Tag Archives: Whistler Question

Whistler’s Answers: November 24, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: It’s no surprise that conditions on Highway 99 have been a topic of conversation and concern since the road to Whistler opened in 1965. The highway was not infrequently closed or rerouted due to washouts, floods, and accidents, at times leaving communities cut off from the Lower Mainland for multiple days. On Tuesday, November 15, 1983, highway officials closed Highway 99 between Squamish and Horseshoe Bay after over 52mm of rain fell in the area within 24 hours.

Question: How should driving conditions on Highway 99 be made less hazardous?

Peter Kirk – General Manager – Burnaby

My main concern is that a road to Squamish should never have been built; the houses along the route should never have been built. It should be on the watershed route. Maybe the secret is to get the Olympics. Then the focus would be on Whistler and the government might be forced into action.

Jim Klement – Corporate Pilot – Coquitlam

I’ve been coming up here since 1966, and I’ve seen a great improvement. The highway has gotten a tremendous boost, and gets a greater share of revenue than any other highway in BC. It’s not true they haven’t done anything for it; you have to consider the severity of the problem. You have to give them credit.

Chuck Cook – Dentist – Whistler Village

From here to Squamish I think the driving conditions are fine with the exception of Brohm Ridge, but that’s under construction. Our problem’s between Squamish and Horseshoe Bay. The depth of the creeks seems to be a problem. They should place the bridge abuttments further apart and move the whole bridge further up.

Whistler’s Answers: November 17, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: While various bus services had operated in Whistler, both between Whistler and Vancouver and (like the “Purple People Eater” run by the Ski Boot Lodge Hotel in the 1970s) between various accommodations, the base of the mountain, and the Gondola area. By 1983, however, there was still no public transportation system. In the winter of 1982/83, Lance Fletcher of Stoney’s Restaurant coordinated a one-van shuttle service which cost riders $1 and was supposed to be paid for by money from local businesses. The following year, three local business people organized an intra-valley shuttle bus service that would be paid for by advertising, as well as charging riders between $1 and $2/ trip. It was proposed that the bus would run from 6pm to 2am between the Gondola area and either White Gold or Emerald Estates. There were no plans for service during the day. The main question behind a bus service seemed to have been who was going to pay to provide the service.

Question: Does Whistler need a public bus service?

Ann Byrne – Village Shop Employee – Cedar Springs

There’s no other type of transportation for people who come in by plane and travel up here, and taxis get expensive. It’s also needed for locals who don’t have transportation. The bus should run in the morning and definitely afternoons and evenings. It’s definitely worthwhile.

Dale Heggtveit – Village Store Employee – Emerald Estates

I think a bus would be a good idea. It wouldn’t be worth their while from the local’s point of view if it didn’t run in the early morning, though. It would prevent accidents from drinking drivers at night, but if it only ran in the evening the bars and restaurants should pay.

Lance Fletcher – Restaurant Co-owner; Co-ordinator of Last Year’s Bus Service – Whistler Village

In a first class resort people expect some sort of public transportation. Hitchhiking here is dangerous. People have been run over and killed. Last year we were planning early morning service, starting at 6:30 or 7 am, running until 10 or 11 am, and then beginning again after the mountains close.

Whistler’s Answers: November 10, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: After the election of Bill Bennett and a Social Credit government in 1983, Bennett’s party introduced a series of bills that quickly became controversial. Of particular concern to the BC Government Employees Union (BCGEU) were Bill 2, which limited the rights of workers and unions in the public sector to negotiate terms except for wages and benefits, and Bill 3, which gave public sector authorities the power to terminate workers without cause and regardless of seniority. Despite organized opposition to these moves (including an estimated 80,000 person demonstration in Vancouver), these and other bills were passed. At midnight on October 31, 1983, about 40,000 members of the BCGEU went on strike, demanding the government retract Bill 2 and provide an exemption from Bill 3.

Question: How has the BC Government Employees Union strike affected you?

Donna Liakakos – Village Store Manager – Alpine Meadows

If the schools go out everyone with children will be affected. I don’t care about the liquor store, but there could be trouble if road conditions worsen. In Vancouver there’s more awareness about the strike than here because more jobs are affected.

John Ryan – Store Security Worker – Vancouver

Not apart from the liquor store, although if the buses go it’ll be a hassle to go to work. People get laid off all the time but when it happens to big unions they act differently. It seems kind of quiet here – we’ve seen a few pickets, and the exercise class is cancelled.

Joe Bowman – Waiter – Pemberton

Not at all. I’ve seen some pickets. They (strikers) should have done it 10 years ago: shut it down and take a better look at it. It’s got to be done now. The thing to do is to provide jobs. The government has been hired as managers; if we don’t have tenure they shouldn’t either.

Whistler’s Answers: November 3, 1983

In the 1980s the Whistler Question began posing a question to three to six people and publishing their responses under “Whistler’s Answers” (not to be confused with the Whistler Answer).  Each week, we’ll be sharing one question and the answers given back in 1983.  Please note, all names/answers/occupations/neighbourhoods represent information given to the Question at the time of publishing and do not necessarily reflect the person today.

Some context for this week’s question: The Alta Lake Sports Club (ALSC) began building cross-country ski trails in the Whistler valley, specifically around Lost Lake, in the 1970s. The ALSC groomed the trails and, for the first years, they were available for free to anyone with skis. In the early 1980s, when the municipality held a referendum on the development of parks and trails in the valley, it was widely understood that the maintenance would be paid for through taxes. The municipality proposed charging cross-country skiers to access the trails at Lost Lake Park in 1983, causing controversy within Whistler as some residents felt it was one of the only free activities available in the winter, the facilities at Lost Lake Park didn’t warrant a $2 fee, and the ALSC had previously been able to afford to provide the maintenance for free.

Question: Is Council justified in charging cross-country skiers to use Lost Lake Park?

Les Doyle – Unemployed – Brio

I think it’s ridiculous. The trails should be a service to the community. I know a few people who come just to cross-country ski and it’ll turn them off. If it’s a public park you can’t really charge to get in.

Cathy Greenwood – Hotel Office Manager – Whistler Cay

Yes. It’s costing us taxpayers money, not the government. I don’t think people will object to it. Back east they have to pay for cross-country. It’s not like they’re charging $10.

Samuel P. Umpkin – Sci-fi Novelist – Tapley’s Farm

I think it’s a seedy thing to do. I haven’t skied myself since my accident, but I can see that concerns will be voiced that a public park should be a free public park. They may as well charge for… pumpkins, for example.