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SFU celebrating approval of $210M Burnaby Mountain Gondola

The days of being stuck at the top of Burnaby Mountain during a snow day may be soon behind us.

The Metro Vancouver Mayors’ Council has voted to approve the plan to put a gondola on the mountain between Simon Fraser University and Production Way – University SkyTrain station.

Earlier this year, Burnaby City Council also endorsed the project, saying that it had strong public support in almost all neighbourhoods.

SFU Gondola Burnaby Mountain

SFU vice-president external relations Joanne Curry says they are hopeful this could be in place for 2027.

“Of course people know quite well the snowy conditions that can happen at Burnaby Mountain with buses stopped half way up the mountain. In all weather the gondola will continue to operate,” Curry said.

“There’s a huge benefit for students in their time of commuting. But it’s also about reliability that they can count on getting to class, getting to exams,” she continued. “We’ve been advocating for over a decade with so many groups and people at SFU, so we’re just thrilled.”

The next steps for the project include where funding will come from, as the gondola alone is expected to cost more than $210 million to build.

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The project is part of TransLink’s 10-year-plan, which also includes an estimated 170 kilometres of rapid transit in the region, including the Millennium Line UBC Extension.

Early estimates suggest the plan will cost more than $20 billion, more than double the slated investment laid out in the 2014 Mayors’ Council 10-year Vision.

The plan also suggests operating costs will increase by 50 per cent once it is fully implemented.

The council, which met virtually on Thursday to vote, includes mayors from across the Metro Vancouver region. They are set to meet again July 28.

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