Ridership in 2016 was at an all time high. TransLink’s service area covers more than 1,800 square kilometres. That means that over 90% of the region’s population either lives or works within walking distance of transit.
Do you like numbers and facts like that? Well then, I’d like to introduce you to the TransLink Accountability Centre.
This is your one-stop-shop for the TransLink “big” picture as we focus on a system that is customer-focused as well as being financially and environmentally sustainable.
Regional Snapshot – what we do and where we go, including cycling infrastructure and the Major Road Network.
Performance Dashboard – performance indicators in six categories; Ridership, Customer Satisfaction, Safety and Security, Service Quality, Efficiency, Environment.
Transparency – links to our corporate reports, meetings and Freedom of Information requests.
Our mandate is to get you where you need to go in a safe and efficient manner on buses and by rail and sea. We also know the importance of monitoring our services and examine how we can strive to be better delivering our service and more transparent to our riders.
This is version 1.0 of the centre and we’ll be improving as we go.
So, how can we make it better? What numbers and other items would you like to see?
Leave a comment and let us know because we want to make it as good as we can for you, our customers!
Today TransLink and Rogers announced the next phase in its partnership to enhance wireless connectivity and customer experience for SkyTrain passengers.
Rogers and Fido customers will now have access to Rogers LTE wireless coverage through the Edmonds Tunnel, helping commuters stay connected across Metro Vancouver!
This next phase expands on the LTE and voice access first made available to SkyTrain customers through the Dunsmuir Tunnel in July 2016 – a significant milestone that connects passengers along one of the busiest stretches in the SkyTrain network.
“This is just one way we are working to improve the transit experience by improving cellular coverage for our customers at no cost to taxpayers. We will continue to work with Rogers to build out wireless coverage along the SkyTrain, including Evergreen, Columbia and New Westminster.”
– Guy Akester, TransLink Director of Real Estate and Strategic Sourcing
Rogers and Fido wireless customers can now surf the Internet, make and receive calls, send and receive emails and text messages, stream video and music, and more on their mobile devices while travelling on the Expo Line between 22nd Street and Edmonds stations.
From left to right: Derrick Cheung, Vice-President Strategic Sourcing and Real Estate, Translink; Gord Nelson, Vice-President, Sales, British Columbia, Rogers Communications; Leon Leroux, Director, Network Implementation, Western Region, Rogers Communications; and Guy Akester, Director, Real Estate Program and Partners, Translink.
Exciting news! Today, Rogers announced it has turned on LTE wireless service in the SkyTrain Dunsmuir Tunnel.
TransLink has partnered with Rogers to provide strong LTE connectivity while on the SkyTrain and – the best part is this service improvement is being made with no cost to taxpayers.
Now, Rogers and Fido customers can surf the web, make/receive calls or texts, stream video and music and catch Pokemon all while travelling through the Dunsmuir Tunnel; including Stadium–Chinatown, Granville, Burrard and Waterfront stations.
Here are all the details on the enhanced connectivity on the SkyTrain!
How do you get wireless service in a tunnel?
This type of install is referred to as a DAS or a Distributed Antenna System. Rogers worked tirelessly over many nights to install equipment in the stations and throughout the Dunsmuir Tunnel.
Non-revenue night work was necessary to ensure passenger service would not be disrupted in any way. SkyTrain staff also provided great support during this installation.
What are the benefits?
Increased access to cellular data and connectivity is important to our customers!
TransLink has engaged industry experts to ensure that we have a reliable and sustainable network in place.
Rogers and Fido customers now have uninterrupted LTE connectivity while travelling along the Dunsmuir tunnel and can browse the web and make calls. This improves the safety, security and convenience and is part of our continued effort to improve customer experience.
Are there any plans to expand LTE service to other areas or other carriers?
We are finding innovative ways to expand and diversify revenue sources while delivering a service that customers have requested.
Rogers will continue to expand LTE service along the SkyTrain, specifically, the Edmonds, Columbia, New Westminster and Evergreen tunnels. The DAS system has been configured to support additional carriers so we look forward to other carriers also taking advantage of this opportunity to improve LTE connectivity to the public.
Is LTE the same as Wi-Fi?
The two major categories of wireless internet access for mobile devices are cellular wide area networks and Wi-Fi local area networks.
The biggest difference and reason why we are pursuing cellular access is that Wi-Fi is tied to a router and has a limited range to a confined area, approximately 50 to 100 feet, whereas a cellular network provides access anywhere, through your data plan when you’re out of Wi-Fi range.
Thank you to Lea Dam, Real Estate Project Manager for the low down on the new connectivity!
Our unique police service has a brand new mobile-friendly website to make it even easier to say something, when you see something, all with your mobile phone.
By visiting transitpolice.ca you are able to discreetly report a non-emergency police issue, contact us, download the OnDuty app or text 87-77-77 and Transit Police takes each report they receive very seriously.
Check out the safety tips section to help keep yourself and your belongings safe while on transit.
Basically, visiting transitpolice.ca means that you have Transit Police in your pocket during your transit journey on all modes at all times.
You can help Transit Police keep transit safe. If you see something, say something!
Author: Adrienne Coling (with files from Transit Police)
In fact, our Customer Information team is in such high demand, on March 14th of this year, we extended our Customer Information service hours on Twitter from 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m., seven days a week to:
Monday to Friday: 5:30 a.m. – 12:30 a.m.
