CRD & BC Transit Form Task Force to Recommend Options to Fund Local Share for Light Rail Transit

Sep 15, 2011

Victoria, BC The Capital Regional District (CRD) and BC Transit have created a joint task force to investigate local funding options to help finance the building of the proposed light rail transit (LRT) project in response to the recommendations of the Victoria Regional Rapid Transit Project. It is anticipated that LRT costs will be shared between all levels of government.

The task force will research and evaluate possible options and conduct public engagement strategies to keep the community informed. The group’s recommendation will be presented to the CRD Board and the Victoria Regional Transit Commission in May 2012.

The use of light rail technology on the preferred rapid transit alignment between downtown Victoria, Uptown and West Shore had the highest level of public support through the BC Transit stakeholder and public engagement process.

“The proposed LRT has been supported by the Regional Board, municipal councils along the alignment and the Victoria Regional Transit Commission,” said Task Force Chair Bob Lapham. “It is expected that LRT costs will be shared between all levels of government. The task force was established to evaluate alternative local funding.”

“We are pleased to be working with the CRD in this critical component of the project,” said Erinn Pinkerton, Director of Corporate and Strategic Planning. “It’s important to identify all of the possible funding options for the local share.”

The task force consists of CRD and BC Transit senior staff, with support from a resource network spanning federal and provincial government departments.

The task force will seek input from the municipalities, stakeholders and the public through public hearings and focus groups and through a dedicated email address and website The Terms of Reference for the task force are available on the website, indicating the scope and timing of the work.

Over the coming months, there will be opportunities for engagement on the LRT local funding options prior to the preparation of any recommendations. By May 2012, the task force will recommend local funding options for the proposed system that best meet regional criteria for consideration by the CRD Board and the Victoria Regional Transit Commission. It intended that these recommendations will inform discussions with senior government to finalize the funding formula for the LRT project.

- 30 -

For further information, please contact:
Bob Lapham, General Manager
Planning & Protective Services
Capital Regional District
250.360.3285 | 250.589-3285