Regional Transportation Priorities

The CRD Board has confirmed transportation priorities to reduce congestion, encourage alternatives to personal vehicle travel and take action on climate change. The CRD role in transportation is to act where it has authority, coordinate where needed, and set direction on matters that are currently not the responsibility of any partner. The CRD Board’s confirmation of regional transportation priorities follows from the 2020 release of the South Island Transportation Strategy (SITS).
 
Transportation priorities are largely based on existing plans, strategies and bylaws at local, regional and provincial levels. At the regional level, priorities align well with the Regional Growth Strategy, Regional Transportation Plan and the Regional Trails Management Plan. The priorities also align to plans and policies from other agencies and senior governments, including the BC Transit Future Plan, BC Transit’s RapidBus Strategy, SITS and CleanBC.

On July 14, 2021 the CRD Board unanimously approved the transportation priority implementation strategies presented in Appendix B Transportation Priority Area Implementation Strategies.

The transportation priority implementation strategies include direction that staff:

  • form a Transportation Advisory Committee, reporting through the Transportation Committee, with senior staff representation from CRD, municipal, electoral area and agency partners to advise on regional transportation matters requiring coordination
  • be given the mandate to develop a region-wide approach to transportation demand management, safety policy and implementation of a connected and consistent regional trail network, working through the Transportation Advisory Committee
  • be directed to advance advocacy and other implementation actions, as set out in Appendix B Transportation Priority Area Implementation Strategies

A Coordinated Approach

Transportation in the CRD continues to be a high priority for all levels of government and the public. Transportation is the highest emitter of Green House Gasses (GHG) in the region and delays caused by road congestion impact the economy and quality of life. Because transportation in the CRD is largely inter-municipal, meeting the complex multi-modal transportation needs of a growing population and changing demographics requires a coordinated approach.

The CRD is working collaboratively with partner municipalities and electoral areas, provincial crown corporations such as BC Transit, BC Ferries and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI) to improve the transportation system across the region and to achieve the mode share targets in the Regional Transportation Plan. Reducing the reliance on single occupancy vehicles (SOV) by offering transportation alternatives is a key priority. The CRD is also responsible for the Regional Trails Network which serves as both an important transportation and recreational asset.

Trends in land use patterns, travel behaviour and population growth indicate increased pressure on the region’s transportation system. The option to expand road networks is limited by the region's built and natural environment. A change in approach from the traditional reliance on single occupancy vehicle travel is needed. The geography, weather, and form of land use in the CRD is generally well suited to use of active transportation and transit. While the CRD has traditionally had comparatively high transit and active transportation mode share relative to other cities in Canada, these rates have remained static in recent years. The region continues to advance new transit and active transportation investment to make sustainable transportation more accessible to more people.

Data

The CRD delivers an extensive transportation data collection and analysis program that provides essential information to inform transportation decision making for local governments, provincial agencies, businesses and the general public. Transportation related data work includes:

Salt Spring Island Transportation

Transit within the region is administered by the Victoria Regional Transit Commission with the exception of Salt Spring Island, which administers its own very successful transit system. The road network within the three electoral areas is maintained and operated by Ministry of Transportation & Infrastructure, as are a number of key roads within the broader region, most notably Highway 1, 14 and 17. SSI transportation is overseen by its own local transportation commission.