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Translink Buzzer Blog

Only a few days left to help design the four new B-Line routes

TransLink is rolling out four new B-Line bus routes across 12 Metro Vancouver communities by the end of next year.

When launched, these B-Line routes will bring frequent, reliable service and shorter travel times within walking distance of a whopping 200,000 residents! Now’s the time to help shape these B-Line routes, and make sure they meet your community’s needs. The consultation period has been underway since April and will be closing on May 31.

Seven more B-Line routes that will come after the 2019 launch as part of future phases of the Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year Vision.

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LTE wireless connectivity arrives for Freedom Mobile customers in SkyTrain’s Dunsmuir Tunnel

Customers disembark the SkyTrain

Freedom Mobile customers now have access to fast LTE service at Waterfront, Burrard, Granville and Stadium–Chinatown stations, as well as in the Dunsmuir Tunnel that connects them!

We’re excited more customers will now be able to email, text, stream music and surf the web through one of the busiest sections of the SkyTrain network. It’s all part of our commitment to improve the customer experience.

TransLink and Freedom Mobile are working to expand wireless connectivity throughout the SkyTrain network so Freedom Mobile can have access throughout their commute.

“The tunnel between Waterfront and Stadium–Chinatown stations is one of the busiest SkyTrain sections, so we’re pleased to have partnered with Freedom Mobile to offer wireless connectivity to our mutual customers throughout their downtown ride. We know that uninterrupted connectivity is important to transit users and we’re pleased that these kinds of partnerships can improve our customers’ experience at no cost to transit customers or taxpayers.”

—Derrick Cheung, TransLink’s vice-president of strategic sourcing and real estate

This is the latest initiative TransLink and Shaw Communications, Freedom Mobile’s owner, has worked on together to improve the customer experience. We partnered to bring Shaw Go WiFi to the SeaBus terminals in 2015 before expanding it to include the SeaBus fleet in 2016.

Last December, Rogers completed installing cellular-network infrastructure, bringing LTE wireless connectivity to Rogers and Fido customers throughout the entire SkyTrain network.

[CLOSED] Listen and take this poll to choose the best Morgan Freeman Tap to Pay announcement on transit!

In light of information we’ve learned through news stories on May 24, 2018, of serious allegations against actor Morgan Freeman, TransLink has decided to pause his voice announcements as part of a VISA ad campaign on the transit system. We will be reaching out to VISA to discuss further.

– TransLink Media Relations

If you’re of the 35% of poll respondents who opt not to listen to anything while traveling on transit, you’ve likely heard a familiar voice during your commute. In celebration of Tap to Pay launching on May 22, 2018, you will now hear Morgan Freeman welcoming SkyTrain and bus riders into Vancouver by sharing some fun facts, etiquette reminders and a heads up that you can now Tap to Pay with your contactless Visa and Mastercard credit card or Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, and Google Pay at Compass Card readers across the system.

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#MyTransLink – May 22

Welcome back to this week’s edition of #MyTransLink! Longer and sunnier days are upon us and it’s shown in the amazing shots you’ve been submitting each week. In this edition of our fun weekly photo series we asked for your mountain view shots in and around our region. Check out this week’s photos and scroll on down for next week’s challenge!

 

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Traveling on transit just got easier!

Hey Metro Vancouver! As of May 22, 2018, you have more ways to pay for your transit trip!  You may have heard our friend Morgan Freeman on the system today announcing that Tap to Pay is here! You can now tap your contactless Visa or Mastercard Credit Card along with Apple, Google and Samsung Pay for your adult cash fare to get you from A to B on transit!

 

 

No more ticket line-ups, finding exact change or worrying about determining how many zones you intend to travel through. Just make sure to tap your intended payment method separate from your wallet to ensure the correct card is charged.

Already love your Compass Card? No worries! Keep using your Compass Card on the system to ensure that you are receiving the maximum discounted fare.

Watch our live stream for a full recap of the event.

For more information on Tap to Pay, check out translink.ca/taptopay

Will you pay with a contactless Visa or Mastercard Credit Card or stick to your Compass Card?

Author: Sarah Kertcher

9 epic transit-friendly hikes in Metro Vancouver

Burnaby Mountain

Metro Vancouver is regularly coined one of Canada’s most livable cities, with sprawling mountain ranges, picturesque views and a public transit system that’s leading the country when it comes to growth in proportion of ridership. Statistics Canada’s most recent report noted that Vancouver’s proportion of public transit commuters grew by 6.1% to 20.4% between 1996 and 2016. In contrast, during the same period, Toronto only saw a growth of 2.3% while Montreal experienced an uptick of 2.5%.

