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Category: Special Event

Celebrate the Chinese New Year with parades and events around Metro Vancouver

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2017 is the year of the rooster

Cock-a-doodle-doo! It’s almost the year of the rooster in the lunar calendar.

The Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival in China, is this Saturday, January 28 and there are lots of activities around the region to ring in this new year.

One of the bigger celebrations is in Richmond at the Aberdeen Centre which boasts the largest Chinese New Year celebration in North America and is easily accessed from the Canada Line!

The events at Aberdeen are already underway with the Chinese New Year Flower and gift fair. Next up is the countdown on Friday then the Golden Dragon and Lion dance on Saturday.

For more Chinese New Year fun, head to Lonsdale Quay on the North Shore, a special Chinese New Year dinner at the Cloverdale Rec Centre in Surrey or check out FlyOver Canada’s special showing of Flight of the Dragon at Canada Place until February 26.

Another popular celebration is the 44th Vancouver Chinatown Spring Festival Parade at 11 a.m. on Sunday, January 29.

Map-2017From 5 a.m. until 4 p.m., Pender, Carrall, Columbia and Gore will be closed.

The following bus detours will apply to allow for the parade route:

5 a.m. to 4 p.m.

50 Waterfront Regular route to temporary terminus on Cambie & Pender.
50 False Creek From temporary terminus on Cambie at Pender via Cambie, Georgia, Seymour, Cordova, regular route.

9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

23 Davie Regular route to Quebec & Expo Blvd then Expo Blvd regular route.
23 Main Regular route to Pacific Blvd & Abbott then Pacific Blvd regular route.
210 Vancouver Regular route to Powell & Main, then via Powell, Water, Cordova, Howe, regular route.
211 Vancouver Regular route to Powell & Main, then via Powell, Water, Cordova, Howe, regular route.
3 Downtown Regular route to Main & Dunsmuir Viaduct, then via Dunsmuir, Homer, Hastings, regular route.
3 Main Regular route to Cordova & Cambie, then via Cambie, Georgia, Main, regular route.
4 UBC Regular route to Main & Hastings then via Hastings, Granville, regular route.
7 Dunbar Regular route to Main & Hastings then via Hastings, Granville, regular route.
8 Downtown Regular route to Main & Dunsmuir Viaduct, then via Dunsmuir, Homer, Hastings, regular route.
8 Fraser Regular route to Cordova & Cambie, then via Cambie, Georgia, Main, regular route.
19 Metrotown Regular route to Pender & Cambie then via Cambie, Georgia, Georgia Viaduct Main, regular route.
19 Stanley Park Regular route to Main & Dunsmuir Viaduct, then via Dunsmuir, Homer, Hastings, regular route.
22 Knight Regular route to Pender & Cambie then via Cambie, Georgia, Georgia Viaduct, Prior, regular route.
22 Downtown Regular route to Prior & Gore then via Prior, Dunsmuir Viaduct, Dunsmuir Homer, Pender, regular route.

For more information including bus detours maps, visit translink.ca/alerts.

Kung Hei Fat Choi!!

Author: Adrienne Coling

The season of giving continues with thousands of donations for Toys for Tots

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Delivering our promissory note of 3,000 toys to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau!

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Lots’o’toys!

It was a unseasonably chilly morning when Sparky the Elf promised 3,000 new, unwrapped toys on behalf of TransLink and its operating companies to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau (LMCB), but the air was filled with warm, holiday cheer!

Toys for Tots in our region was developed by a group of BC Transit operators back in 1985.

Each year since, the employees of the TransLink enterprise have donated to the less fortunate during the holiday season.

Donations have been made at all eight transit centres, TransLink Lost Property as well as HQs for TransLink, CMBC, BCRTC and Transit Police.

How do we deliver these packages of Christmas joy to the LMCB? By reindeer bus and shuttle, of course!

Santa, Mrs Claus, Sparky, Prancer (that’s me) and some plucky helpers collected 6,111 toys and items from across the Enterprise! That is on top of over $500 of cash donations!

This year is record-breaking and it wouldn’t have been possible without the immense generosity from all of our staff to make this season a little brighter for those in need.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Metro Vancouver welcomes the 2016 CUTA Fall Conference and Transit Show

CUTA is the Canadian Urban Transit Association and this year’s Fall Conference and Transit Show is happening right here in Metro Vancouver November 5–9.

The conference is such a wonderful opportunity to bring the best and brightest in Canadian transit together and experience the wealth of knowledge these experts have to bring!

This year’s theme is Inspiring Sustainable Change with a variety of seminars and speakers discussing today’s demands, tomorrow’s challenges and the possibilities for transit in our country and around the world.

