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Translink Buzzer Blog

The latest news from the New Westminster Station upgrades

New West east station entrance

Upgrade work continues to march forward

Construction is well underway at New Westminster Station while we upgrade the station to improve accessibility, capacity, safety and security.

Project status:

After almost a year of station upgrades, New Westminster Station upgrades will soon be complete!

Here are some highlights of the work that has taken place over the past few months:

  • The east entrance fully re-opened with an upgraded staircase and a newly replaced escalator.
  • The staircase at the south entrance reopened as work continues to reopen the escalator.
  • Work progressed on the installation of the new south entrance elevator.
  • Installation of permanent lighting in the concourse area continued; most of the ceiling is now in place.
  • Benches have been installed at the platform level.
  • Construction fencing continues to be removed.
  • Painting throughout the station is complete.

What to expect:

Our top priority is the safety of the public, passengers, employees, and contractors.

Due to the nature of construction activity, we recognize there will be impacts to the public, including noise, traffic impacts and changes to SkyTrain service and station access.

Below is a summary of the short-term work that passengers and neighbours can expect:

  • South entrance escalator to reopen.
  • Installation of the south elevator to be completed and in operation this summer.
  • Ceiling panels at the concourse and platform levels to be fully installed.
  • Permanent lighting throughout the station to be completed.
  • North entrance to fully re-open this summer with an upgraded staircase and a newly replaced escalator.
  • Noise associated with large construction projects, including nighttime work with varying levels of noise while trains are not operating will continue.

Thanks for your patience as we complete these much-needed upgrades to New Westminster Station and stay tuned for additional updates throughout the project.

Have questions about the upgrades to New Westminster Station? Contact us!

Customer Service: 604.953.3333
Monday to Friday: 5:30 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Overnight Customer Service: 1.866.979.0930
Monday to Friday: 12:30 a.m. to 5:30 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 11:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m.

For more information you can visit translink.ca/newwestminster or translink.ca/customerservice.

Author: Jordan Keim

An update on Metrotown Station upgrade work

West Stationhouse loop truss

West station house loop truss

Have you noticed the huge steel structures being constructed outside Metrotown Station?

Over the past few weeks, crews have been constructing a massive loop truss which will be installed above the west station house – providing structural support for the station’s roof. MultivistaPhoto-2016-06-09 (1)

The loop truss is so massive, in fact, that it was shipped to the work site in four separate pieces, all of which arrived in May.

Crews have also been working on building eight columns which will support the final structure. 

Over the coming weeks, crews will continue fabricating the loop truss, and later this summer it will be hoisted into place with two separate tandem lifts.

More details to come on what this will mean for customers.

Once fully constructed, the loop truss will weigh approximately 70 tons (140,000lbs) and will be around 64.5 meters (212 feet) in length. 

A similar loop truss will be constructed and then installed in the east stationhouse.

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A rendering of the completed Metrotown Station upgrades project

Have questions about this work?
We’re here to listen!
Customer Service: 604.953.3333
Monday to Friday: 5:30 a.m. to 12:30 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.
Overnight Customer Service: 1.866.979.0930
Monday to Friday: 12:30 a.m. to 5:30 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 11:30 p.m. to 6:30 a.m.

Author: Jordan Keim 

Upcoming special events: April 16 to 20, 2016

Harminder Sidhu - who competed in the Sun Run with our CMBC team

Harminder Sidhu – who competed in the Sun Run with our CMBC team

To accommodate upcoming special events, we will be adjusting services to help our customers get where they need to go.

  • Saturday, April 16Vancouver Vaisakhi Parade; bus route detours in effect from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • Sunday, April 17Vancouver Sun Run; SeaBus and SkyTrain services will begin earlier and bus detours are in effect from the first bus until 2 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 20 – Vancouver 420;  bus route detours in effect from 9 a.m. to 12 a.m

Ongoing construction will continue on the City of Vancouver’s Burrard Corridor Project, so please allow extra travel time if commuting over the Burrard Bridge.

Customers are encouraged to check the trip planner and know before they go!

For transit service information including bus re-routes during this weekend’s events or ongoing construction, sign up for Transit Alerts at translink.ca/alerts, visit our events page,          follow @TransLink or call 604.953.3333.

Author: Jordan Keim 

Spring into Service Changes!

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You know the drill!

