Freeway removal now becoming commonplace, even in US; Seattle study shows gains far outweigh costs

With city council again considering the future of Northeast False Creek — where a proposed park reconfiguration butts up against the Georgia Viaduct — the current ideas contest for a new vision for the area takes on added urgency.

Freeway removal is becoming so commonplace in the United States that the Urban Land Institute has created a “top 10 list” of Metro Highway Removal Projects.

It’s increasingly clear that elimination of one or both of Vancouver’s viaducts is not only possible, it’s consistent with what many cities have done with great success. This Seattle study of a range of removals concluded traffic can be absorbed and city benefits can be significant, provided careful planning comes first.

That’s the premise of Vancouver’s Viaducts and Eastern Core Strategy.