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TransLink narrows down options for Burnaby gondola as public consultation launches

Last Updated Aug 31, 2020 at 7:23 pm PST


TransLink wants to hear from you on its proposed Burnaby gondola routes

The transit authority has launched a month-long public consultation

Three routes are being considered

BURNABY (NEWS 1130) – TransLink is hoping you can help it narrow down the best route for the proposed Burnaby Mountain gondola.

There are three routes under consideration: A straight line, with the gondola terminal near the bus exchange, an eastern route from Production Way-University along Gaglardi Way, and a western route from Lake City Way, crossing the Burnaby Mountain Golf Course.

“There’s a direct route from Production Way up to SFU, and two routes that include an angle where the gondola would change direction,” Jeff Busby, the project director, explains.

“The idea here is to make sure that we’re looking at the tradeoffs between the travel time and the experience for users, but also how they can fit well in the neighbourhood and some of the sensitive environmental areas along Burnaby Mountain.”

People will be able to have their say on which route their prefer for the next month as TransLink holds a public consultation. Talks of a gondola have been ongoing for about a decade.

“While the idea of the project has been around for a long time, our most recent direction was received last year from the Mayors’ Council on Regional Transportation, and what they asked TransLink to do is work with the city of Burnaby to identify a preferred route option for the project,” Busby explains.

If the project goes ahead, it could have cabins arriving every minute, providing 25,000 daily trips up and down the mountain. A lack of options to get on and off the mountain, as well as the safety concerns associated with the only road, have been cited as reasons for a gondola.

A gondola would carry more people up the mountain per hour than the current bus service does, in about half the time, TransLink says.

“We see this project as an important project,” Busby notes.

“We have written a business case that shows it has pretty significant benefits, both for improved transportation and reliability of that transportation in all weathers. But, also, the ability to be a really sustainable solution, both to the environment — because it’s entirely run on electricity, so it can be almost carbon neutral — and part of the longterm sustainability for TransLink financing. Once the gondola is up and running, it actually costs less to operate and maintain than relying on bus service.”

Have your say here.