Four times a year (spring, summer, fall and winter), we adjust transit service across the region to make our network more efficient and provide service where it is needed most.

This spring’s service changes are extra exciting!

Why you might ask?

Because we are implementing changes that were consulted on during the 2015 Transit Network Review.

Highlights of the 2016 spring service changes include: 

  • Seasonal service changes on routes serving post-secondary institutions to reflect decreased demand following the completion of the winter semester and through the spring/summer months.
  • An additional bus service on routes 104, 340, 388 and 410 to increase service reliability and reduce congestion associated with the Pattullo Bridge Rehabilitation Project.
  • Service changes to community shuttles C3, C4, C8, C9, C19 and C20 in New Westminster and Vancouver-UBC as recommended in the 2015 Transit Network Review. These changes increase service reliability, reduce overcrowding and improve direct connections to key destinations.

Want to know more information? Check out the upcoming print Buzzer, our service changes page and all of the recommendations in the Transit Network Review.

How else can you stay in touch? Sign up for Transit Alerts at translink.ca/alerts, visit translink.ca, follow @TransLink or call Customer Service at 604.953.3333.

Author: Jordan Keim

Meet Jordan – our newest Buzzer contributor!

Jordan Keim

Jordan Keim

Hello Buzzer Blog readers – although you may have seen a few of my posts already, I am excited to be officially introduced to all of you!

I joined the TransLink communications team in October last year, and I will hopefully be posting to the blog and interacting with all of you on a regular basis.

I hate to admit it, but prior to joining TransLink my exposure and knowledge about transit was fairly limited. The past few months have been quite exciting for me; having this opportunity to learn about all things transit has been a great experience.

I grew up in a small community in BC’s northern interior with a pretty dismal transit system (which I never used), and after moving to North Vancouver three years ago – I still drove my car a lot.

How times have changed! I live in Vancouver and take transit everywhere – I haven’t driven my car in over a year. I can now say that I fully appreciate how incredible (and complex) Metro Vancouver’s integrated transit network really is.

I am excited to share new stories with all of you and keeping you in the know on TransLink projects and initiatives.

 

Author: Jordan Keim 

First phase of running rail replacement work complete!

You may have noticed in the past few months that the Expo Line has been undergoing some major maintenance work!

As part of that maintenance, we have been replacing major sections of rail along the 30 year old track.

The first phase of the work began last August and has just been completed – replacing 4,550 linear metres of rail at three locations.

Here’s what has been replaced so far:

  • 700 linear metres of rail along the outbound curve east of Edmonds Station
  • 950 linear metres of rail along the inbound curve west of Edmonds Station
  • 2,900 linear metres of rail along the S-curve between Commercial–Broadway and Main Street –Science World stations.

We will be continuing the rail replacement work this summer.

This work is critical to keeping our system in a good state of repair.

Thanks for your patience while we complete this necessary maintenance on the SkyTrain system!

Author: Jordan Keim

Get ready to surf (WiFi) with SeaBus

Beginning today, Shaw Go WiFi will be available to all SeaBus passengers at both the Waterfront and Lonsdale Quay terminals – for FREE!O15-1320_SeabusDom_Roof_BurrardBeaver_252x324_Lamar_Page_1

We have partnered with Shaw Communications to provide strong WiFi connectivity for our SeaBus customers and – the best part is – this service improvement is being made with no cost to taxpayers!

Just wait! It gets better…

Following the initial launch of Shaw Go WiFi in our SeaBus terminals, this partnership will also see Shaw Go WiFi installed on all TransLink SeaBuses in the coming months.

Passengers who are not Shaw customers can enjoy Shaw Go WiFi access by selecting ‘ShawGuest’ from the list of available WiFi settings, and following the on-screen instructions to connect. All Shaw Internet customers have complimentary access to all SeaBus hot spots as part of their subscription.

We understand that customers want a fast and reliable WiFi connection when they ride transit, and this is a step we are taking to improve our customers’ experience with our services.

So sit back, relax and enjoy complimentary WiFi. Happy surfing, folks!

Check out our Mobile Services page for more details on this and other mobile service tools.

Author: Jordan Keim

SkyTrain turns 30 today!… (Whaaaaaat?)


Flashback Friday: a SkyTrain promo video from 1984 

Today, on a sunny winter day 30 years ago, Premier Bill Bennett proudly announced the opening of SkyTrain – forever changing the face of transit for Metro Vancouver – crazy, huh?

