Cloverdale needs more transit options, writes columnist Frank Bucholtz. (Black Press Media file)

BUCHOLTZ: Cloverdale leaders need to advocate for more transit solutions

Ridesharing suggestion is good, but organizations such as the Cloverdale BIA need to do more

The Cloverdale Business Improvement Association makes a compelling case for ridesharing — it would give residents of the area a viable alternative to what has to be characterized as poor transit service.

Executive director Paul Orazietti says transit service is “woefully inadequate and the future does not look promising.” The BIA believes Uber and Lyft are good options to improve the ability of people to get to and from Cloverdale.

Regular bus service came to Cloverdale when the NDP government of Dave Barrett expanded B.C. Hydro’s transit service area to include Surrey, White Rock, Delta and Langley in the early 1970s. At that time, two bus routes served Cloverdale – the 320 to Guildford, Whalley and New Westminster and the 640 to Delta and the Tsawwassen ferry terminal. Both originated in Langley City.

Fast forward 46 years or so. Cloverdale has grown greatly. Areas which were rural are filled with housing — in West Cloverdale, south of Highway 10, north of 64 Avenue, in Clayton (which has almost become a self-contained town centre) and in almost all the once-rural areas between 184 Street and the Langley border.

With the exception of transit service along Fraser Highway, which serves Clayton and a portion of North Cloverdale quite well, there has been almost no change to bus service. The 320 still operates, usually on a 15-minute schedule. Another bus runs along 64 Avenue, and there are a couple of infrequent community shuttle bus routes.

While SkyTrain is proposed for the Fraser Highway corridor, it won’t come any closer to Cloverdale than Fry’s Corner (Fraser Highway and 176 Street). Residents of Cloverdale who rely on bus service won’t see much in the way of improvements.

Where the Cloverdale bus service really falters is in off-peak hours. In the evening, it is barely possible to go to and from Cloverdale by bus. Weekends aren’t too much better. This is despite the fact that the fairgrounds and casino complex attract a lot of people to Cloverdale for many different events.

A number of community events in the downtown area are also hard to get to, unless you have a car. The newly-renovated Museum of Surrey, the largest Remembrance Day event in Surrey and many shopping opportunities are all very hard to access if a car isn’t available.

A significant number of people in Cloverdale do not have cars — particularly in the core downtown area. New multi-family housing projects are attracting more people to the downtown area, but it will be hard for them to use transit to get to and from work. This makes Cloverdale a less attractive place to live, as many people rely on transit to get to their jobs.

Ridesharing is one of the solutions, but it is not enough. Community leaders and organizations such as the BIA need to press Surrey council, the Mayors’ Council and TransLink to make significant improvements to transit service in Cloverdale. There needs to be a dedicated shuttle bus to SkyTrain when the line opens. The 320 needs to run more often, and later at night. More community shuttle routes are needed to penetrate various Cloverdale neighbourhoods.

Cloverdale residents all pay taxes to support TransLink, and there are enough of them that improved transit service is a necessity.

Frank Bucholtz writes weekly for the Cloverdale Reporter, as well as at frankbucholtz.blogspot.ca.



editor@cloverdalereporter.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Court awards Surrey Costco shopping cart collector $583K after car pins him

Kurtis Ryan Burdeniuk, 22, was retrieving carts when driver backed into him in the parking lot, pinning him

Woman in Fraser Health region confirmed as sixth COVID-19 case in B.C.

Woman remains in isolation as Fraser Health officials investigate

Royal Canadian circus coming back to Cloverdale

June dates for rebranded circus in year of expansion into U.S.

Guildford’s Winter Festival raises nearly $7K for Surrey Memorial Hospital

Funds raised through two weekends of skate rentals, on-site donations

Committee that replaced Surrey’s Public Safety Committee seven months ago has never met

Surrey mayor dissolved safety committee in July 2019, replaced it with Interim Police Transition Advisory Committee

Fashion Fridays: The 8 best quality online stores! Shop the ultimate sales

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Woman missing in Metro Vancouver

Police seek public’s help locating Atefeh Jadidian, last seen in Maple Ridge

Petition seeks to remove local police department from Lindsay Buziak murder case

American woman starts online petition in hopes of helping Buziak family

Health officials confirm sixth COVID-19 case in B.C.

Woman remains in isolation as Fraser Health officials investigate

Study says flu vaccine protected most people during unusual influenza season

Test-negative method was pioneered by the BC Centre for Disease Control in 2004

Saskatchewan and B.C. reach championship round at Scotties

British Columbia’s Corryn Brown locked up the last berth in Pool B

‘Chain reaction pile up’ closes southbound traffic on Coquihalla Highway

Black Press Media has reached out to RCMP, paramedics for details

Exploding enrolment prompts opening of second TWU campus in Richmond

Langley’s faith-based Trinity Western University opens a second campus in Richmond

Fraser Valley seniors’ home residents go without meds for a night due to staff shortage

Residents speak out about staff shortages that are leading to serious safety concerns

Most Read