The Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD) and BC Transit were recently presented with a ‘Silver Award for Excellence in Planning Practice’ for the Fraser Valley Express (FVX) Implementation Plan.
The Planning Institute of BC (PIBC) awards ceremony took place May 12.
According to the PIBC Awards Committee, the FVX project stood out among a competitive field of submissions as “a great example for the planning profession.”
The FVX is a collaboration between BC Transit, the FVRD, the City of Abbotsford, the City of Chilliwack, UFV and the UFV Student Society. First Canada and TransLink also played important roles in implementing the service on a very ambitious timeline.
Upon receiving municipal support in March 2014, BC Transit and the FVRD in consultation with municipal funding partners developed a comprehensive implementation plan, with a goal to start service in April 2015.
To meet this deadline the team developed an intensive one-year implementation plan, which included: extensive public consultation; coordinating schedules with four separate transit systems; ordering new buses; establishing and upgrading transit facilities, fares, and a vendor network; negotiating agreements with TransLink and other parties; developing a marketing plan; and many other activities.
The FVX started service on April 6, 2015 and in its first year has outperformed expectations.
“The successful launch of the FVX could not have happened in such a short time frame without the support and contributions of our partners,” said FVRD Chief Administrative Officer Paul Gipps.
The City of Abbotsford and the City of Chilliwack engineering departments played key roles and worked closely with BC Transit to ensure that the new service connected with existing municipal transit systems and that bus stops and transit exchanges were ready for the first day of service.”
“As ridership and revenues for the FVX continue to grow, the demand for the service is clear,” said Sharon Gaetz, Chair of the FVRD Board of Directors. “It has been a pleasure to work with Mayor Braun and our partners and we look forward to the continued success of the Fraser Valley Express.”