Mayor Dianne Watts wants to consider selling the names of SkyTrain Stations to corporate interests.

Watts in favour of selling SkyTrain station names

Surrey mayor says a host of sustainable funding is needed to pay for transit plan

Leaving SFU Surrey Station, next stop, Concord Station.

Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts is favouring the idea of selling the names of SkyTrain stops as a way of generating much needed revenue for TransLink, which is in dire need of cash to complete projects such as the Evergreen Line.

Watts said naming of the stations would be put under strict rules of taste.

She also said it wouldn’t be decided by the mayors.

The unelected Translink board would decide the naming criteria.

Watts said an example would be to have the Stadium Station renamed “Rogers Arena Station” for a fee.

She also said two stops in Surrey could be SFU or Concord stations.

The idea comes as the transportation authority works to find additional funding to pay for its transportation plan.

Some of the money will come by way of a two-cent charge on each litre of gas which is expected to raise $40 million annually.

Watts said it will also require a host of other funding sources including moderate road pricing and contributions from development.

All are necessary to fund the regional transit plan, which includes:

·   $20 million annually for Major Road Network improvement projects

·   $6 million annually for cycling network infrastructure

·   200,000 additional transit hours for the South Fraser Region – 425,000 hours region-wide

·   Highway 1 RapidBus Service from Langley, through Surrey to the Lougheed SkyTrain station

·   A New B-Line service from White Rock to Guildford Town Centre, plus a new bus route from White Rock to Langley serving the Surrey community of Grandview Heights

·    SkyTrain station upgrades and Seabus improvements

Watts said the funding sources and the projects within the plan need to be considered to prevent this region from become another Los Angeles.

“The bottom line is this, we’ve got almost a million people moving into the region,” Watts said. “When you do the calculation, that’s another 800,000 vehicles.”

Seventy per cent of that growth is south of the Fraser and the northeast sector.

“You have to make a choice; whether you want to look like Los Angeles, or do you want to have a sustainable region,” Watts said.

@diakiw