial, April 9), but this old traffic artery is gradually deteriorating over time just as surely as the railway and the ferry service.

Intercity motorists on Vancouver Island are growing increasingly resentful and defiant about the escalating numbers of driving impediments that interfere with the free flow of traffic on the Island Trans Canada Highway.

Why do you think we are seeing growing road rage on Highway 1, especially through the Duncan area? The recent proposal for an expressway in the Cowichan area may be off the table for now, but it is definitely not dead. It will rise another day, just like the eternal issues of municipal restructuring and the never-ending hydro power outages we pretend to tolerate on the Island during storm season.

Similarly, BC Ferries will someday be fixed and a new rail line will be provided. An upgrade to expressway status will have to bring a significant reduction in traffic lights on our main highway, and maybe even a few interchanges and a Duncan bypass.

Our local merchants will adapt when the expressway comes into being, just like they have everywhere else where expressways and freeways have been built.

Reduced promotional signage on the revamped highway will be problematic at first.

However, merchant prosperity is a function of good advertising and service, not road signs.

It will be just a matter of time before everyone sees the light and quits standing in the way of progress.

Chris Carss


Just Posted

Sierra Acton, regional district director for Shawnigan Lake. (file photo)
New parkland in Shawnigan creating connections

Used to created parking for the popular Masons Beach Park

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

Chris Wilkinson
Chris Wilkinson column: This could be the worst thing done to you during the pandemic

As a result, all of us will contend with more ‘scarcity’ thinking and mindset.

The Crofton trailer park home where the bodies of two people were found. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Mom still waiting for answers after daughter and her fiance found dead in Crofton

Pair discovered dead in their Crofton home in May identified as Rachel Gardner and Paul Jenkins

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

Emergency vehicles are parked outside of the Wintergreen Apartments on Fourth Avenue. (SUSAN QUINN / Alberni Valley News)
Port Alberni RCMP investigate stabbing on Fourth Avenue

Two men were found with ‘significant’ injuries near Wintergreen Apartments

Most Read