There are 20 amazing TransLink employees presenting different topics from climate change to land use and everything in between.

In fact, our own Robert Willis will be presenting in the Growing Customer Expectations session regarding video use for social media used by transit agencies.

Derek Stewart from CMBC will also be speaking. His talk is about his climate change challenges facing transit agencies. Keep your eyes glued to the Buzzer blog as we will be featuring a little Q & A with Derek next week.

For more conference details, check out the full program.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Transit Trick-or-Treat

Transit Trick or Treat

Halloween is fast approaching! The weather looks like it should clear by this evening, but you never know!

If you or your costumed comrades are fair weather trick-or-treaters, we have a list of Metro Vancouver malls conveniently located on or near  SkyTrain routes that participate in indoor trick-or-treating.

Central City Mall – Located on the corner of 102nd Avenue and King George Boulevard in Surrey, BC.

Trick or Treating will take place on Monday, October 31, from 4pm to 6pm. Stop by Customer Service for a treat before making your way to any store displaying participating signage.

Coquitlam Centre – Located at the intersection of the Barnet Highway (7A) and the Lougheed Highway (7). The address is 2929 Barnet Highway, Coquitlam, BC.

Want to keep your kiddies indoors this Halloween? Coquitlam Centre invites you to celebrate Halloween on October 31st, from 4pm to 5pm by trick or treating at the mall. All kids 12 and under in a costume are welcome to participate!
Brentwood Town Centre – Located at 4567 Lougheed Highway, Burnaby, BC.

Join the annual Halloween fun on Monday, October 31st from 4pm to 5pm. Fun for the whole family including a live DJ, Stilt Walkers, Balloon Artists, Interactive Pumpkin Patch, and of course, candy galore!

Willowbrook Shopping Centre – Located at #150 – 19705 Fraser Highway, Langley, BC

For $2 cash per child up to age 12, you can join in this popular and lively Halloween event and Trick or Treat Parade on Monday, October 31st from 5pm to 6pm. Registration starts at 4:30pm at any of the following Willowbrook Shopping Centre entrances: Sport ChekSwimco, Tim Hortons,  Sashimi Sushi, and Sears.

Proceeds from the event will go to the Langley School District Foundation to support innovative and essential school programs for Langley students.

Lougheed Town Centre – Located at 9855 Austin Ave, Burnaby

Trick or treat (mostly treats!) at Lougheed Town Centre on October 31 from 4pm to 5pm. Free treats for kids under 12, with a little something for parents too! Check out the Halloween photo booth open from 4pm to 6pm to capture your perfect costume (and then submit your #TLtrickortreat selfie).

Trick or treating at Lougheed Town Centre is in support of Burnaby Firefighters Charitable Society. Suggested donation of $1 per child.

Metropolis at Metrotown – Located at 4700 Kingsway, Burnaby, BC

Come in costume and trick-or-treat your way around Vancouver’s biggest shopping centre on October 31st from 4pm to 6pm. Not all stores are participating, however there will be more than enough candy at the various shops throughout the mall.

Landsdowne Centre – Located at 5300 No.3 Road, Richmond, BC

Grab your costume and your silly face on October 31st from 12pm to 5pm for the Halloween photo booth at Lansdowne Centre. Celebrate Halloween with trick or treating from 3pm to 5pm.

 

*****Don’t forget to snap a #TLtrickortreat selfie of you in costume on transit for a chance to win!*****

Author: Sarah Kertcher

Hamilton Transit Centre opens in Richmond!

I Love Transit 2016

Today is an exciting day for TransLink, Coast Mountain Bus Company and transit users across the region!

The brand new Hamilton Transit Centre (HTC) is open and will start operations on September 5, 2016.

Transit centres are the hubs of transit systems. They keep buses on the roads to get passengers where they need to go.

Hamilton Transit Centre has capacity for 300 forty-foot buses, including up to 80 community shuttle buses and 150 Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fuelled buses.

HTC will perform three functions: dispatch, fuel and wash service as well as maintenance for buses servicing the Richmond, New Westminster, Burnaby and Vancouver areas.

Watch the video above where Joe Peschisolido, Member of Parliament for StevestonRichmond East, the Hon. Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development and Minister Responsible for TransLink, Al Richmond, UBCM president, TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond, and Councillor Harold Steves, Acting Mayor of Richmond celebrated the opening in Richmond today.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Take the “T” to the PNE!

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Get your runners out for the 2016 donut dash, go prehistoric at the Dinosaurs Alive! exhibit or fly through the air as an Angry Bird on the new zip line because The Fair at the PNE is back and we have your added transit to get you to the fun!

