Public Works & Transporation Committee Meeting Minutes - September 7, 2000





Thursday, September 7th, 2000


W.H. Anderson Room

Richmond City Hall


Councillor Lyn Greenhill, Chair
Mayor Greg Halsey-Brandt
Councillor Kiichi Kumagai
Councillor Linda Barnes


Councillor Ken Johnston
Councillor Derek Dang

Call to Order:

The Chair called the meeting to order at 4:00 p.m.



That the minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee held on Wednesday, July 5th, 2000, be adopted as circulated.




(Report: Aug. 23/00, File No.: 6480-01) (REDMS No. 160300)

The Manager, Transportation, Gordon Chan advised that the plan was no longer a draft plan and would be submitted to the Board of Directors for TransLink later in September for approval.

Mr. Bill Lambert, Program Manager, TransLink, expressed his appreciation to the Committee and staff for their hard work in preparing the proposed transit plan. He stated that the projects planned for 2000 were included in the draft program plan however, projects for next year would be dependent on the success of financing options currently being considered by the Board.

The Chair thanked Mr. Lambert, staff and the members of the Transit Public Advisory Committee for their hard work. She indicated that some of the current members of the Committee might be asked to remain on the committee to provide comments on (a) the plan as it developed, and (b) the various recommended service improvements.

Discussion continued among Committee members and the delegation on the availability of financing for current and future projects, especially if the financing options proposed by TransLink were unsuccessful. Reference was made to Part 2(a) of the recommendation, the intention of which was to advance the implementation of the Williams Road cross town service from 2001 to 2002. Mr. Lambert responded that because of certain time constraints related to the implementation of this route, the Williams Road cross town route could not be initiated before 2001. He stated that time was needed to order transit vehicles and to prepare a detailed plan on the proposed route.

Reference was made to a request for the allocation of resources to update Richmond’s ‘accessible bus stop inventory’. In response, Mr. Chan advised that TransLink would be requested to inspect those bus stops not on the inventory to determine if these locations met the criteria for being accessible, and to place a decal on the bus stop posts so that transit drivers would stop and let down and pick up passengers in wheelchairs at those bus stops. Comments were made by Councillor Kumagai that many of the new buses were equipped with ramps and no longer required curbs to enable those in wheelchairs to board the buses.

Discussion ensued on the proposed implementation of the Williams Road cross town services in 2001, during which Councillor Kumagai commented that preliminary figures indicated that the ridership needed to make the route viable did not exist. He suggested that alternate methods of providing this route should be considered, and added that the TransLink Board was endeavouring to analyze those routes which could be minimized to increase service levels in other areas. Cllr. Kumagai referred to the public consultation process taking place with regard to the proposed $75 levy for transit, and he stressed that until that issue had been resolved, the TransLink budget would remain the same.

It was moved and seconded


That TransLink be commended for their efforts in addressing the transit service deficiencies in the City through the recently completed Richmond Area Transit Plan, which outlines key service improvements to be introduced over the next five years.


That the overall findings and recommendations contained in the Richmond Area Transit Plan be endorsed, and that, in implementing the proposed service improvements, TransLink be requested to:


Advance the implementation of the Williams Road cross-town service from 2001 to 2000 and the Crestwood service from 2002 to 2001 to respond to the input received during the public consultation process.


Provide the City with further information on the scope of road infrastructure requirements to support the Richmond Area Transit Plan.


Launch a public communications program to increase the community awareness of the upcoming transit service improvements in Richmond.


(d) Devote resources to update the accessible bus stop inventory and to identify any deficiencies in providing accessible bus stops at high priority locations in Richmond.


Implement the Lansdowne Transit Exchange by 2001 to fulfil TransLink’s commitment in providing an off-street bus passenger transfer facility within the City Centre to support the effective integration of the new #98 B-Line with local and regional services.


That the recommendations contained in Part 2 above be conveyed to the TransLink Board of Directors.


That staff continue to work with TransLink to ensure the timely implementation of the Richmond Area Transit Plan, to monitor the resulting ridership response and user feedback, and to identify further service enhancements as required to reflect future land use and travel demand changes.


