Detail script for 12 / WHAT’S IN ALIGNMENT STUDY?
Engineering work by the City of Surrey engineering department will include determining the exact alignment relative to highway 99 including depth and grade percentages, the extent of tunnel, trench or surface portions, urban and transportation plans as needed, estimates of capital costs, life cycle economic analysis, ways to integrate with the proposed high speed passenger rail, and a multi-criteria business case. Criteria to be considered in this business case might be [but are not limited to] capital costs, operating costs, land use, safety/health risks, environmental concerns, socio-political acceptance, geotechnical, ALR acceptance, BNSF feedback, CTA feedback, and time for construction. The ‘guidelines’ contained in the ‘Capital Asset Management Framework of the Province of BC may well be useful; see BC-CAMF link here
Urban Development and transportation plans in the immediate areas would be a normal inclusion in the business case; they definitely are a requirement for any ultimate application for RR to the Canadian Transportation Agency [CTA]. The ‘urban development plan’ is a plan that depicts the land use within the area as well as areas adjacent that are impacted. It also outlines areas of land to be used for the following: commerce, industry, government, recreation, transportation, hospital, schools, churches, residential and other. The ‘transportation plan’ dictates how transportation is to be controlled and outlines the lay-out of: streets, highways, bridges, railway lines, crossings [level and at grade], bus routes, rapid transit lines and stations for bus, and rapid transit including rail. See Ref #1 pages 5 and 6 for further elaboration on these comments.
Capital cost estimates can now be prepared on the basis of the above information, including the cost of any ROW lands that might be required; operating cost estimates can also be prepared; liaison with BNSF will reveal necessary financial figures more related to the railroad operations themselves; if BNSF is not cooperative in providing financial figures as required, this may force the ‘expanded mayors group’ to resort to the use of the Railway Crossing and Relocation Act and an application to the Canadian Transportation Agency.
Partner allocation of capital cost figures is the logical next step; we fully expect multi-party participation much like the allocation for the 2010 ‘Roberts Bank Corridor Crossing Projects. See card #18 for future total and partner-allocated capital costs.
The life-cycle economic analysis could take various forms depending on the procedural funding option in moving ahead on this RR initiative; it is to be hope that if all parties recognize the realities of this unique in NA rail relocation, highly advantageous to BNSF, that it might be possible to negotiate a shared stakeholder funding solution in a collaborative and open manner without resorting to the federal legislation; if not, and as the ultimate option, this will occur formally and legally through the ‘Railway Relocation and Crossing Act’ which acts very much like an expropriation process. To aid in deciding what funding option to pursue, our political masters may want to consider the exact words of key folks in the Seattle office of BNSF, in February 2013; those words, spoken to advocate Craig in person, and in a productive/amicable meeting, were “get the Canadian Transportation Agency to tell us to move”.
Whatever operational funding option is ultimately used, a multi-criteria business case will be the result.