Additional bus service includes:

  • #16 PNE Special from 29th Avenue Station – stopping at Renfew SkyTrain Station
  • #210 PNE Special from Phibbs exchange in North Vancouver
  • The West Vancouver Blue Bus Special from Horsehoe Bay

For the PNE free days on Tuesday, August 23 and Tuesday, August 30 there will be extra shuttles from 29th Avenue Station to PNE.

Remember! The Fair at the PNE is closed on August 22 and August 29.

Know before you go! Head to our Trip Planner to map out your route to the PNE grounds!

Author: Adrienne Coling

That’s a wrap! The Mark III enters service

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What a beaut!

August 18th, 2016 “marks” another momentous day in SkyTrain history. The highly anticipated Mark III entered revenue service for the first time and it wasn’t without fanfare!

If you’re as excited as we were about its arrival, you likely followed the Mark III’s journey across the country, endeavoured to #SpotTheMarkIII during system testing, entered our contest to become a Mark III VIP, or stopped by in person to take the inaugural ride.

If not, don’t you worry – you can catch all that you may have missed right here!

Watch as SkyTrain President & General Manager Vivienne King and TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond welcomed the new Mark III into Waterfront station.

If you haven’t had a chance to already, get up close and personal by checking out the behind the scenes tour with Chris Morris, our resident Mark III expert and Director of Engineering Assets at BCRTC.

But wait, there’s more!

Below is a gallery of some of the photos “mark”-ing the special day.

Make sure to check out Facebook and Instagram for even more!

This Mark III is now in regular service and will be joined shortly by its sibling Mark III SkyTrains once they have completed their testing and are rail ready!

Author: Sarah Kertcher

I Love Transit week is back for its 8th year!

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Eight is great and 2016 marks eight years of TransLink I Love Transit weeks!

This week is all about celebrating the reasons why we love transit, sharing interesting transit stories, holding fun in-person events and contests for everyone!

This year, I Love Transit will run August 29 to September 2, 2016.

Take a look at what we have going on:

August 29: Kick-off of I Love Transit social media contest – start thinking about your entries to win!

September 1: I Love Transit Camp for kids (ages 8-12) at SkyTrain Operations and Maintenance Centre and Burnaby Transit Centre.

September 2: Exclusive opportunity to tour the new Hamilton Transit Centre!

September 7: Colouring contest draw from the special I Love Transit print Buzzer – out on the system on August 19, 2016.

Thank you, in advance, to all of our participants and entrants. This is always such a great time of the year and we love sharing it with you!

 Be sure to check out our social media channels for stories, photos, videos and lots of other exciting I Love Transit week content!
TwitterInstagramFacebookBuzzer blog

Author: Adrienne Coling

Oh, Canada! Celebrating Canada Day across Metro Vancouver

Photo courtesy of Colin Knowles

Photo courtesy of Colin Knowles

It may not be Canada’s Sesquicentennial (Yep, that’s what it’s called – I looked it up!) for another year but there are still so many great Canada Day events all around the region!

TransLink will be operating on a Sunday/Holiday schedule with additional service to help you get to and from your Canada Day celebrations.

Please be advised that due to events across the region, many buses are being detoured or re-routed on July 1, 2016.

Take a look at just a few events you can experience on our nation’s birthday!

Granville Island Canada Day

This celebration includes a parade, a special ceremony with cake, live performances and the free water park for the kids!

Time: 8 a.m. – Midnight
Place: Granville Island, Vancouver

Canada Day at Canada Place

This is the nation’s largest celebration outside of Ottawa! There will be live music and entertainment, a circus show, food carts, activities for the kids and a Canada Day parade!

Time: Waterfront Party: 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Parade starts at 7 p.m.
Place: Canada Place – Parade starts at Georgia Street & Broughton Street.

Steveston Salmon Festival

Salmon. ALL OF THE SALMON! Also, all of the people! This annual festival takes place in this historic fishing village bringing thousands of people to enjoy over 1,200 pounds of salmon, grilled over open fire pits!

Time: 6:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Place: Steveston Village, Richmond

Surrey’s Canada Day celebration

This day of celebrations South of the Fraser boasts one of the biggest outdoor concerts in B.C. Food trucks, a games land, sports world, activity tents for all ages (including seniors!), lots of live music and performances.

Time: 10 a.m. – 10:30 p.m.
Place: Bill Reid Millennium Amphitheatre, Surrey

Coal Harbour fireworks

End all of your Canada Day adventures with a spectacular fireworks show at Coal Harbour. The fireworks show will be visible from northwest-side Downtown (Coal Harbour, parts of Stanley Park), West Vancouver (the seawall between Ambleside and Dundarave), North Vancouver (Lower Lonsdale).

