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For Immediate Release June 8, 2020

VANCOUVER, B.C. — The COVID-19 global pandemic has significantly impacted transportation networks across the world, a recurring theme during last week’s annual Transportation Forum presented by Deloitte. It is becoming increasingly evident that the prosperity of the region will depend on our ability to effectively manage our post COVID-19 recovery while addressing pressing regional transportation issues and advancing priority projects.

The Greater Vancouver Board of Trade commissioned a Mustel Group’s Omnibus survey to better understand how COVID-19 might impact mobility in the Greater Vancouver region and determine what recovery might look like. The survey found that:

  • 36% of respondents plan to increase use of their car or car ownership because of COVID-19, with a similar result across the region, including in the City of Vancouver.
  • The region’s residents desire to increase active modes of transportation (32%) including biking and walking - this preference is much more pronounced in the City of Vancouver (43%) compared to the rest of the region (27%).
  • Respondents expect to decrease use of transit (34%), car-sharing (13%), and ride-hailing (12%) as a result of COVID-19.
  • Despite the impact of the pandemic, respondents indicated available funding for new transportation infrastructure (65%) was most likely to impact how we move and travel throughout the region, followed by public health (53%), population growth (47%) and land use policies/development (37%).

While it is encouraging that residents are seeking more active modes, more than a third of respondents plan to increase use of cars, the largest change among mobility preferences. A key regional challenge in economic recovery will be avoiding congestion, which leads to lost productivity and increased environmental harm. We must continue to build for the long term by making progress on transportation projects that will create jobs, better connect our region, and enhance our quality of life like the Broadway extension, Surrey-Langley skytrain, and transportation corridor investments to support trade. 

“COVID-19 has impacted so much of our day-to-day life, including transportation. Greater Vancouver was caught in congestion prior to the pandemic, and without action, we may find the situation deteriorating further. We need to act boldly to plan, invest, and build today for the future.” - Bridgitte Anderson, President and CEO, Greater Vancouver Board of Trade

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*The survey was conducted online from May 20th to 25th. An online panel was used for sampling, which is a randomly recruited research panel consisting of residents from Metro Vancouver, 18 years of age and over. The margin of error on the sample of 300 is +/-5.6%, 19 times out of 20.

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