With many Metro Vancouverites living an active and outdoorsy lifestyle, we’re sharing 9 epic transit-friendly hikes in Metro Vancouver.

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#MyTransLink – May 15

It’s National Police Week, and we’re paying respect to our partners in blue by dedicating this entire week of #MyTransLink to Metro Vancouver Transit Police. In this edition of our fun weekly photo series were showcasing your best shots of our Transit Police at work in and around our region. Check out this week’s photos and scroll on down for next week’s challenge!

106 new CNG buses roll into Surrey

Compressed Natural Gas Bus

Clean energy initiatives and safety are two high priorities at TransLink, which is why we’re excited to be adding 106 new Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) buses to the fleet at the recently upgraded Surrey Transit Centre. All 106 of these new buses will also be equipped with bus safety barriers to help keep our operators, and passengers safe. Transit riders can expect to see these new CNG buses in operation in Surrey starting this week, with full roll out of all remaining new clean energy buses by the end of 2018.

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Meet Your Transit Police: 5 things you might not know!

Cst. Avgerinos and Cst. Cheng speaking to a transit operator at Braid Station.

National Police Week is May 13–19! This week, police forces across from Canada are connecting with their communities and increasing awareness about the services they provide. Here on The Buzzer blog, we’re kicking off our new series, Meet Your Transit Police!

This will be a semi-regular series that profiles members of the Metro Vancouver Transit Police, who ensure safety and security on and around the region’s public transportation system, including SkyTrain, bus, SeaBus and West Coast Express.

Metro Vancouver is home to Canada’s only public police force dedicated to transit with full provincial policing powers: Metro Vancouver Transit Police (MVTP). They’re responsible for a service area that crosses 21 municipalities and one First Nation, working to reduce crime and disorder through community policing and beat-style patrols.

Here are five things you might know about Transit Police!

They’re provincial police officers

Transit Police officers are designated provincial police officers. It means they have full police powers throughout the province of British Columbia, 24/7, on and off duty—the same as municipal police officers in British Columbia.

Dogs with jobs

The Transit Police Dog Service Unit, specializing in explosives detection, patrols the system. It’s just one of the many initiatives that keep the system safe!  The unit is comprised of four Labradors: Lucie, Cruiser, Kona and Diesel. They’re friendly and you are often welcome to pet them—just make sure you ask their human partner for permission first!

A photo of Transit Police constable Leanne Smith and police service dog Diesel

Cst. Leanne Smith with police service dog Diesel

On duty 24/7/365

The Metro Vancouver Transit Police Operations Centre is available 24/7/365, responding to non-emergency events texted to 87.77.77 and calls to 604.515.8300. Remember—in an emergency, always call 9-1-1.

Patrol operations are guided by intelligence reports and crime trend analysis. Transit Police also works closely with Transit Security on ensuring the safety and security of bus operators and passengers across Metro Vancouver.

Policing the moving city

Metro Vancouver Transit Police responds to incidents all over the transit system, and deploys foot patrols and mobile response units. Their work is guided by four operational priorities: reducing sexual offences, reducing frontline workplace assaults, helping vulnerable people in crisis and building system resiliency.

Transit Police patrols 144 kilometres of rail, 63 transit stations, the SeaBus, and more than 1,500 buses and 200 bus routes, spread out over 1,800 square kilometres.

Walking the beat

Did you know Transit Police officers usually patrol the same areas each day? It’s called walking the beat. This community-focused, holistic approach allows our Neighbourhood Police Officers (NPOs) to develop specialist knowledge of the areas they work in and understand the particular needs of each community.  This approach translates into a safer journey for all passengers and safer workplace for transit staff.

Over the coming months, we’ll be profiling members of Transit Police and all they to do keep our transit system safe!

Visit transitpolice.ca to learn more, or follow Transit Police on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram!

10-Year Vision Spotlight – Building new rapid transit; new road, walking, cycling and new mobility investments; and HandyDART

10-Year Vision Spotlight

This post is part of our 10-Year Vision Spotlight series, breaking down the nitty gritty of what’s planned in Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year Vision! 

If you’ve been following along on our Spotlight series, you’re likely aware that public engagement for Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year Vision is taking place until May 11! This is your opportunity to get involved as we gather input to help develop and finalize the Phase Two Plan.

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10-Year Vision Spotlight – North Shore, Burnaby and New Westminster

10-Year Vision Spotlight

SeaBus service will be extended to meet the last Canada Line train as part of the planned improvements in Phase Two of the 10-Year Vision.

This post is part of our 10-Year Vision Spotlight series, breaking down the nitty gritty of what’s planned in Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year Vision! 

