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Measuring selected neighbourhood impacts of rapid transit Adelman, Michael David 1991

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MEASURING SELECTED NEIGHBOURHOOD IMPACTS OF RAPID TRANSIT by MICHAEL DAVID ADELMAN B.Comm.(Hons.), The U n i v e r s i t y of Manitoba, 1977 L l . B . , The U n i v e r s i t y of Manitoba, 1984 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE  REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTERS OF ARTS in  THE  FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES  ( S c h o o l of Community and R e g i o n a l  Planning)  We a c c e p t t h i s t h e s i s as conforming to the r e q u i r e d  THE  standard  UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA September 1991 © M i c h a e l D a v i d Adelman, 1991  In  presenting  degree  this  thesis  in  at the University of  partial  fulfilment  British Columbia,  freely available for reference and study. copying  of  department  this or  thesis by  for scholarly  his  publication of this thesis  or  her  of  the  requirements  I further agree that permission  purposes  Community  and  may  representatives.  Regional  advanced  It  be is  granted  for extensive  by the head 'of  understood  that  for financial gain shall not be allowed without  The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada  DE-6 (2/88)  an  I agree that the Library shall make it  permission.  Department of  for  Planning  copying  my or  my written  ii  ABSTRACT This thesis focuses on one aspect of the rapid transit planning process-the analytical assessment of localized impacts. The purpose of this thesis is to develop and test a method to determine the neighbourhood impacts of a proposed Richmond Rapid Transit Line in Vancouver. The method developed is as follows: Past impacts of various rapid transit systems are examined, and then, based on this information, quantitative and qualitative methods are used to determine potential impacts in a selected study area. A compendium of impact determinants is generated as part of the method. In order to fine tune the method, specific findings on impacts in the Study Area, as well as ways to mitigate adverse impacts in each category, were examined. In all, ten impact categories are dealt with—noise, loss of privacy, shadowing and light overspill, view obstruction and other aesthetic effects, traffic and parking impacts, pedestrian impacts, land use and property price impacts, commercial activity impacts, indirect social impacts, and impacts on local amenities. To assist in the application of- the method to other situations, a set of recommendations is presented. In addition, a general recommendation is made to compensate for unmitigated impacts by the addition of special community amenities. The findings of this thesis must be qualified by the need to examine additional routes, technologies, and neighbourhoods; and by the need to subject them to the scrutiny of the people that would be most affected.  iii  TABLE OF CONTENTS  ABSTRACT  ii  LIST OF TABLES  vi  CHAPTER ONE - INTRODUCTION  1  1. Objective  1  2. Background  2  3. Thesis Methodology  4  4. Selection of Study Area  5  5. Selection of Technology  7  6. Sope and Limitations  8  7. Organization CHAPTER TWO - LITERATURE REVIEW  12 14  1. Noise  16  2. Visual Intrusion  21  3. Shadowing and Light Overspill  23  4. Aesthetic Impact and Loss of Views  26  5. Traffic and Parking Issues  29  6. Pedestrian Issues  32  7. Land Prices and Development  34  8. Commercial Activity  41  9. Neighbourhood Change  43  10. Public Amenities and Services  46  CHAPTER THREE - IMPACT DETERMINANTS  49  1. Noise  49  2. Visual Intrusion  52  iv  3. Shadowing and Light Overspill  53  4. Aesthetic Impact and Loss of Views  54  5. Traffic and Parking  56  6. Pedestrian Issues  57  7.1. Land Prices and Development  58  7.2. Property Prices  60  8. Commercial Activity  61  9. Social Issues  63  10. Amenities and Services  64  CHAPTER FOUR - APPROACH, FINDINGS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS  66  1. Noise  71  2. Visual Intrusion  79  3. Shadowing and Light Overspill  83  4. Aesthetic Impact and View Obstruction  91  5. Traffic and Parking Impacts  99  6. Pedestrian Impacts .  105  7.1. Land Development Impact  108  7.2. Property Price Impact  119  8. Commercial Activity  122  9. Social Issues  128  10. Amenities and Services  135  CHAPTER FIVE - CONCLUSION  138  1. Major Assumptions  140  2. Summary of Major Findings  140  V  3. Specific Recommendations  144  4. General Recommendation  148  5. Methodological Limitations and Recommendations for Further Research  150  REFERENCES CITED  153  OTHER BIBLIOGRAPHY  158  KEY TO MAPS IN APPENDICES  161  APPENDIX A - SELECTED STUDY AREA  162  APPENDIX B - ALIGNMENT STUDIED  163  APPENDIX C - VANCOUVER SUN ANGLES AND ALTITUDES  164  APPENDIX D - SHADOW PROJECTION CHART  166  APPENDIX E - NOISE IMPACT MAP  167  APPENDIX F - VISUAL IMPACT MAP  168  APPENDIX G - SHADOW IMPACT MAP  169  APPENDIX H - ELEVATION MAP  170  LIST OF TABLES  TABLE 1 - Number of Affected Premises (Noise) TABLE 2 - Number of Affected Premises (Visual) TABLE 3 - Number of Affected Premises (Shadowing) TABLE 4 - Number of Affected Premises (Light) TABLE 5 - Number of Affected Premises (Views) TABLE 6 - Number of Affected Premises (Aesthetics) TABLE 7 - Detour Added to Get to Other Side of Trackway TABLE 8 - Comparative Social Profile of Study Area and CMA  1  CHAPTER ONE INTRODUCTION  1. Objective This thesis focuses on one aspect of the rapid transit planning process-the analytical assessment of localized impacts. It does not evaluate the broader aspects of rapid transit planning, such as engineering, cost, and ridership considerations; or address the political and policy issues involved in a major project.  Nor does this thesis deal with the  intuitive concerns which might arise in a public participation process. The purpose of this thesis is to develop and test a method to determine the impacts of a proposed Richmond Rapid Transit Corridor on a selected Vancouver neighbourhood. "Neighbourhood," in this context, refers to potentially affected premises adjacent to the corridor. Neighbourhood rapid transit impacts may include an array of social, economic, and environmental effects, both positive and negative. Detrimental impacts may include excessive noise, loss of privacy by residents, loss of views, increased neighbourhood traffic, and social or economic destabilization.  More beneficial impacts may include improved  transit service, an increase in local amenities, more variety in development possibilities, and increased land values. This type of a study can assist transportation authorities in their route and station site selection in the rapid transit development process. There is presently no manual on how to do a proposed rapid transit station area impact study.  2  Importantly, past experience with Skytrain in Vancouver suggests that neighbourhood impacts from rapid transit systems can be significant, and can be shared disproportionately by those living adjacent to the alignment.  2. Background A rapid transit corridor from Downtown Vancouver to Richmond has been proposed since the 1978 Greater Vancouver Regional District Rapid Transit Study (City of Vancouver, 1986). In that study it was identified as a route second in priority to the Southeast Corridor to New Westminster, and one which experiences sufficient transit ridership to justify an investment in rail or other "rapid transit" technology. Now that the "Skytrain" to New Westminster has been completed, attention has shifted to the Richmond route. In August, 1989 BC Transit, the responsible authority, issued terms of reference for the study of appropriate alignment and technology for the proposed Richmond Rapid Transit Corridor (B.C. Transit, 1989, #1). The proposed area for study cuts a wide north-south swath through WestCentral Vancouver. However, the wide boulevard on Cambie Street, and the unutilized/underutilized rail line adjacent to Arbutus Street, make those two rights-of-way choice candidates for the rapid transit proposal. A triad of technologies is suggested within the terms of reference: "Skytrain," "busway," and "conventional LRT." "Busway" refers to a system of roadways for the exclusive use of transit buses, and, in Canada, has been instituted in the Ottawa Region (City of Vancouver, 1986). "Conventional LRT" is used in Calgary, and is characterized by short  3  surface trains, limited grade separations, and "conventional" technology (City of Vancouver, 1986; City of Calgary Planning Department, 1981). In contrast, "Skytrain" utilizes advanced technology and is entirely gradeseparated, mainly through the use of elevated guideways, although underground tunnels and cuts are also used (City of Vancouver, 1986). Although Skytrain was used in the Southeast Corridor, and preliminary plans were made to use Skytrain in the Richmond Corridor as well, it is not necessarily the preferred option. The choice of route and technology is controversial. Partly this arises out of the fact that the Skytrain to New Westminster has had some significant detrimental impacts which have yet to be rectified (British Columbia Ombudsman, 1987). Excessive noise, loss of privacy, and loss of views, are among the complaints of residents near, the Skytrain guideway. These complaints have gone unheeded, as the Skytrain continues to sail past living room windows and over backyards. The effect has been a community benefit at the arbitrary expense of a few individuals. This experience of significant negative impact, combined with a lopsided absorption of these impacts by residents adjacent to a rapid transit guideway, suggests that an analysis of the impacts of rapid transit on surrounding neighbourhoods is an appropriate exercise when choosing a rapid transit route and technology.  4  3. Thesis Methodology The examination of social and environmental impacts on a sample area of a proposed rapid transit alignment involves, firstly, the selection of a study area and technology, and then an analysis of the study area in relation to the technology, based upon appropriate considerations. The selection of the study area and technology will be based on current conjecture, as it is not the task of this thesis to undertake the engineering, cost, and ridership analysis required for a rigorous study of feasible alignments and appropriate technology. However, to ground this thesis as far as possible in the real world, study area and technology selection will be derived from a relevant public document issued by the transit authority (B.C. Transit), the Richmond Rapid Transit Corridor Alignment/Technology Terms of Reference, issued in August, 1989. In any event, any rigorous attempt to discern the "optimal" technology or alignment on a "technical" basis could be stymied by political decisions or other intervening events which render the exercise worthless. Therefore this thesis will not stray from its narrow objective. Rather, the purpose of this thesis is to facilitate the determination of neighbourhood impacts through the identification and application of relevant impacts determinants.  That being the case, the approach of this  thesis will be firstly to the review neighbourhood impacts of recently-built North American rapid transit systems, including Vancouver's Skytrain, in order to identify the type and degree of potential impacts. This information will then be utilized to generate a c o m p e n d i u m of impact determinants, which in turn will be applied to a selected study area to  5  arrive at impact conclusions and practical recommendations to resolve identified impact problems.  The impact determinants and the study area  application will be detailed in order to facilitate other studies. The study area impact conclusions and recommended solutions will help to provide this thesis with a practical grounding.  4. Selection of Study Area a) Alignment This thesis will assume that the Arbutus alignment will be chosen for the Richmond rapid transit corridor. The underutilized rail line provides a corridor of undeveloped land with few roadway crossings (Map, GVRD, 1983). In contrast, utilization of the Cambie median would involve dealing with many cross streets by either blocking them off, passing the transit corridor over or under them, or leaving them to inconvenience transit trains or motorists. An alignment along Cambie would also significantly impact the residents of Cambie Street houses, who would find themselves facing directly onto the guideway. The alignment is also problematic north of King Edward Avenue where the boulevard ends, and no at-grade corridor exists for continuation of the line. Therefore, a cursory analysis of the two alternatives suggests the Arbutus alignment would be less inconveniencing to traffic, less intrusive visually, and cheaper to build. b) Station Area The segment of the Arbutus alignment chosen for study is the area around Broadway and Arbutus (See Map, Appendix A). It is likely that a station would be located in this area, where the Arbutus rail line crosses West Broadway. B.C. Transit Terms of Reference for alignment selection  6  (B.C. Transit, 1989, #1) specify one station requirement as being a bus interface at Broadway. Skytrain station areas involving major commercial arteries (e.g., Broadway and Commercial Street) have faced significant land use changes, making them interesting study areas (B.C. Transit, 1989, #2).  Therefore, a  comparable area has been chosen for study in the case of the proposed Richmond Corridor, c) Study Area Limits For the purposes of this thesis the study area will involve a 1/4 mile circumference around the selected station (See map, Appendix A). The appropriate geographic area to be studied is arguably quite large, so, practically speaking, limits must be imposed. Studies indicate that a large group of rapid transit users walk to the station (one quarter on average, more in higher density areas), and that walking distance is generally considered to be approximately 1/4 mile from a station, although many users walk up to 3/4 of a mile to or from a station (United States Department of Transportation, 1982, #2). Development impacts, therefore, are likely to be greatest within this 1/4 mile circumference, providing one basis for selection of study area limits. In addition, the impacts of such factors as noise and traffic are likely to be felt most intensely closer, rather than further, from a station, so that a close circumference around a station would capture the most intense impacts.  7  5. Selection of Technology For the purpose of this thesis it will be assumed that of the the three technologies referred to in the B.C. Transit Terms of reference, the one that will be utilized in the Richmond Rapid Transit corridor will be some form of "conventional" light rapid transit. Busways comprise a cheap alternative in cities where existing urban freeway systems can be modified to accomodate a bus-based system. A system of this type is also very flexible, as, of course, buses can leave the designated corridor. However, a busway system has low passenger capacity and high operating costs as compared to a rail-based system (City of Vancouver, 1986), as rail vehicles can be arranged into long trains. And the flexibility gained by the use of diesel buses is offset by the difficulty in accomodating them where underground segments are required, such as in the crucial downtown area. As Vancouver cannot benefit from the capital cost savings of utilizing a freeway corridor, and will likely find it neccessary to tunnel at least part of the Richmond rapid transit link, rail technology is likely to be chosen for the Richmond Corridor. On the face of it, one desirable rail-based option would be Skytrain. This is because the Richmond line could be connected downtown to the existing New Westminster line, saving capital costs, reducing transfer problems, and eliminating the need for another set of maintenance yards. However, the noise, intrusiveness, and capital cost of the New Westminster line (British Columbia Ombudsman, 1987), combined with the political clout of the West Side of Vancouver (See Chapter Four, Section 7), may eliminate the Skytrain as an option in the Richmond Corridor.  8  Conventional light rail transit, on the other hand, has lower capital costs and fewer privacy-intruding grade separations (City of Vancouver, 1986), increasing its political palatability.  6. Scope and Limitations a) Practical Limitations As implied earlier, it is not the purpose of this thesis to discuss engineering, cost, or ridership considerations in the development of rapid transit systems; nor to discuss political considerations surrounding the implementation of such a project. Therefore, there will not be a direct evaluation of these types of impacts within this thesis. The findings in this thesis with regard to neighbourhood impact are not purported to be either definitive or completely comprehensive. Comprehensive conclusions on neighbourhood impact requires the examination of all likely routes, technologies, and impacted neighbourhoods. Due to practical constraints, this thesis is limited to the examination of the potential impact of one technology, along one alignment, in just one neighbourhood. However, the information provided by this study should be readily adaptable to other studies, and a detailed study of one neighbourhood may provide more information than a superficial study of several neighbourhoods. The literature review of neighbourhood impacts will attempt to cover as wide a range of impacts as possible. However, some impacts may be disregarded because of their irrelevance to this thesis, and will not be referred to. For example, there is a U.S. literature on social and political impacts of rapid transit development on poor, ghettoized  9  neighbourhoods. While this is an intriguing issue, it has limited pertinence to the social milieu of Vancouver's West Side. Rapid transit systems surveyed will generally be limited to North American projects. It is assumed that cultural and systemic differences with overseas regions would render study of their rapid transit experiences moot. b) Theoretical Context The approach reflected in this thesis must be placed in a theoretical context in order to appreciate its further limitations. The spectrum of planning paradigms can be split into five categories: incremental planning, synoptic planning, advocacy planning, transactive planning, and radical planning (Hudson, 1979). Incremental planning involves an ad hoc approach to problems, and a generation of solutions on an intuitive or experiential basis. It is the opposite of "planning," as the term is normally understood. Synoptic, or "rational/comprehensive" planning, is the normative planning paradigm. It involves an "expert" pseudo-scientific approach to issues which arrives at solutions through a linear process of goal setting, and generating, testing, and evaluating alternatives in terms of the set goals. Advocacy planning involves decision-making based on representations from various interest groups. Transactive planning involves the resolution of issues through comprehensive interaction between decision-makers and interested members of the general public. Radical planning involves a focus on the root causes of community problems, and their resolution through the amelioration of economic and power inequities.  10  The process applied in this thesis, information gathering with respect to the impact of one alternative, appears, on the surface, to fit into the synoptic planning paradigm. However, the process being applied herein deviates from the traditional synoptic model. The matters, addressed, the external impacts of a transportation system, are not a traditional consideration in a transportation system plan (OECD, 1971). Furthermore, this thesis does not attempt to assign a value-laden hiearchy of weights to various impacts. The application of the traditional synoptic approach to planning is not the intent of this thesis. Each of the identified planning paradigms, including the the synoptic approach, has both merits and shortcomings. Incremental planning is pracitical and efficient, but does not deal with challenges comprehensively, causing important information and significant opportunities to be missed. Traditional synoptic planning is meritorious for its organized, comprehesive, and efficient orientation. However, the synoptic planning process is subject to the biases and limitations of the "expert" practitioner, and is somewhat nieve in its predilection to establish normative goals and quantify alternative outcomes. Advocacy planning is desirable from the point of view that it broadens knowledge of the goals of, and the impacts on, the advocating groups. However, the corollary to that is that advocacy planning will tend to be incremental rather than comprehensive, as a path of least resistance among vocal opponents is sought. In an advocacy planning process it is also not clear that all interests are effectively represented. Transactive planning provides the opportunity for a cross-section of inputs into the planning process, and from that perspective is empowering for participating members of the  11  public. But the transactive planning process is markedly cumbersome compared to other types of planning, and like advocacy planning it tends to produce plans which lack comprehensiveness. While radical planning laudably focuses on fundamental inequities, radical approaches will be met with overwhelming resistance on fundamental issues, and have limited applicability on more prosaic issues. Therefore, the best planning approach is to utilize a composite of all five paradigms, which incorporates the merits and discards the deficiencies of each. An efficient, comprehensive synoptic approach should be tempered with the value inquiry, information fermentation, and empowerment of a public participation process. This thesis putatively exemplifies the approach engendered by this hybrid paradigm. Its intent is to provide an information framework, based to the extent possible, on observable data, rather than conjecture. This information framework should only be seen as a prelude to a public participation process designed to broaden information and offset value biases. Specifically, within the continuum of the normative planning process, information on the neighbourhood impacts of one alternative relates to the simulation and evaluation of alternatives, and reflects back on goal setting and generation of alternatives. But prior to making any tradeoffs among impacts, extensive public input is required, particularly with respect to the values and priorities of the community, c) Policy Assumptions The planning process described above will not resolve the fundamental policy questions involved in making tradeoffs. These fundamental questions include the extent to which collateral costs and  12  benefits of a large scale public undertaking should accrue to the public or to private individuals. This issue becomes especially significant in discussion of rectification or reasonable mitigation of detrimental impacts (as discussed in Chapters Four and Five). However, these types of policy issues are fundamentally political in nature, and, as discussed, it is not the purpose of this thesis to resolve political questions. These types of issues must be resolved by either political decision makers, or through value discussion in a public participation process. As a practical matter, where this type of question must be addressed, it will be assumed that where disproportionate private costs arise from a public undertaking, to some extent these costs should be shifted to the public through financial compensation or other means.  7. Organization This thesis is comprised of six chapters: Chapter One has dealt with the objective, background, methodology, and the scope and limitations of the thesis; and assumptions about technology and alignments. Chapter Two canvasses relevant literature to identify potential impacts, their nature, and their significance. Chapter three applies literature findings to establish a framework for neighbourhood impact projection. Chapter Four presents an analysis of impacts of rapid transit on the Study Area based upon the established framework. Options for rectifying determined adverse impacts are also presented.  13  Chapter Five concludes the thesis with a summary of the analysis, a consolidated set of recommendations, a general recommendation, a review of the thesis limitations, and suggestions for further research.  14  CHAPTER TWO LITERATURE REVIEW  This chapter will summarize the findings from the literature on past neighbourhood impacts of rapid transit. The review involves a discussion of the significance of each impact and consideration of the theoretical relationship between rapid transit development and the particular impact concerned. This provides the framework required for a reasonable impact assessment, as a survey of past rapid transit impacts alone is inadequate. Differences between systems and cities may render specific findings on any particular system in any particular locale irrelevant to other systems and cities. But the review will also focus on the impact of Vancouver's Skytrain, because this highlights local concerns and conditions. Systems in other cities will be drawn on as well, however, to derive the array of potential rapid transit impacts. The Chapter is arranged by impact category. The impact was selected for elucidation if the literature indicated that the impact concerned was significant or controversial, or, at least, aroused a degree of public concern. A type of neighbourhood impact, such as intensified land use, was also focused upon if it tended to be actively sought in rapid transit planning. But an impact was not addressed if, although receiving passing reference in the literature, it neither attracted attention, nor apparently had any significant effect. For example, there was mention of potential vibration impacts emanating from rapid transit systems. But there was generally no mention of either significant vibration impacts or public concern with vibration impacts, thus eliminating this impact from  15  consideration (One can speculate that either engineering can resolve major vibration problems, or that vibration does not annoy people). The categorization was, in some respects, an arbitrary process, as the studied impacts tended to be interrelated. There is no clear demarcation between impacts one might select. For example, a resulting increase in land development can lead to a panoply of problems, such as increased noise and traffic. These indirect "environmental" impacts, in turn, could intensify more direct noise and traffic impacts of rapid transit. In other cases one species of impact could be regarded as a sub-species of another. For example, commercial impacts could be seen as a form of land price and development impacts. For purposes of clarity the discussion handles indirect impacts as sub-categories of their proximate cause, rather than bundling them up with more direct impacts of the same genre. That is, if a rapid transit line induces development, which in turn produces excessive noise, that land development noise is discussed in the context of land development, not in the context of noise emanating from rapid transit hardware. Also for purposes of clarity, in addition to manageability of the information, what could be regarded as sub-categories are retained as separate categories. For example, commercial development is handled as a separate category from land development. The survey of impacts will begin with direct environmental impacts, to be followed by indirect impacts, reflecting no particular hierarchy.  16  1. Noise a) Significance and Theoretical Impact Noise is a prevalent issue in transportation impact literature, and of some ignominy locally as regards the Skytrain. Noise can be defined as "unwanted sound" (U.S. Office of Environment, 1985). Although at moderate levels, the amount of sound unwanted is a subjective determination (based in large measure on individual expectations and beliefs with respect to the sound), the annoyance suffered by some individuals at particular subjective levels is real (Doak, 1978). Furthermore, as noise levels increase "objective" impacts start to become observable. For example, at some point individuals must raise their voices to be heard (BC Ombudsman, 1987), and ultimately people begin to sustain damage to their health. As well as hearing loss, excessive noise may cause sleep disturbance (unhealthy at particular stages in the sleep cycle), and even cardiovascular impacts (Armour and Lang, 1979). Furthermore, the impact of excessive noise can extend to the pocketbook as well. The owner of real property exposed to frequent recurring noise is likely to find that prospective purchasers accord the property diminished value (BC Ombudsman, 1987). Rapid transit trains emit significant noise. The source of this noise includes guideway vibration and power-train operation. But most system noise emanates from wheel-rail interaction—wheel impact on rail joints, wheel flange lateral impact on rails, wheel movement over rail irregularities, and curve squeal (Hothersall and Salter, 1977). Excessive amounts of this type of noise is not easily mitigated once the infrastructure is in place. Marginal improvements are possible by smoothing the track  and checking it for irregularities, as well as by slowing the trains (Transportation Research Board, 1989; Doak, 1978). Erecting barriers is effective, if the barrier is of sufficient density and blocks the line of sight between the trackway and wayside areas (U.S. Office of Environment, 1985). Such a barrier, however, is expensive and unsightly, especially in the case of an elevated rail system. In the case of a surface rail system berming and contiguous fencing in selective areas may be practical (CMHC, 1987). Noise will be worst adjacent to the trackway. Noise disminishes in intensity geometrically as it moves away from the source (Maclean, 1988). The amount of ambient noise will also affect the manner in which rapid transit generated noise would be received (Vancouver Planning Department, 1982). Dealing with rapid transit noise requires a method to determine how significant it is in a particular case—that is, a measurement. Usually, as noise has a subjective element which is difficult to measure, sound level is used vicariously. Sound level equivalencies for annoyance and ill effects of noise have been determined on the basis of the historical response of a majority of people to particular pressures and frequencies. This has led to the establishment of a variety of convenient benchmark sound levels as maximum acceptable standards. (U.S. Office of Environment, 1985; CMHC, 1981) As rapid transit lines run adjacent to housing, an appropriate standard for rapid transit noise is probably residential outdoor noise standards. