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More people are opposed to Port Mann bridge toll than last year: survey

A new poll shows opposition to the toll on the new Port Mann bridge has intensified over the last year.

Extra highway lanes are expected to open west of the bridge in December, and the toll rates will go up staring on January 1.

For example, the crossing rate for a small vehicle will go up from $1.50 to $3.00.

The Insights West poll says 37 per cent of their respondents are in favour of the Port Mann Bridge toll going up to $3.00 per crossing. That is a 14-point decrease compared to last year.

Only ten per cent are strongly in favour of the toll.

The poll shows the opposition to the toll has increased from 45 per cent last year to 56 per cent today.

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Seventy-two per cent of respondents who use the bridge once a week or more and 57 per cent of those who rely on the bridge one to three times a month are opposed to the toll.

Only three per cent said they used the bridge several times per week in the past year. Ten per cent said they used it once a month.

Some residents are finding alternatives to avoid the bridge. Thirty-one per cent of respondents are planning to “actively seek out new routes in order to avoid the toll.” That is five points up since last year when the toll was $1.50.

Once the toll goes up to $3.00, 36 per cent say they will use the bridge as usual and just pay the toll — a 16 per cent decrease from last year.

Twenty-three per cent say they will drive over the bridge less often.

Last year, 10 per cent of Lower Mainland and Fraser Valley residents said they did not use the Port Mann Bridge at all—that has increased to 22 per cent this year.

Results are based on an online study conducted from November 26 to December 3, 2013, among 690 Metro Vancouver and Fraser Valley residents aged 18 and over.

To see full results, go here.

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