Saturday and Sunday: 6:30 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
to answer all your service-related questions and provide service updates, tips, and information to all 100,000+ of you!
#ThankYou100K 100K+ followers! THANK YOU for your continuous support! ^TLTwitterTeam
— TransLink BC (@TransLink)
To celebrate this excellent milestone, we’re having a giveaway (Prizing to be announced soon!) To enter, simply follow @TransLink and retweet one of the following tweets from our Twitter team:
It is amazing to see 100.000 followers on our twitter feed! We have the best tweeps! #THANKYOU100K ^jkd
Are you looking to get into cycling in Metro Vancouver? Are you unsure of where the best, safest and longest stretches of cycling paths and lanes? Or maybe you want to learn more about the region’s cycling community in general.
TransLink.ca is a great place to start your cycling journey!
Here are some updates we’ve done lately. Click the links provided to take a peek!
Riding transit, you may have noticed that some of our transit vehicles and properties contain video and/or audio recording devices.
Recording devices are present around the system to ensure the safety and security of everyone on and around our system and we take the privacy of all concerned very seriously.
Riders can use the Next Bus SMS service or Next Bus on our mobile site
If you’re a user of Next Bus SMS service, like I am, or if you are considering using the service, this post is for you!
For those of you who are new to this, I’ll break it down for you.
Basically you text the 5-digit bus stop number (the yellow number at the top of every bus stop sign) to 33333 and our Next Bus SMS service will tell you when the next six buses are expected to depart your stop.
Handy, isn’t it?
And, bonus, it’s free for riders to use!
That’s right, TransLink doesn’t charge you for Next Bus SMS — although, depending on your plan, standard carrier text messaging charges may apply.
Now, to keep operating costs associated with Next Bus from being passed on to you, we’ve introduced an advertising-based service.
When you use Next Bus SMS, an ad and/or link may appear, in addition to the upcoming bus times.
This won’t cost you anything, either.
If you don’t want to receive these ads, there’s an easy solution!
Our fabulous Customer Information team are the folks at the other end of the line when you call and the Customer Information Work Leaders are the ones behind the Transit Alerts and Twitter account!
At the rate TransLink’s Twitter account responds to tweets and pushes out information to our customers, you would imagine a throng of staff all behind rows and rows of computers. But nope, it’s usually just one person – the Customer Information Work Leader!
Desirée, better known as ^DA on Twitter, has been a Work Leader for the past few years. I had the opportunity to ask her a couple of questions about what it’s been like helping to look after the Twitter account!
What does 50,000 followers mean to you and the TL Twitter Team?
It feels like a reward to see this many people follow us! It means over 50,000 of you are looking to us and trust us for accurate and timely information. We always keep that at the front of our minds – just how much impact the information we share can have on our customer’s day.
What do you want to say to the 50,000 followers?
Thanks for the taking the time to contact us, whether it is for good or bad feedback! Thanks for taking the time to notify us when you see something – like an accident on the road or a knocked over bus pole – out on your route that that we should know about. And thanks for sending us positive and kind tweets when you think we might need it. Some of those get passed along so that everyone in our group can see it because we are a team. We really do feel that we have some of the best followers around the Twitterverse!
One of Desirée’s colleagues at the Customer Information Work Leader desk!
What’s the favourite part of your job?
There are a couple of things. One, I really love the team that I work with. Seriously, they are such a great group of people and they’re so knowledgeable. I learn something new all the time from them. Another favourite part is figuring out some of the mysteries of transit. Being part of the Twitter team involves so much more behind the scenes than just what gets tweeted out. I love figuring out why something is the way it is or why something happened.
What’s the most memorable question you’ve received from a tweeter?
We’ve received so many and it always amazing to see how creative people are. Also, I think it is so great to hear how passionate our riders are about transit. Some pretty fantastic and constructive conversations have been had via Twitter about transit so it’s tough to narrow it down to just one. Although, I personally love it when our followers send us funny or interesting pictures – like the one of Darth Vader riding the Canada Line that said he was “Forced” to take transit due to rising gas prices.
What’s it like having to convey information in less than 140 characters on Twitter?
It’s a challenge to be reduced to such a small number of characters, that’s for sure. I’m usually a pretty descriptive person, so I cringe and joke about having to commit “a grammar crime” in order to squeeze it all in one tweet. I think I’m probably the biggest offender for sending multiple tweets to get an answer out! Sometimes you need to get creative.
How does one become a tweeter for @TransLink?
Apply to work at Coast Mountain Bus Company and TransLink! Most of the people who tweet and respond using @TransLink are Work Leaders in the Customer Information department. The majority of the Work Leaders have been with Customer Information for some time and most of us have worked in other Coast Mountain departments and depots during our tenure with the company. Being a Work Leader requires a higher level of knowledge about the transit system and also we have access to additional tools and contacts within the company.
How has @TransLink changed 50,000 followers later?
It has evolved. There is a lot more discussion happening and we’re not just using Twitter to push out information. Information is now being exchanged in both directions, between our followers and us. We learn a lot from our riders and often, if there is an issue going on, they have been the first to alert us (accidents, delays, clean ups required, etc.). Also, in addition to our 50,000 followers, when there is any sort of disruption people who don’t follow @TransLink on Twitter are turning to us first for information and updates.
To cellebrate 50,000 followers on Twitter and to show appreciation, we are giving away three FareCards! To enter, simply follow @TransLink and retweet one of the tweets on this page. It’s that simple. =)