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation utilizes 55 dB [Leq] (an equivalent of 55 dB for frequent non-continuous noise over a 24 hour period) as its standard for maximum acceptable outdoor noise levels  18  (Maclean, 1988; BC Ombudsman, 1987). A similar standard is often used in the United States which focuses on nightime noise, called dB DNL (daynight equivalent decibel level), which has 65 as its maximum acceptable level (U.S. Office of Environment, 1985). In addition, since the National Research Council of Canada recommends that single event noise not exceed 65 dB [A] (Armour and Lang, 1979), no individual should be exposed to this level from any single passing train over the duration of the day. b) Skytrain Noise Impact The experience with Skytrain highlights the reasons rapid transit generated noise is a significant concern. Residents living adjacent to the Skytrain guideway in Vancouver have a number of complaints, not the least of which is the noise generated by the system (BC Ombudsman, 1987). Studies have been undertaken which confer validity on these complaints. A 1986 University of British Columbia study of one East Vancouver residential neighbourhood found that the average reading of all test sites 50 feet from the the guideway exceeded accepted standards of 55 dB 24-hour L eq (Maclean, 1988). Furthermore, even at 200 feet, some individual test sites exceeded standards, with 24-hour L eq readings of 56 (Ibid.). In addition, some single event readings were as high as 81 dB [A] at 100 feet, and 78 dB [A] at 200 feet (Ibid.). These noise levels occured despite the manufacturer's promises that the experimental system would have relatively low noise levels (BC Ombudsman, 1987). It is clear that "excessive noise constitutes a significant adverse impact on the residents adjacent to the alignment" (Ibid.). However, little was done to alleviate  19  noise conditions for affected residents (Ibid.), rendering "noise" as a major rapid transit issue in Vancouver. U.B.C. Skytrain studies also generated noise data which may have some general application. Skytrain had average 24-hour outdoor L eq readings of 58.0 dB at 50 feet [15.5 m], 54.1 dB at 100 feet [31 m] from the guideway, and 50.4 dB at 200 feet [62 m]. In the same U.B.C. study it was also determined that the noise level disminishes from 3.4 dB to 5.2 dB per doubling of distance from the Skytrain guideway. (Maclean, 1988) c) Examples from Other Systems In North America Noise problems from rapid transit systems are by no means restricted to Vancouver's Skytrain. A neighbourhood survey regarding Atlanta's "MARTA" indicated that noise was the sole concern with an otherwise well received system. That 1980 survey involved residents Ijving within 500 feet of a segment of a rapid transit line which was partly elevated, partly at grade, and partly underground (Atlanta Regional Commission, 1984). Likewise, noise was found to be the most important environmental impact of San Francisco's "Bay Area Rapid Transit System" ["BART"]. At some "problem sites" surveyed as many as 71% of the residents rated noise heard inside their home as "bad," and noise was perceived as a problem as far as 250 feet from the trackway in some instances.  Not  surprisingly, in the case of BART, noise was found to be most troublesome in unshielded dwellings alongside aerial segments of the trackways in neighbourhoods with low ambient noise levels (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). However, in the case of Calgary's Light Rapid Transit System south line, residents did not cite any noise problems despite concerns with regard to noise expressed prior to operation of the system (City of  20  Calgary, 1983). But single event decibel levels of 82 have been recorded for Calgary's LRT 15 metres away from 4-car trains (McLean, 1988). In part the lack of concern could be attributable to high ambient noise. Calgary's LRT South Line operates at grade along a pre-existing railway right-of-way and adjacent to a busy thoroughfare (City of Calgary, 1983). d) Calculation Method Governmental agencies provide simple, rough methods for determining the noise impact of rail transit systems. The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development Noise Guidebook (U.S. Office of Environment, 1985) provides a method to discern whether system noise impact exceeds day-night equivalency decibel levels. On a graph provided number of trains/day can be charted against wayside distance to determine if noise produced at the selected distance is unacceptable, as defined in the shaded area of the graph. Methods are provided to adjust the system to local conditions. This calculation can be utilized to determine the noise impact of a rapid transit system in the Richmond Corridor by assuming it will have an operation frequency and capacity similar to Skytrain. Assuming: 536 trains/day (one train every 3 to 5 minutes in both directions 6 A.M. to 1 A.M.); 4 cars/train (which must be adjusted by dividing by 50 according to the method of calculation); and an average speed of 40 to 50 mph (which the guide translates to a factor of 2.78)  21  the adjusted equivalent number of trains/day according to the method provided is: 536 x .08 x 2.78 = 119. A check against the graph provided (Ibid.) shows this equivalency to produce marginally acceptable noise levels 100 feet from the trackway, but noise levels which require attenuation at 65 feet from the trackway. Similarly, assuming 536 cars in 4-car trains (for a total of 2,144 cars daily) running at 70 km/hour, according to the the CMHC method of calculation (CMHC, 1981), produces an absolute decibel level of 64 at 100 feet, just within dB [A] acceptable limits.  2. Visual Intrusion a) Significance and Theoretical Impact A sense of privacy is important to people (Vancouver Planning Department, 1983, #2; OECD, 1971). In general, unwanted intrusions can cause detrimental impacts ranging from jitteriness and stress to physiological reactions (Insel and Lindgren, 1978). As offending intrusions become closer and more frequent, a greater impact is likely to result (Mehrabian, 1976). A significant impact also becomes more likely when affected individuals feel helpless to control the situation (Ibid.). Therefore, if householders or office workers are subjected to the views of train passengers, this may comprise a significant intrusion. The intrusiveness on individuals will increase with train frequency and proximity. Furthermore, people are likely to feel frustrated in this situation where they have little control over this intrusion to their privacy. They may be able to screen out the trains only at the expense of natural light (BC  22  Ombudsman, 1987). The threshhold distance for visual intrusion to occur will depend, firstly, on the visual acuities of the passers-by; and, secondly, on the subjective privacy preferences of the affected individuals (The application of these factors will be explored more fully in the Study Area impact assessment in Chapter Four). The potential for intrusion of any particular rapid transit system will depend on several factor in addition to the distance and frequency of trains: the angle of overlook of passengers, the speed of passing trains, the extent of other visual intrusion, and the degree of ambient screening (Appleyard and Carp, 1973). Generally, the higher the overlook position, the greater the visibility of private yards, though lower overlook can provide views directly into the windows of households. The faster trains move down the trackway, on the other hand, the less passengers will see (although train noise increases with speed). The trains will not add significantly to intrusion if there are already buildings or places nearby which afford a view of a property concerned. If a train is running at or near grade, it can be screened with fencing or with dense landscaping, eliminating the intrusion problem. This would be done, however, at the expense of passenger views. An elevated section of trackway becomes more problematic, as their is no obvious manner in which to screen private residential areas from the view of passengers. All homes near the trackway could be expropriated, but only at great expense, b) Skytrain Visual intrusion from rapid transit has been a major issue in Vancouver, as Skytrain has been a major intrusion for some households (City of Vancouver, 1986). As an unscreened elevated system running  23  close to some homes, Skytrain affords a view into several backyards and, in some cases, directly into the windows of some residences (BC O m b u d s m a n , 1987). Some properties are close enough to the guideway for passengers and residents to clearly see the expressions on each other's faces (Ibid.), increasing the intensity of some intrusions. Some homes have constantly drawn drapes, and some residents have found they limit the use of their outdoor space (Ibid.) c) Experience with Other Systems Similar problems of visual intrusions arose with San Francisco's BART system. Along several miles of BART trackway passengers can look into the yards and interiors of houses, and in a survey of respondents living adjacent to the trackway, more than half responded that BART had intruded on their privacy (U.S. D O T , 1979, #1).  However, few of these  respondents had taken mitigating action, such as screening (where such action could have been effective) [Ibid.], suggesting that the degree of visual intrusion was not excessively disconcerting.  3. Shadowing and Light Overspill a) Significance and Theoretical Impact The amount and nature of lighting is an important factor in the human environment.  Different kinds of lighting environments not only  convey different visual impressions of particular milieux, but may affect human attitudes, task performance, and emotions within the different environments. While there are differences between individual perceptions of lighting conditions, these do not outweigh a general consensus with respect to the desirability of particular kinds of lighting. Natural lighting is  24  almost always preferred over artificial illumination. Despite detrimental impacts of sunlight like excessive heat generation, glare, and fading of fabrics, few people can be convinced that the desirability of sunlight is even open to question. People surveyed attribute everything from improvement in appearance to therapeutic affects to natural light, and few people prefer working in windowless rooms. (Boyce, 1981; Krasner,1980) Given the importance of appropriate lighting and the perceived importance of natural lighting, an unneccessarily shadowed environment can be regarded as a significant detriment. The degree of shadowing in any situation will vary, of course, with the movement of the sun in the sky, so that the extent of shadowing will vary with the time of day, time of year, and the height and orientation of shadow-casting built forms (Matus, 1988). For rapid transit systems, shadowing is going to be a significant concern in the case of any elevated segments (BC Ombudsman, 1987). Predicting shadow effects beforehand is a significant undertaking, as the annual range of shadowing would have to be determined for the relative height and orientation of each guideway segment vis a vis each existing and future potentialy affected building. However, a maximum shadow line can be determined by taking readings at the Winter Solstice (December 21) at around 10 A.M. (Matus, 1988). Systems running at grade are not likely to have significant direct shadowing effects, but any built-form development which accompanies rapid transit development may raise concerns about shadowing (City of Calgary, 1981).  25  A related planning concern is light "overspill" from passing trains, station areas, and related transit development (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). Inconsistency lighting conditions or excessive light can be as problematic as light blockage (Boyce, 1981). Alternating light created by passing trains or glare from station areas can be a nighttime irritant for nearby residences (Appleyard and Carp, 1973). However, ambient lighting usually exceeds rapid transit generated light, reducing or eliminating light overspill (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). b) Skytrain There are houses near the Skytrain guideway which are subject to "an unacceptable degree of shadowing." (BC Ombudsman, 1987). This is especially true of homes within 50 feet of the track. The problem is particularly bad during the winter months when shadows cast from the low sun are longer in both distance and duration, and daylight hours are limited. (BC Ombudsman, 1987) c) Other Examples In a BART wayside survey 25 to 50% of residents living near elevated tracks said that the trackways cast unwelcome shadows. BART planners projected that no excessive shadowing would occur if homes were located at least 100 feet from the trackway. However, after BART was built, many residences were situated within the shadowed swath. The same survey indicated no problems with light overspill—in fact, many residents welcomed the glare from station lighting as a crime deterrent. (U.S. DOT, 1979,#1)  26  4. Aesthetic Impact and Loss of Views a) Significance and Theoretical Impact The Vancouver Goals survey (City of Vancouver, 1979, #2) indicates that Vancouverites are concerned about their aesthetic environment. According to the survey around 95% of Vancouverites think that views and aethetics are important or very important (although the survey did not ask what tradeoffs respondents would be willing to make for aesthetic improvements). As a result, the first goal which was established involved aesthetic concerns (City of Vancouver, 1979, #1). Furthermore, the survey concluded that the attractiveness of the environment would affect the way people live (Ibid.). There is a basis for public concern with aesthetics beyond simple issues of visual preference. The aesthetic nature of a built form communicates information about ownership, status, and affiliation; and can produce feelings of anxiety, pride, or submission (Lynch, 1982). For example, "natural" views confer high status (Boyce, 1981). A structure will convey this type of information through its scale, mass, colour, architectural details, degree of obtrusiveness, naturalness, state of maintenance, cleanliness, and overall quality and identity (Appleyard and Carp, 1973; U.S. DOT, 1979, #1; Lynch, 1982). More importantly, aethetic impact will also be determined by the aethetics of the surrounding structures and landscape (Appleyard and Carp, 1973; Lynch, 1982). In the case of rapid transit systems the stations, station environments, guideway, and any connected development projects all contribute to the aesthetic impact (Fairfax County, 1973). A station can be small, clean, and unobtrusive in design, harmonizing with a residential neighbourhood; or it  2 7  can be large, garish, and surrounded by a parking lot, disturbing the neighbourhood (U.S. DOT, 1979, #2). But station design is relatively independent of engineering considerations, and it can be adjusted to local considerations. A greater aesthetic challenge concerns the guideway, especially if it is elevated (BC Ombudsman, 1987). An elevated guideway can be obtrusively large in scale, unnatural looking, void of interesting architectural details, and impossible to screen with landscaping. It will also block views from nearby residences (Ibid.). Guideways running at grade are less intrusive, and can be screened by landscaping [U.S. DOT, 1979, #2](at the expense of passenger views), but are also not aesthetically pleasing where they are visible. Only an underground system avoids view blockage problems. b) Skytrain The most important aesthetic impact of Skytrain has been the blocking of views. Private views were not considered when the height for its elevated guideway was selected.  The result was that after the Skytrain  was built the monolithic pillars and trackway interfered with, or eliminated, mountain, cityscape, or streetscape views for many residents. Residents had little recourse on this issue as view corridors have never been legally protected. (BC Ombudsman, 1987) Other aesthetic concerns were probably not as significant because the trackway runs predominantly along existing railway lines and through industrial areas. c) Other Examples The aesthetic impacts of San Francisco's BART were studied extensively, both through professional design analysis and resident  28  surveys. Stations were generally not problematic, as most residents found them to be neutral or positive. The professionals, who judged the stations in accordance with local design guidelines, found most inobtrusive, especially if they were small, had generous landscaping, and were inconspicuously located. This was easily achieved in commercial or industrial areas. In a few residential areas, however, stations contrasted too sharply with surrounding homes. Station parking lots were were also problematic where they were unscreened large lots. A series of smaller lots with landscaped screening was judged to be more aesthetically pleasing. Unsurprisingly, a larger problem was found with the elevated guideway. In a wayside survey up to half of residents living in areas of elevated trackway complained of view blockages. The professional designers also judged that BART created adverse visual effects along elevated sections of trackway in residential areas. In the case of BART there were some positive aesthetic impacts as well. New developments were induced in previously deteriorating neighbourhoods. The trackway eased the transition between different land uses in some cases. And in an interesting corollary to view blockage, in some cases the trackway screened out unattractive local features (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). In a general neighbourhood survey with regards to the Calgary LRT South Line, 95% of respondents stated that the system had a neutral or positive effect on their neighbourhood (City of Calgary, 1983). However, the respondents were not asked to specifically judge the aesthetics of the system, leaving open the possibility that there are more complaints than  29  indicated. Furthermore, the neighbourhood surveyed extended well beyond the immediate wayside, meaning most of those surveyed would have had limited concerns with the aesthetic impact in any event. In any case, as a line running entirely over pre-existing railway tracks (Ibid.), a major negative aesthetic impact was less likely.  5. Traffic and Parking Issues a) Significance and Theoretical Impact Usually, a major resident concern with new rapid transit systems is the additional motor vehicle traffic it may generate in the neighbourhood. The fear is that traffic to and from stations may begin to infiltrate otherwise quiet residential streets to avoid increased congestion in station areas.  Increased congestion could not only arise from passenger drop-  offs, but from additional feeder buses and parking restrictions in the immediate station area. Congestion would be dramatically compounded with a "Park and Ride" facility at the station. Traffic congestion can also be worsened if a rapid transit facility is allowed to induce traffic-generating commercial development in the neighbourhood. (City of Calgary, 1981) Increased traffic presents a number of potential problems in residential neighbourhoods. The noise of cars without mufflers, or which squeal their tires would compete with any detrimental noise impact of the rapid transit trains. Pedestrian safety is reduced, which is especially of concern when any young children are in the area. Perhaps another important, but more subtle, reason increased traffic is of concern is that strange vehicles reduce resident privacy and sense of territoriality. The importance of this factor has been discussed.  30  A rapid transit station in the neighbourhood also has the potential to decrease traffic levels (City of Calgary, 1981). If the implementation of a rapid transit system significantly changes regional or neighbourhood modal split in favour of transit, traffic traversing the neighbourhood could be reduced. This, however, is not readily apparent if absolute traffic levels continue to grow, nor is it beneficial if the greatest changes occur on nonresidential arteries (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). In addition to increased traffic, stations can generate a parking overspill problem. People will park and use transit for a portion of their trip in order to maintain the convenience of the automobile, while avoiding congestion and parking problems at their destination (Ibid.). If station area parking is left uncontrolled, congestion around stations will increase, impeding access to stations and surrounding businesses and residences (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). Station area parking will overspill onto quiet residential streets. Residents and businesses will find that their visitors will have no place to park. There are, however, several methods to control traffic and parking problems. Traffic on residential streets can be deterred with signage such as turn prohibitions; or with selective barriers (City of Calgary, 1981), in effect turning through streets into cul-de-sacs. These measures, however, result in some loss of convenience to local residents. Parking can be regulated with a variety of time restrictions and prohibitions on parking, combined with a permit system to exempt local residents from these parking regulations (City of Calgary, 1981). However, this would provide difficulty for the legitimate visitors and invitees to businesses and residences.  31  b) Rapid Transit System Examples Generally, although a great deal of public concern is expressed on the issue, traffic and parking problems generated by rapid transit appear to be either minimal or controllable. Most users of rapid transit seem to access it by walking or feeder buses, not automobile (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). And traffic problems might also be mitigated if rapid transit development induces a modal shift to transit (City of Calgary, 1983). Adequate access to park and ride lots seems to present the greatest traffic difficulty (U.S. DOT, 1979, #2). In Atlanta, after the construction of MARTA, neighbourhood streets saw little change in traffic patterns and residents surveyed had no complaints about parking problems. In Washington, D.C., despite an extensive park and ride system, only 27% of riders used the car as their dominant mode of access to a Metrorail station. A majority walked or took a bus unless they lived more than 7 miles from a station. (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2) The impact in the case of light rail transit has been no different. In a survey of Calgary residents on the impact of the LRT on transportation in the South Corridor, only 5% said that it had worsened traffic congestion, while 20% said it had improved the traffic situation (City of Calgary, 1983). This perception is given some legitimacy with the observation by planners of a significant modal shift across South Side screenlines (Ibid.) after the LRT was built. Where traffic and parking problems did arise was in connection with San Francisco's BART. There were initially major parking overspill problems near stations with park and ride lots. The main cause was that inadequate parking was provided in the lots. This was, however, resolved with  32  regulation of on-street parking. A couple of station areas continued to experience traffic problems, however, due to lack of adequate access to park and ride lots (U.S. DOT, 1979, #2).  6. Pedestrian Issues a) Significance and Theoretical Impact A rapid transit trackway running at grade will interfere significantly with pedestrian travel patterns. The speed and frequency of trains, plus any electrified guiderail, make crossing the trackway unsafe. This means that any trackway accessible at grade must be fenced off, creating a linear barrier of significant length. Pedestrian crossings would be restricted to particular points, at the expense of time and convenience for pedestrians. And if pedestrians crossings are not placed appropriately, there may be a safety risk of unauthorized crossings (Davies, 1982), as well as a risk of physically splitting neighbourhoods and eliminating community social space (City of Vancouver, 1983, #3). They may also comprise a significant barrier to those with limited mobility (for example, the elderly and physically handicapped). Not only are actual pedestrian crossing patterns and neighbourhood social patterns difficult to discern (Davies, 1982), but traditionally little attention has been paid to the resolution of pedestrian issues (Bay Area Metro Transportation Commission, 1981), making careful consideration of crossings less likely. There can also be some benefits for pedestrians connected with construction of a rapid transit system, such as the construction of new overpasses over busy thoroughfares (City of Calgary, 1981).  33  Where a rail system does run at grade, pedestrian crossing becomes plausible if the train power source is overhead rather than at grade (Ibid.). As well, specific pedestrian overpasses and underpassses can be constructed. However, these are costly, and, as well as being carefully located (Davies, 1982), they must be visible and well-lit in accordance with security considerations (Ramsay, 1986). Elevated or underground segments, of course do not interfere with pedestrian links, so that with respect to pedestrian issues, an elevated guideway is an advantage in terms of this type of impact, b) System Examples The impact of rapid transit systems on pedestrian needs has been variable. The close-to-grade segment of Skytrain between Nanaimo and 29th Avenue resulted in the blocking off of several neighbourhood streets and pedestrian links (City of Vancouver, 1983, #3). Pedestrian crossing only remained alongside thoroughfares overpassing the Skytrain. The Vancouver Planning Department recommended that pedestrian overpasses be built between thoroughfare crossings, but this did not occur (City of Vancouver, 1986). While pedestrian interference per se was not evaluated, the Calgary LRT was evaluated for pedestrian safety. The at-grade segement running down the downtown pedestrian mall experience 4 accidents with pedestrians in its first two years of operation. However, this does not exceed the number of pedestrian-bus accidents on the same mall for the same period (City of Calgary, 1983).  34  7. Land Prices and Development a) Significance and Theoretical Impact Historically, transportation routes have been one of the primary factors shaping development in North American cities (City of Vancouver, 1986). If rapid transit induces numerous or large scale changes in the surrounding cityscape, community controversy may erupt as a result of the broad range of impacts connected with land use change. Moreso than the rapid transit development itself, collateral land development can result in traffic and parking problems, noise, shadowing, loss of views, aesthetic controversy, physical and social destabilization of the neighbourhood, and overloading of existing community amenities and services (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1; City of Calgary, 1981; U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). However, the relationship between rapid transit development and land development is nebulous (Putnam, 1976). Rapid transit development is neither a neccessary nor sufficient condition for land development to occur. Generally a number of factors will contribute to a development decision, especially the type and price of land available, and anticipated demand for any development at the site being examined (Allen and Mudge, 1974; U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). The influence of a rapid transit alignment on a development will be indirect, and sometimes subtle. Development can be influenced, for example, by the increased number of development options at a particular site made possible with an efficient rapid transit link (Lee, 1978; Fairfax County, 1983), or a perception by the developer that a nearby station can have promotional value for a particular development (UMTA, 1984). Furthermore, general market conditions and market demand for any particular neighbourhood may easily outweigh any  35  influence rapid transit implementation may have over any development decision. For example, in 1983 in Calgary the influence of rapid transit development was insufficient to overcome recession factors, and previously robust station area development activity tapered off (City of Calgary, 1983). In addition, with local government holding a veto over land development, the political process intervenes in the determination of land use around transit stations (Putnam, 1976). Given the randomness of developer decisions and market factors, and the influence of political decisions on land development, any observed correlation between rapid transit and land development does not neccessarily imply a causal relationship. That being the case, the influence of rapid transit development on land use changes is difficult to determine (Lerman et aL, 1977; U.S. DOT, 1979, #2), and ultimately the developers and local area residents (the suppliers and demanders) must be surveyed to have any degree of certainty on the extent to which the presence of rapid transit has influenced land use changes. And even if it could be determined that neighbourhood land use changes occurred partly or primarily as a result of the introduction of rapid transit, further controversy arises as to whether rapid transit development attracted new financial resources into land development, or merely shifted development from other parts of the region. The intricacy of the marketplace precludes a definitive determination of that issue as well. (Lerman et al., 1977) Intrinsically connected to the impact of rapid transit on land development is the impact it may have on land prices. Increasing land  36  prices, while a welcome windfall to some landowners, may act to destabilize the neighbourhood and attract new kinds of more intense development unwanted by some neighbours. On the other hand, few landowners cherish the thought of an absolute or relative decline in the value of their properties. Rapid transit development may influence land prices by effecting changes in the demand for land. Demand changes may result from several factors, including anticipated changes in development opportunities, and perceived improvement in neighbourhood accessibility, both of which would raise land prices (U.S. DOT, 1979,#1; UMTA, 1984). These factors would increase demand particulatly in the vicinity of stations. Rapid transit could also reduce demand and prices in some areas, especially alongside its alignment, where nuisance effects, such as noise and shadowing, would be most intense (UMTA, 1984; BC Ombudsman, 1987). As in the case of land development, the influence of rapid transit on prices is difficult to measure (Lerman et a[., 1977). Each property is unique, and its value is not known until it is sold. Professional appraisals are based on a prediction of the marketplace (Ibid.), which is tied to the nebulous decisions of developers and politicians regarding land development, as well as unpredictable changes in general macroeconomic and neighbourhood market conditions. Further, it is difficult to isolate the influence of rapid