Downtown (Olympic) Streetcar: Test Runs Begin

It's been some time since I've been able to post.. work and side projects are taking up all my time.

I was riding through SE False Creek and checking the progress of the streetcar, when I noticed it was running - the two trains were running end-to-end.

It was great to see them actually running down the track and stopping at the stations. The track is a single track, with passing sections at the stations. It's unfortunate, but I verified my earlier discovery: that the track only reaches the "Olympic Village" Canada Line station at Cambie - and doesn't run through the Village itself.

Vancouver Council Endorses NE False Creek Development Plan

The High-Density vision (High-level review) of development for NE False Creek has been endorsed by city council - apparently to bring the highest density in the downtown area.

This doesn't mean that the buildings will go up next week; this is but the first stage in the development plan of the site - now, developers will begin to submit their plans for building out the area.

Evergreen Watch: 'Moody Locals Looking for Third Station

It is wonderful to see people taking action on something well before it's too late - it seems that far too often, everyone waits until all the decisions have been made to actually begin talking about changing the course of a plan already in development.

A group of citizens in central Port Moody is taking pre-emptive action, and is currently organizing to ensure they get more than the two stations already drawn into the plans for the Evergreen Line.

Vancouver's "Greenest City" Plan 2020

In February this year, Gregor Robertson convened the "Greenest City Action Team". A bit over a week ago, their '2020 Action Plan' was released, which is intended to be a plan on how to become the greenest major city on the planet by that date. I've finally had enough time to skim over it - I'll focus on the transportation bit for the moment.

Average Home Size Might be Turning the Corner: Geller

In an article hinting at one of the major challenges to suburban planning, both currently and in coming years, Michael Geller discusses trending changes in the average size of North American homes. The statistics he drops could also likely serve as ammunition for proponents of laneway housing:

Back to the Future: West Van --> Coal Harbour by Ferry

A quick post here, a day late: West Vancouver city council approved, yesterday, a six month trial run of a ferry service from near Ambleside park to Coal Harbour.

Getting It Done in NYC

If you're reading this, you might already be aware that Translink just brought Janette Sadik-Khan to Vancouver for a bit of an information exchange and a few public discussions. The current NYC Transportation Commissioner, she has overseen some amazing traffic-calming, pedestrian- and bike-friendly infrastructure changes made in that city. The pace at which ideas become places there is phenomenal.

Vancouver's Streetcars on Their Way

It appears Bombardier has shipped the two "Flexity" streetcars to Vancouver, and the local news release brought the local media's attention to the new line once again. The right of way has been rebuilt over the last year, and looks complete (the above photo was taken a few weeks ago). It was great to see Frances Bula's posting on the subject draw a significant amount of discussion.

Granville Island Carless Redux

We've all noticed it - the constant traffic jam and parking battle that is Granville Island. Still, in 2004, it was named One of the World's Great Places, but I'd say the perpetual queue of sheetmetal, exhaust, and darting drivers stop it from living up to its potential as a truly great destination and public space. The time has come to remove cars from the island.

Summer of Cycling Update

This summer has indeed turned out to be action-packed for cyclists, and for the growth of cycling (and argument of the auto vs. cycling) in the realm of public discussion. The Burrard Bridge bike lane 'trial', Critical Mass finally being discussed in mainstream media, and the Summer Spaces project point towards some huge and welcome change yet to come.

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