Time: 10:30 p.m. – 11 p.m.
Place: Coal Harbour, Vancouver

There are lots more activities to do around the region including celebrations in White Rock, Maple Ridge, Coquitlam, North Vancouver, Langley and more!

Remember!

You can skip the lines and crowds after your event by using your Compass Card or by purchasing an extra return ticket before your event.

Tickets are good for 90 minutes from the time they’re first tapped. Plus! You only need a one-zone fare to travel across all zones on holidays!

Please be sure to use our Trip Planner and head to translink.ca/alerts and translink.ca/holidayservice to help you on your way to Canada Day fun!

Author: Adrienne Coling

Join us for TransLink’s AGM on June 23, 2016

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Each year, TransLink holds our Annual General Meeting (AGM).

The AGM is where TransLink and its operating companies review highlights of the past year in transit from financial to operational milestones, our latest Annual Report and a whole lot more.

We also open the floor to questions from riders and community members just like you!

Our June Open Board Meeting will follow the AGM after a brief break.

Details:

June 23, 2016
Annual General Meeting
9:00 – 9:45 a.m.
Open Board Meeting 10:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
TransLink Head Office
400-287 Nelson’s Court, New Westminster

 Unable to attend? Not to worry!
Both events will be filmed and available on translink.ca.

**UPDATE**

TransLink 2015 Annual General Meeting

You can also review our AGM videos for the past give years here.

Author: Adrienne Coling

TravelSmart to the BMO Vancouver Marathon!

On your mark. Get set. GO!

On your mark. Get set. GO!

Where can you find 31,000 litres of water, 13,000 bananas, over 90,000 spectators and 4,000 volunteers?

At the 45th annual BMO Vancouver Marathon and it’s happening this Sunday!

Runners from around the world will lace up and descend on our fair region on May 1 for this award-winning race.

Not up for the 42 kilometre trek? Not to worry!

There are races for everyone! You can participate in the marquee marathon, a fast half marathon, a relay, an 8 km run, a kids run or a 2.5 km walk.

The big news on the transit front is that the Vancouver International Marathon Society is offering free, single-use Compass Tickets to all runners.

There will also be free TravelSmart Bus Shuttles available in five locations for registered Marathon and Half Marathon runners.

You can find more information and register for the shuttle here.

Canada Line is one of the most convenient ways to get to the race with peak service levels in effect until 8:15am — meaning trains will be running every 6-7 minutes.

Remember! Different races have different starting points and times.

Check out this handy-dandy chart to help you get to the starting line!

Let transit help you get to the starting line

Let transit help you get to the starting line

*Relay Exchange Zones are located near Imperial Drive and W 16th, NW Marine and 4th Ave, plus Chestnut and Cornwall.

Get those pompoms and bullhorns out because the day isn’t just for the runners!

If you come out and cheer for the thousands of runners as they race toward the downtown Finish Line Street Festival, YOU could win prizes!

Know before you go!

The following bus routes will be modified at certain times during the day to accommodate the marathon: 2, 9, 15, 17, 19, 22, 25, 33, 41, 49, 99, 160, 210, 211, 240, 246, C18, C19, C20, C21, and C23.

SkyTrain and SeaBus will operate regular Sunday service; there is no Sunday service on the West Coast Express.

More race details as well as road closure information can be found online at bmovanmarathon.ca/travelsmart.
For transit information and detours, visit translink.ca/alerts.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Be a SkyTrain VIP!

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See what lies behind the velvet rope with SkyTrain VIP

******FYI: THIS WAS AN APRIL FOOLS DAY JOKE.
THERE IS NO SKYTRAIN VIP PROGRAM******

We are so happy to introduce our brand new SkyTrain VIP service.

Up until now, SkyTrain seats have been first come, first serve.

But starting today, April 1st, you can reserve a spot in the first train car and experience the luxury of pre-warmed seats, personalized neck pillows and complimentary on-board spa treatments.

Be the first to enjoy the view while riding in style.

The cost? Only $18.99 a ride!

Proceeds will go to transforming the Vancouver Transit Centre into a crow sanctuary for Canuck.

Author: Adrienne Coling

The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival blooms for the 10th year

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Join other cherry blossom enthusiasts online using the hashtag #VCBF10

Cherry blossoms are blooming all around the region and that means two things: 1) spring is definitely on its way and 2) the annual Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival is nearly here!

This year, the festival is celebrating its tenth season and will run from March 24 until April 17, 2016.

The festival always has so many fun events for all ages and this year is no exception!

