Northern Exposure

The British Columbia Ferry Commission is hiring a consultant to investigate "the adequacy of BC Ferries' search to date for a suitable replacement vessel for the Queen of the North which sank March 22 2006." This, according to an annoucement quietly posted earlier today on BC Bid. The posting notes that "After an application from BC Ferries, on May 17 2006 the Commission issued Order 06-02 authorizing a 60-day reduction in the normal summer service level on BC Ferries' northern routes, starting May 18 2006. Our Order may be extended beyond the 60 days (i.e. beyond July 17 2006) if we are satisfied that BC Ferries has carried out a thorough search for a suitable replacement vessel and remains unable to secure one." The consultant's finding will be key in making that determination. The following is a complete copy of that posting.

BC Ferry Commission
Adequacy of BC Ferries Search to Replace Q. of the North
Transportation - Ground & Marine (see also Aviation)
Consulting Assignments - Transportation

For more information contact:
Crilly, Martin
Commissioner
BC Ferry Commission
PO Box 1497
Comox, British Columbia
V9M 8A2
Phone: 1 (250) 339-2714
Fax: 1 (250) 339-2753
Email: martin.crilly@bcferrycommission.com

Summary Details:

The BC Ferry Commission (www.bcferrycommission.com) seeks a qualified consultant to provide an opinion on the adequacy of BC Ferries' search to date for a suitable replacement vessel for the Queen of the North which sank March 22 2006.

BACKGROUND

Following the sinking of the Queen of the North, BC Ferries has reported that it has considered some 100 vessels as a replacement, but that none were suitable. Consequently the company has reduced service to northern routes below the normal northern summer schedule which began May 18 2006.

After an application from BC Ferries, on May 17 2006 the Commission issued Order 06-02 authorizing a 60-day reduction in the normal summer service level on BC Ferries' northern routes, starting May 18 2006. Our Order may be extended beyond the 60 days (i.e. beyond July 17 2006) if we are satisfied that BC Ferries has carried out a thorough search for a suitable replacement vessel and remains unable to secure one.

ASSIGNMENT

Your task as a qualified consultant would be to provide an opinion on the adequacy of BC Ferries' search to date for a suitable replacement vessel for the period starting March 22 2006. If finding that BC Ferries' search has been thorough, and that a suitable replacement is unlikely to be available until after July 17 2006, you would provide a
letter of comfort to that effect, with appropriate supporting material as you see fit, to the Commission. Your letter would include a recommended period for the extension. The Commission would expect to rely on your report in making its decision on whether an extension of Order 06-02 will be made and, if so, for how long.

BC Ferries records relating to the search for a vessel after March 22, 2006 will be made available and meetings can be arranged with members of BC Ferries' search team.

TIMING

The assignment is expected to start by June 19 2006 and its output would be submitted to the Commission by July 7 2006.

FEE

The consultant should quote a fee based on a maximum of 10 days' work. It is not essential but probably desirable to visit BC Ferries headquarters in Victoria, BC as part of the investigation.

Interested consultants should submit a short summary of credentials and relevant experience to the Commissioner by June 14, 2006 and including a brief time and cost budget.

5 Comments

Martin Crilly used to work for the GVRD and lead the planning process for Transport 2021 in the early 1990s, which rejected any expansion to the highway system in the GVRD, including any major expansion at Port Mann. It's that plan that is now being relied upon by critics of twinning the Port Mann bridge as proof that this element of Gateway violates plans laid down by local authorities.

"...the planning process for Transport 2021 in the early 1990s, which rejected any expansion to the highway system in the GVRD, including any major expansion at Port Mann. It's that plan that is now being relied upon by critics of twinning the Port Mann bridge as proof that this element of Gateway violates plans laid down by local authorities"

The Transport 2021 is outdated and didn't provide for projected growth and spatial distribution of the population. The error that the local whiner politicians have made is that the Liveable Regional Plan is not chiseled in granite. It was agreed to as a guide. Not a
specific requirement.

Plans are continually being updated and revised to meet future growth expectations.

One has to wonder if the critics are doing this reliance on the LRSP selectively.

There is no compulsory aspect to adhere to the Liveable Region Strategic Plan.

Face facts. People will work where they can afford to buy houses. It's cheaper to live in Langley than it is in Langara. Even if the place
of work is downtown.

The other thing these critics are missing is that the Port Mann is part of a national highway and the Highway 1 freeway is not just a local commuter road. It's also a major throughfare and is used by trucks to get cargo to the docks.

The Gateway Project is long overdue (should have been done 10 to 15 years ago).

The NDP's bandaid solution of a one direction only HOV lane across the Port Mann bridge is woefully inadequate for meeting today's traffic demands.

Please, what is a "Letter of Comfort?" I think I need one or two.

Not sure P-i-t-s, but I suspect that it will neither comfort the afflicted nor afflict the comfortable.

"One has to wonder if the critics are doing this reliance on the LRSP selectively. ... People will work where they can afford to buy houses. It's cheaper to live in Langley than it is in Langara. Even if the place of work is downtown. ... The other thing these critics are missing is that the Port Mann is part of a national highway and the Highway 1 freeway is not just a local commuter road. ... The Gateway Project is long overdue (should have been done 10 to 15 years ago)."

Posted by Harold Matheson on June 2, 2006 11:26 AM

Harold, you can relax, I agree with you, except your last point. It should have been built 50 years ago, not 10 or 15.

Even in 1955, how could anyone in the WAC Bennett-Phil Gaglardi Govt have rationalized building a six-lane Second Narrows bridge to North Vancouver, with it's very limited prospects for development, and only a four-lane Port Mann bridge to the Fraser Valley, and on to the Interior and the Rest of Canada. Even in 1955 or 1960, any reasonable person could plainly see that the supplies of developable land are far greater in the Fraser Valley than on the North Shore, even after an appropriate subtraction to preserve farmlands.

If a six-lane structure were indicated to the North Shore, then at least a six, but more likely an eight-lane structure was indicated for Port Mann. So, ... what were they thinking, Harold? Do you have any theories on that?

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