Chamber, Tourism Squamish, BIA Call for County Action on Parking, Public Transportation

The Squamish Chamber of Commerce, Squamish Tourism and the Downtown Squamish Business Development Association are calling for immediate and long-term action to address critical shortcomings in Squamish’s transportation infrastructure.

Partners recommend the following actions to Squamish County:

The communities of the District of Squamish, Sea to Sky and the province of British Columbia are working together to create and implement an integrated local and regional transit system.

Squamish County is implementing and funding an action plan based on the findings of the June 2021 Transportation Future Action Plan on Community Engagement and the April 2021 Business Space Needs Analysis, with a focus on operating hours and bus frequency to ensure that business power can get to the place of work.

The Squamish area actively attracts and supports alternative transportation businesses (air, sea, bike, private shuttle, carsharing, ridesharing), including infrastructure improvements such as more car sharing kiosks and secure bike storage.

The Squamish area is investigating parking solutions, with a focus on creating dedicated employee parking hubs and employee transportation solutions.

The Squamish area is revisiting its approach to allowing parking waivers in new developments.

Partners say the combination of rapid population growth and a transport strike has forced them to share their serious concerns about the impact of transit and transport on the local economy. This is a key issue affecting businesses across the community, and the three organizations are calling for immediate and long-term action to address critical gaps in Squamish’s transit, parking and transportation infrastructure – a deficit that is having a growing negative impact on businesses, employees and customers.

Team members have faced significant recruitment and retention challenges during the pandemic. The local transport strike is another strain. Businesses are already understaffed due to COVID-19 and availability issues, and now they can’t be sure their employees will be able to work. The lack of alternatives (such as taxis) and growing parking problems exacerbate the situation.

“We really want to see a solution to the strike in public transport. At a time when businesses should be focused on recovering from the pandemic, Squamish is instead facing new logistical challenges,” say the partners.

Squamish Chamber, Tourism Squamish and Downtown Squamish BIA represent hundreds of Squamish community businesses. Together, partners actively support business, economic growth and economic diversification. The partners believe that the solution found will immediately solve several key infrastructure problems.

In addition, partners support an updated rail corridor study and urge the provincial government to prioritize regional and economic benefits when investing in transport. A letter addressed to…

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