That members of the Richmond Transit Public Advisory Committee be commended for their participation in the plan development process and that the Committee be kept in tact to provide further input in the implementation and monitoring phases of the Richmond Area Transit Plan.

Prior to the question being called, Councillor Kumagai noted that information on GVTA funding had been included in the Engineering 2nd Quarter Report (Item No. 8).

The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED.



(Report: Aug. 15/00, File No.: 6450-08) (REDMS No. 177676)

Mr. Chan, in response to questions from the Committee, provided the following information:

No. 3 Road and Francis Road intersection was being proposed for the program because of the high number of accidents at this intersection which were caused by motorists running red lights

No. 3 Road and Blundell Road was not being included because of the lack of sufficient physical space to mount the camera equipment

the number of accidents occurring at the intersection of Blundell Road and No. 2 Road have declined since the improvements made by the City to that intersection.

It was moved and seconded


That the expansion of the Intersection Safety (Red-Light) Camera Program be endorsed by including the following intersections in the program:


No. 4 Road and Cambie Road;


No. 4 Road and Alderbridge Way; and


No. 3 Road and Francis Road.


That staff submit a follow-up report to Council, through the Public Works & Transportation Committee, to present the impact of the expanded Intersection Safety Camera Program in terms of frequency of motor vehicle crashes and level of compliance with the traffic signal control regulations after one year of operation at these new locations.

Prior to the question being called, information was provided by Mr. Chan that the current program allowed the installation of an additional 3 signals in the City. He stated that if another municipality did not take advantage of the entire allocated resources for that jurisdiction, Richmond could have one additional intersection added to the list.

The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED.



(Report: July 6/00, File No.: 6450-06-03) (REDMS No. 152958)

Mr. Chan briefly reviewed the report with Committee members. In response to questions about the potential $18,000 annual cost of maintaining the new signs, Mr. Chan advised that as City staff became more experienced in replacing these signs, the cost should decline. He noted that the implementation of new international standards for stop signs are planned which would require the upgrading of all stop signs in the City to the new standard, which would have been an added expense if the City had not taken advantage of ICBC’s offer to fund the replacement of the signs.

It was moved and seconded


That the financial contribution from the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) Road Safety Program to fund the replacement of all stop signs within the City with highly reflective material be accepted.


That the use of highly reflective sign material be adopted in principal as the new standard for stop sign installations and replacements throughout the City, and that the incremental cost of adopting this new standard be included as part of the 2001 Operating Budget Review process.




(Report: Aug. 24/00, File No.: 6340-01) (REDMS No. 167812)

It was moved and seconded


That the City support implementation of the Greater Vancouver Regional District’s proposal to replace the current physical survey monument system with a Global Positioning System (GPS) reference network and a "reduced density" survey monument system.


That the regional GPS implementation cost to the City be included in the Capital Program as a three year program such that expenditures are $76,900 in 2001, $49,300 in 2002 and $53,000 in 2003 for a total of $180,300 (as described in the business case attached to the report dated August 24th, 2000, from the Director, Engineering).


That staff continue to work with the GVRD - GPS Study Group to resolve out standing issues including the GVRD project management structure, the cost to the City for GPS equipment purchase and details regarding conversion of historical survey data to the new NAD83 datum and UTM mapping standards, and report to Committee in June of 2001 with respect to progress in this regard.




(Report: July 21/00, File No.: 0970-05) (REDMS No. 170157)

It was moved and seconded

That the Mitchell Island Watermain Fraser River Crossing capital project be deferred from 2000 to 2001 pending approval of an additional $400,000 from the proposed 2001 Capital Program.

Prior to the question being called, the Manager, Engineering Design & Construction, Steve Ono, advised that discussions had been held with Concert Properties Limited regarding future road alignments. He indicated, however, that the company representatives were not prepared to finalize this matter at this time, however, they were receptive to committing to the dedication of a road alignment.

