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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The Arbutus corridor : a feasibility study for public open space design Maness, Alina

Abstract

The north-south rail line known in Vancouver as the Arbutus corridor (Figure #1) is currently under-used but not yet abandoned, and its future use is in debate. As owner of the corridor, the Canadian Pacific Rail Co. has publicly announced its desire to change the corridor into a multi-use development. According to the wishes of residents and reflected in the City of Vancouver's policy, however, the corridor will be preserved for transportation use. An alternative design solution would be reactivating the rail line as a much needed north-south transit route, with an adjacent greenway for pedestrian and bike use, as a more responsible and sustainable vision for this corridor. The feasibility of this design, tested at a smaller scale in three Kitsilano neighbourhoods, revealed it is a viable solution. The issues surrounding this case study are the value of a fair public process to ensure a common vision; the validity of the policy preserving existing transportation corridors in urban areas; and the actual effect of rail transit and greenway upon the adjacent, as well the regional environs. Future directions are toward considering transit as a vital element in promoting sustainable communities.

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