transit development from other factors, as other influences are not likely to remain stable (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). In the absence of extensive sales data, any appraisal is likely to reflect a  subjective belief of the effects, rather than actual effects of rapid transit development (Lerman et al., 1977). b) Land Development Examples Although a causal relationship between rapid transit development and land development cannot be proven, there is a tendency for intensity of development to increase, rather than decrease, in the vicinity of rapid transit stations (Fairfax County, 1983; BC Ombudsman, 1987). As well, there is a tendency for areas adjacent to transit stations to experience proportionately more development than other areas of the city (Putnam, 1976). And in addition to the amount of development, a change in type of development (e.g., industrial to residential)[City of Calgary, 1981] often seems to accompany rapid transit development (This, however, elicits a "chicken and egg" argument, as rapid transit alignments are generally placed where intense development already exists, where it is anticipated, or where it is encouraged). Where development is induced by rapid transit, the pattern of development emerging in different cases is too inconsistent to draw conclusions as to the amount and type of development which may occur around different stations. This is not surprising, given the intervening political and market factors alluded to. In the case of Vancouver, B.C. Transit claims that $5 billion in new development occurred as a result of the construction of Skytrain (BC Transit, 1989, #2). The claim is questionable as including, without justification, almost all new downtown development; desirable waterfront land in New Westminster which had just come onstream; and a new Town Centre in Burnaby which had been planned for several years. It had been initially planned that the Skytrain would connect these projects (City of  38  Vancouver, 1983, #2), so a causal effect is difficult to determine. However, there is no question that there have been new developments immediately adjacent to several stations, and in some cases (for example, in the Main Street and Edmonds station areas) there has been little prior development activity. Furthermore, this development has represented a change in land use, for example, in the case of Main Street Station development, from industrial use (a cement plant) to residential use (highrise condominiums). (BC Transit, 1989, #2) Because of the difficulty in determining causal relationships, no clear geographic pattern to these developments emerges. In a case of Light Rail Transit, in a four-year time span around the period of construction of Calgary's Light Rail Transit, there was intensive land consolidation activity and use redesignation in the vicinity of stations. There was also significant development in three suburban station areas. Developers stated that Light Rail Transit was an important factor in their locations decision, but other factors, such as parking costs, and land prices were also determinants. As in the case of Vancouver, however, new development that did occur was residential and mixed use development, replacing existing industrial and low order commercial activities. Suburban stations, in this case, experienced more development than Inner City stations (City of Calgary, 1983). In the case of San Diego Light Rail, in suburban areas in the first four years, no building permits were issued along the alignment between station areas, but dozens of residential and commercial building permits were issued for areas adjacent to stations. A survey of developers involved revealed that even if light rail was not a factor in their  39  development decision, it was usually a factor in the marketing of the project (UMTA, 1984). In other cities, there has been some obvious rapid-transit-centred development. In Toronto, over a five year period, 2/3 of all development took place within a five minute walking distance of a subway station. (Fairfax County, 1983) In Washington, D C . there are some developers who develop only in Metrorail station areas, and there was initially more development around stations than in the traditional Downtown core (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). Experience with San Francisco's BART and Atlanta's MARTA systems indicate an unsusual development pattern which may arise as a consequence of rapid transit development --that development tends to become more centralized in the downtown core, while, conversely, other inner city and suburban stations may experience no development at all. Almost all initial station area development in the two cities occurred in the Downtown or central areas, while activity around other stations was relatively stagnant (U.S. DOT, 1979, #3; U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). It is difficult to discern if this central development is proportionately more than would have occurred otherwise, but some of these central areas, in the case of Atlanta's "Midtown", in particular, saw little development in prior years (Roughton, 1989). The theory is that rapid transit may increase central development because of the perception of a more accessible downtown being created, a recognition of the substantial public commitment being made to the central area with a downtown-oriented system, and the actual ease of employee and shopper access to the central area it creates.  40  On the other hand, not only does local government prohibit development unwanted by nearby residents, but even where development was desired, such as Central Oakland, rapid transit alone is insufficient to induce it if there is no available land supply or demand for new development in the particular neighbourhood (U.S. DOT, 1979, #3). This not only lends credence to the idea that rapid transit alone is insufficient to overcome political and market barriers to development, but that these factors will be fundamental to the determination as to which stations may experience development. For, as has been alluded to, the San Francisco/Atlanta pattern is not the only one which has emerged, c) Property Price Examples As regards Skytrain in Vancouver, given the development levels around several stations, there is a correlation between land values and proximity to Skytrain stations (although not necessarily a causal relationship). However, of more immediate concern in Vancouver has been the possibility of price decreases in certain cases arising out of the nuisance impacts of Skytrain. "It is inevitable that the more severly impacted properties that are not near stations, are worth relatively less today as single detached homes" (BC Ombudsman, 1987).  However, in  some cases, a change in zoning might increase the value of the properties in those cases. Nonetheless, a B.C. Assessment Authority study of two control areas indicated that some properties has reduced values of 5 to 10% that could be attributed to some degree to Skytrain (BC Ombudsman, 1987). In the case of the development of Calgary's LRT, a survey of Corridor residents found that a significant portion (20%) felt that the LRT  41  had increased the value of their homes. Real estate consultants also felt there was an appreciably higher rate of increase in land value in station areas, but this amount was not quantified. According to the transit provider, only 1% of the residents surveyed felt that the LRT had decreased the value of their home (City of Calgary, 1983). Similarly, with the construction of BART, a majority of San Francisco developers surveyed said that they would pay a premium for land near a BART station, and a majority of wayside homeowners surveyed found BART to be an insurance policy in the event driving becomes too expensive or cumbersome. Conversely, there was no evidence of wayside residents moving away because of BART-created nuisances (U.S. DOT, 1979, #2). A study of of Washington, D.C. Metrorail also concluded that there was a direct inverse correlation between land prices and proximity to a Metrorail Station. However, this did not exceed the differences between specific parcels with differing characteristics. Also, no conclusion could be reached on nuisance-impacted properties (Lerman et. al_., 1977). In Atlanta, in some station areas, prices more than doubled over a five year period of MARTA implementation, but these effects could not be separated into MARTA-induced changes and general gentrification trends (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2).  8. Commercial Activity a) Significance and Theoretical Impact The people traffic which is usually generated by rapid transit makes station area locations attractive to many kinds of retail businesses. This would especially true of businesses which people frequent on their way to  42  or from work, such as coffee shops and dry cleaners (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2). To area residents any new businesses which might open as a result of rapid transit development can be either a benefit or a detriment. It can be a benefit by providing close-by amenities which the neighbourhood previously lacked, or providing more competition and choice in retail sectors which already exist. On the other hand, new businesses may increase noise, traffic, and parking problems in the neighbourhood because of the non-transit customers these new businesses may attract (City of Vancouver, 1983, #2; Fairfax County, 1973). For businesses already existing before a station is put in, the arrival of rapid transit can mean either an increase in business; or a loss of business, because of new competitors, or new parking restrictions in the adjacent area. Business not located near a station could potentially also suffer a relative loss (UMTA, 1984). b) Examples In Vancouver, the retail impact of Skytrain has not been an issue, probably in part because the rapidly growing population in the region has been sufficient to sustain retail sales, regardless of Skytrain influence. There is no question, however, of large new retail projects (e.g. Metrotown) being located adjacent to Skytrain stations since the system began service (BC Transit, 1989, #2). In Calgary, new retail and mixed use projects have also been developed around light rail stations (City of Calgary, 1983). In the case of San Diego Light Rail, seven new retail developments opened near stations over a four year period. Most new businesses opened near a station stated that the San Diego "Trolley" was a factor in  43  the choice of their location. In a survey of both previous and new wayside merchants, 25% stated that the trolley helped business, while only 11% said that it hurt business. However, a significant 44% responded thay they were hurt by the removal of parking spaces accompanying light rail development (UMTA, 1984). The effects are probably more pronounced in a heavy rail system. In a survey of Atlanta merchants near one downtown MARTA station, over 60% reported an increase in gross sales with the station opening. Those closest to the station experienced the greatest increases, along with particular types of retailers, such as food stores, restaurants, and gift shops. Merchandise mix also changed with a broader cross-section of people becoming customers. In the case of Washington D.C.'s Metrorail, a study concluded that retail properties, more than any other type, were price sensitive to proximity to a station (U.S. DOT, 1982, #2).  9. Neighbourhood Change a) Significance and Theoretical Impact Neighbourhood change can involve either physical or social change. Physical changes in character and scale have been dealt with as land development, land price, commercial, traffic, and other impacts. This section will deal with social impacts. Social impact may include a significant change in the social mix of the community. This may comprise a change in the predominant social class, income, ethnicity, age, or marital status. Therefore, complaints about neighbourhood destabilization can be a veneer for racism, classism, ageism, and other forms of discrimination. However, such complaints may  44  also represent legitimate concerns about an influx of strangers into the neighbourhood, at the expense of a sense of security, familism, and control over the environment (Appleyard and Carp, 1973). A sense of territoriality is a universal consideration in neighbourhood evaluation (OECD, 1971). A loss of sense of control over the neighbourhood can cause negative social reactions, such as callousness and withdrawal (Insel and Lindgren, 1978). Any influx of new residents can be controlled with the political veto over new development. Such development, if not eliminated, can be confined to particular areas which are more "public" in nature, such as major thoroughfares. However, what cannot be controlled is the people using rapid transit who alight in the neighbourhood, although they do not live or work nearby (e.g., for transfer purposes, or to visit new commercial attractions). Some people fear that the presence of a nearby station can lead to an increase in crime in the neighbourhood (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). While rapid transit development can be destabilizing, it also provides opportunity for desirable developments which may otherwise not occur. If the community or political authorities decide that increased social mix is a desirable objective, more young single people, seniors, single parents, and the less affluent can be brought into a neighbourhood by new development (which incorporates new rental accomodation and social housing components), made plausible by the access rapid transit provides to other areas of the city (City of Calgary, 1981; Fairfax County, 1973). As in the case of other indirect effects, measuring the influence of rapid transit on neighbourhood social change is a challenging endeavor.  45  Evidence of neighbourhood demograhic change, gleaned for example, from census information, does not prove this change can be attributed to rapid transit development. This change may be attributable to other factors, such as general market conditions. It is even more difficult to try to measure the social influence of transient strangers, except on the more tangible dimensions, such as crime statistics, b) System Examples As to the influx of new residents into the neighbourhood, prior to the opening of Skytrain, concern was expressed on this issue (City of Vancouver, 1983, #2). New developments are dealt with on a case by case basis, as required by the municipal political process. This disassociates consideration of destabilization impacts from Skytrain development. Information on destabilization, however, is forthcoming from a study of Calgary Light Rail Transit. When asked the effects of Light Rail Transit on their neighbourhood, only 5% of residents surveyed said the effect was negative, compared to 22% that said the effect was positive, and 47% who said there was no effect (City of Calgary, 1983). This finding strongly infers that neighbourhood destabilization was simply not an issue regarding Calgary's LRT. However, the specific question was not addressed in the survey. Furthermore, there is some indication that during the construction phase of the LRT there was some dislocation of area residents (Ibid.), creating a small element of uncertainty in a couple of inner city station areas.  So destabilization was not entirely eliminated as a concern. A study of San Francisco's BART, however, concluded that there was  no noticeable impact on the demographic characteristics of wayside  46  neighbourhoods. Rapid transit, in that case, unequivocally had no destabilizing influence. (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1) However, in a case where there had been more widespread development induced by rapid transit, it would have been more difficult to reach a conclusion as to the influence of rapid transit on neighbourhood destabilization. As to the social influence of riders on the neighbourhood, the greatest concern would be a crime increase. The San Francisco BART study showed there was no aprreciable increase in property or violent crime after BART service had begun. However, there was some slightly disturbing increases in arrests from drunkeness and vandalism at stations, which would not be well received by a community (U.S. DOT, 1979, #1). In a similar vein, at the New Westminster Station of Vancouver's Skytrain station, there have been reports of a signifcant number of drug transactions (Interview - New Westminster Police). Therefore, as a transportation centre, stations may focus certain types of petty crime.  10. Public Amenities and Services Rapid transit may provide both opportunities and challenges in the provision of public amenities and services. A swath cut for the construction of a trackway provides the opportunity to create recreational space out of the leftover land. This is particularly true in the case of an elevated guideway, where land underneath could become available as a linear park, a bicycle path, or pedestrian path. For example, underneath most of the length of the Skytrain elevated guideway in Vancouver there is a bicycle path and pedestrian walkway, where there was previously only  47  railway tracks and underutilized industrial land (BC Ombudsman, 1987). But even in the case of a surface system there are likely to be remainders of land after construction which can find new pleasing uses (City of Calgary, 1981), though not as much land as in the case of an elevated guideway. There can be a less desirable type of amenities impact from rapid transit, however. There is usually concern that new residential and commercial projects accompanying rapid transit development can result in an overburdening of existing community facilities and services, such as parks, athletic facilities, libraries, and social services. This would leave less opportunity for existing residents to use the facilities, or result in the need for new public facilities (City of Calgary, 1981). This view, however, contains two assumptions-first, that the city would allow development to occur without taking into account the burden on existing services; and second, that existing facilities are used to capacity. Presumably development levels are matched to facility levels by the local government authority before approval for development is given. In fact, the provision of additional amenities may be a requirement of development approval (City of Calgary, 1981). And in the event existing facilities are underutilized, finding new users would preclude the need to construct new facilities elsewhere (Ibid.). In addition, new development may provide private recreational facilities which supplement public amenities (Ibid.). Another potential undesirable type of amenities impact is the impact on existing neighbourhood parks. The noise, shadowing, and aesthetic impacts which affect residences may also affect recreational areas.  48  Finally, no discussion of rapid transit and public amenities is complete without mentioning the transportation amenity provided to neighbourhood residents in station areas by the rapid transit system itself. Rapid transit may provide time savings and convenience for nearby residents and their visitors.  * * *  This review of the literature on past neighbourhood impacts of rapid transit can now be summarized and used to generate a list of factors to be considered in assessing any neighbourhood impact of rapid transit. The impact categories established in this Chapter provide a convenient and manageable framework for the balance of the thesis in which to discuss these considerations and their application to the Study Area.  49  CHAPTER THREE IMPACT DETERMINANTS This Chapter will summarize and analyze the array of potential rapid transit impacts, and provide a framework to project neighbourhood impacts based on these analyses. The summaries and analyses of impacts are derived from the Chapter Three literature review. These analyses are then used to generate a compendium of impact determinants. For purposes of clarity, the summaries, analyses, and derived determinants are arranged by impact category. The impact categories correspond to those utilized in Chapter Three.  1. Noise a) Summary and Analysis Noise is one of the more difficult impacts of rapid transit systems. It is one of the most serious impacts, because it can potentially affect human health; it is one of the most pervasive impacts, being characteristic of most systems; and noise is one of the most insoluble impacts, being difficult to mitigate after a system is built. Perhaps the best way to deal with noise impacts, therefore, is to choose a less noisy system. Systems with resilient wheels, in particular, will generate less noise. After the system has been chosen, two of the most important considerations in the determination of the noise impact are the elevation of the system trackway and the amount of ambient noise in the corridor. Trackways at or below surface can be shielded effectively, while this is not the case with elevated sections. Ambient noise levels cut both ways: if they are high, noise problems are compounded by the addition of rapid  50  transit noise (as rapid transit and ambient noise are not necessarily coincident in direction and timing); if ambient noise levels are low, rapid transit noise is a more noticeable intrusion. An important aspect to the determination of rapid transit-generated noise impact is the noise impact for properties located immediately adjacent to the trackway. Experience has shown (as in the case of Skytrain) that it is unlikely that all of these properties would be exproriated. And it is unlikely that all of these properties would be shielded from the noise. To effectively shield a significant length of trackway with appropriate berms and fences is costly, and the barrier which would result could be unsightly for both property occupants and passengers. And practically speaking, it is difficult to shield noise in the case of elevated sections. For a particular property, its distance from the trackway will remain the main determinant of the noise impact it will suffer. In the case of almost all rapid transit systems (except those underground) there is a zone of unacceptable noise impact within approximately 50 feet of the trackway. This is true in the case of Skytrain, predicted by general calculation methods, and even found to be the case with Calgary's LRT. The degree of impact involved renders properties within the 50-foot zone unsuited for residential living. In theory, those properties beyond the 50-foot limit are much less likely to experience unacceptable noise levels. However, given the Skytrain experience of unexpected noise impacts, a more cautious approach to predicting the breadth of noise impacts is suggested. The Skytrain experience can be used to establish relevant benchmark distances. It is an appropriate example, given its large  51  unexpected noise impacts at significant distances from the trackway. Furthermore, there are systems which generate greater noise than Skytrain. Average test site readings for Skytrain were generally only below CMHC acceptable limits at 50 metres from the trackway (MacLean, 1988). This establishes 50 metres as a minimum acceptable distance from the trackway for residential properties. In some cases, however, both single event and 24-hour Leq noise far exceeded the 50 metre limit. In summary, there is likely to be significant noise impact within 50 metres of the trackway, and in many instances at a distance which exceeds 50 metres. But in the case of surface sections of trackway, berming and fencing can be helpful in attenuating some of the noise, especially as you move further from the trackway, b) Rapid Transit Noise Impacts Determinants: i. Type of rapid transit system—steel wheel or resilient ii. Distance of houses and other buildings to the trackway iii. Elevation of the trackway iv. Feasible locations for berms or fences which would mitigate noise v. View impact of berming or fencing for both passengers and area residents vi. Volume of ambient noise, and its location in relation to residences and workplaces  52  2. Visual Intrusion a) Summary and Analysis People will be significantly irritated if rapid transit passenger have views of their yards or through their windows into their homes. The major factors which will determine the potential for this type of visual intrusion are the rapid transit trains' angle of overlook with respect to residences; the distance of homes from the trackway; the amount and type of any screening between the trains and the residences; the speed and frequency of the rapid transit trains; and any pre-existing visual intrusions. Most of these factors are unlikely to be adjusted solely to diminish the amount of visual intrusion. For example, it is unlikely that trains would be made to run faster to protect privacy. Such action would intensify noise problems, which tend to be more irritating than privacy intrusion. Nor are rapid transit service levels likely to be adjusted for the benefit of adjacent properties, as frequent service is an essential element of an effective rapid transit system. And properties closest to the the trackway will probably not be expropriated as there is no legal obligation to do so (BC Ombudsman, 1987). It can be assumed that the speed and frequency of trains will be such as to intrude on the privacy of adjacent residences. However, privacy intrusion will not be significant for segments of the system which run at grade. Segments at grade do not provide a broad overlook for passengers, and in most cases it is relatively easy to screen out surface views of residences with fencing or landscaping. However, even in the case of surface systems screening will not always be an appropriate solution to visual intrusion. Dense vegetation or high fences  53  can block views for both passengers and residents.  Some residents might  rather look out on train passengers than a wall, b) Loss of Privacy Determinants: i. Track elevation ii. Distance of homes and other buildings to the  trackway; Orientation  of buildings to the trackway iii. Station location and train speed (as they affect exposure duration) iv. Potential for effective screening, and its view blockage implications v. Current unrelated intrusions on privacy  3. Shadowing and Light Overspill a) Summary and Analysis Lighting is an important part of the environment, to the extent that it can even affect human feelings. This, combined with the fact that people almost always prefer sunlight over artificial lighting, means that excessive shadowing constitutes a significant problem. In the context of rapid transit, shadowing should only be a concern in the case of elevated segments.  Due to the temporal variation in  shadowing, the precise shadow effects of extensive elevated sections is a tedious determination.  But the most significant effects will occur in winter  because of the short hours of daylight and the long shadows which are cast at that time of the year. It should be noted that transit-related land development can be a further source of shadowing. Light overspill connected to rapid transit operations  is generally not  a major problem. Strong lighting can be emitted from station areas, trains,  54  and any connected land development. But light from station areas is often seen as a crime deterrent. Light from surface trains can be screened, while light emitted from elevated trains will usually be far enough away to have limited effects. In any event, ambient urban lighting is usually intense enough to override the effects of station, train, and development light for all but the closest buildings, b) Shadowing and Light Overspill Determinants: Shadowing: i. Sun angle and altitude at selected times ii. Locations and dimensions of guideway bridges iii. Location of premises in relation to elevated guideway Light Overspill: iv. Station location v. Land use adjacent to station site vi. Location of premises in relation to surface trackway vii. Potential for effective screening for affected premises, and its impact on views viii. Intensity of existing lighting in probable station areas and along track corridor  4. Aesthetic Impact and Loss of Views a) Summary and Analysis The maintenance of views, and aesthetics in general, are significant concerns in Vancouver. In the context of rapid transit, aesthetic impacts arise from stations, the guideway, and any connected land development.  55  With regard to stations, attention should be paid to their design because of their landmark quality. However, unless they are surrounded by large unscreened parking lots, stations are relatively unobtrusive and negative aesthetic impacts can easily be minimized. Guideways have a more significant aesthetic impact, especially if they are elevated. Not only is their scale obtrusive, but they block views as well. But even surface trackways may have an unpleasant aesthetic impact which is difficult to mitigate for those that overlook them. However, in a few instances there may be a positive aesthetic impact from guideways if they block unsightly views or induce land development in otherwise deteriorating neighbourhoods. A plethora of factors will determine the response to the aesthetics of any connected land development, but its impact on views will be critical. b) Aesthetic and View Impact Determinants: i. Station design and surroundings ii. Location and height of elevated segments iii. Location and orientation of buildings with regard to elevated segments in terms of both aesthetic impact and view blockage iv. Premises which may have a view of surface trackway v. The view impact of screening vi. The extent to which the station area is in need of rehabilitation vii. Buildings with unobstructed views viii. Topography of trackway surroundings  56  5. Traffic and Parking a) Summary and Analysis Greater neighbourhood traffic is a concern because of the noise increase, safety reduction, dimunition in privacy, and frustration over congestion, which often accompanies it. However, traffic increases induced by rapid transit development are usually marginal. Rapid transit generally induces a modal shift away from cars towards rapid transit use, and most passengers access rapid transit stations by foot or bus, not by automobile (U.S. D.O.T. 1982, #2). And if traffic does become a problem in the vicinity of a station, it can be restricted with parking regulations, turning regulations, and, if neccessary, with barriers at the end of residential streets. Congestion in the immediate station area can be prevented with parking restrictions, bus loops, and off-road car passenger drop off areas. Traffic problems which theoretically could arise from rapid transit induced land development can be dealt with through municipal development regulation and parking requirements. Parking in stations areas is also usually not problematic as a permit system can be instituted for area residents and businesses, though this would be at the expense of visitor convenience. Where traffic and parking overspill can become a problem is when a station is accompanied by park and ride facilities. b) Traffic and Parking Impacts Determinants: i. Extent of potential parking overspill ii. Willingness of the municipality to regulate traffic and parking in the vicinity of the station  57  iii. Effectiveness of potential regulation iv. Feasibility of a bus loop and special drop-off areas adjacent to the station, and the willingness of authorities to provide it v. Likelihood of a park and ride facility next to the station vi. Whether or not the trackway will be grade-separated from thoroughfares vii. Regulation of parking for new development  6. Pedestrian Issues a) Summary and Analysis An at-grade rapid transit trackway will form a significant pedestrian and neighbourhood barrier.  