Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Approaching the freeway

with 8 comments

Approaching the freeway, originally uploaded by keefer79.

The line up on 152 Street to try and get on the Port Mann Bridge. Taken at 2007:05:10 15:40:40 – so the beginning of the afternoon peak. The bridge itself is not the location of congestion, but rather the convergence of 152 St on ramp and the two or three earlier on ramps as well. The local traffic radio stations all measure the length of the queue in terms of which ramp it has backed up to. A simple ramp metering system, such as is used “downstream” of the bridge on the Coquitlam side would lengthen this queue but shorten the one on the freeway.

 On ramp meter

Most of the traffic on this stretch of Highway 1 is local commuting between North Surrey and the TriCities.

Written by Stephen Rees

May 27, 2007 at 12:08 pm

Posted in Transportation

8 Responses

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  1. You know, this is absolutely the case. While perusing though some documents from Translink and the GVRD, I do remember reading about using the traffic signals to keep a consistent flow of cars entering the highway. Now the question is, how do you effectively move all these people in North Surrey and Langley into Coquitlam without all the congestion.

    Paul

    May 27, 2007 at 6:09 pm

  2. Ah! I am glad you asked me that. You can read the transit alternative the LRC has proposed on a PDF file found at the bottom of this page

    Stephen Rees

    May 27, 2007 at 6:15 pm

  3. Hi Stephen.
    I’ve enjoyed your sensible blog on regional planning and transportation for just a few weeks. As an addendum to my photo of above– I must admit to being quite gleeful at striding right past those vehicles depicted– perusers may wish to explore the aftermath shots as I continued walking towards the Port Mann Bridge. They are available starting here: http://www.keeferstreet.com/hikes/portmann/4.html
    As a foot and transit traveller who frequents ‘pedestrian unfriendly’ spots all over the Lower Mainland, I was glad to find a blog like this by a professional such as yourself. I’m currently writing a book on these foot travels in the region.
    Yours Sincerely
    Keith Freeman

    keefer79

    May 27, 2007 at 10:26 pm

  4. Thank you for those kind comments

    Just a question – are those cars in the curb lane parked, or queued?

    Stephen Rees

    May 28, 2007 at 6:32 am

  5. Hi Stephen,
    Those cars were parked. The picture above shows 152nd Street between 104 and 108 Ave, where the traffic was really beginning to build. Two other photos I just uploaded now show the traffic further along towards Highway 1.
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/88984806@N00/518371953/
    and
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/88984806@N00/518344320/
    Cheers,
    Keith

    keefer79

    May 28, 2007 at 11:01 am

  6. An arterial road bridge across the Fraser would work well to serve the local (Surrey to/from Tri-Cities) transportation needs in the Port Mann area. What is needed is connectivity across the river. Right now, anyone crossing the river must either use the highway or detour a long way to the Patullo Bridge.

    The problem is that I don’t think that an inter-municipal arterial road bridge near the Port Mann is on Translink’s agenda (and it still has to deal with the Patullo Bridge). Given that the Province has come to the table with Gateway (within its jurisdiction over the TCH), why would either Translink (or if initiated locally, any of Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam or Surrey (think Vancouver’s Cambie Bridge project, Richmond’s No. 2 Road Bridge project for locally initiated intra-municipal projects)) ante up any money to build an arterial road bridge across the Fraser? And of course, building a local arterial road bridge isn’t within the Province’s jurisdiction.

    ron

    May 28, 2007 at 2:02 pm

  7. The province is determined to twin the Port Mann Bridge and expand the freeway. They will do this no matter what: they refuse to look at alternatives and ignore the experience of every other urban region that has tried this strategy and has seen it lead to more sprawl and more congestion. They pretend that it has something to do with congestion at the port, even though that is transparently untrue. Very little traffic on the bridge is long distance trucking, and most of the freight to and from the port for the rest of the country or the US moves on trains.

    It is a simple short term sop to the pressure from their supporters to “do something”. Sadly, in this case it will not satisfy anybody for very long. The current awareness of the cost of global warming is rising. It is clear that more road capacity does not ease congestion for very long. Anyone who looks at the data dispassionately would conclude that a transit solution is cheaper, more effective and easier to implement in the short term. The Gateway is posturing and it is designed to appeal to BC Liberal supporters i.e. those who pay the bills for the party.

    Please read http://www.livableregion.ca/pdf/Transport_for_a_Sustainable_Region.pdf

    Stephen Rees

    May 28, 2007 at 2:42 pm

  8. ron said:

    “An arterial road bridge across the Fraser would work well to serve the local (Surrey to/from Tri-Cities) transportation needs in the Port Mann area. What is needed is connectivity across the river. Right now, anyone crossing the river must either use the highway or detour a long way to the Patullo Bridge.

    The problem is that I don’t think that an inter-municipal arterial road bridge near the Port Mann is on Translink’s agenda (and it still has to deal with the Patullo Bridge). … ”

    I agree that a separate arterial road bridge from Coquitlam to Surrey would be a good suggestion in terms of connectivity as you put it. But the problem is that any bridge over the main channel of the Fraser River is a major undertaking, and no municipality or combination of them can or will undertake such a project.

    If one wishes to either replace Patullo, or replace Patullo and add another six or eight lane arterial road crossing in between Port Mann and Patullo, and one wants Translink to do it, then the presumptive model is the Golden Ears bridge, a self-supporting P3 with an expected $3 to $4 toll. The toll may be somewhat less if the associated changes to the road network are less extensive than in the case of Golden Ears.

    I have said for forty years that the worst mistake WAC Bennett ever made was removing the tolls from the bridges in the Lower Mainland. It’s going to be major political surgery to restore fiscal sanity to the system.

    Budd Campbell

    May 30, 2007 at 12:40 pm


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