Public engagement for Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year Vision is now underway through May 11! There’s lots of improvements coming to the North Shore (Bowen Island, Lions Bay, City of North Vancouver, District of North Vancouver and West Vancouver), Burnaby and New Westminster! Read more »

ConGRADulations to the Class of 2018: Pick up your GradPass today!

Before you know it, Grade 12 students across our region will don their caps and gowns and walk across the stage as graduates of 2018.

To help commemorate this tremendous accomplishment, each graduating Grade 12 student attending school in Metro Vancouver can enjoy two free days of unlimited travel by bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus or West Coast Express with a Compass GradPass.

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10-Year Vision Spotlight – Northeast Sector, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows

10-Year Vision Spotlight

This post is part of our 10-Year Vision Spotlight series, breaking down the nitty gritty of what’s planned in Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year Vision! 

Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council 10-Year Vision continues to bring more transit and transportation improvements to our region. It will not only improve mobility for residents, but also make progress towards the broader social, economic, and environmental goals of our region’s long-term strategies.

In this post, we’re breaking down all of the improvements coming to the Northeast Sector, Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows as part of Phase Two of the 10-Year Vision which we’re seeking public input on until May 11!

In March, we announced how we’re preparing to roll out four new B-Line bus routes by the end of 2019! This is great news for the Northeast Sector as the proposed Lougheed Highway B-Line will run from Coquitlam Central Station to Haney Place. Extended hours of service and reduced wait times are also to come with Phase Two of the Mayors’ Council 10-Year Vision.

On the rail side, you may have heard, 80 new SkyTrain cars will be available for service in Metro Vancouver by 2020 (28 of which are arriving early!).

Northeast Sector (Anmore, Belcarra, Coquitlam, Port Coquitlam, Port Moody)

North East Sector Improvements

Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows

In addition to the new B-Line and other bus service expansions and improvements, we’re also making changes to West Coast Express. Phase One of the Mayors’ Council 10-Year Vision funded the purchase of two new locomotives and refurbishment of 6 locomotives
for the West Coast Express. Phase Two plans for expanded capacity in Phase Three of the vision.

Maple ridge and pitt meadows

Public engagement on Phase Two of the 10-Year Vision is now underway until May 11! Visit tenyearvision.translink.ca to learn more and have your say.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

#MyTransLink – May 8

There’s no denying that you were on track with this week’s #MyTransLink challenge. In this edition of our fun weekly photo series showcasing your best shots of transit life in and around our region, we asked for your West Coast Express shots and once again you delivered. Check out this week’s photos and scroll on down for next week’s challenge!

 

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Granville Escalator Replacement Project set to begin on May 26


The escalators at SkyTrain’s Granville Station—the longest in Metro Vancouver—carry 30,000 people per day and have been operating since the Expo Line opened in 1986. That’s more than 30 years!

The time has come for them to be replaced to ensure the escalators are safe and reliable for our customers today and well into the future. That’s why we’re embarking on an ambitious project to replace the six escalators at Granville Station, beginning with the three main escalators on May 26 and continuing for about two years.

The Seymour Street entrance to Granville Station will be closed for the duration of this work in order to ensure the safety of customers and construction crews, and minimize project cost and time. Customers will access the station from the escalators and elevator at the Dunsmuir Street entrance where new fare gates have been installed for the increased passenger volume.

Customers are asked to allow for extra travel time or consider using Burrard or Stadium–Chinatown stations, a five to eight minute walk away. Additional SkyTrain staff will be on site to assist customers.

DID YOU KNOW? 💡 The escalators at Granville Station are the longest in Metro Vancouver at 115 feet (35 metres) long!

It’s no easy feat as it’s not your typical escalator installation! The confined location of the escalators requires them to be built on-site piece-by-piece.

Escalators typically come prefabricated and can be installed in about six months. However, the length of the escalators at Granville Station (the three main ones are the longest in Metro Vancouver!) and the challenges of bringing large prefabricated pieces into a constrained, underground space means the escalators must be built and assembled on site, and must be adapted to the exiting truss.

The Granville Station Escalator Replacement Project is part of the TransLink Maintenance and Repair Program, our annual investment in repairing, replacing and improving aging infrastructure across the system to keep customers safe, comfortable and moving across a reliable transit network every day.

In total, 37 escalators at 13 SkyTrain stations along the Expo Line and at select West Coast Express stations will be replaced through the Expo Line Escalator Replacement Project, with Granville Station up first. Improvements to the other 12 stations are anticipated to begin rolling out in 2019.

Extensive proactive maintenance is being completed on the three escalators serving the Dunsmuir entrance at Granville Station to reduce the need for unplanned maintenance, and replacement parts have been pre-ordered to allow for faster repairs.

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