1985skytrainbanner

SkyTrain bursts through a banner on its very first day in service: Dec 11, 1985!

The inauguration of SkyTrain was huge – so huge in fact, that there were three events in one day (lucky!).

Following the opening ceremony at Waterfront Station, the first SkyTrain car was radioed to the platform, broke through a ceremonious ribbon and then continued its maiden voyage – attending two more celebrations – one at Metrotown Station and the other at New Westminster Station.

The original line – named Expo Line – was a legacy project of Expo ’86 and connected downtown Vancouver, Burnaby and New Westminster. Passengers then had the ability to travel from Waterfront Station to New Westminster Station in just 25 minutes – half the time it would have taken to travel by bus!

Following the December 11, 1985 inauguration, SkyTrain entered free service—the system was launched with huge fanfare and eight days of free rides, before officially going into paid service on January 3, 1986.

Over the coming decades, Metro-Vancouver’s rapid transit system would see exponential growth with extensions to the Expo Line, the creation of the Millennium Line, the addition of the Canada Line and our soon to be Evergreen Extension (an extension of the Millennium Line).

Let’s look at some of our major milestones in the last 30 years:

  • 1986 SkyTrain opens for regular revenue service
  • 1989 – 1994 – three Expo Line expansion projects built – adding service to Surrey with King George Station as the terminus station.
  • 2002 – Millennium Line officially opens – operating along the Expo Line to New Westminster Station and adding new service between Columbia Station and Commercial-Broadway.
  • 2006 – Millennium Line service is extended to its current terminus station, VCC-Clark.
  • 2009 – Canada Line opens connecting downtown Vancouver with Richmond and YVR airport.
  • 2017 – The Evergreen extension of the Millennium Line, connecting Coquitlam and Port Moody, through Burnaby, to Vancouver with a one seat ride, is scheduled to open.

From a modest 22 kilometres track carrying roughly 50,000 passengers a day to 15 stations, SkyTrain has grown to a mammoth rapid transit system. We now operate 68 kilometres of track with 47 stations and transport roughly 250, 000 passengers per day, AND when the Evergreen Extension opens, we will have the longest fully automated rapid transit network in the world – with 79  kilometres of track and 53 stations.

Were you at SkyTrain’s inauguration or at any other of the milestone events or have a favourite memory of SkyTrain? We would love to hear from you – comment below!


Going to Town – 1985 SkyTrain project documentary 

 

Author: Jordan Keim 

New signs make taking the bus a breeze

A wayfinding expert’s rendering of a new bus stop sign and scheduling panel

A wayfinding expert’s rendering of a new bus stop sign and scheduling panel

Starting this month and continuing through the week, bus stop signs in Surrey City Centre are getting a new look!

The design of the new signs, courtesy of TransLink’s Wayfinding experts, display more information and are easier to read.

You’ll also notice something strangely familiar — the new look is consistent with other transit facilities across the system such as SkyTrain stations. The large “T” is for transit (of course!) and will make spotting a bus stop a breeze.

Digital rendering of a new bus stop sign

Digital rendering of a new bus stop sign

Rolling out the new bus stop signs will be a gradual process. To be cost effective, signage and schedules “infotubes” will only be changed out when the existing pieces reach end-of-life or are damaged or require updated route information. The full replacement of all bus stop signs and infotubes will take place over the next few years.

New bus stop signs

New bus stop signs will make it easier for customers to locate bus stops from a distance.

The “T” for transit, route numbers, Next Bus information and the bay number are placed in prominent locations. To differentiate from regular bus service, B-Line information will be highlighted in orange and NightBus in navy blue.

Schedule panels replace infotubes

Many bus stops currently have infotubes on the pole with schedule information, and riders generally give us good feedback about them. Sometimes, however, riders tell us the text is too small. We’re making improvements in this area by replacing the infotubes with schedule panels. The schedule panels are flat, contain larger text and have the same look and feel as the bus stop signs.

Existing infotube (left) and new scheduling panel (right)

Existing infotube (left) and new scheduling panel (right)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Keep your eyes open!

If you’re in Surrey City Centre over the next few days, make sure to check out the new signs. There are also a few new ones dotting other areas of the region, so keep your eyes open for them too!

 

 

Author: Jordan Keim