Bridge decision seems like payback

Editor:

Well, the report is in. What have we all learned?

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My first thought is that the report contract for $350,000 with an additional $650,000 was issued without a tender process. That is a million-dollar contract with no tender. A less formal short-listing process was used. The rationale was that there was some urgency to decide regarding the bridge/tunnel. Perhaps this process is used to make sure you get the report you want? What did we learn?

There is a definite need to build increased capacity. Hmm, we already knew that.

There is no decision or recommendation other than to halt the construction of a 10-lane bridge. The NDP made it clear before they were even elected that they planned to halt this project. Hmm, we already knew that.

Many options were proposed, but no clear recommendation other than more study and consultation. I thought there was supposed to be some constructive decision and direction. Maybe we can do this or maybe that! Let’s do some more studies!

There is a need to upgrade the existing tunnel in the interim. Wow, what a revelation!

The minister responsible said that a business case was needed and would be developed by the fall of 2020. How long did it take to develop the business case for removing the tolls on two bridges? How long for the business case for the Pattullo Bridge? These decisions were made within months of the NDP being in power. Why does the Massey Tunnel issue take two years?

Once this business case is finalized it will require a bidding process and we will be lucky to see any bridge by 2030. The 10-lane bridge cost was closer to $2.6 billion as opposed to the initial estimate of $3.5 billion and we would be driving on it in 2022 – three years from now.

I guess we learned a lot from the urgent need for a report! Or did we? Hurry up and wait!

Remember, when governments need to release problem information, they do it prior to holiday seasons like the period before Christmas. It is called “putting out the garbage.”

It is hoped that nobody notices.

Remember the minister’s statements of Dec. 3: “What I heard at the time [of the study] is that almost no one, none of the municipalities in the region, were wanting a 10-lane bridge, so we put a halt to that,” said Transportation Minister Claire Trevena. – CBC News.

This statement is very hard to believe. I am sure there are many in South Delta, South Surrey and Langley who would strongly disagree with that statement. It is reasonable to note that the areas mentioned all tend to be Liberal ridings. I guess this is payback – not good government.

John Godfreyson

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