This is especially the case if the power  source is also at grade, since safety requires that such a trackway is carefully fenced. The most direct path to schools, shopping areas, and community facilities can be blocked. To avoid dangerous crossing attempts, and to restore pedestrian convenience, special pedestrian crossings of surface trackways are desirable. However, as pedestrian issues usually receive scant attention, it is unlikely that such pedestrian overpasses would be built unless there was significant public insistence. As elevated segments present no barrier to pedestrian traffic, unlike the case of other impacts, they are advantageous in terms of pedestrian impact. b) Pedestrian Impacts Determinants: i. Elevation of the trackway ii. For surface sections, location of the train power source, frequency and speed of trains  58  iii. Distance of required pedestrian detours iv. Whether blocked pedestrian routes include direct routes to schools, playgrounds, parks, major shopping areas, or other significant activity centres  7.1 Land Development a) Summary and Analysis The extent to which a rapid transit project influences land development is not easily discerned. Rapid transit development on its own is not a neccessary or sufficient condition for land development to occur. Any rapid transit influence on development can be easily subsumed by site specific factors, general economic conditions, and political factors. These political factors include the attitude of municipal politicians to new development; and the degree of political influence of residents living adjacent to rapid transit corridors who are opposed to some or all new development in their neighbourhood. However, if site, neighbourhood, economic, and political conditions do not constitute barriers to new development in the vicinity of rapid transit stations, then, based on past experience, new development is more likely to occur adjacent to rapid transit stations than in most other parts of the city. Furthermore, this new development is likely to be more intense than in the surrounding neighbourhood, and is likely to be of a residential or mixed use nature, rather than industrial or commercial. The extent of this station area development, however, will depend on such unquantifiable and unpredictable factors as the image of the rapid transit system before and during operation, and the perceived  59  improvement in accessibility the system provides. If rapid transit implementation changes the perception of a neighbourhood to one easily accessed from Downtown, development pressures in the neighbourhood can intensify dramatically. New development which does concentrate in the vicinity of rapid transit stations may reflect the commitment of additional resources to land development, or merely the shifting of resources from elsewhere in the region. However, even if no additional resources are committed, concentration alone may confer benefits of an economic, environmental, or social nature (e.g., improved access for the poor and elderly). There is a wide range of potential impacts connected to rapid transit related land development, as in the case of any significant land development. Positive impacts may include the provision of new neighbourhood housing options, the provision of new amenities, and the economic, environmental, and social benefits conferred by increased concentration of development. In the absence of radical local government intervention, the marketplace must be relied upon to bring about these potential benefits. Detrimental impacts of land development may include increased traffic, view blockages, negative aesthetic impacts, shadowing, business dislocation, neighbourhood destabilization, and amenities overload. To preclude any of these negative by-products of large scale development, the community may rely on its political control over development.  60  b) Land Development Impact Determinants i. Economic and land development trends in the region ii. Current demand for housing and commercial space and current development trends in the vicinity of the rapid transit corridor iii. The attitude of corridor residents to development and the political influence of corridor residents iv. The attitude of municipal politicians towards development v. Availability of vacant or underutilized land, in the station vicinity; or obsolete land uses and recent zoning changes in the station area vi. Efficiency and effectiveness of the rapid transit system for passengers; and the image its technology is likely to create vii. The degree to which the rapid transit system improves access to the City Centre viii. The prior experience in rapid transit development in the region in terms of the type, intensity, and degree of connnected land development ix. Likely type and scale of new development  7.2 Property Prices a) Summary and Analysis It is difficult to isolate the influence of rapid transit development on property prices.  However, it appears that outside the vicinity of stations  the presence of a rapid transit guideway will depress property prices. The amount of decrease will depend on the specific nuisance effects and image of the system, but experience indicates that most of the decrease is likely to be subsumed by other locational and economic determinants. Even in the case of Skytrain, where the nuisance impact is fairly  61  substantial, the effect on property prices between stations was considered to be relatively marginal. A more significant and opposite price effect may occur in the vicinity of stations. Here prices may increase to a degree that places significant development pressures on the neighbourhood. The amount of increase will depend on the perceived change in land development opportunities and accessibility arising out of rapid transit development. As already discussed, these will depend on the economic, political, and locational determinants of land development, as well as the efficacy and image of the rapid transit system. The closer land is to the station, the more likely it is that it will be affected, b) Property Price Impact Determinants: i. Perceived change in accessibility created by the rapid transit system, and general image of the system ii. Land development pressures created by the rapid transit system iii. Locations of the most intense land development pressures iv. Nuisance effects of the system chosen: Noise generation, visual intrusiveness, shadowing, light overspill, aesthetic impacts, view blockages, traffic increases, parking problems v. Location of worst nuisance effects  8. Commercial Activity a) Summary and Analysis Experience indicates that rapid transit development has an impact on retail activity which is beneficial for both consumers and business. Busy rapid transit stations provide a larger market for retail goods and  62  services, particularly those of a convenience nature. The result is that new retailers open in the station area, providing increased choice and competition for consumers. In addition, the business of existing station area retailers also tends to increase. The closer a business is to the station, the greater will be the impact of rapid transit development. However, rapid transit development can have a detrimental effect on retailers if severe restrictions on retail customer parking accompany rapid transit implementation. Rapid transit development can also be detrimental in the retail context if the new types of retailers which open draw a large number of non-transit customers, increasing traffic and parking problems in station areas, b) Commercial Impact Determinants: i. Ridership levels in the station area ii. Existing retailers in the station area—i.e., potential for retail development in the area iii. Types of goods offered by existing retailers in the station area—i.e., potential for new kinds of retail development in the area iv. Availability of sites near the proposed station for commercial development v. Present parking and traffic conditions in the station area vi. Degree of impact of new parking restrictions in retail areas adjacent to stations vii. Scale and type of new development, and parking restrictions imposed upon it  63  9. Social Issues a) Summary and Analysis Neighbourhood stability is a justifiable goal to the extent it concerns the "territoriality" interests of residents, but it must be ensured that pursuance of this goal is not an artifice for racial or other discrimination. Rapid transit development will influence neighbourhood social change to the extent it induces land development activity in a socially homogeneous neighbourhood (See "7.1 Land Development" for land development determinants).  It provides the opportunity to increase social  mix where new land development activity is induced. But since the type and location of any new development is controlled, the chances for "disruptive" changes in neighbourhood social structure are to some extent limited. This will depend on the degree of neighbourhood concern with social homogeneity and the degree of neighbourhood political influence. In any event, as new development on quiet residential streets elicits the most opposition, any new social mix which is induced is likely to be confined to areas alongside arterial roads. Experience indicates that the social impact of commuters or "transients" carried by rapid transit is likely to be marginal. Other factors far outweigh the influence of  rapid transit on the amount of serious  neighbourhood crime. At worst a transportation node focuses area crime. Vandalism, drunkenness, or drug transactions can become c o m m o n in stations if they are improperly designed, badly lit, or inadequately patrolled.  64  b) Social Impact Determinants: i. Present degree of neighbourhood homogeneity ii. Potential for built form changes to influence homogeneous aspects iii. Likelihood of rapid transit induced land development in the neighbourhood, and its type iv. Likelihood of non-market housing v. Degree of neighbourhood concern with social homogeneity and social mix; and the political influence of the neighbourhood vi. Station visibility and lighting; and patrols, cameras, and other security measures in place vii. Past associations in the area between rapid transit and crime  10. Amenities and Services a) Summary and Analysis On balance the impact of rapid transit on amenities and services should be positive. A significant transportation amenity should be created for neighbourhood residents and their visitors. Both current transit users and those who are currently motorists should gain the benefit of reduced travel time and increased convenience. Following construction of the system, remainders of land should become available for neighbourhood recreational purposes, especially adjacent to elevated segments. For example, there is a bicycle path underneath much of Skytrain in Vancouver. The extent of benefit will depend on City priorities and budgets. Commercial projects  65  accompanying rapid transit development may also provide new private recreational facilities in the neighbourhood. On the other hand, one would expect that there would be no detrimental impact on existing recreational and social services. Prior to approval of new projects, the approving authority should be expected to take into account current service capacity. However, there could be some negative impacts on existing wayside recreational areas, b) Amenities Impact Determinants: i. Savings in travel time to key destinations provided by rapid transit as compared to bus and motoring time ii. Potential change in modal split with rapid transit implementation iii. Location of elevated sections of trackway, and the present and future surroundings of elevated sections iv. Locations alongside surface sections of track which are unlikely to be developed (i.e., in residential areas) v. City policy in developing recreational land alongside transportation corridors vi. Existing capacity utilization of community recreational and social services vii. Number of wayside parks which could be affected by noise, shadowing, aesthetic, and other rapid transit impacts.  66  CHAPTER FOUR APPROACH, FINDINGS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS  This chapter will project the impact of a proposed light rail transit line on Vancouver's Kitsilano neighbourhood. This undertaking will not only provide an example of potential rapid transit impact on the West Side of Vancouver, but may help to preclude detrimental impacts from occurring, if and when a rapid transit system is actually built. Further, employment of an impact assessment method in a specific situation assists in development of a more accurate and effective methodology. The assessment is arranged according to the impact categories employed in previous chapters. The categorization, though in some respects arbitrary, allows for clarity and manageability in handling the huge number of potential impact combinations. Overall findings will be summarized in the following chapter. The assessment of each impact category utilizes the research-based criteria established in the preceeding chapter. In assessing each of the impact categories, there is often an array of possible outcomes, ranging from the most likely, to the highly improbable. Practical considerations induce the selection of what is believed to be the most probable outcome, which  is the basic approach  in this chapter. But predicted outcomes are broadened somewhat to account for unforeseen contingencies. This approach should produce a reasonably accurate projection. However, the unlikely, unforeseen, and overlooked are, paradoxically, a regular occurrence, so projections must be qualified on that basis. These projections must also be exposed to scrutiny by others, especially knowledgeable and interested residents of  67  the study area, to assist in avoiding projection error, particularly of the overlooked variety. In regards to the preclusion of detrimental outcomes, as findings of detrimental impact arise in the discussion, options for mitigation or rectification of the identified problem will be presented. A comprehensive set of recommendations will follow in the final chapter. These do not constitute definitive remedies, only plausible solutions. An array of mitigation options should also be further developed in a public participation process. In assessing the impact of rapid transit in Kitsilano an array of alternative technologies, routes, and implementation schemes, all of which would be plausible, could be undertaken. With a multiplicity of potential variables, such an undertaking would be difficult and time consuming, and result in a great deal of energy expended looking at many scenarios, only one of which would ever be implemented. If only very limited resources are available, the analysis of all these variations, including the one eventually selected for implementation, may be incomplete. Instead, one plausible variation is closely examined. This produces detailed assessment results, which are then available for modification as the planning process proceeds and presents new preferred alternatives. In other cases, if resources allow, it is appropriate to examine other radically different variations to broaden the knowlege of the range of impacts in the first instance. General aspects of the implementation scenario selected for study in this Chapter, such as the route, the technology employed, and the extent of the impact area, have been discussed in earlier parts of this  68  thesis. To briefly reiterate, the route selected is along the Arbutus rail corridor, the technology that it is assumed will be employed is "light rail," and the limit of impact is likely to be around one quarter mile from the trackway. However, additional site-specific assumptions must be made to analyze the impact in Kitsilano. The first assumption is that the rapid transit trackway will not deviate from the Arbutus rail line at any point through the study area. The second assumption involves trackway grade through the neighbourhood. With the exception of guideway overpasses over Broadway near Arbutus Street and over Burrard Street near Seventh Avenue, it is assumed that the rapid transit system will run at grade. The at-grade assumption is premised on two factors. First, light rail technology is assumed. This technology is usually cheap and safe to use at grade. Second, if the Arbutus rail corridor land is available for rapid transit purposes, it is prima facie unnecessary to tunnel or bridge. However, it is assumed that grade separation would be required if a grade-level LRT crossing would cause significant interference with traffic flow or transit buses. Most crossings involve local residential streets, which presumably would not be greatly inconvenienced by LRT crossings. But there are three arterials through the study area - Burrard Street, Broadway, and Twelfth Avenue. An overpass is probably necessary at Burrard Street because of interference that passing LRT's would cause to heavy car and truck traffic on this bridge access route. An overpass is also probably required on Broadway, a major crosstown roadway, with heavy transit bus traffic. Twelfth Avenue is probably manageable without grade separation, as traffic on this route does not appear to be as heavy as on the other routes  69  mentioned, this street is not used by transit buses, and grade-separated Broadway would be nearby as an alternative route. In the absence of cost and engineering data it is not known whether overpasses or underpasses would be more feasible. That being the case, overpasses have been chosen for study, as the more problematic scenario in terms of neighbourhood effects. The third general assumption required involves overpass lengths and heights. In the absence of specific technical plans, engineering code standard specifications, appropriately modified for this study, have been utilized as a basis to calculate the dimensions required. Overpass height was established from standard specifications for highway bridges. For Broadway and Burrard streets, both being major routes, the appropriate standard is for a trunk route through an urban area. The specified clearance for a trunk route is 16 feet (American Association of State Highway Officials Standard Specifications for Highway Bridges, 1983), which in this study has been rounded to 5 metres. Confirming the selected standards, Skytrain overpasses examined appeared to have about a 5 metre clearance over thoroughfares. The length of overpasses is determined by the feasible gradient for train ramps. A ususal standard gradient for heavy rail rapid transit is 3.5% (Meritt, Standard Handbook for Civil Engineers, 1983). Given that feasible gradient is determined by weight (Ibid.), the gradient appropriate for light rail was modified to 5% (for practical purposes of this study this estimate need not be more precise, as the change in effects of overpass length this would cause would not be large). With a 5% gradient, a 5 metre high overpass would require a 100 metre long ramp at each end.  70  To sum up the assumption of overpass height and length, two guideway bridges will be required, at Broadway and Burrard, and each of these bridges will have a 5 metre clearance over the roadway, and 100metre-long approaches. Most remaining assumptions necessary for this study are relevant only to particular impact categories, and will be dealt with, as required, in the discussion of each category. * * *  In undertaking the projection of rapid transit impacts, impressionistic information was used, only where other data was not readily available. While sometimes helpful in terms of generating ideas and perspectives, impressionistic information is characterized by inaccuracy. Instead, wherever possible, direct measurements or observations were taken. If direct measurements were not possible, then an attempt was made to arrive at conclusions using proxy statistics. In this chapter one of the most important instruments used to determine impacts is the 1983 Greater Vancouver Regional District Land Use Map. Given that this map is slightly dated, it was used in conjunction with both the 1989 City of Vancouver Aerial Photos and information obtained from site visits. The Land Use map was utilized by superimposing the assumed guideway and overpass scheme onto it (See Appendix B). Contours, taken from topographical maps (Canada Department of Energy, Mines and Resources, 1989), were also superimposed onto the land use map, to assist in the determination of view impacts.  71  In some cases, to facilitate the impact discussion, the study area has been divided into four parts: Quadrant 1 is the portion of the study area located north of Broadway, but also east or south of the Arbutus rail line; Quadrant 2 is the portion of the study area located north of Broadway, but also west or north of the rail line; Quadrant 3 is the portion of the study area located south of Broadway and east of the rail line; Quadrant 4 is the portion of the study area located south of Broadway and west of the rail line. (See A p p e n d i x B) The projection of rapid transit impacts on Kitsilano in ten impact categories will now begin. The discussion of each impact category will start with a detailed explanation of the approach adopted to the application of the Chapter Three criteria to analysis of the Study Area. This will be followed by the findings, and options for rectification or mitigation of identified adverse impacts. In the Final Chapter selected mitigation options from each category will be consolidated into a consistent set of overall recommendations.  1. Noise a)Approach Research findings indicated that the major noise impact determinants are the distance of the noise recipient from the trackway, and the potential for non-porous barriers between the recipient and the trackway.  72  As excess noise has been found to be one of the most common and noticed impacts of rapid transit, a conservative approach has been taken to noise impact assessment. The surprisingly high Skytrain noise readings (see Chapter Two) were utilized as the relevant standard for distance measurement. Applying Skytrain readings, an unacceptably high impact zone was set at 0 - 50 metres from the trackway, and, taking a conservative approach, an additional impact zone was established at 50 200 metres from the trackway. Also, because curve squeal is the most irritating type of rapid transit noise (based on personal experience with curves on Skytrain and other rapid transit systems, such as the Toronto subway), premises which could be subjected to curve squeal were identified. The potential for noise mitigation through shielding was assessed as follows: i. Do the affected premises face hard-to-screen elevated sections of trackway? (Note that the premises that face elevated sections are those most likely to be affected by ambient noise — elevated sections are most likely to be located at the busiest roadways). ii. Are the affected premises multi-storey buildings which cannot be screened because they overlook the trackway? iii. If a barrier is erected, will it block views or sunlight for the affected or other premises? These findings were all determined from the maps discussed in the introduction to this Chapter. Because noise is an important issue with a complex impact, for ease and flexibility of analysis, the findings for the high impact zone and additional impact zone are presented separately.  73  b) Findings (See Appendix E) TABLE 1 Number of Affected Premises i. High Impact Area Number of Premises in High Impact Area 0-50 metres Quadrant  Apartment Houses  Office Bldgs.  1  8  8  2  2  5  23  -  3  2  6  -  4  -  2  1  15  39  Total  Of These, Subject to Curve Squeal: 5 (at curve in Quadrants 1 and 2) Summary of Impact:  3  10  The impact in the area north of Broadway, in the  absence of mitigation, is highly problematic. Many of the buildings closest to the trackway have been recently constructed.  74  Ordinary Mitigation Precluded: Apartment Buildings  Houses  Office Bldgs.  Quadrant 1 I.  Face Overpass  3  -  2  (To complicate the problem, ambient noise is also highest here) II. Multi-storey Buildings III. View Blockage  5  8  All Premises on Sixth Avenue between Maple St. and Burrard St. are affected  Quadrant 2 I.  Face Overpass  1  II. Multi-storey Buildings  -  III. View Blockage  Nil  4 4  -  Quadrant 3 I.  Face Overpass  .  II. Multi-storey Buildings  1  III. View Blockage  Nil  .  .  Quadrant 4 I.  Face Overpass  -  II. Multi-storey Buildings III. View Blockage  .  Nil  1 .  .  75  Summary of Mitigation Potential: Quadrant 1 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: nil Quadrant 2 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: 4 apartment buildings, 15 houses, although some of these houses face curve squeal Quadrant 3 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: All but one apartment building Quadrant 4 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: Both houses, but not the office building. ii. Number of Affected Premises in the Additional Impact Area Number of Premises in Major Impact Area 50 - 200 metres Quadrant  Apartment  Houses  Office Bldgs.  1  15  23  -  2  27  36  -  3  -  38  4 Total  School  31 42  Of These, Subject to Curve Squeal: 4 (at curve in Quadrants 1 and 2) Summary of Impact:  128  6  Mitigation of noise in all four quadrants in the high impact area is required  Ordinary Mitigation Precluded: Apartment  Houses  Office Bldgs.  Quadrant 1 I.  Face Overpass  II.  Multi-storey Buildings  III. View Blockage  4  Premises between Maple St. and Burrard blocked marginally  Quadrant 2 I.  Face Overpass  II.  Multi-storey Buildings  III. View Blockage  1  5  .  .  .  Nil  Quadrant 3 I.  Face Overpass  II.  Multi-storey Buildings  III. View Blockage  -  3 .  .  .  Nil  Quadrant 4 I.  Face Overpass  II.  Multi-storey Buildings  III. View Blockage  . Nil  .  .  7 7  Summary of Mitigation Potential: Quadrant 1 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: All but 4 of the 38 premises can be assisted with fencing or berming Quadrant 2 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: All but 1 of the 27 affected apartment buildings, and 5 of the 36 affected houses can be assisted with fencing or berming uadrant 3 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: Noise for all but 3 of the 38 affected houses can be mitigated by fencing Quadrant 4 Potential to Mitigate with Barriers: Noise for all affected houses can be mitigated with barriers. c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Noise Impacts i. Problematic noise will emanate from the trackway curve. A large number of residents will be affected by this curve squeal. The curved part of the trackway, extending from Seventh to Maple, should be covered. ii. A second highly problematic location will be the area adjacent to the Burrard Overpass site. Many of the surrounding buildings, fortunately, have types of commercial uses, such as car sales, which will not be detrimentally affected. However, there are three houses at this location which closely abut the trackway. These would have to be expropriated. iii. As well, there is a recently constructed apartment complex, and a new office complex, near the Burrard overpass site. If it is felt that the owners should have known about the rapid transit corridor proposal before they built, then mitigation is unnecessary. If it is felt that the owners would not have known, then the responsible municipal authority was amiss, and in fairness has an obligation to mitigate the detrimental effects. It is plausible  78  that legal action could be taken by the affected owners for the City's dereliction in duty [based on Kamloops (City of) v. Neilson (1984), (S.C.C.)]. And further, the same situation applies for two new buildings at the Broadway overpass site. iv. There are other residents and businesses adjacent to the overpass sites. For these premises, one mitigation option to consider is tunneling the guideway under traffic arteries instead of bridging them. However, this option is expensive, and would have the collateral effect of eliminating spectacular passenger views. A more appealing and less expensive method of noise mitigation may be to install transparent coverings on guideway bridges. The technical feasibility of this solution would have to be investigated. v. Uncovered trackway north of Broadway must be fenced, because of the potential adverse noise impacts nearby. To sufficiently mitigate noise, the fencing must be thick and non-porous. vi. South of Broadway, the Arbutus Industrial Lands should not be developed in a manner which places residences within the noise impact zone, or, at a minimum, if development includes residences, orients residences in such a manner as to minimize rapid transit noise impacts. vii. Four houses between 12th and 14th Avenues, located immediately adjacent to the track, should be expropriated. As well, to protect other nearby homes, the track should also be fenced between 12th and 14th. viii. The east side of the trackway between 10th and 12th should also be fenced to mitigate noise impacts in the nearby school. ix. Remaining Homes in the high impact area, not protected by covering, should be expropriated at the option of the owners. (About 8 in total). It  79  is likely too expensive and too disruptive to expropriate apartment buildings.  