In answer to questions, Mr. Ono advised that the Simpson Road alignment had been considered, however, the preferred alignment was "Alignment B" (northward from Shell Road to Mitchell Island). He stated that this would give the City and Concert Properties flexibility with the undeveloped land on Mitchell Island. Mr. Ono further advised that if the project was approved, discussions would continue through the Winter and Spring of 2001, with construction of the watermain proceeding late in 2001.

In response to further questions, he confirmed that even if the City was unable to obtain a grant from the Local Grants Act, the project would proceed. Mr. Ono also provided information on (i) the rationale for including an amount of $50,000 to cover the cost of disposing of contaminated soil; and (ii) the purpose of ‘pigging stations’. He confirmed that the City would be pursuing the obtaining of the additional funding through the grant process.

The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED.



(Report: July 20/00, File No.: 8060-02) (REDMS No. 163521)

It was moved and seconded

That staff prepare an amendment to Bylaw No. 6976, Local Improvement Project Charges Bylaw, that will be based on project specific construction costs.

Prior to the question being called, the Manager, Engineering Planning, Paul Lee, explained that staff were prepared to base a local improvement project on an estimate of the costs rather than on the actual cost. He further advised that the City Law Department had indicated that provisions contained in the Local Government Act might prohibit this. Mr. Lee advised that other municipalities had initiated similar bylaws and he intended to seek a second opinion to determine if the City could do likewise.

Discussion continued on the misleading wording of the proposed recommendation, and as a result, it was agreed that the recommendation would be amended to delete the words "actual construction costs as shown in Option 3 (contained in the report dated July 20th, 2000, from the Director, Engineering" and to substitute the words "project specific construction costs"

The question on the motion, as amended, was then called, and it was CARRIED.



(Report: Aug. 14/00, File No.: 0340-20-PWOR1) (REDMS No. 176953, 173490)

The Chair noted that the General Manager, Engineering & Public Works, Chuck Gale, and the Director, Engineering Jeff Day, had been required to attend another meeting, and were not in attendance this afternoon. Concern was expressed about the length of the report, and the Chair suggested that discussion on that issue be referred the next meeting when Mr. Gale and Mr. Day would be present.

Discussion then ensued among Committee members and staff on various components of the quarterly report, and in response, the following information was provided:


The Hansen Management System - Steve Ono advised that the Hansen system (a work order processing system which replaced the former OMS system) was working well but minor adjustments were required; in addition, a Hansen user group had been established between Richmond, Burnaby and Bellingham, Washington


Common theme for No. 3 Road Rapid Bus Signage (on hold due to budget constraints involving the Rapid Bus Project) - Mr. Ono advised that some of the improvements were included in the TransLink project which was facing budget issues; however, some work had been completed

During the discussion, Mayor Halsey-Brandt commented that the report should also contain information on areas where the department had failed to meet expectations, whatever these expectations were, rather than just hearing about the successes.

It was moved and seconded

That the Division Quarterly report for the 2nd quarter, 2000 be received for information, and that the matter of the manner in which the report is presented be referred to the next meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee for discussion.

Prior to the question being called, in response to questions, an explanation was provided by the Manager, Water Services, Steve McClurg, on the turbidity of Richmond’s water supply during the past few months.

The Chair also expressed her appreciation for the increase in the City’s Apprenticeship Program.

The question on the motion was then called, and it was CARRIED




Mr. Chan advised that a report would be presented to the next Committee meeting in response to the presentation made by TransLink at the September 5th General Purposes Committee meeting on possible options to finance TransLink’s Strategic Transportation Plan.

Mr. Chan also advised that two open houses were being planned, for September 12th to address the financing options, and on October 6th, at which time representatives of TransLink would be presenting their 2001 Program Plan.


Mr. Lee advised that the City had submitted 11 applications to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities for funding from its Green Municipal Enabling Act; however, because of the overwhelming number of applications received by the FCM, the City had had to select 2 proposals for consideration. The first application was for funding to undertake a joint effort with the Fleet and Transportation departments to examine the feasibility of using ‘clean air’ vehicles for the City’s commuter vehicles. The second application was for funding to develop a drainage model and to examine the efficiencies of the new ‘clean air’ pumps as compared to the traditional impeller air pumps.

