Time ticks along and the 2018 Vancouver civic election on October 20 is not so far away.

Long ago, Price Tags did some analysis of candidate statements to find what issues were top of mind then.  Housing was the top issue that drove them.

Well, it’s now time for the public to weigh in via a Main Street Research poll. With thanks to Charles Gauthier (@DowntownCharles) and Global News Hour.

Issues ranked by the public

Housing gets a lot of attention, as it should.  It’s a terrible crisis unless you’re a lucky landowner.  Too bad otherwise.

And look at the Kinder Morgan pipeline’s prominence (all to the good of Kennedy Stewart and Shauna Sylvester).  But NPA’s Ken Sim would apparently not touch the issue, since it’s not within the city’s jurisdiction.

Together, these two issues get 54% of the public’s votes.

But one has to wonder about a mayoral candidate who puts hot-button focus onto dear old, dead old bike lanes.  Really.  Is this a mayoral level of judgement?  My guess is that people are happy with the bike lanes we have, and with the rate of installation of new ones, and the plans for more.


  1. It was smart to install well designed cycling infrastructure that makes people want to use it. Typically in this continent they’ve been such low quality that people don’t use them much. Others point to that lack of use and say that it’s a waste of money. (And they’re right.) After that it’s hard to get any more done.
    Here, more recently, we have some good start to a network with AAA standards. People see that, get used to it, use it themselves, and understand.
    Another thing people see is the better motor traffic flow on the redesigned streets. The Burrard bridge is now a joy to drive over. People notice things like that and recognize that bike lanes reduce congestion and any message otherwise is a lie.

  2. In am quite surprised to see Kinder Morgan with a double-digit importance rating in this multi-faceted poll. Pro-pipeline commenters on news stories like to portray it having a huge majority in support and cite Canada-wide or BC-wide polls.

    As always, god is in the details. Broken down, the “majority” was in fact evenly split on the Coast where the majority of the population lives, which is equivalent to almost 3/4 of Alberta’s population. Imagine 1.5 million people in Alberta being against Kinder Morgan. When ranked against 10 other topics, it still gets almost 20% saying it is an issue locally.

    If you polled Burnaby residents Kinder Morgan will no doubt chime in well above 50% (72% was the poll I saw a few months back). There they are forced to live with an expanded tank farm, an additional pipe on a new route taking out park space, houses and trees, and an existing refinery. No wonder.

    1. The pipe goes under the Burnaby Mountain in a tunnel. No new surface disturbance. There’s a lot of FUD out there.

      The trees are being cut down at the existing tank farm, and marine terminal, which aren’t exactly parkland considering they’re behind barbed wire.

      1. I have a map of the route. It separates from the existing pipe in enough places in the Metro, including Burnaby, to classify it pretty well as a separate pipeline project. The new alignment will be dug next to the supposedly protected Brunette River, through municipal parks, though sensitive ecosystems and adjacent to existing residential development. The tunnelled section through the mountain is very short by comparison, and continues to ignore the severity of the geotechnical instability of the slopes above the terminal and Barnet Highway.

        In addition, the number of tanks in the tank farm is set to double. That would be a tremendous amount of highly flammable dilbit perched on the mountain above residential communities to the south. The Burnaby Fire Dept. has stated they can do nothing if a major fire erupted in even one of the 21 tanks.

        Having said that, there is an excellent chance the project will not be viable politically or legally in the long run. It is highly doubtful coastal First Nations will NOT take it to the Supreme Court if Trudeau continues on the current path to build this conduit for carbon while mouthing meaningless platitudes about climate change. The current push is part of the 2019 federal election campaign where the Kid is playing for industry and voters back east, which signals his willingness to sacrifice 17 Liberal seats in the Metro. I will be happy to oblige in that process.

        Meanwhile, more calls to act on climate change (and invest accordingly) are coming in from powerful and influential people, the latest in a Globe opinion piece today from Michael Sabia who heads the board of the Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, a pension fund that controls $300 billion. These calls are being heeded more as extreme climate trends manifest themselves, even with atmospheric temp increase still below one degree C on average and with several more degrees in the pipeline, so to speak.

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