2. Visual Intrusion a) Approach Research findings indicate that the determinants of the degree of visual intrusiveness on premises are: the distance of the premises from the trackway; the presence or absence of obstructions in the line of sight between the premises and the trackway; and the potential for screening between the trackway and the premises. As elevated sections of track will have the most intrusive view, these are the most relevant sections of trackway to.consider in this context. The primary factor which will determine visual intrusiveness is the distance of affected premises from elevated sections of guideway. An appropriate distance from the guideway can be set so as to create a visual intrusion impact zone. The appropriate distance is dependent on the sight capabilities of an average passenger. Standard sight capabilities can be modified so as to set a passenger sight limit in the case of an elevated LRT. The "20/20" vision standard is the generally accepted standard of sight capability. Sight occurs over a small portion of a visual circle, centred vertically around the eye. The "20/20" vision standard refers to "perfect" object discernment at 20 feet (or 6 metres), for objects with dimensions taking up as little as 5 minutes of the visual circle (Weinstein et al., 1984). The 5-minute dimension can be roughly translated into a vertical object size by calculating the size of the standard 6-metre visual  80  circle (using the 2 x pi x radius formula), and then calculating 5 minutes of that 360 degree circle: (2 x pi x 6) x 5/60 x 1/360 The approximate result is that .87 centimetres can be discerned at 6 metres by the "standard" viewer. With this sight standard established, a passenger sight limit can be set. By choosing a maximum dimension which passengers should be allowed to view, the ratio of standard distance to standard object dimension can be applied to the selected object dimension to arrive at the distance at which the selected object dimension may be discerned. That distance can then be utilized as a basis for a passenger sight limit. The applicable maximum dimension for intrusiveness to occur is undefined and must be selected. It is assumed that merely the discernment of the presence of a human being is not excessive acuity. To intrude on someone's privacy, there must be some notion of what the person is doing or of the person's appearance. So the applicable dimension arbitrarily chosen in this instance was not the size of a human being, but a much shorter length—10 cms. If 10 centimetres is used as the maximum dimension for passenger object discernment, then, applying the ratio of standard object dimension to standard distance to the selected dimension, the maximum distance of passenger sight will be 70 metres. For the purposes of this study, this was rounded to 50 metres to take account of diminished passenger sight opportunities. Visual conditions for rapid transit passengers are affected by lack of illumination, lack of contrast, and short exposure duration (Ibid.).  81  The determination as to whether screening could eliminate privacy intrusion was assessed as follows: i. Do the affected premises face hard-to-screen elevated sections of trackway? ii. Will any screening put in place block views or sunlight for the affected premises? As in the previous section, these assessments were undertaken using the maps, photographs, and site inspections referred to earlier, b) Findings (See Appendix F) TABLE 2 Number of Affected Premises Number of Premises 0-50 Metres Quadrant 1  Apartment 7  2  Houses 8  Office Bldgs. 1  15  3  -  3  4  -  2  Total  7  28  -  1  Of which Immediately adjacent to track: Summary of Impact:  5 Mitigation of intrusion is required, particularly for residences north of Broadway  82  Ordinary Mitigation Precluded: Apartment Buildings i.  Houses  Face Overpass  2  15  ii. View Blockage  2  5  Office Bldgs. 1  Summary of Mitigation Potential: Problems for only 3 of the 7 affected Apartment Buildings and 8 of the 28 affected houses can be easily rectified with screening. Partial mitigation is possible for some premises facing overpasses, where the bridge approaches are low. For 5 houses, one new apartment building, and the office building concerned, screening is impossible except with drawn drapes. And in other cases screening would block views or sunlight. c) Option for Mitigation/Rectification of Visual Intrusion Impacts i. As in the case of noise, problematic locations are the areas adjacent to the guideway bridge sites. At Burrard overpass 3 houses closely abut the bridge site, and can only be shielded from intrusion with drawn drapes. These 3 houses must be expropriated. ii. Four other houses and one apartment building also face the Burrard overpass site. The bridge approach would be low enough at this point to be easily screened, but screening there would also affect sunlight and views. Therefore, screening should be placed alongside the approach at the discretion of the residents concerned. iii. At the Broadway overpass there are a multiplicity of privacy intrusion problems. The trains will have a "bird's eye view" of one new trackside apartment complex, plus windows and yards of up to 8 houses. Little can be done for the apartment complex, other than compensating the  83  occupants. Fencing could provide partial shielding for six of the affected houses. iv. As the premises exposed to the Broadway overpass are located on the North Side of Broadway, in order to minimize exposure duration the station should be located on the South Side of Broadway. v. In view of the intrusion problems created by the Broadway overpass, consideration should be given to tunneling under, rather than bridging Broadway. The cost of this would have to be balanced against the cost of some form of compensation to residents. vi. North of Broadway, between overpasses, fencing should be placed where there are gaps in existing trackside planting. As the trackway here will run at grade, this screening will be completely effective, although it will result in fewer views for 6 houses and 3 apartment buildings. vii. South of Broadway, few existing residences are oriented towards the trackway. Exposed windows can be shielded with selective fencing, berming, or planting. viii. No trackside residences should be developed South of Broadway, in the Arbutus Industrial Lands.  3. Shadowing and Light Overspill In this section, because these related impacts are assessed differently, they will be dealt with separately. A. Shadowing a) Approach Shadow impact in the study area can be assessed by superimposing determined shadow effects onto maps to ascertain the number of affected  84  premises. The determination of shadow effects requires the application of shadow size and direction characteristics to the applicable locations and dimensions of elevated sections of trackway. The calculation of shadow size and direction requires a selection of an appropriate shadow incidence, as the shadow pattern for each day of the year, and the shadow effect for each time of day, is unique. A multitude of shadow impacts could be determined. However, many of these impacts, such as summer late evening shadows, may not be considered material. Therefore, for reasons of efficiency, only a limited instance of shadow impacts was selected for analysis. Shadow impacts that are the most appropriate for analysis would be those with the most detrimental impacts. It is assumed that shadows are most detrimental when there are few daylight hours and the days are at their coldest. The Winter Solstice, December 21, is appropriate for analysis purposes, as it exemplifies these conditions. Times of day appropriate for analysis are 8:30 A.M. and 3:30 P.M. The morning impact is material, as heat from the sun is important at this time to offset the cold prevalent prior to sunrise. For balance, afternoon shadows were also calculated. In the late afternoon the altitude of the sun is the same as early morning, but the angle is mirrored in the opposite direction. The direction and size of shadows cast at the selected times in the Study Area can be determined with the assistance of sun path and shadow size charts for the appropriate latitude and longitude (longitude is required to correlate sun location with time, because established time  85  zones are discrete, rather than continuous). The sun path chart provides the sun angle and altitude for each day and hour. The shadow size chart indicates the size of structure that will produce a one-foot shadow, when the sun altitude and angle are known. As shadows will occur in the opposite direction from the sun, shadow direction for the selected times can be easily ascertained by determining the opposite direction of the sun angles for the selected times. As the sun path chart provides the required altitudes and angles for the selected times, the shadow size chart will provide the proportional inverse of structure shadow length for the selected times. A calculation of the proportional inverse will produce the multiple necessary to project shadow length. From the sun path chart for Vancouver (MacLaren, 1974), at 8:30 A.M. on December 21st, the angle of the Sun will be 46.5 degrees Southeast, and the altitude will be 4 degrees (see Appendix C). Applying these factors onto the shadow size chart for Vancouver (MacLaren, 1974), it is found that a 1 foot shadow will be cast by a one inch structure(see Appendix D). Applying the methods discussed, it can be concluded that the shadows produced will be cast 46.5 degrees to the Southwest; and a one-metre object will cast a 12-metre-iong shadow. Following the same procedures, at 3:30 P.M.on December 21st, a one-metre object will cast a 12-metre-long shadow 46.5 degrees to the Southeast. The assessment of shadow impact next requires a determination as to the location and size of elevated structures. As to location, in previous discussions it was determined that bridges would be located on the Arbutus Trackway at Burrard Street and Broadway. In regards to structure  86  size, the structures which could cast shadows are the support structures and the bridge. From previous discussions it was determined that the bridge would have a 5-metre clearance, so it can be assumed that will be the size of the supporting pillars. A cursory examination of existing rapid transit bridges in Vancouver indicates a bridge height of approximately one metre above the clearance. So it can be assumed that the bridge will begin 5 metres off the ground, and reach a height of 6 metres. The identified heights will diminish as the bridge approaches reach a level grade, which from previous assumptions, will occur 100 metres from either end of the bridges. Applying the shadow characteristic findings for 8:30 A.M. on December 21st, the pillars will cast 60- metre-long shadows and the bridge will cast 12 metre long shadows, beginning 60 metres from the bridge. These shadows will be 46.5 degrees to the Northwest. At 3:30 P.M. the shadows will be the same length, but cast 46.5 degrees to the Southeast. These shadows can be superimposed on the updated land use map described earlier to determine the number of affected premises (Some further calibrations, such as allowances for window positions, were not undertaken here since, as shown below, the scope of the impact in this case is quite limited), b) Findings (See Appendix G) TABLE 3 Number of Affected Premises Apartment Buildings A.M. Shadows  Houses  Office Bldgs.  4  1  P.M. Shadows  2  2  1  TOTAL  2  4  2  87  Notes on Findings: 1. Affected houses total to 4 instead of 6, because 2 of the houses are subject to both morning and afternoon shadows. 2. This is a maximum shadow impact estimate, as no allowance was made for dimunition in bridge height along the approaches. Summary of Impact: The shadow impact is limited. This can be accounted for in large part by the north-south orientation of the trackway through the study area. East-west structures have a more sever shadow impact. In addition, the existing density of the study area has meant that many premises were already impacted by shadows from other buildings, limiting the potential for new detrimental shadow impacts, c) Options for Rectification of Shadow Impacts 1. In general, little can be done to mitigate shadow impacts, short of moving the premises or the trackway. 2. The two houses adjacent to the Burrard overpass site, which would experience both morning and afternoon shadows, should be expropriated. 3. The impact on the two apartment buildings and office buildings near the Broadway overpass site suggests consideration of a trackway underpass instead. However, this option would have to be weighed against the cost of reasonable compensation for the affected occupants. B. Light Overspill a) Approach As discussed, at night light may "overspill" into the neighbourhood from stations, passing rapid transit trains, or development induced by rapid transit. Land development lighting impacts will not be dealt with in  88  this section. Impacts which relate to land development are more appropriatley discussed in the context of a specific proposal, as institutionally, that is the method by which development proposals are considered. In dealing with light overspill it must be kept in mind that this can be either a beneficial or detrimental impact. While light overspill theoretically can cause disturbance, strong lighting is also regarded as a crime deterrent. As "light overspill" impacts differently in the context of stations areas and trackways, the approaches and findings for the two aspects are dealt with separately, i. Station Area a) Approach The impact of station area lighting on its surroundings will be. determined by the intensity of station area lighting. In addition, ambient lighting is an important consideration, as it can readily diffuse station lighting. In the urban context, even if station lighting is quite intense, other lighting is usually intense enough to limit potential effects to a limited area. And the impact of ambient lighting will differ according to whether the station lighting is centred in a high activity area, such as a commercial thoroughfare, or in a quiet residential setting. Therefore, the most important determinant of light overspill impacts is station surroundings. An assessment of station surroundings requires identification of the station location. It has been assumed previously that the station would be located on the Arbutus rail line near Broadway. But as station location is  a  89  a significant consideration in this context, for the purposes of this section, a more precise station location must be determined. Because residential premises and other relatively intense development are located near the North Side of Broadway, a station at that site could be highly disruptive. On the other hand, the South Side of Broadway is commercial in nature and is not as intensely developed. That being the case, it is assumed that the station site will be on the South Side of Broadway. Therefore, a determination of the light overspill impact will involve a determination of the surroundings of the South Side of Broadway on the Arbutus rail line. Based on the assumption that the station will be located in this high activity commercial area, it can be assumed that station lighting overspill impacts will be limited to the immediate surroundings of the putative station site. Therefore, an assessment of the station lighting overspill impact merely involves checking the immediate surroundings of the station location. Only residential premises need to be considered as any open commercial establishment would require lighting, b) Findings There are no houses in the vicinity of the station site. There is only one apartment building which could be affected by intense station light, ii. Trackway a) Approach Trackway light overspill involves the impact of light emitted from passing trains during the night on adjacent premises. Because of the limited intensity of the light, only premises immediately adjacent to the trackway would be affected. Those premises adjacent to elevated sections of trackway will be affected most. Premises adjacent to surface sections  90  can be easily shielded, although this may be at the expense of daytime views. Therefore, an assessment of light overspill impacts merely involves identification of premises adjacent to the trackway, especially elevated sections of track. In addition, for those premises located adjacent to surface sections of track, an assessment has to be made as to whether shielding will obstruct views. Identification of premises adjacent to the trackway was made using the updated land use map referred to at the beginning of the Chapter. Assumptions were made at the beginning of this chapter on the location of elevated sections of track. View corridors were identified also by using the maps referred to previously. In assessing train light overspill it should be kept in mind that the degree and duration of illumination involved is limited, b) Findings TABLE 4 Number of Affected Premises Apartment Buildings  Houses  At Overpass  2  At Surface  5  10  TOTAL  7  10  Of Which Immediately Adjacent: Mitigation Precluded Due to View Obstruction:  2 3  5  91  C) Options for Mitigation or Rectification of Detrimental Impacts: 1. The station should be built on the South Side of Broadway, as, at this location, station lighting would have a limited impact. 2. The two houses immediately adjacent to the trackway should be expropriated. 3. The portion of apartments and houses which would lose views by putting in fencing would have to weigh that option against the marginal impact of train light. 4. For the two apartments adjacent to the overpass, the overspill effects would be marginal. One is of some distance back from the trackway, and the other is oriented away from the trackway. Little should be done in the way of mitigation for these apartment buildings. 5. The remaining affected premises could be shielded with fencing at the option of occupants.  4. Aesthetic Impact and View Obstruction Because of the complexity of this category of impacts, view obstruction and aesthetic impact will be dealt with separately. A. View Obstruction a) Approach View obstruction will occur where elevated sections of LRT trackway interfere with the viewscape offered from various buildings. Therefore, an assessment of view impact first requires the identification of buildings which have views, and a determination of the height and location of elevated sections. Then the view obstruction can be assessed by comparing the height of the elevated sections to the level of identified views.  92  In general, buildings with views can be established as those located where adjacent buildings in the direction of views are low enough so that the view is not blocked. View direction is easily derived from the direction of the decline in contour levels on topographic maps. A building in the direction of the view will not be obstructive if its height is somewhat lower than the building to which a view is ascribed. To ascertain whether a putatively obstructive building is comparatively low enough requires the determination of building heights. In addition, height of potentially obscuring buildings must be adjusted for the effects of slope gradient to determine its effective obscuring impact. Building heights, for efficiency, can be estimated from the number of storeys. Industry standards for storey heights can be used to approximate actual storey heights.  The National Building Code (Assoc.  Comm. on N.B.C., 1985) specifies that a commercial building should have ceilings of 2.1 metres, and that a storey, for certain purposes should not exceed 2.3 metres. Based on these criteria, one can assume that each storey of a building will be 2.3 metres in height. For a residential building, the specified dimensions are altered only slightly. Each storey will be the same height, but will be an additional .75 metres higher than ground level because of the nature of residential basement specifications (Residential basement minimum specifications allow the excavation depth to be less than basement ceiling height, resulting in a partially above-ground basement). Applying these criteria, a 2nd storey will begin at around 5 metres; and a 3rd storey will begin at around 7.5 metres. To adjust the height of obstructing buildings for slope the height must be reduced proportionately by the gradient. Slope gradient is height  93  as a proportion of distance. For a particular location, gradient can be calculated from the distance and the difference in heights between the applicable contours on a topographic map. Assumptions as to the relation and height of elevated sections have been made and explained previously. To reiterate, it is assumed that there will be two overpasses, one at Burrard and one at Broadway. Each overpass will have a 5-metre clearance, one metre sides, and 100-metrelong approaches. As in the case of building height, the height of the overpass in relation to the particular viewscape must be adjusted for the applicable gradient. The view impact can then be determined by comparing the height of unobstructed buildings to the adjusted height of the overpass. In undertaking the assessment, the height and location of elevated sections and the location of relevant view corridors was determined first, in order to limit the number of buildings which needed to.be considered. This was done using the land use map previously referred to, with the trackway configuration and contours superimposed upon it. Relevant buildings were identified from the aerial photos and site tours previously referred to. Because of the limited potential obstruction in this particular case, overpass obstruction was surmised from site visits.  94  b) Findings (See Appendix H) TABLE 5 Number of Affected Premises Apartment Buildings  Houses  Office Bldgs.  Burrard 1  1  Overpass  1  -  1  TOTAL  2  1  1  Overpass Broadway  Summary of Impact: The limited impact is not surprising, given the location of the rail line on high flat land. In addition, views are oriented northward, so that they are not affected by the north-south oriented rail corridor. Note that the identified affected house faces directly onto the trackway. For the other affected premises, only the 2nd and 3rd floor views are affected. c) Mitigation Options 1. In view of the fact that it faces right onto the trackway, the affected house should be expropriated. 2. Expropriation would be extreme for the remaining affected premises in terms of the limited detriment of this type of impact. Little else can be done to mitigate the effects. The occupants would have no cause of action in law, as the law does not protect views. An option to assuage the concerns of the affected occupants may be to compensate for the loss of views with new public amenities.  B. Aesthetic Impact There are three types of rapid transit aesthetic impacts, station aesthetics, guideway aesthetics, and neighbourhood development impact aesthetics. As determinants of these impacts differ, the approach and findings for each of the three types of aesthetic impacts will be dealt with separately, i. Station Aesthetics a) Approach The aesthetic impact of a station will d e p e n d on its degree of obtrusiveness. The degree of obtrusiveness can be inferred to some extent from past experience in the community with rapid transit stations. Community input into design may also diminish the the chances for obtrusiveness. Obtrusiveness is also dependent on the type and design of station site surroundings. If station surroundings are commercial and garish in design, it is not likely that a station could be too obtrusive. Previous experience in Vancouver with rapid transit stations was inferred from touring the vicinity of a Skytrain station in an area of similar types of land uses.  Conclusions on community input potential were also  taken from Skytrain experience. Station site surroundings were determined from a tour of the station site. b) Findings 1. Most Skytrain stations in Vancouver are not located immediately above the roadway, lessening their intrusiveness. This is true, for example, of the Broadway Skytrain station, w h i c h , like the study area station site, is located on a commercial thoroughfare in a residential area (However, it should be  96  noted that in some cases it may be desirable to place stations above the roadway in order to shift the location of guideway overpasses). 2. There was significant input into Skytrain in the initial stages (BC Ombudsman, 1987), and input into the proposed Richmond Rapid Transit Corridor is already being sought (BC Transit, 1990). 3. Station site surroundings are currently crass, including a video store, gas station, and parking lots. It would be a challenge for a station to be obtrusive in this environment, unless it was located close to the residential developments north of Broadway. Summary of Impact: The aesthetic impact of the station will likely not be problematic, as in the past there has been public imput into rapid transit development, and, in any event, the garish station site surroundings would be difficult to compromise, even with a station located immediately above the roadway, ii. Guideway Impact The aesthetic impact of the Guideway will depend, first, on the type of guideway that is viewed, and, second, on the building height it is viewed from. Elevated concrete overpasses have a more significant aesthetic impact than surface tracks, and first floor views can be easily screened with fencing, while higher views cannot. Trackway grade has been surmised and explained at the beginning of the chapter. The height of relevant buildings was determined from the aerial photos and trackside visit referred to earlier. The relationship between the guideway and adjacent premises was identifed by superimposing the assumed guideway configuration upon the updated study area map referred to at the beginning of the Chapter.  97  b) Findings TABLE 6 N u m b e r of Affected Premises Elevated Sections Apartment Buildings  Houses  Office Bldgs.  Broadway Overpass  2  Burrard Overpass  1  1 2  -  Number of Affected Premises Non-Elevated Sections Apartment Buildings 5  Houses  Office Bldgs.  14  Notes on Impact: The impact, in this case, must be measured against the fact that all of these premises presently face railway tracks. Almost all the premises involved are multi-storey buildings. The two houses facing concrete overpasses are immediately adjacent, iii. Neighbourhood Aesthetic Impact a) Approach As well as the cumulative impact of the station and guideway, the aesthetic impact of rapid transit on the neighbourhood depends on the potential for rapid transit to improve the quality of the neighbourhood with new development.  Potential for improvement of the neighbourhood  is determined by the presence of deteriorated areas available for development.  98  Need for redevelopment can be determined in several ways: by touring the neighbourhood, by interviewing residents, or through governmental or community information. In this case, the City has extensive information on redevelopment in the study area. b) Findings The Arbutus Industrial Lands, bounded by Broadway, 12th, Maple, and Vine, is presently the subject of a local area planning process for redevelopment of the deteriorating industrial area. The area is immediately adjacent to the station site, linking it to rapid transit development. c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Detrimental Aesthetic Impacts: 1. To reduce the potential for station obtrusiveness, the station should not be built over the roadway, but on the non-residential South Side of Broadway. In addition, there should be public input into station design. 2. Two houses located near Burrard Street, which would face immediately onto the guideway overpass, should be expropriated. 3.  The problem of the remaining buildings which could face overpasses  needs to be addressed. As it is difficult to hide concrete overpasses, instead of attempting mitigation, compensation of occupants could be considered. This impact, in conjunction with others, may warrant an underpass at Broadway. 4. As to the buildings facing surface trackway, probably little can be done, as the apartments and other buildings overlook the trackway. The cost of covering the tracks would have to be measured against the marginal nature of the impact, and be considered in the context that these  99  premises presently overtook railway tracks. For the benefit of first floor residents, the trackside can be fenced at the option of these residents. If they don't want to look at tracks or train passengers, train passengers probably don't want to look at their premises. 5. Plans for redevelopment of the Arbutus Industrial Lands should be considered in the context of an Arbutus rapid transit line.  5. Traffic and Parking Impacts a) Approach In the absence of regulation, a successful rapid transit system will create an informal "park and ride" situation around stations. Traffic and parking will tend to overspill from the station area into the surrounding neighbourhood. The impact of this traffic and parking overspill will be determined by the extent of potential overspill, the willingness of authorities to regulate it, and the effectiveness of potential regulation. Traffic problems can also be generated by the cars and buses which drop off passengers at stations, and cars entering and leaving formal park and ride lots. Problems caused by bus and car dropoffs can be substantially reduced by the provision of unobtrusive areas specially designated for the purpose, while park and rides are best dealt with by not having them unless absolutely necessary. The provision of unobtrusive bus loops, "kiss and rides," and park and rides, will depend on whether space is available for them, and whether or not they are planned for. Rapid transit will also have a traffic impact if surface sections of trackway interfere with traffic flows on thoroughfares, or block off residential streets.  100  Finally, land development accompanying rapid transit development, may have a traffic impact. The extent of overspill, the likelihood of overspill regulation, and the effectiveness of overspill regulation was gauged from the experience in a neighbourhood already served by rapid transit. The Broadway Skytrain Station area has parallels to the study area. Like the study area, it is almost adjacent to Vancouver's Downtown Peninsula, its arterials are characterized by commercial development of medium intensity, and most of the area consists of low and medium density residential development. Because of these parallels parking overspill results in the Broadway Skytrain area were chosen for analysis as an appropriate predictor for the study area. The availability of space for bus loops, kiss and rides, and park and rides, was assessed from maps and a visit to the putative station site. The likelihood of the provision of these facilities was assessed informally with a visit to existing rapid transit facilities in the region. Potential traffic interference was assessed from maps and a site visit. It was undertaken in the context of assumptions about trackway elevation made previously. Problems generated by rapid transit related land development must be assessed as proposals for development arise. However, these are dealt with generally in the context of other findings on traffic and parking impact.  101  b) Findings i. Parking by Rapid Transit Passengers The potential extent of the problem is represented by the extent of parking regulation in existing station areas. Around Broadway Skytrain Station parking regulations on nearby residential streets extend for 5 blocks north of the station, 3 blocks south of the station, and two blocks east and west of the station. But the most intense regulation (shortest parking limitations) relates to the proximity to commercial activity, rather than proximity to the station. A n d the problem is not intense enough to preclude some parking directly across the street from the station. Therefore, it can be surmised that a rapid transit station at Broadway and Arbutus has the potential to impact parking to some extent for a 3 to 5 block area surrounding the station site, modified more or less for the presence or absence of commercial activity nearby. The likelihood of parking being regulated by authorities in the Broadway-Arbutus station area is reflected in Broadway Skytrain station area findings just discussed. Generally, on nearby commercial thoroughfares there is a one hour time limit for parking, while on residential streets close to the station, there is a two hour limit on daytime parking, unless the vehicle has a resident's permit.  