Evening view of traffic on the south side of the Cambie Street Bridge

Transport pricing

What you need to know

In November 2020, City council approved the Climate Emergency Action Plan, which included direction to assess the feasibility of transport pricing within Vancouver’s city centre.

Transport pricing would be a fee for vehicles to drive into, and through, the city centre. Details such as cost and boundaries will be determined through further engagement and consultation with residents, businesses, government agencies, and First Nations. 

Over the next three years, we will do further analysis and work with the provincial government, TransLink, the local and regional community, and stakeholders to develop the right fit for Vancouver. 

What's happeningTransport pricing study

The first phase of the study, “Explore”, is now underway until spring 2022. Activities include: 

  • Stakeholder interviews and workshops with organizations who may be affected or interested in transport pricing, to understand and discuss interests, priorities, concerns, and potential benefits that should be considered as we explore transport pricing in the city centre
  • Technical analysis, including effects of COVID-19, traffic patterns, and equity considerations
  • Partnering with TransLink to consider regional implications and ensure alignment on shared interests
  • Developing draft evaluation criteria to be used in the next phase of the project (2023) where potential scenarios and draft evaluation framework will be brought to the public for discussion
  • Providing an update to Council in spring 2022 on stakeholder engagement, supported by technical analysis

Public engagement will take place in Phase 2, “Develop”, in 2023.

Timeline

  • 2021-2022

    Explore

    Stakeholder engagement on interests, priorities, concerns, and potential benefits, supported by technical analysis, including effects of COVID-19 and equity considerations

    Council update on findings (spring 2022)

  • 2023

    Develop

    Develop transport pricing scenarios that include potential boundaries and pricing. Engage public to discuss effects, mitigation, and opportunities

    Council decision to move forward and refine recommended option

  • 2024

    Refine

    Refine transport pricing strategy for the city centre with further stakeholder input

    Council decision to move forward and implement transport pricing in Vancouver

  • 2026

    Implement

    If approved, transport pricing for the city centre will be implemented

Why we're doing this

Transportation accounts for almost 40% of Vancouver’s carbon pollution, which is why it’s critical we prioritize walking, cycling, and transit. 

By 2030, our goal is that two-thirds of all daily trips will be made by walking, biking, or transit, and that we reduce our carbon pollution by 50%. These shifts will be supported by expansions to our walking and biking networks, bus service improvements (for example, bus priority lanes), and the new Broadway Subway, which will provide additional regional rapid transit access into the city centre.

Transport pricing is an important opportunity to reduce carbon emissions while making the city centre a better place for everyone. People come to Vancouver’s city centre to work, play, and access services. However, too many vehicles travelling into, and through the city centre creates congestion and delays, pollution, and takes up valuable, scarce public space.

A road use fee would reduce the number of vehicles on the road and: 

  • Enable more people and goods to move into, and through, the city centre with more reliable travel times
  • Reduce air and noise pollution and carbon emissions 
  • Increase the amount of road space for sustainable travel and help create new, vibrant public spaces

Resources

Mobility Pricing – Is it time?

Lessons from London and Stockholm, SFU’s City Program, May 17, 2018.

Related plans and policies

Climate Emergency Action Plan

Our plan focuses on cutting carbon pollution from our biggest local sources: burning fossil fuels in our buildings and vehicles.

Transportation 2040 Plan

Our plan provides a vision for how people and goods move in and around Vancouver for the next 30 years.

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