VICTORIA - Members of the ACEC-BC Executive Committee met this morning with the new BC Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure, Hon. Claire Trevena. Representing ACEC-BC were Jeannine Martin, Chair; Gurjit Sangha, P.Eng., Designated Director; and Keith Sashaw, President & CEO. Derrick Harder, Ministerial Assistant was also in attendance. The meeting provided an opportunity to introduce ACEC-BC to the new administration and continue the excellent and ongoing relationships we've had with previous Ministers, and with BCMOTI staff at all levels. The new Minister was very well spoken and appeared to be getting well acquainted with transportation issues.
(Left to right): Gurjit Sangha, P.Eng., ACEC-BC Designated Director; Jeannine Martin, ACEC-BC Chair; Hon. Claire Trevena, BC Minister of Transportation & Infrastructure; Keith Sashaw, ACEC-BC President & CEO.
Our message to the Minister focused on four key areas: infrastructure, transportation, future labour demand, and climate action. We commended the government for their continuing commitment to infrastructure spending, and urged them to develop a 5 to 10 year capital plan to ensure appropriate resources are available on an ongoing basis. We also noted the life cycle cost benefits that are achieved on infrastructure projects by using qualifications based selection (QBS). We expressed our support for the Metro Vancouver Mayors' Council's 10-year vision, which includes Surrey Light Rail, a new Broadway SkyTrain and thousands of new hours of bus service, as well as bridge and road improvements. We also expressed support for the George Massey Tunnel Replacement Project, and for mobility pricing as one source of funding to enable the effective expansion of the transportation system. Finally, we noted the key role that engineers play in every aspect of BC's economy, and offered to collaborate with the Ministry to address challenges around future labour demand, and on climate action.
Minister Trevena reiterated the government's commitment to removing tolls, pushing forward on the new Pattullo Bridge and improvements on Highway 1. The Minister acknowledged that Highway 99 does present a chokepoint for traffic and needs to be looked at. The Minister noted that an Independent Review Panel has been assembled to review the work that has been done to date on the George Massey Tunnel Replacement project. A deadline for the delivery of the Panel's findings was not given.
It was a good first introduction and we look forward to future meetings with the Minister.
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