So the City is likely to  provide any required parking regulation. If the Broadway Skytrain Station area is an appropriate example, then a permit parking regulation system is effective in preventing passenger parking problems. A visit to the area revealed that, although the Skytrain cars were full at the time, there was a considerable amount of parking available on both regulated and unregulated streets. There was  102  some shortage on the commercial arterials, but this problems likely related to the commercial functions rather than Skytrain, as adjacent residential areas did not have the same shortage of parking space. There may be a parking problem on one nearby street, which was, surprisingly, unregulated, and contained an unofficial "residents parking only" sign. The parking permit system adopted is likely acceptable for both area residents and visitors. Area residents are not inconvenienced as they have permits exempting them from parking regulations. Their visitors are not likely terribly inconvenienced, as under the system, restricted hours are limited to the daytime, and two hour parking is allowed during restricted hours. Residents in the Broadway-Arbutus area can be confident that, in the event a rapid transit station is built there, an effective parking permit system will be implemented to prevent passenger parking in the neighbourhood. ii. Likelihood of Bus loop, Kiss and Ride, Park and Ride There is significant land available for intermodal transfers. The station site area south of Broadway is not intensively developed. It consists mainly of parking lots, older commercial buildings, and warehouse sites available for redevelopment. With appropriate design there would be sufficient undeveloped land surrounding the station to accommodate a bus loop and a Kiss and Ride. An unobtrusive bus loop is also plausible by utilizing nearby streets for the purpose. The streets east of Broadway-Abutus have homes and a school alongside them, but Arbutus, 10th Avenue, and Yew could be utilized, as they are presently flanked by transitional uses. And with the nearby extensive Arbutus Industrial Lands  103  slated for redevelopment, there is even enough land for a park and ride to be theoretically feasible. In the case of Skytrain in Vancouver, intermodal access areas have been provided extensively. Most stations have off-road bus loops. Even where there was no room for a bus loop, such as in the case of Broadway station, adjacent non-arterial roads are dedicated for the purpose.  There  are also many kiss and rides. However, there is only one park and ride, at the new suburban Scott Road Station. Drop off areas preclude traffic problems. As land is available for a bus loop and a kiss and ride, and these have been provided extensively in the past, they would likely be provided at a Broadway-Arbutus rapid transit station. O n the other hand, park and rides generate traffic problems. But, as a park and ride consumes a great deal of land and has generally not been provided for in the past, it is not likely that a park and ride would be located in the Broadway-Arbutus area. That being the case, intermodal access provisions are not likely to create traffic problems, iii. Traffic interference from Surface Track Given the assumption that there would be grade separation at Broadway and Burrard, and a grade-level crossing at 12th, traffic interference from trains would be moderate.  The major problem would  occur on 12th. This part of the arterial has moderate traffic, and an alternate grade-separated route, Broadway, is just 3 blocks away. Furthermore, if the LRT headways approximate those of Skytrain (around 4 minutes), the amount of "green light" time on 12th w o u l d not have to be reduced (Interview - J. Eastman). Nevertheless, a peak hour bottleneck could be created on 12th as LRT's pass through.  104  There are no other arterials in the study area besides these three. With light rail transit grade level crossings are feasible on residential streets, but even if all non-arterials in the study area are blocked off at the right of way, the detour required of motor vehicles would be acceptable. The distance to the nearest crossing would, in most cases, be no more than two blocks. iv. Traffic and Parking Impacts of New Development Any potential parking overspill problems would likely be subsumed by a residential permit parking system. However, increased traffic can become a problem as more commercial outlets are added. v. Beneficial Impacts Rapid transit will have a beneficial impact on neighbourhood traffic to the extent it changes regional modal split in favour of transit. Much of the benefit may not be apparent because of an absolute increase in motor vehicle traffic, and because most of the impact on traffic volume will be confined to busy thoroughfares. Nevertheless, any change in modal split should result in reduced shortcutting through residential streets, and reduced need for road widenings. c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Traffic and Parking Impacts 1. As commuter parking intrusion is a potential problem, and a parking permit system is effective in preventing it, a parking permit sytem should be implemented in the station vicinity. As in the case of Broadway Skytrain station, it should extend at least 2 blocks from the station site, and contain sufficient exemptions for area residents and their visitors (e.g., a two hour daytime parking time limit, except for residents with permits).  105  2. To preclude traffic interference from buses and cars dropping passengers at the station, the station should be located on the South Side of Broadway. It would then be surrounded by sufficient space to allows a bus loop and Kiss and Ride area. If there is insufficient space for bus parking, Tenth Avenue could also be incorporated into a bus loop with minimal interference with traffic. 3. Since park and rides interfere significantly with traffic, have a negative aesthetic impact, use up a substantial amount of land, and are unnecessary in this case because of relatively good transit service in the area, no park and ride should be built. 4. The desirability of grade separation at 12th to eliminate potential traffic problems has to be weighed against additional potential detrimental noise, visual intrusion, aesthetic, view obstruction, and shadowing impacts. 5. Significant inconvenience for local motor vehicle traffic would certainly be eliminated with a grade-level right of way trackway crossing at Maple. 6. In the case of any rapid transit-related land development, traffic and parking implications should be seriously considered.  6. Pedestrian Impacts a) Approach Impact on pedestrians is determined primarily by guideway elevation. If the trackway is not grade-separated, pedestrians can be significantly inconvenienced. The degree of inconvenience depends on whether grade level crossings are allowed or proscribed. If grade level crossings are proscribed, the inconvenience to pedestrian traffic can be assessed by:  106  i. Determining the increased distance added to pedestrian trips caused by the need to detour via the nearest grade-separated crossing; and, ii. Identifying the types of amenities and services which become more distant by virtue of trackway interference. If, on the other hand, pedestrian grade level crossings are allowed, the pedestrian impact must be assessed in terms of the safety risk pedestrian crossings present. Of most interest, in that instance, is the location of child-related activity, such as school yards and playground, in relation to accessible trackway. Crossing gates may help prevent accidents, but children often do not appreciate the risk in ignoring crossing barriers. Serious accidents occur at controlled track crossings, including at those where trains pass less often than is the case with urban rapid transit. The alternative of proscribed pedestrian crossing at grade level is assessed first. Representative required detour distances were calculated by counting the number of blocks of walking required to get from one side of blocked trackway on a particular street to the other side of the trackway on the same street, utilizing the assumed allowed crossings. In this case, as it has been assumed that there will be motor vehicle crossings allowed on Broadway, Burrard, and 12th, it is assumed that these will also be the location of pedestrian crossings. Affected destinations identified are limited to those commercial and recreational facilities in the study area within reasonable walking distance of the trackway. In the assessment of the scenario of permitted crossing, relevant destinations were identified as all known child-centred activity centres in the study area.  All assessments were undertaken utilizing the study area maps referred to earlier, b) Findings TABLE 7 i. Proscribed Grade Level Crossing Detour Added to Get to Other Side of Trackway (From each street blocked by the guideway to the same street on the other side of the guideway. Only Burrard, Broadway, and 12th are assumed to have crossings.) Street  Number of Blocks  Pine  2  Cypress  2  Maple  4  Sixth  6  Seventh  4  Eighth  2  Tenth  2  Eleventh  2  Thirteenth  2  Fourteenth  4  Street Blocked  Affected Destinations  Maple, Cypress  Retail stores on 4th Ave.  6th Ave, 7th Ave  Day care  10th Ave, 11th Ave  School, skating rink, community centre, retail stores on Arbutus  108  ii. Grade-level Crossings Permitted Street  Adjacent Destinations  6th Ave  Day care  7th Ave  Park  10th Ave, 11th Ave  School, skating rink, community centre  c) Options for Rectification/Mitigation of the Impact i. Proscribed Grade Level Crossing 1. Because of the detour distance that would be required, and the commercial and social service facilities that would be subject to diminished pedestrian access, grade-separated pedestrian crossings of the trackway should be provided on 7th Avenue and on Maple Street. 2. A pedestrian overpass over the trackway should also be provided at 10th or 11th Avenue to ensure convenient access to the nearby school and community centre facilities. ii. Permitted Grade Level Crossing The requirements in this scenario are the same as in the proscribed crossing scenario. For safety reasons, the community facilities near 7th, Maple, and 10th requires grade-separated pedestrian access routes on these streets.  7.1 Land Development Impact a) Approach As discussed, any relationship between rapid transit development and land development is indirect. Rapid transit development can only have an influence if economic, political, and environmental conditions in the corridor are favourable for land development to occur. Then rapid  109  transit may be a factor in influencing development if the chosen rapid transit system is considered to be effective. A plethora of factors may influence the type of development which then occurs, but prior patterns may be helpful as a guide. To gauge the potential land development impact in the study area, the assessment begins with an examination of non-transit development influences. This is necessary to ascertain the potential for rapid transit to have an influence. First, economic and development trends in the region, and past development trends in the study area, will be examined as evidence as to the likelihood of future development. Second, political determinants of land development will be considered. These include the the attitude of decision-makers towards development, and the influence of study area residents opposed to major development initiatives. Third, as the presence of anachronistic and obsolete land uses facilitates the land development process, there will be an assessment of these types of uses within the study area. Once the general land development potential of the study area is established, the potential for further influence by rapid transit will be evaluated. This influence will depend on the effectiveness of the system in attracting users, and the degree to which the system enhances linkages to other commercial nodes. Then, the economic, political, and land use conditions for development can be weighed along with the likely effectiveness of the system, in conjunction with historical results, to arrive at an estimation of development expectations for the study area.  110  Regional economic trends were derived from an existing growth forecast, moderated by current government statistics. The assessment is cursory, given the unreliability of forecasts, and the scope for error in trying to extrapolate past statistics into the future. Regional land development trends were established from statistics provided by the City. Study area development trends had to be assessed indirectly, as development statistics are not kept on a neighbourhood basis (Interview Vancouver Planning). An indication of trends was obtained by examining secondary sources, such as articles and government documents on social change in the study area, and from a cursory observation of study area built form. The attitude of area residents towards development is difficult to gauge accurately without an extensive survey. Only impressionistic information was obtained. Public input at community meetings was used as the source, as summarized by city planners, and as recorded in planning documents. Political influence of the study area is always a matter of conjecture, but some evidence on the issue was obtained from City policies peculiar to the study area; and analysis of voting trends. The manner in which municipal decision-makers deal with development was assessed, in the absence of a detailed study, on the basis of selective decisions. The decisions were selected because they involved a major development; or because they deal with rapid transitrelated development. The decisions were identified by observation, or through interviews. The conclusion is qualified by the limited number of instances examined; and the potential for an election to render any findings on this point moot.  Ill  The existence of development opportunities and anachronistic land uses was determined from land use maps, study area visits, and city planning documents and interviews. The effectiveness of a new rapid transit system in attracting users or effecting changes in travel time cannot be determined in the absence of operation, especially where it is even uncertain as to what technology will be used. Past experience with rapid transit in the region was chosen as the best of flawed indicators of future effectiveness. Effectiveness in attracting users was assessed on the basis of passenger growth and the number of discretionary users. These statistics were obtained from the service provider. For efficiency, the effected change in travel time to other commercial nodes was assessed using a limited, but germane, example. Rapid transit travel time was compared to travel time on one other mode, conventional transit, to one destination, Downtown, from one origin, an area of similar distance from Downtown as the study area. Travel time information was also obtained from the service provider. Historical results of land use changes relating to rapid transit development was obtained from the service provider, and from station area visits. In particular, emphasis was placed on an existing station area with characteristics similar to those of the study area, b) Findings i. Economic and Land Development Trends in the Region Utilization of economic projections in this context must be qualified. First, it must be kept in mind that economic growth is unlikely to bear a direct relationship to either the degree or direction of land development trends (Based on development data, City of Vancouver, 1990).  112  Second, as the timing of rapid transit development is a political decision, the appropriate time frame for consideration is unknown, and current projections may be rendered obsolete by the time rapid transit is implemented. With those qualifications, a recent economic growth projection for British Columbia for 1991 was 1.5 % (Interview - B.C. Central Credit Union). However, the latest statistics indicate a 1.6% annualized decline nationally for the 2nd quarter of 1990 (Statistics Canada). In light of the national environment, the forecast for B.C. is still realistic, but it is not unreasonable to revise it downward by 1/3 (Ibid.). In summary, for the foreseeable period, rapid economic growth is not expected. As to regional land development trends, long-term residential development statistics for the City of Vancouver (City of Vancouver Planning, Monitoring Program Information Update, July 1990) indicate a drop-off in the amount of development around the time of recession periods, but overall there is a surprising consistency in the number of unit completions per year, about 2000-3500. In conclusion, rapid economic growth is not expected at the present, but this could change by the time rapid transit development begins. Further, even if rapid growth is not sustained, there will likely be significant development activity within any multi-year time frame, ii. Development Trends in the Study Area Census statistics indicate that there has been no significant increase in population in the study area in the last two decades (Statistics Canada Census 1966, and 1986). However, there are a number of indicators which suggest a significant amount of development has occurred in the study  113  area during the same time period. First, neighbourhood social analysis indicates that the study area is within the highest quintile for amount of social status change for Canadian urban neighbourhoods (Ley, 1988). Second, a significant number of single family dwellings and older apartment buildings in the neighbourhood have been demolished (City of Vancouver, 1989). In addition, the study area exhibits a significant number of newer buildings. In conclusion, if past trends continue, a significant amount of development will occur in the study area. It is not clear what will occur, though, when "gentrification" reaches the saturation point, iii. Attitude of Residents Towards Development and the Political Influence of Residents There are some indications of resident attitudes toward development in a current resident-controlled planning process in the study area. Some evidence of resident attitudes can be gleaned from preliminary documents emanating from the local area planning process. Preliminary guidelines for development indicate that residents do not want any change in scale in the neighbourhood, though some change in type of development is desired. Guidelines state that there should be no "megaprojects," height should be restricted to 4 storeys, floor space ratio should be restricted to 1.5, and that there should be no new commercial activity. On the other hand, more family, senior and social housing is sought for the neighbourhood (City of Vancouver, 1990). Analysis of the political influence of study area residents can be rendered moot by a future election. But currently some degree of influence is evidenced by the City's facilitation of a resident-controlled planning process for the area. This process is exclusive to the study area  114  neighbourhood (Interview - Vancouver Planning). The voting pattern for the study area provides limited clues to its influence with the current council majority. The pattern in the recent past has been to split its vote between opposing alliances on City Council (City of Vancouver, 1988). The influence obtained by this vote configuration is open to opposing interpretations, but is probably more than those areas which currently support the minority group. In conclusion, there is likely to be significant opposition in the neighbourhood to developments which propose to change the scale of the neighbourhood, and this opposition is likely to have a substantial, but not overwhelming, degree of influence on the decision-makers, iv. Attitude of Municipal Decision Makers to Development The prevailing attitude of the current City Council, based on a limited sample of decisions, may be characterized as receptive to developments of significant scale. The Council is unlikely to impose changes in housing type, and only imposes moderate modification in height or density. Community-based opposition to proposals is only marginally successful. In the case of the high profile "Expo Lands" proposal, significant opposition was expressed at community meetings to the limited amount of social and family housing, and the potential view blockages and other problems caused by the height and density of the proposed development (Interview - M. Beazley). The Council decision did not impose changes in housing type, but reduced proposed height and density by 1/3. It is not known if this change in scale will preserve view  115  corridors, "and, in general, community-based groups did not have an impact on the Council decision" (Ibid.) Similarly, in the case of a proposed 17-storey mixed-use development at the Broadway Skytrain Station, despite significant community opposition expressed to this change in scale of the neighbourhood, Council imposed a height reduction of only 4 storeys. In summary, in the absence of significant influential opposition, Council is likely to approve changes in scale for new development (though with symbolic modifications), and unlikely to impose strong conditions for changes in development type. v. Availability of Developable Land in the Study Area Although much of the study area is already intensely developed, there are a significant number of sites, with underutilized and obsolete uses, where new development is plausible. The Arbutus Industrial area, the area bounded by Broadway, Maple, 12th, and Vine, has become obsolete, and a planning process is already underway for its rezoning, reuse, and redevelopment (City of Vancouver, 1990). As well, there appear to be several potential areas for new commercial development on Broadway. Recently constructed multi-storey office buildings make adjacent expansive parking lots and low scale development look underutilized. In addition, set amongst large scale apartment areas north of Broadway are some anachronistic collections of single family dwellings. Some of these houses are quite close to the likely station site, and, if they  116  could be assembled, would be obvious locations for new, more intense, development. vi. Effectiveness of the Proposed Rapid Transit System in Attracting Users The precedent set by Vancouver's Skytrain is of a system which is highly successful in attracting users. According to the service provider, ridership on Skytrain is growing at the rate of 11% per annum, and 43% of riders are discretionary (had a car available for the trip) [BC Transit, 1987]. As usually few discretionary riders use conventional transit, this constitutes nearly a doubling of transit usage. If the proposed Richmond Rapid Transit system is as effective, then station areas will be attractive for development. For example, the 18,000 passengers who currently use conventional transit on a daily basis in the Broadway-Arbutus area (1985 GVRD O-D Survey), on the basis of Skytrain experience, could increased to 30,000 transit passengers daily in the same area with rapid transit implementation. And most of these passengers would be focused at the rapid transit station. vii. Effectiveness of the Rapid Transit System in Providing Access The precedent set by Vancouver's Skytrain is also of a system which effectively enhances access to commercial nodes. The potential access impact on the study area can to some extent be predicted from an example of the change effected by Skytrain on an inner city location. Travel time by conventional transit from Broadway Skytrain Station to Granville Station Downtown is supposed to be 16 minutes (BC Transit), while the Skytrain reduced this to travel time to 6 minutes, a reduction of more than 60 percent (BC Transit). This kind of enhanced Downtown  117  access would make the study area attractive to "spillover" commercial development. viii. Previous Regional Land Use Changes Effected by Rapid Transit As discussed, there is a strong propensity for more intense land development to occur around rapid transit stations in the Vancouver Region. At the time of writing, there was visible new development around 12 of the 16 Skytrain Stations. There had previously been little recent development around some of these stations. The development involved varies in amount, scale, and type, but is generally not industrial or warehouse development. An example which may be germane to the study area is the amount, type, and scale of development near the Broadway Skytrain Station. Like the study area, prior to the construction of Skytrain, the Broadway Skytrain area was close to the Downtown Peninsula, and was predominantly a residential neighbourhood, mixed with medium-scale commercial activity. Four Years Later, these descriptions still apply to the Broadway Skytrain Station Area. The major change had been that several new low-rise apartment buildings have been built within 3 blocks of the Skytrain Station. However, recently the City gave approval for a new mixed use development at a site across from the station, which is significantly larger in scale than anything presently in the neighbourhood. So if past patterns hold, there would be new development in the study area coincident with rapid transit development. Much would be in accord with the existing uses and scale of the neighbourhood, but there is a strong possibility of an increase in scale of development.  118  ix. Summary of Land Development Impact The consistency of regional land development activity, the strong demand for housing in the study area neighbourhood, the current receptiveness of the City Government towards development, the significant amount of developable land in the study area, the record of effectiveness and enhanced access provided by rapid transit systems, and presence of development in the City which appears to have been induced by rapid transit, all point to the likelihood of a significant amount of land development occuring in the study area with rapid transit implementation. The strong demand in the study area, past political decisions in the City on land development, the linkage rapid transit will provide to downtown, and past rapid-transit connected land development, all strongly intimate that this development will be of increased scale. This is especially true in the immediate vicinity of the station, which is also the area which otherwise suffers the strongest environmental impacts of rapid transit. Only significant opposition from area residents would reduce the degree of development, and only a major political change or an inept rapid transit technology would alter the projection for significant development to occur in the study area as a result of rapid transit implementation. c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Detrimental Impacts In recognition of the intense pressures for development likley to accompany rapid transit implementation; and the fact that much of this development can impact detrimentally on privacy, views, traffic, and other aspects; a planning process involving neighbourhood residents should set  119  appropriate constraints for development in the station area at an early stage.  7.2 Property Price Impact a) Approach Although the influence of rapid transit on prices is difficult to isolate, in general, a rapid transit system which enhances neighbourhood accessibility and induces new development opportunities, will increase the demand for land, and thus, real property prices. However, guideway segments distant from stations will have a depressing effect on property prices, as nuisance effects become the predominant systemic impact. Access and development opportunities change potentially effected by a rapid transit system in the Study Area have been discussed in Section 7.1. The potential nuisance effects of the guideway in the Study Area have been discussed in Sections 1 through 6. The conclusions of these previous sections will be briefly reiterated in this section. But the focus here will be on the location of these effects since the question to be addressed is at what point down the guideway will demand for property adjacent to the station stop subsuming guideway-induced downward price pressure. As throughout this Chapter, it will be assumed that there will be one station in the Study Area, located at Broadway and Arbutus. b) Findings i. Change in Accessibility As projected in Section 7.1, rapid transit may cut transit travel time from Downtown to the Study Area by more than half (probably to 5  120  minutes or less). Not only will this change encourage new development in the station area, but increase demand for existing residential and commercial space in the Study Area as well. From previously discussed research, this demand will occur mainly within walking distance of the station, about .4 kms or 1/4 mile. In the study area this amounts to 2 eastwest blocks or 4 north-south blocks. ii. Creation of Development Opportunities As discussed in Section 7.1, barring major political change or the implementation of an ineffective technology, there are likely to be significant development opportunities in the vicinity of a rapid transit station in the Study Area. Research indicates that this is also likely to occur within close walking distance of the station (U.S. Department of Transportation, 1982 #2). This hypothesis is confirmed by Vancouver experience. In the case of Skytrain new development is generally most intense adjacent to the station, but filters out after three or four blocks. (It should be noted, however, that there are exceptions to this rule. For example, in the case of New Westminster Station, new development leapfrogged to an area beginning a couple of blocks from the station at a desirable waterfront location). iii. Location of the Worst Nuisance Effects Prior findings in this Chapter show that, in general, in the absence of mitigation measures, there will be substantial detrimental noise, privacy, and aesthetic impacts north of Broadway along the east side of the right of way, and to a lesser extent, between 12th and 14th Avenues. But the greatest potential for excess noise, visual intrusion, guideway shadowing, and displeasing aesthetic impacts would occur adjacent to arterial  121  overpasses located at Broadway and Burrard. In addition, there would be very adverse impacts at the Maple St. guideway curve, due to curve squeal, and the barrier that would be presented to normal pedestrian traffic. iv. Summary of Property Price Impact As upward price pressure induced by station accessibility usually far exceeds downward pressure induced by nuisance effects, the result within station accessible areas should be a net relative property price increase. Thus, within the Study Area, upward pressure on prices should occur within a circumference of 2 eastrwest blocks or 4 north-south blocks of the station site. This would leave the trackside areas (within approximately 100 metres of the track) from Maple to Pine and from 12th Ave. to 14th Ave. with nuisance effects predominant, and downward pressure on prices to varying degrees. This would especially be the case at the Burrard overpass site. Rapid transit induced relative price declines, however, are usually not of a magnitude sufficient to override absolute general market price upswings. c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Adverse Impacts As an effective system and new development opportunities will result in upward pressure on real property prices, and nuisance impacts will tend to depress prices, it is in the interest of Study Area landowners to ensure, not only that adverse systemic impacts are minimized, but also, that an effective rapid transit technology is put in place and station area development is allowed to occur. Study area renters will have a more ambiguous interest. They will not welcome the higher rents that go along with upward property price pressures. But in the long term renters will  122  want the new development induced by higher property prices so as to maintain a reasonable price and supply of rental housing. Planners, decision-makers, and Study Area residents will have to consider these competing interests when planning rapid transit corridor technology and land uses.  8. Commercial Activity a) Approach Commercial impact assessment will focus on retail sales and service activity, the most pervasive form of neighbourhood commercial activity. There are two facets to this commercial impact—the impact on area resident-customers; and the impact on neighbourhood business establishments offering goods and services to the public. Resident impact will be dealt with firstly. Rapid transit can impact the level of neighbourhood retail activity, which in turn can affect area residents. If rapid transit induces an increase in retail activity in the vicinity of stations, it should constitute a benefit to station area residents, as it should result in increased choice and competition for customers. However, in the absence of appropriate regulations, new retail activity can also result in traffic and parking spillover problems in the adjacent neighbourhood. Whether an increase in retail activity occurs will depend on the success of the rapid transit system in generating rider-customers. It will also depend on the existence of openings in the existing area retail mix for additional vendors, and the availability of sites in the station area for new businesses.  