‘We need a good road system’

Dan Banov responds to a letter writer who claimed B.C. continues to make mistakes by building more roads

The new Port Mann Bridge allows for efficient transportation of goods.

The new Port Mann Bridge allows for efficient transportation of goods.

Editor, The News:

Re: Biggest strategic error ever (Letters, March 27).

Most socialists, such as Dave Rush, who wrote to claim that we are running out of oil and need to solve this problem with better public transit, have little understanding of reality.

First, we are not running out of oil as a finite resource.  The free market will not let this happen.

Here is some basic economics: if oil supply decreases, then the price will go up; when the price goes up, then alternatives are found.

A simple example is food packaging.  Many foods used to be in tins. As the price of metal went up, producers put food in plastic. And now that plastic is becoming more expensive, you find more food being packaged in paper cartons.

In the same way, if gas is becoming more expensive, people will buy electric cars – which are now too expensive.

The implication that spending $3.5 billion for the new Port Mann Bridge is wasteful is a narrow socialist view. This system saves a lot of fuel by getting rid of stalled traffic and allows for efficient transportation of goods. We need a good road system.

The Evergreen transit plan of $1.5 billion for a short distance is more costly per mile, and this does not do a lot for solving transportation costs and efficiencies. A balance of both systems is best.

To suggest that a simple solution is to just build  a better rapid transit system is very simplistic. The cost would really burden future generations. We already subsidize the transit system with billions of dollars. Transit is being subsidized heavily by non-users.The transit system is constantly looking at more ways to subsidize it even more. Recently they were talking about putting extra taxes on homeowners.

At least the Port Mann being fully paid off with tolls paid by users.

Dan Banov

Maple Ridge