B.C. Votes 2017: Surrey-Fleetwood riding profile
It's Fassbender vs. Brar vs. Binnema once again in Fleetwood, in a race that is sure to be closely watched
In advance of the 2017 B.C. election, we'll be profiling all 87 electoral districts in the province. Here is Surrey-Fleetwood, one of nine ridings in Surrey — and a place that might see the most heated rematch in the province.
Summary: A suburban riding in the centre of Surrey, Surrey-Fleetwood is one of the only two ridings in B.C. to see the same three candidates for the B.C. Liberals, NDP and Green Party as the last election.
Politics: The NDP's Jagrup Brar, previously the MLA for Surrey-Panorama Ridge, won this riding when it was created prior to the 2009 election.
But in 2013, Peter Fassbender, the longtime mayor of Langley, ran for the Liberals, and defeated Brar by 200 votes, the B.C. party's smallest margin of victory.
In this election, the boundaries of the riding have changed, having lost its southeast corner close to Cloverdale, which has historically favoured the Liberals over the NDP, while adding areas north and southeast of John Thompson Park that used to be in Surrey-Green Timbers and Surrey-Newton.
Candidates: The Liberal candidate is Fassbender, who served as minister of education during the 2014 teachers' strike, and minister of community, sport and cultural development since 2015.
The NDP candidate is Brar, the former executive director of Surrey's Self Employment and Entrepreneur Development Society, who first became an MLA in a 2004 byelection.
The Green Party candidate is Tim Binnema, its candidate in 2013 and an engineering manager for A.H. Lundberg Systems Limited.
Where does the NDP do well? It's hard to make too many comparisons in this riding, because it straddles so many areas that have been under different MLAs in recent elections, but in general it does best in the area directly south and east of Green Timbers park, along with the areas to the northwest of Fleetwood Park.
What about the Liberals? In general, it does better in the areas east of 152nd Street and north of 84th Avenue. It also picked up a lot of votes in the eastern stretch of the riding, south of the Fraser Highway and east of Fleetwood Park, but the area was transferred to Surrey-Cloverdale for this election, making Fassbender more vulnerable than before.