123  Rapid transit, can also affect shopping convenience for area residents. As discussed in Section 7.1, rapid transit may induce a significant amount of new development in station areas. The additional traffic this attracts may reduce parking availability for neighbourhood residents adjacent to their usual shopping destinations. Ridership changes effected by rapid transit implementation have been discussed in Section 7.1, and will be briefly reiterated.  It is assumed  that increased ridership will be focused in the station area. Commercial mix analysis focused on the two commercial streets most likely to be impacted -- the two that meet at the putative station site -- Broadway and Arbutus. Information on existing outlets on these two arterials was drawn from a current city directory. Retail site availability analysis was derived from the analysis undertaken in Section 7.1 on developable land availability in the Study Area. As further evidence of retail change potential, an overview is provided of past Vancouver experience, with brief analysis of visible changes around Skytrain stations. * **  Rapid transit impact on retailers parallels the impact on residents, but must be adjusted somewhat for the business context. As mentioned above, rapid transit should increase demand for retail services. Whether existing retailers benefit will depend on whether they supply the product/service mix which will appeal to commuter-customers; whether any new retailers induced by increased demand supplement the existing retail mix to create a broader total customer base for the area, or merely  124  compete directly with existing business; and whether new development accompanying this increased demand interferes with customer parking. The potential for rapid transit to increase retail demand, product mix analysis, and parking impacts have been analyzed for the customerresident perspective. These will be drawn from, along with some conjecture on new competitors, to arrive at conclusions as to retailer impact, b) Findings i. Increase in Retail Demand/Ridership As discussed in Section 7.1, if the Skytrain precedent were to hold true for the Arbutus Corridor, there would be a significant increase in ridership in the Study Area. Half of Skytrain riders are discretionary, compared to a very small percentage of bus passengers. It is assumed that the same proportion of new discretionary riders will be attracted by rapid transit in the Richmond Corridor. Applying this ratio to the Study Area, the approximate current ridership of 17,000 passengers (1985 GVRD Origin-Destination Survey) would double to more than 30,000, not n counting additional transfer passengers generated. Furthermore, these new passengers, in addition to most of the existing passengers, would be focused at the Broadway-Arbutus station site. Therefore, within the station vicinity, there will be a large increase in pass-by traffic, significantly increasing retail trade potential. ii. Retail Mix A survey of existing retail activity along Broadway and Arbutus, within three blocks of the putative station site, indicates that the existing mix is limited. Activity is generally confined to providers of general  125  services, such as hair salons, video rental, insurance and travel agencies, coffee shops and gas/convenience bars (B.C. Directories, 1989). There is a noticeable absence of establishments offering upscale services and durable goods. There are also no pharmacies, food take outs, clothing stores, sporting goods shops, or gift shops.  New commuter-customers could be  a catalyst for the establishment of new types of enterprises in the area, as could land development following from rapid transit implementation. iii. Site Availability As discussed in Section 7.1, it is probable the rapid transit development will induce new mixed use developments in the station vicinity. Mixed use developments generally contain retail space. As well, the redevelopment of the nearby Arbutus Industrial Lands will provide retail opportunities. Wayside retail activity would conform to adjacent existing uses and would be compatible with trackside nuisances. Finally, the rearrangement of land uses made necessary by station development, will itself confer retail space opportunities. iv. Skytrain Retail Impacts Along the Skytrain line there has been new large scale commercial development where a "town centre" was planned (at Metrotown Station); major new commercial development at inner stations near the Downtown Peninsula (on Terminal Avenue near Main St. Station); and new smaller scale retail development in low density residential neighbourhoods (for example, at Joyce Station). Based on this pattern, a station at Broadway and Arbutus is likely to induce new retail activity; and further, given the proximity of the station site to the Downtown Peninsula, this new commercial development is likely to be large scale.  126  v. Potential for Increased Retail Activity The significantly enhanced customer base that would be created by increased ridership and the residential component of new mixed use development; the presence of major gaps in existing retail mix; the multitude of sites available for new enterprises; and the precedent set by Skytrain, all indicate that the opening of a rapid transit station can induce a major increase in retail activity nearby. This potential is at its greatest adjacent to the station; in the redeveloping Arbutus Industrial Lands; and, more generally, in commercial zones within three blocks of the station (meaning, in this case, along Broadway and Arbutus Street). vi. Potential for Parking Spillover from New Activity As discussed in Section 5, generally, any traffic generated by new development should be restricted to commercial areas if a parking permit system and other appropriate regulations are put into place in the Study Area. However, regulation will not be sufficient to preclude the problem if excessive development is allowed. vii. Parking Impact at Retail Businesses As discussed in Section 5 of this Chapter, with appropriate regulation, rapid transit alone should not have a major impact on access to retail outlets in the Study Area. Parking time limitations on commercial thoroughfares, combined with a parking permit system on nearby residential streets, will allow sufficient time for customer parking, while precluding commuter parking. However, as above, this would change if excess development is allowed.  127  viii. Impact from Resident/Customer Perspective From the resident/customer perspective, the commercial impact of rapid transit development should be favourable. The increase in retail activity generated should result in a wider variety of goods and services available locally, and, at least theoretically, more competitive retailers, while the effects of increased retail activity on parking should be manageable. However, this outcome could be precluded if development sufficient to interfere with access, is permitted. ix. Impact from Perspective of Retailers Rapid transit development should have a benficial impact for Study Area retailers, as well, especially for those in the vicinity of the BroadwayArbutus intersection. Increased transit ridership focused at a BroadwayArbutus station should result in an increase in pass-by commutercustomers for nearby businesses. The convenience orientation of these businesses puts them in a position to take advantage of these new potential customers. In addition, the probability of new development in the area should also enlarge the overall customer base for the station vicinity. This should occur, not only because of  new occupants, but also  because of the wider commercial appeal that will be conferred by new retail components. And with appropriate regulation, new development should not interfere with customer parking, unless an excessive amount of development is allowed. There is a risk that some businesses will face new competition, but the greater likelihood is that new enterprises will first seek to fill gaps in the existing retail mix.  128  c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Adverse Commercial Impacts 1. The level of commercial development should be carefully monitored for potential parking impacts, so as not to lose the advantages of commercial development. 2. Adverse parking impacts can perhaps best be prevented with implementation of a new zoning scheme prior to rapid transit construction, sensitive to parking implications of large scale development. 3. Once rapid transit operation begins there should be tighter parking time limitations on Broadway and Arbutus Street, and a parking permit system on nearby residential streets. 4. Greater demand for parking and commercial space, combined with the nuisance impacts emanating from the guideway, suggest trackside land would be appropriate to, and compatible with, retail and retail parking uses.  9. Social Issues a) Approach This section will deal with two kinds of potential rapid transit social impacts -- greater neighbourhood social mix; and, increased neighbourhood crime. It will be assumed for the purpose of analysis in this section that the former kind of change is desirable, while the latter type is obviously undesirable. Rapid transit influence on social mix is limited and indirect. It can only exert an influence on neighbourhood physical change, which in turn, may affect neigbourhood social mix. Therefore, to determine the potential  129  for rapid transit to increase social mix, first, an assessment must be made as to the gap that exists between the current social configuration and the desired mix in the area. Then a determination must be made as to whether the types of changes which are desired can be effected by changes in built form. This must be followed by a projection as to whether the desired changes in built form will occur because of rapid transit development, through either market mechanisms or government intervention. Finally, an assessment must be made as to whether residents of the area concerned have the desire and necessary political influence to thwart new kinds of development in the neighbourhood. The standards arbitrarily selected for neighbourhood heterogeneity were Census Metropolitan Area averages. These were derived from the most recent Canadian census statistics (Statistics Canada, 1986). The categories chosen for analysis were place of birth, ethnic origin, male and female income, and level of educational attainment. The absolute numbers were converted into percentages in each class for a particular category. The social profile of the Study Area, used for comparison, was derived from the same set of census statistics. Average percentages were calculated for census tracts approximating the Study Area, in the selected categories. For determined heterogeneities, assumptions are made about the possibility that these can be affected by changes in built form. The probable type of new development induced in the Study Area by rapid transit, as well as the potential political influence of area residents, have been discussed in Section 7.1 of this Chapter. These will  be briefly reiterated in this Section, and then analyzed for their social impact implications. Finally, a certain conclusion as to Study Area resident attitude towards social mix would require an extensive and detailed resident survey. In the absence of such a survey, City documents summarizing attitudes expressed at public meetings, have been utilized as a substitute, c) Findings TABLE 8 i. Comparative Social Profile of Study Area and CMA Study Area (Census Tracts 41, 46, 48)  CMA (Vancouver)  Percentages in each category Foreign born  25.8  28.0  European  91.0  78.6  Asian  9.0 (low)  21.4  0 - $10,000  27.5  27.2  over 35,000  20.3  24.4  0 - $10,000  33.1 (high)  46.2  over 35,000  7.3  Ethnic Origin (where specified)  Income (male)  Income (female)  4.8  Education less than Grade 9  5.1 (low)  10.1  some university  46.5  24.6  131  Summary: The comparative profile indicates that the Study Area is heterogeneous in male income and percentage foreign born; but is relatively homogeneous in racial origin, and has fewer than average low income females. The relatively high level of educational attainment in the Study Area probably relates to this difference in female income, but more generally probably reflects a large current and former student population, due to the proximity of the Study Area to the University of British Columbia. ii. Potential to Change Homogeneity Through Built Form Changes Racial mix probably cannot be influenced by changes in built form, and, in any event, it is probably too controversial to attempt. However, the proportion of low income females in the Study Area can be increased through new types of market housing (i.e., apartments), or through nonmarket housing. As differences in educational attainment for the Study Area probably arise out of geographical rather than social reasons, they probably cannot and should not be addressed. iii. Likelihood of Sought Built Form Changes The built form changes that may be induced by rapid transit development have been discussed in Section 7.1 of this Chapter. To briefly reiterate, a significant amount of new development would likely be induced in the Study Area, and generally, it would be on an increased scale as compared to what presently exists. If any large, comprehensive developments are proposed, the City is likely to require a social housing component.  But it is unlikely this requirement would exceed 20% of the  total housing planned for the project.  132  Development on an increased scale, and social housing requirements, suggest the construction of market and non-market apartments affordable for low income women. However, the market apartments are most likely to be designed as expensive condominiums as long as the market for that type of housing persists. And non-market housing requirements may be precluded if development occurs on a piecemeal basis. Even if social housing requirements are imposed, a 20% requirement on a few projects is likely insufficient to alter neighbourhood income mix. iv. Resident Political Influence and Attitudes on Social Mix. As discussed in Section 7.1 of this Chapter, Study Area residents probably have above average political leverage. However, how any leverage would be used on issues of social mix is uncertain. Even the explicit stance of area residents, as expressed in City planning processes, is ambiguous. While residents state that they desire "demographic and social mix," at the same time they state that "the feeling, character, and image" of the community, and "existing densities" should be maintained in local developments (City of Vancouver, 1990). If increased mix is desired, the type of mix sought is not defined, nor is there discussion of the way it would be achieved. Affordable market housing would presumably involve an increase in neighbourhood density, while social housing could change the character and image of the neighbourhood. This gives the appearance that expressed desire for increased social mix is misleading.  133  v. Conclusion on Potential for Increased Social Mix The Study Area is racially homogeneous and has a greater than average level of educational attainment. However, it it unlikely rapid transit-induced built form changes can be used to influence racial or educational mix in the Study Area.  But the study area also has relatively  few low income women, and rapid transit related development provides the opportunity to accommodate a larger number. However, under current conditions, market housing is unlikely to cater to this group and there are no assurances that non-market housing will be built. A significant increase in low income housing would require political will by government and tolerance from area residents. Evidence of these is equivocal, suggesting a minimal chance for increased social mix in the Study Area as a result of rapid transit development. vi. Association between Crime and Skytrain As the relationship between rapid transit development and crime cannot be a direct cause-effect relationship, rapid transit influence on crime was assessed by determining the association between crime and rapid transit in the past. As North America varies widely in regards to crime-related matters, in order to maintain its relevance to the Study Area, the assessment was restricted to analysis of rapid transit crime in Greater Vancouver. As no statistics are kept specifically on crime around Greater " Vancouver Skytrain stations, the determination of the association was derived from impressionistic information obtained in interviews with police personnel. There are no significant crime problems at Skytrain stations in Vancouver, probably because stations have a good security system  134  (Interview - Vancouver Police). Stations are well-lit, well-patrolled, cameraequipped, and designed to be free of hidden areas (for example, staircases do not turn at landings). However, there have been crime problems associated with New Westminster Station, such as drug dealing and minor assaults. But the level of crime is comparable to that of the surrounding area, and can probably be attributed to the bars, pinball arcades, and alcohol rehabilitation centres neighbouring the station. In any event, problems have declined with better police enforcement (Interview - New Westminster Police). In summary, appropriate station design and security will generally preclude significant crime problems in rapid transit systems. Any problems probably reflect station surroundings. That being the case, it is not anticipated that there would be any such problems in the Study area, given the absence of seedy bars, pinball arcades, etc. c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Adverse Impacts 1. A survey should be undertaken to ascertain more precise views of residents with regard to social mix. 2. If increased social mix is desired, prior to rapid transit construction, a plan should be developed for inclusion of low income housing in station vicinity proposals. 3. Stations should be designed for security, as were Skytrain stations. They should be well-lit, well-patrolled, camera equipped, and free of hidden corners. 4. Activities which compromise station security, such as bars, should not be allowed to locate near stations.  135  10. Amenities and Services a) Approach Rapid transit can have an impact on local amenities in at least four ways. First, the system itself may constitute a new neighbourhood amenity in its potential to enhance local transportation. Second, more indirectly, as a spinoff to rapid transit development, construction of the corridor can leave remainders of land, which would subsequently be available for recreational or other new community-friendly uses. Third, any rapid transit-induced development projects will add demand pressures to existing community facilities. Fourth, noise, shadowing, and other rapid transit impacts can affect wayside parks and recreational facilities. Potential as an added transportation amenity to the Study Area will be tested by utilizing relevant findings from the existing rapid transit line in Vancouver. Travel time comparisons between conventional transit and rapid transit are made, for trips from an area situated similarly to the Study Area to the City Centre. Additionally, the attractiveness of the existing system is gauged from the percentage of discretionary riders. These findings were made previously in Section 7.1 of this Chapter, and will be reitierated here for the purposes of this section. Potential community and recreational land additions were identified through the examination of maps referred to earlier and used throughout this Chapter ~ the updated Study Area land use map, with the rapid transit configuration superimposed upon it (See Appendix B). Probable actual use of these remainders is determined by the examination of analagous examples from the existing rapid transit line in Vancouver.  136  Findings are not made on potential facilities impact from rapid transit-induced development. First, that would involve a overly hypothetical projection based on a projection; and secondly, government presumably matches development permits with facilities usage levels. Findings on the impact on existing parks is made by adapting prior findings on noise, shadowing, and aesthetics, b) Findings i. Transportation Amenity If the rapid transit technology selected for the Arbutus Corridor is as effective as the Skytrain technology, than the Study Area would be provided with a significant amenity. As discussed in Section 7.1 of this Chapter, Skytrain cuts the transit travel time from Broadway Station, for example, to Downtown by more than 60%. In addition, indicating the attractiveness of the system, 40% of Skytrain riders are discretionary riders (had an automobile available for the trip). ii. New Community Amenities There is presently a narrow undeveloped strip of land in the Study Area alongside the Arbutus rail line. With rapid transit construction, this strip could be consolidated with a much broader strip of land, South of Broadway, wedged between the rail line and Arbutus Street, which is slated for redevelopment. This trackside land could be utilized for bike paths, jogging paths, pedestrian trails, or other community and recreational uses. However, this land would be subject to competing pressures for use as commercial or parking space. The precedent set by Skytrain development on use of adjoining lands is ambiguous. In many cases the land underneath and adjoining Skytrain has been redeveloped  137  into bike trails and other recreational facilities. But, near Broadway Skytrain Station, for example, there are parking lots underneath the guideway.  Recreational use of lands adjoining the guideway can only be  ensured with political pressure, iii. Impact on Wayside Parks There is one wayside park in the Study Area, located at the corner of 7th Avenue and Arbutus Street. Given the alignment assumptions of this Chapter, this park would not be situated adjacent to an elevated section of the guideway. Therefore, the park would not be subject to shadowing or view obstruction from the guideway. However, based on the findings in Section T of this Chapter, the park is located in an area that could be subject to unacceptable noise levels (See Appendix E). c) Options for Mitigation/Rectification of Adverse Amenities' Impacts 1. Priority criteria for the selection of a rapid transit technology should include travel speed and convenience. 2. Land underneath elevated guideway segments should not be used for parking. Parking use of this space w o u l d detract from aesthetics and preclude Skytrain-type recreational use of the same space. 3. Trackside land, particularly the strip of land wedged between the tracks and Arbutus Street, should be used for recreational or other community purposes. 4. A noise barrier should be placed alongside the park at Seventh Avenue.  138  CHAPTER FIVE CONCLUSION  In Chapter One the focus, purpose, methodology, scope, and limitations of the thesis are outlined. The focus is on one aspect of the rapid transit planning process-the analytical assessment of localized impacts. The purpose given is to develop and test a method to determine neighbourhood impacts of a proposed rapid transit line. The method outlined is to derive quantitative and qualitative impact determinants from the literature, and then to apply them to the selected study area. The scope is limited with the selection of a study area (Kitsilano), and by making assumptions about the route and technology for the proposed line (The Arbutus Rail Line and light rail transit, respectively). Practical and theoretical limitations to this approach are presented.  It is explained that  a more comprehensive method may be developed by examining more routes, technologies, and neighbourhoods; and that research findings must be refined by public input, so as to offset researcher biases and limitations. This approach is placed in a theoretical context: It is meant to reflect the rational/comprehensive planning paradigm, modified by the incorporation of the transactive planning paradigm. In Chapter Two relevant literature is reviewed to identify potential impacts, and to assess their nature and significance. Ten impact categories are set out— noise, visual intrusion, shadowing and light overspill, view obstruction and other aesthetic effects, traffic and parking impacts, impacts on pedestrians, land use and property price impacts, commercial activity impacts, indirect social impacts, and impacts on local amenities.  139  In Chapter Three a framework to project neighbourhood impacts is established. A list of impact determinants for each of the ten impact categories is derived from the literature. Chapter Four, the focal chapter, projects Study Area impacts. Each of the ten impact categories is analyzed separately. In the case of each category, first the method of application of the relevant impact determinants to the Study Area, is detailed. This includes the explication and explanation of any assumptions involved in the application process. Then the impact projection for the Study Area is presented. Finally, logical options are proffered for rectification or mitigation of projected adverse effects. The mitigation options presented in Chapter Five have not been coordinated for consistency between impact categories. In this concluding Chapter, the findings of previous chapters will be summarized, consolidated, and placed in perspective. First, the major assumptions made in the thesis will be reviewed. Second, the major findings as to Study Area impact will be reitierated. Then an internally consistent, consolidated set of recommendations, culled from previously suggested mitigation options, will be presented (Note that this process involves significant value choices). This will be followed by an additional general recommendation. Finally, limitations of the thesis will be reviewed, and recommendations made for further research.  140  1. Major Assumptions 1. The technology selected for the Richmond Rapid Transit Corridor will be some form of light rail transit. The selected light rail technology will be as attractive to, and as convenient for users as Skytrain. 2. Within the Study Area, the rapid transit alignment will follow the Arbutus Rail Line. 3. The rapid transit guideway will run at grade, except for two guideway bridges. 4. The guideway will bridge Burrard Street and Broadway. 5. Bridge dimensions will be consistent with standard engineering specifications. 6. There will only be one station in the Study Area, located near the corner of Broadway and Arbutus Street. 7. Grade level pedestrian crossings will probably be proscribed. 8. The political and economic environment will remain relatively stable. 9. There will be no major impacts beyond 500 metres (average walking distance) of the guideway.  2. Summary of Major Findings 1. Excessive noise is one of the most common and most notice'd impacts of rapid transit systems. 2. Noise was found to potentially create a major problem for the Study Area. In the absence of mitigation measures, 15 apartment buildings, 39 houses, and 3 office buildings, would be located in a zone of unnacceptable noise levels. An additional 42 apartment buildings, 128  141  houses, and 1 office building would be exposed to some degree of disturbing noise emissions. 3. The most significant noise problem would occur at the guideway curve (from Maple Street to Seventh Avenue), where, in the absence of mitigation, curve squeal would be projected onto surrounding premises. 4. While in many cases noise impacts may be readily mitigated with berming or fencing, this is not the case for impacts on premises adjacent to guideway bridges (at Broadway and Burrard St.). This impact problem has been exacerbated by the recent construction of residential and commercial buildings at these problematic locations. 5. Overall, 15 apartment buildings, and 24 houses in the Study Area cannot be protected from excess rapid transit noise with conventional mitigation measures. 6. Due to exposure to passing trains, in the absence of mitigation measures, 7 apartment buildings and 28 houses would have a reduced level of privacy. In most cases the problem can be easily rectified with screening (such as putting in fencing or shrubbery), although for some of the affected premises screening would also adversely affect views and sunlight penetration. And conventional screening is not feasible in the case of 5 houses and an apartment building located near guideway bridge sites. 7. Due to land use patterns, the north-south orientation of the guideway, and the grade level guideway configuration, guideway shadowing effects in the Study Area would likely be limited. Premises most affected are the same ones most affected by excess noise and visual intrusion.  