The City is rolling out the next stage in its Transportation 2040 plan – an update to Council this morning by Jerry Dobrovolny, the Director of Transportation

Of special note: the plan will set targets for what’s called the modal split, or the percent for each mode of activity – vehicles, transit, feet and bike – used by travellers.

In 1976, for instance, the car was the choice of 90 percent of everyone who moved around within Vancouver’s borders.  The plan of that time called for the percentage to drop to 75 percent.  (There was no  target date, likely because the planners and engineers never thought it would be reached in their lifetimes.)

So what actually happened?

By 1992, the number was down to 70 percent for vehicles.  What might have seemed an unrealistic target in the heyday of Motordom was surpassed. 

Next up: the Transportation Plan of 1997.  It forecast driving would drop to 58 percent by 2021.  Even that far out, it seemed ambitious.

What actually happened?

We got to 58 percent by 2008.

So now the next plan, Transportation 2040, calls for a split of  50 percent by car in 2020, 50 percent for everything else.  Then, to up the ante, by 2040 driving would be down to 33 percent.   In other words, two-thirds of all movements would be by foot, bike and transit.  That means a drop of 25 percent in driving in roughly the same time it took to drop 32 percent from 1976 to 2008.

Seems unlikely?  Not, apparently, as unlikely as the odds in 1976.

If you want to take a look at the details of the plan – there’s so much more, including 140 policies and actions – as well as participate in the feedback, check out the Transportation 2040 site here.

Alan Garr provides some background in his column here.