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This video on YouTube captures a bit of the B.C. Electric’s interurban line that ran from New Westminster to Chilliwack between 1910 and 1952. An interesting little “what if?” film – could a network of these have limited the suburban sprawl in the Valley, or was the car culture simply too powerful, as magnetic as the Uber/share/self-driving paradigm is becoming today for some people?

Apparently passenger service on the line had become unprofitable as early as the 1920s because of the growth of car ownership. Freight, especially the transportation of milk, kept the line going, and it was an essential piece of infrastructure during the gas- and tire-rationing period of the Second World War.