142  8. Two houses which abut a guideway approach site would be significantly affected by light overspill. Otherwise, if the station is sited south of Broadway, light overspill impacts would be limited. For other affected premises this problem could be rectified with screening, although in some cases screening could block views. 9. Due to the grade level configuration of the guideway, and its placement within the topography of the Study Area, guideway-caused view obstruction would only occur in the case of one house. 1 0 . Given the present garish surroundings of the putative station site, it is unlikely that a rapid transit station could be aesthetically disruptive. Most of the guideway is also unlikely to be displeasing, aesthetically. Grade level segments will not be visible except to adjacent premises which presently overlook railway tracks. But there could be a limited negative aesthetic impact at the guideway bridges. In particular, two houses would abut concrete bridge structures. 1 1 . Parking and Traffic Impacts will mainly depend on the nature and extent of related regulation and facilities. Parking time limitations and neighbourhood parking permit systems are effective in precluding commuter parking overspill problems. Off-road bus loops and "kiss and rides" are effective in precluding traffic bottlenecks in station areas. Conversely, park and rides create traffic bottlenecks at stations, while authorization of excessive development in the station vicinity will have an adverse impact on local parking conditions. 1 2 . Without grade separation, there could be minor traffic tie-ups on Twelfth Avenue.  143  13. Without some pedestrian bridges, a guideway would necessitate significant pedestrian detours, and block direct pedestrian access to important community facilities. Pedestrians would be inconvenienced most near the guideway, at Maple Street and at Sixth Avenue. 14. The consistency in the level of regional land development activity, the general receptiveness of municipal authority towards land development projects, the strength of demand for housing in the Study Area, and the availability of large amounts of developable land within the Study Area, indicate that inserting an effective rapid transit line would likely induce a major amount of land development activity nearby. Furthermore, the enhanced transportation linkage to the City Centre would result in pressure to increase the scale of development. 15. Only significant opposition to development from area residents, a major political change, or selection of an inefficient rapid transit technology, would reduce development potential in the Study Area. 16. With the improvement in accessibility and the increase in development opportunity created by rapid transit, there should be a relative increase in real property prices within 400 metres of the station site. But unless significant nuisance mitigation measures are taken, properties more distant from the station site, but within 200 metre of the trackway, will have relatively less value compared to the present. However, due to the usually marginal nature of such relative losses, general market swings could subsume relative declines within absolute increases. 17. Given the increase in demand that would be provided by new commuter-customers; the limited scope of current retail activity surrounding the putative station site; and likely availability of new retail  144  space within the Study Area, the insertion of rapid transit would generate an increase in retail activity, including new retail development, in the station vicinity. 18. A rapid transit station in the Broadway - Arbutus area would benefit existing nearby "convenience" businesses, unless parking becomes problematic. 19. While rapid transit development provides an opportunity to increase social mix, at the same time it tends to increase property prices. Therefore, an increase in social mix in the Study Area due to rapid transit development is unlikely without direct political intervention. 20. In Greater Vancouver there is not a significant crime problem associated with rapid transit. 21. As well as providing a significant transportation amenity, rapid transit development in the Study Area may result in the provision of additional recreational space through allocation of residual land.  3. Specific Recommendations 1. Eight trackside houses must be expropriated. Even if significant mitigation measures were taken, these houses would still be impacted by excess noise, visual intrusion, guideway shadowing, view obstruction, negative aesthetics, and losses in property value. The relevant houses are located at the guideway approach site west of Burrard; and between Twelfth and Fourteenth Avenues. 2. To preclude substantial curve squeal impact, the track curve between Maple Street and Seventh Avenue should be covered.  145  3. The north approach of the guideway bridge at Broadway, and the west approach of the guideway bridge at Burrard Street, should be fitted with transparent coverings. There are several premises near the approach sites which require protection from nuisance effects, but conventional mitigation measures would have a severe impact on views and light. Transparent coverings would limit noise impacts, but at the same time protect passenger and resident views and avert shadowing (This measure, however, would still leave a few residences exposed to passing trains). 4. There should be trackside fencing between Maple Street and Burrard Street, between Tenth and Eleventh Avenue, and between Twelfth and Fourteenth Avenue. Wayside fencing at these locations would protect nearby homes from noise, visual intrusion, and light overspill. It would also protect the school at Tenth Avenue and Maple Street from noise. Fencing made from non-porous w o o d may be cheaper and more effective than berming, and more aesthetically pleasing than other kinds of screening. 5. The station should be located on the South Side of Broadway. North of Broadway there are many residences, and were a station to be located there, these residences would be exposed to intense station lighting and the views of passengers in stopped trains. As land use on the North Side is intense, a North side station would also complicate station access and create traffic problems. Since the South Side site is surrounded by vacant or developable land, these problems could be avoided. 6. The Study Area station should be designed for security. It should be well-lit, camera-equipped, frequently patrolled, and clearly visible in all areas, including stairwells.  146  7. A number of measures are neccessary to preclude parking and traffic problems. First, there should be a resident parking permit system in place in the station vicinity. To be effective it should extend approximately 3 north-south blocks and 2 east-west blocks from the station. Second, there should be an off-road "kiss and ride" lot at the station.  Third, there  should be a bus loop near the station which provides for bus parking, but does not interfere with Broadway traffic and parking. Tenth Avenue between Arbutus and Yew, an area currently subject to redevelopment, could probably be used in such a loop without causing inconvenience. In contrast, there should not be a park and ride lot in the Study Area. As well as creating traffic problems, invariably these large lots are aesthetically displeasing. 8. There should not be a guideway bridge over Twelfth Avenue. A grade level crossing would result in a moderate amount of traffic interference. But, the additional noise, visual intrusion, shadowing, view loss, and aesthetic problems that would arise from an additional guideway overpass, combined with the additional costs that would be incurred with another bridge, make bridging Twelfth Avenue an undesirable option. 9. There should be pedestrian bridges over the guideway at Maple Street, Seventh Avenue, and Eleventh Avenue. This would eliminate the need for significant detours, and ensure direct pedestrian access to nearby schools, day care, and shopping. Bridges would be safer than tunnels, although they would constitute a problem for those with impaired mobility. 10. A land use plan should be developed which establishes explicit constraints on the. scale and type of land development to be permitted in the impact area. Rapid transit development will likely generate intense  147  land development pressure, including pressure to increase the scale of neighbourhood built form. The potential benefits arising out of an increase in built form scale - higher property values, lower rents, increased social mix, and a more diverse streetscape ~ have to weighed against the potential detriments of increased scale, such as view obstruction, increased traffic, and less parking space. In addition, decisions have to be made as to where new high impact commercial activity, such as the sale of liquor, is to be permitted. Given the value judgements involved in such decisions, and the likely intensity of development pressure, the land use plan should be developed with extensive public input, and at an early stage. 11. If increased social mix is desired, a plan should be developed for attainment of this goal in the context of the opportunity provided by rapid transit development. This could include measures such as the incorporation of social housing components into impact area development plans. 12. Land underneath guideway approaches should not be turned into parking lots. That would be an aesthetically displeasing use of the land, and it would preclude more appealing uses. The land might be better used as park space. 13. The strip of land between the tracks and Arbutus Street, South of Broadway, should be used for parks and trails. Not only would this add a recreational amenity to the community and add to general community aesthetics, but it would provide a much needed buffer zone for adverse system impacts.  148  14. Industrial land West of Arbutus Street (South of Broadway) is slated for redevelopment. This land should be used for parking and commercial activity. Rapid transit development will likely increase demand for commercial premises and parking space nearby, and the available Arbutus Street land is some of the closest available land. Furthermore, the proximity of the Arbutus Street land to the guideway makes it inappropriate for residential use. Any residences on Arbutus Street would be exposed to significant nuisance effects. 15. Frequency and speed of service should remain priorities in the selection of the rapid transit route and technology. While an increase in speed or frequency can increase adverse neighbourhood impacts, it can also enhance system benefits for both trackside residents and the City as a whole. And the purpose of implementing a rapid transit system should not be lost sight of. An inefficient system with adverse impacts is much worse than an effective system with adverse impacts.  4. General Recommendation Most of the benefits of a large scale public project, such as a rapid transit system, are distributed across the community. For example, a rapid transit line not only improves mobility for a large sector of the region, but the enhanced access it confers may increase economic efficiency, improve social equity, and reduce environmental impacts for the region as a whole. Yet, as can be deduced from this thesis, there will be a lopsided distribution of the costs of the project onto those located nearby. This will occur in the case of any rapid transit guideway, regardless of the technology, alignment, or particular configuration adopted.  149  That being the case, in fairness, the most severe systemic impacts projected onto proximate premises must be mitigated by appropriate measures (such as those suggested above). However, it is unreasonable, if not impossible, to rectify all problems created by the system. For example, measures designed to block all systemic noise will also block sunlight and views. Preserving the privacy of proximate premises completely would mean sacrificing passenger views. And grade separation at all local thoroughfare crossings to increase traffic efficiency will either add dramatically to systemic costs (in the case of tunneling), or cause a plethora of collateral detrimental impacts (in the case of elevated structures). There will always be some unwelcome residual impacts. Therefore, in addition to reasonable mitigation measures which address the most extreme impacts, those living proximate to the guideway should be entitled to some general form of compensation. This presents two problems: i. The impact area population is transient, while adverse impacts are permanent and ongoing (How do you compensate/Who do you compensate?); and, ii. Systemic impacts are not amenable to market pricing (How much do you compensate/What form should compensation take?). The compensation problem created by people moving in and out of the neighbourhood can be resolved by tying compensation to location rather than to individuals. Market pricing problems can be avoided by providing compensation in a non-financial form. Therefore, to compensate for irremediable detrimental impacts, in lieu of financial compensation to  150  individuals, supplementary amenities should be provided to impacted areas. The appropriate type and amount of amenities is that which will increase community appeal to a degree sufficient to offset community degradation arising from systemic impacts and achieve a kind of situational "equilibrium." Details of type and amount should be determined through public interaction in affected neighbourhoods, in conjunction with other exchanges in the rapid transit planning process.  5. Methodological Limitations and Recommendations for Further Research There are two major sets of methodological limitations in this thesis, both of which have been alluded to earlier. The first set of limitations involves the restriction of the impact assessment to one selected impact area, one selected technology, and one selected alignment. The subject of this study, the proposed Richmond Rapid Transit Corridor, would not only affect several neighbourhoods, but might entail either of two alternative technologies, and one of a plethora of alternative routes, none of which have been discussed in this thesis. The findings could be improved by the study of more neighbourhoods, alternative technologies, and a greater number of routings.  Nonetheless, this thesis evidences the genre of  findings on rapid transit impact one can expect to generally encounter. In addition, it facilitates further study by providing a detailed assessment method, a compendium of impact determinants, and a comprehensive set of recommendations which can be adapted to analagous situations. The second major set of limitations to this thesis involves the quality of the findings. The conclusions and recommendations contained in this  151  study cannot purport to be definitive. To the extent possible, findings were based on observable data, rather than conjecture. However, as in any study, the analysis is subject to the assumptions, value judgements, and general limitations of the researcher. Inappropriate assumptions or subtle value judgements could render findings inaccurate or inapplicable. Unforeseen impacts are not ruled out. For example, the findings as to induced land development are predicated on the adoption of an efficient technology. If an inefficient technology is actually selected, the findings on induced land development become irrelevant. To test assumptions, clarify values, discover overlooked information, and otherwise "fine tune" the findings, the conclusions of this thesis must be exposed to public scrutiny.  * **  Two major recommendations for further research have been implied in the above discussion of thesis limitations. First, the thesis findings and recommendations should be exposed to scrutiny by concerned others in order to reduce error and neutralize inappropriate value judgement. Second, utilizing the thesis methodology, other neighbourhoods, alternative technologies, and additional alignments should be studied in order to improve the method presented in this thesis. In addition, in order to refine the methodology, almost any one of the assessment approaches could be studied in greater detail. For example, to gain more insight into the relationship between rapid transit alignment and land development, a survey of residents and builders could  152  be undertaken to determine the extent to which rapid transit figured in their location decision. Finally, another detailed impact study, based on different assumptions, undertaken in order to refine impact identification, clarify impact determinants, and further "fine tune" the methodology, would not be unwarranted.  153  REFERENCES CITED Books and Articles Allen, W. Bruce, and Richard R. Mudge. The Impact of Rapid Transit on Urban Development: The Case of the Philadelphia-Lindenwold High Speed Line. Santa Monica: The Rand Corporation, 1974. American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials. Standard Specifications for Highway Bridges. 13tn ed. Washington: American Assoc. of State Hwy. and Trans. Officials, 1983. Appleyard, Donald, and Frances M. Carp. The BART Residential Impact Study: A Longitudinal Study of Environmental Impacts. Berkley: U of California, 1973. Armour, Audrey, and Reg Lang. Impacts of Urban Railways. Toronto: U of Toronto/York U, 1979. Associate Committee on the National Building Code. National Building Code of Canada, 1985. Ottawa: National Research Council of Canada, 1985. Boyce, David E. Studies of the Philadelphia-Lindenwold Rapid Transit Line: Methods for the Assessment of the Impact of Urban Transportation Improvements. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania, 1971. Boyce, P.R. Human Factors in Lighting. London: Applied Science Publishers, 1981. British Columbia Directories. 1989 Vancouver City Directory. Vancouver: B.C. Directories, 1989. Davies, Stephen C , principal author. Designing Effective Pedestrian Improvement in Business Districts. New York: Project For Public Spaces, Inc., 1982. Doak, P.E., ed. "Proceedings of the Second Workshop on Railway and Tracked Transit System Noise." journal of Sound and Vibration. 66 (1978). Hothersall, David C , and Richard J. Salter. Transport and the Environment. London: Crosby, Lockwood, Staples, 1977. Hudson, Barclay M. "Comparisons of Current Planning Theories: Counterparts and Contradictions." APA journal Oct. 1989: 387-398. Insel, Paul M., and Henry Clay Lindgren. Too Close for Comfort. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 1978. Kitsilano Citizens Planning Commission. Arbutus Industrial Area Subcommittee. Kitsilano Local Area Planning Program. Vancouver: City of Vancouver, 1990.  154  Krasner, Leonard, ed. Environmental Design and Human Behaviour. New York: Pergamon Press, 1980. Lee, Douglas B., Jr. How to Do a Transit Station Land Use Impact Study. Iowa City: U of Iowa, 1978. Lerman, Steven R., David Damm, Eva Lerner Lam, and Jeffrey Young. The Effect of the Washington Metro on Urban Property Values. Cambridge, Mass: M.I.T., 1977. Ley, David. "Social Upgrading in Six Canadian Cities." The Canadian Geographer. 1 (1988): 31-45. Lynch, Kevin. A Theory of Good City Form. Cambridge, Mass: The MIT Press, 1982. MacLaren, Jim. Vancouver Sun Angles. Vancouver: U of British Columbia, 1974. MacLean, Hugh D. "Noise Impacts of ALRT in the Broadway and Nanaimo Station Areas of Vancouver." Thesis. U of British Columbia, 1988. Matus, Vladimir. Design for Northern Climates: Cold Climate Planning and Environmental Design. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1988. Mehrabian, Albert. Public Places and Private Spaces: The Psychology of Work, Play, and Living Environments. New York: Basic Books, 1976. Merrit, Frederick S., ed. Standard Handbook for Civil Engineers. 3rd ed. New York: Mcgraw-Hill, 1983. Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. The Urban Transportation Planning Process. Np: np, 1971. Putnam, Stephen H. The Interrelationships of Transportation Development and Land Development. Vol. 1, Main Report. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania, 1976. Ramsay, Anthony. Planning for Pedestrians. Stamford, England: Capital Planning Information Ltd., 1986. Roughton, Bert, Jr. "Marta: So Far So Good." Planning 4 Apr. 1989: 16-20. Transportation Research Board. Light Rail Transit: New System Successes at Affordable Prices. Washington: TRB, 1989. Weinstein, George, Larry Schwab, Gary Raflo, and David Swansen. Key Facts in Opthamology. New York: Churchill, 1984.  155  Government Publications and Reports Atlanta Regional Commission. Transit Impact Monitoring Program: Analysis of MARTA Operations Data in the East-West Line Corridor. Atlanta: 1984. British Columbia. Ombudsman. Skytrain Report: Public Report No. 8. By Stephen Owen. 1987. British Columbia Transit. Appendix A. "Terms of Reference: Technology/Alignment Selection." Vancouver/Richmond Rapid Transit Project. 1989, #1. —. Skytrain, A Catalyst for Development.  1989, #2.  —. Skytrain Surrey Report No. 2. Fall, 1987. —. Vancouver - Richmond Rapid Transit Project: Bulletin #1. Spring, 1990. Calgary. Planning Department. Special Projects Division. Light Rail Transit South Corridor Land Use Study. 1981. —. Transportation Department. Planning Division. Light Rail Transit Impact Study. 3 Parts. 1983-84. Canada. Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation. Noise Control. 1987. —. —. Road and Rail Noise: Effects on Housing. 1981. —. Statistics Canada. 1986 Census. Fairfax (County of, Virginia). Office of Planning. A Study of Probable Transit Impact in Fairfax County. 1973. Greater Vancouver Regional District. Development Services. 1985 Metropolitan Vancouver Origin-Destination Survey. Burnaby: 1987. Metropolitan Transportation Commission (Berkeley). Transportation Systems Management Element for the Nine County San Francisco Bay Area. Berkeley: 1981. United States. Department of Transportation. MUNI |-Line Connection Project: Draft Environmental Impact Statement. Washington: 1982, #1. —. Department of Transportation. Rail Transit Impact Studies: Atlanta, Washington, San Diego. Summary Report. By Paget, Donnelly, Price, Williams, and Assoc. Silver Springs, Maryland: 1982, #2. , —. Department of Transportation and Department of Housing. The Environmental Impacts of BART: An Interpretive Summary. By Gwen Associates, Inc., and De Leuw, Cather, and Co. Washington: 1979, #1.  156  —. —. BART in the San Francisco Bay Area: Summary of the Final Report of the BART Impact Program. By The Metropolitan Transportation Commission. Washington: 1979, #2. —. —. The Impact of BART on Land Use and Urban Development: Interpretive Summary of the Final Report. By John Blayney Associates and David M. Dornbusch and Co., Inc. Washington: 1979, #3. —. Office of Energy and the Environment. Environmental Planning Division.. The Noise Guidebook. Washington: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1985. —. Urban Mass Transportation Administration. San Diego Trolley: The First Three Years. By San Diego Association of Governments. Washington: 1984. Vancouver. Elections. 1988 Results. —. Planning Department. An Evaluation of Social Mix in Kitsilano. 1989. —. —. Arbutus Industrial Lands: Draft Policy Principles. 1990. —. —. Planning for the Community and Rapid Transit: ALRT, A Noise Study. 1983, #1. —. —. Planning for the Community and Rapid Transit: An Overall Planning Context for ALRT Development. 1983, #2. —. —. Planning for the Community and Rapid Transit: Nanaimo and 29th Avenue Station Areas. 1983, #3. —. —. Rapid Transit: Articles from Quarterly Review.  1986.  —. —. Response to Vancouver City Planning Commission First-Run Goals for Vancouver. 1979. —. —. Vancouver ALRT Stations Urban Design Directions.  1982.  —. —. Vancouver the Future City: Goals Program for the City of Vancouver: A Survey of 1000 Residents. By William Davenport/Intercorp Marketing Ltd. 1979. —. —. The Vancouver Plan Monitoring Program: Info Update. July 1990.  Other Sources Legal Citations: Kamloops (City of) v. Nielsen, [1984] 2 S.C.R. 2. Maps: Greater Vancouver Regional District. Vancouver Land Use. 1983. Canada. Department of Energy, Mines, and Resources. Canada Map Office. National Topographical Systems: Vancouver. 1989. Aerial Photographs: Vancouver. Planning Department. Vancouver. Plates E9 and E10. 1989. Interviews: Beazley, Michael. U.B.C. Graduate Student. 10 Dec. 1990. Birch, Peter. Vacouver Planning Department. 12 Dec. 1990. Dehaas, Casey. New Westminster Police. 15 Dec. 1990. Drieml, Scott. Vancouver Police. 15 Dec. 1990. Eastman, John. N.D. Lee Consultants. 13 Sept. 1991. Lusctig, Ken. British Columbia Central Credit Union.  12 Dec. 1990.  158  OTHER BIBLIOGRAPHY Books and Articles Adams, John. Transport Planning: Vision and Practice. London: Routledge, 1981. Armstrong-Wright, Alan. Urban Transit Systems: Guidelines for Examining Options. Washington: World Bank, 1986. Behavioural Research for Transport Policy. The 1985 International Conference on Travel Behaviour. Noordwijk, The Netherlands, 1985. Utrecht: UNV Science P, 1986. Black, John. Urban Transport Planning: Theory and Practice. London: Croon, 1981. Boyce, David E. Studies of the Philadelphia-Lindenwold Rapid Transit Line: Discussion Paper No. 7. Philadelphia: U of Pennsylvania, 1971. Dodge, William H., and Donald J. Harmatuck. Elements of Publicness in Urban Transit. Madison: U of Wisconsin, 1977. Feimer, Nicholas R., and E. Scott Geller, eds. Environmental Psychology: Directions and Perspectives. New York: Praeger, 1983. Fielding, Gordon J. Managing Public Transit Strategically. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1987. Henson, Susan, ed. The Geography of Urban Transportation. New York: Guildford, 1986. Holmes, J. M. Architectural Shadow Projection. N.p.: Attic Books, 1985. Joyal, A. N. Benefit Estimates for Recreational Re-use of Abandoned Railway Rights-of-Way. Iowa City: U of Iowa, 1975. Kuipers, Anton. Rapid Transit Project: Summary of Municipal L.R.T. Alignment Recommendations and Associated Costs. Vancouver: GVRD, 1980. Long, A. Scheffer, and Richard M. Soberman. Urban Rail Transit: Its Economics and Technology. Cambridge, Mass: M.l.T. Press, 1964. Merril, Allen. Vision and Highway Safety. Philadelphia: Chilton, 1970. Millodot, Michel. What Do You Know About Vision? Montreal: Aquila, 1976. Nash, CA. Economics of Public Transport. New York: Longman, 1982.  159  Nijkamp, P., and S. Reichman, eds. Transportation Planning in a Changing World. Aldershot, England: Gower, 1987. Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development. Traffic Policies for the Urban Environment. N.p., n.p., 1976. —.  The Urban Transportation Planning Process. N.p., n.p., 1971.  —. Environment Directorate. Planning and Land Use Controls for Noise Prevention and Abatement. Paris: OECD, 1977. Osborne, D.J., and J.A. Levis, eds. Human Factors in Transport Research. Vol. 2. London: Academic Press, 1980. Podesta, Claudio, ed. Rapid Transit Systems: From Feasibility Studies to Operation. Amsterdam: Elsewier Science Publishers, 1985. Poulton, M.C., ed. Light Rail Transit in Vancouver: Costs, Potential, and Alternatives. By The Students of the School of Community and Regional Planning of U.B.C. Vancouver: U of British Columbia, 1980. Voorhees, Allan. Failing and Succeeding in Planning for Transportation. Vancouver: U of British Columbia Centre for Human Settlements, 1980. Webber, Melvin M. The BART Experience-What Have We Learned? Berkeley: U of California, 1976. Westley, Glenn D. Planning the Location of Urban-Suburban Rail Lines: An Application of Cost-Benefit and Optional Path Analysis. Cambridge, Mass: Ballinger, 1978. Yago, Glenn. The Decline of Transit. Cambridge, England: Cambridge UP, 1984. Government Publications and Reports British Columbia Transit. Skytrain Surrey Reports. No. 1, 3-5. 1986-1990. Greater Vancouver Regional District. Automated Light Rapid Transit and Regional Transportation in the GVRD 1986-1996: A Preliminary Report. 1983. —. Feasibility Study of an ALRT Station at Clark Drive and Grandview Highway. 1981. —. Transportation and Transmission Policy Committee. Transportation for a Liveable Region. 1973. Greater Vancouver Transit System. A Five Year Conceptual Plan for Transit, 1983 to 1987: Preliminary Draft. N.d.  160  Honolulu. Department of Transportation Services. Honolulu Rapid Transit Development Program: Alternatives, Analysis, Update. 1987, Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. The Impact of MetroRail on Trip Making by Nearby Residents: The Van Ness Case Study. By Dunphy, Robert T. 1984. Report of the Joint Technical Transportation Committee. Evaluations of Alternate Rapid Transit Systems for the Spadina Corridor. Toronto: n.p., 1973. Tri-County Metropolitan Transportation District of Oregon. Urban Decision Making for Transportation Investments. By Edner, Sheldon M., and G.B. Arrington. 1985. United States. Department of Transportation. Impact of Access Distance and Parking Availability of Suburban Rapid Transit Station Choice. By Boyce, David E. et. al. 1972. —. Environmental Protection Agency. Office of Noise Abatement and Control. Transportation Noise and Noise for Equipment Powered by Internal Combustion Engines. 1971. Vancouver. Planning Department. New Neighbours: How Vancouver's Single Family Residents Feel About Higher Density Housing. 1986. Washington, D.C. Transit in the Nation's Capital: What Lies Ahead?  1986.  1  KEY TO MAPS IN APPENDICES  1983 LAND U S E  of Vancouver  SINGLE ' A M O  VANCOUVER  SCALE IN MEIERS  DWELLING  V 22  w a c  D E K M O I a* M i w o m u . T i n t  SCHOOL.« CO*VERSI««,»«CLlJOiNO  —=—1 \  m  80AR0IM9  ~*~i UWEO HCSiDCNTIM. • RETAIL (MTCRMAL 9TUMM- DEPENDS OM IICSIOCNTIAL TYPE >  APARTMENTS I  orncc  • CMUWCK, * ' MftSPTIAi. c TCI  RETAIL a OFfiCE  MIXEO  tWUWSCN Of UNITS  DETAIL 6 FEMIOMAI. UWVfCC IA-AUTO OftlCMTEO RETAIL, S-Sl»V»CE STATION, P-PARKMC LOT OB STRUCTURE I  MANUFACTURING B PROCESSING (fCOO, WOOD, METAL.CHEUtCAL ITC.t  W H O C E S A L I N C BJ •AREHOU3JM6  E23 (ZZ1  STORAGE (SHIPUCMT O n CONSTRUCTION EQUIPMENT)  COUUUNir.All£.'.7  EAffiHl E  H  3  PRIMARY AC  U***AJ FiS**fHiesj 353 [;;;;;•  (AGAICULTUF  OUTDOOR  CELL ttOstNt  162  V,  163  APPENDIX  C - VANCOUVER  SUN  ANGLES  AND  ALTITUDES  2 •0  TIME SHOWN IS LOCAL APPARENT TIME/ OR "SOLAR T I M E " . TO CONVERT TO PACIFIC  STANDARD  T I M E . ADD APPROXIMATELY 12 MIN. TO CONVERT TO PACIFIC SUMMER TIME (EFFECTIVE FROM LAST SUNDAY IN A P R I L . TO LAST SUNDAY IN OCTOBER) ADD APPROXIMATELY 1 HOUR AND  12  MIN.  FOR EXACT TIME CONVERSION. SEE CHART  2.  SUN ANGLES AT LAT. 19 20' fi THE  CURVED LINES SHOW THE D/J  OF THE SUN AT DIFFERENT TIME YEAR.  THE BROKEN LINES SHOw]  POSITION OF THE SUN AT DIFFE HOURS OF THE DAY. HORIZONTAL SCALE/ 1" = 10  0  MEASURED EAST OR WEST OF TRU VERTICAL SCALE, 1" = 10 ABOVE THE HORIZON. LOCAL "SOLAF  fIME"  —t i i > ! ' I i : 1  2 0"  10*  0 SOUTH  10  2 0'  40"  5  SOUTH WEST  o  90* WEST  100  120*  166  Chart 6  APPENDIX  D  AZIMUTH  f".  V*.  ^  tf. 1  ^-  ^  ^  - SHADOW P R O J E C T I O N  CHART  O f S U N + S H A K I N G oj= > V A L U  V>  rO  -  -  —  Q  Q  167  APPENDIX E - NOISE IMPACT  MAP  4  168  169 APPENDIX G - SHADOW IMPACT  MAP <  -  Dec 21  A.M. and P.M.  Shadows  —  170  

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