Submit your cherry blossom-themed lines in the traditional 5-7-5 syllabic form for the Haiku Invitational.

Entering will get you the chance to be recognized as top winning poem, win the Sakura Aware or honourable mention in your category!

The inspiration for this year’s poems is celebrations and the contest runs until June 1.

Here are some tips from the organizers to help you get started:

Be clear. The best haiku present clear images that everyone can understand. Of course, deeper meanings may take many readings to fathom, but you’ll make a great start by focusing on sensory images – things you can see, hear, smell, touch, or taste.

Be suggestive. A haiku should hint at some sort of emotion or point of view rather than naming or analyzing it. Usually a haiku will have two parts, and deeper meanings or emotions often arise out of the unstated relationship between the two parts.

Practise. No poet has ever written a top-notch haiku without writing dozens of forgettable ones first. Keep a notebook where you can jot down haiku as the inspiration hits and then review them at your leisure.

You can take a look at last year’s winner, here.

A new experience for this year’s festival is the Blossom Barge where 40 beautiful, blooming cherry trees will be pulled by a tugboat up False Creek for everyone to enjoy.

Exciting performances will be happening at the moorings and it’s free to go!

Here is the Blossom Barge schedule:

April 16, 2016
10:40 am Blossom Barge parades from Science World to Granville Island
12:00 pm -2:00 pm Performances at Granville Island Market – featuring Tetsu Taiku & Tzo’kam collaboration, Kutapira and Langley Ukulele Ensemble.

April 17, 2016
12:00 pm-2:00 pm Performances at Granville Island Market – featuring the Vancouver Metropolitan Orchestra.
3:00 pm Blossom Barge parades from Granville Island to Science World
5:25 pm Blossom Barge passes by Canada Place Viewing Station

*Unfortunately, there will be no audiences allowed
on the actual voyage of the barge due to safety regulations*

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Cherry Jam Downtown Concert 2015

The big “to-do” each year is the Cherry Jam Downtown Concert at Burrard SkyTrain station sponsored, in part, by TransLink.

On March 24 from 12-1:30 pm in the indoor concourse, you can catch Metropolitan Orchestra String Quartet, Vancouver Chinese Music Ensemble, Vancouver Okinawa Taiko and more!

With so much happening this year, be sure to head to vcbf.ca for more event listings and further details.

Looking for blossoms? Visit the festival’s interactive map on where the blossoms are blooming!

Author: Adrienne Coling

Pink is powerful!

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Pink Shirt Day 2016

Another Pink Shirt Day has arrived! What’s Pink Shirt Day? Well, let me tell you!

It’s a day to stand together (wearing pink, of course), speak up and speak out against bullying and harassment.

Wearing pink today says that you will not tolerate bullying behaviour in our schools, workplaces, communities or on transit and TransLink is committed to supporting this cause.

You can read about the original event that sparked the pink shirt movement here.

There are similar anti-bullying days all across the globe and the message is clear: kindness!

Take a look at some of the great pictures from the main event today at London Drugs Plaza, downtown Vancouver.

Looking for more ways to support Pink Shirt Day?
Head to pinkshirtday.ca.
Be sure to use #pinkitforward to show your support on social media!
Coast Capital Savings will donate $1 for every use of the hashtag to
support anti-bullying programs!

Author: Adrienne Coling

8 Tips from Transit Police to keep you safe this Halloween

Photo credit: Nathan Walls

Boo! Halloween is just around the corner and as things get a bit spookier around Metro Vancouver, Transit Police wants to share a few tips on how to make sure you have a safe night out. Here are a few things to keep in mind this All Hallows Eve:

1) Take extra care when choosing a Halloween costume. Ask yourself, could this prop be easily mistaken for the real thing? If so, how might it put your safety at risk if the police are called? If in doubt, leave it at home.

2) Remember, consumption of liquor in public is illegal. This includes at SkyTrain stations and on-board buses, SkyTrain, and SeaBus, If you are carrying liquor on transit, ensure it remains closed until you arrive at your private destination.

3)  See something? Say something. There are three easy ways to report non-emergency police issues discreetly to Transit Police: text 87-77-77, use the OnDuty App or call 604-515-8300. In an emergency always call 911.

4) Stay alert to your surroundings while on public transit. Keep valuables out of sight from others. Avoid being distracted by your electronic device.

5) Plan ahead for a safe ride home. Make note of key times such as the last trip of the night!

  • Check out the NightBus and SkyTrain schedules to make sure you don’t miss your ride home.

6) If travelling in a group, establish a meeting place just in case you are separated. 

7) Be visible. Wear bright costumes or include reflective tape, glow sticks, or other articles that improve visibility.

8) