If you’re someone who often frequents a taxi, you know wait times can be lengthy especially at specific periods of the day. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like that will change as City of Vancouver councilors have voted in favour of extending a moratorium on issuing new taxi licenses for at least another 12 months.
This ultimately means that no new taxis will be able to hit the streets until October, 2017.
It also means Vancouverites won’t be able to use Uber anytime soon.
The motion was put forward by Vision Vancouver councilor Geoff Meggs who believes that it “doesn’t make sense” to issue new licenses until the province submits a review of British Columbia’s taxi industry.
The review was launched earlier this year in January and currently has no timeline of completion, with some councilors predicting it won’t be released until after the next provincial election.
According to Meggs, there shouldn’t be any downtime in lifting the moratorium and distributing new licenses upon the release of the report.
Following the council’s recent ruling, Uber Canada spokesperson Susie Heath issued the following statement:
“We believe that Vancouverites are clearly underserved and that people deserve access to more reliable transportation options in the city, including more taxis. The City of Vancouver and the provincial government should take action to expand the number of options available, before the busy holiday season.”
At the moment, Yellow Cab, Vancouver Taxi, McClure’s, and Black Top Cabs makeup the 708 taxis operating within the City of Vancouver. Among the 708 vehicles, only 99 operate on weekends.
Despite the province approving an additional 34 taxis from suburban operators back in 2012, the City of Vancouver has turned down their licenses and eligibility to serve.