Reference was made by Councillor Kumagai to the status of the No. 5 Road Sewer System study, and Mr. Lee advised that the proponents had asked the consultant to discuss with the City, the possibility of reducing the security requirements, because they were in receipt of lower estimates than those proposed by the City. With respect to the proposal to increase the size of the Shell Road sewer line, the proponents also believed the City’s cost estimates to be too high.

Mr. Lee further advised that staff had submitted an application for funding of the Mitchell Island Watermain Crossing project to the Local Grants Act, however, this project had not been approved, possibly because the City had received 2 grants from the Act in 1999.

Mr. Lee also reported that staff were working with the Greater Vancouver Regional District on the preparation of a presentation on the Lulu Island Treatment Plant to the Committee, possibly in October.

As well, Mr. Lee advised that staff were working with the Plumbing Department with respect to incorporating the GVRD’s ‘Code of Practice’ for wastewater management at food establishments into the City’s Plumbing Bylaw.


Manager, Fleet Operations, Ken Fryer, introduced the new Public Works Liaison, Sandy Webster. They then provided information on the upcoming Public Works Open House to be held on Saturday, September 16th , during which they advised that the funds raised from the event would be donated to the Richmond Hospital Foundation.

Discussion ensued among Committee members and staff on the selection of the Hospital Foundation as the recipient of funds from the Open House. Reference was made to the annual United Way Campaign and the suggestion was made that direction could be given at the time the funds were given to the United Way that the funds were to be directed to Richmond based organizations. As well, staff were requested to consult with Council about the date of next year’s event to ensure that there were no conflicts with other obligations.


Mr. Ono reported on the status of the construction schedule for the #98B Line, which now had a completion date of October 30th, 2000, with operation commencing in December, 2000. He added that preliminary operation of the #98B Line had commenced from Vancouver to the Airport as a means of training drivers.


Mr. McClurg advised that TransLink, on behalf of the City, has initiated litigation against the owner of the barge which struck the Knight Street Bridge earlier this year, to recover the City’s costs (currently $712,000) for replacement of the watermain which was damaged in the incident. He noted that while the watermain repairs have been completed, the catwalk along the underside of the bridge deck had not yet been replaced. Mr. McClurg added that a $500,000 cap on repair expenses had been approved by the Courts and it was therefore unlikely that the City would receive any refund. It was noted that the Knight Street Bridge is the responsibility of TransLink but the watermain is the responsibility of the City.

Mayor Halsey-Brandt sought information on the completion of the Ferndale Road reconstruction. Advice was given that the completion date is October 17th, 2000, and the contractor has confirmed that construction would be completed by that time.

Mayor Halsey-Brandt referred to complaints which were being received from residents living in the area of Lynwood Drive which ends at 5300 Granville Avenue, who were being ticketed for parking on the wrong side of the road (parking on the north side, heading east) based on the current flow of traffic through this area. Discussion ensued among Committee members and staff on possible solutions to the problem, and as a result it was agreed that staff would undertake a mail out to the affected residents, informing them that this portion of Lynwood Drive is a road, and that as of a certain date, tickets would be issued to anyone who parked illegally.

The Mayor advised that complaints had been received about motorists speeding in Terra Nova. In response, Mr. Chan advised that it had been determined as a result of conversations with areas residents, that one or two youth were the offenders. He stated that staff would be discussing the matter with the RCMP with a view to contacting the individuals and their parents with a view to educating them on proper traffic behaviour. The suggestion was also made that the Volunteer Speed Watch Committee should be contacted about undertaking a program in that area, and Mr. Chan was asked to take the proposal to the Committee.



That the meeting adjourn (5:10 p.m.).




Certified a true and correct copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Public Works & Transportation Committee of the Council of the City of Richmond held on Thursday, September 7th, 2000.



Councillor Lyn Greenhill

Fran J. Ashton
Executive Assistant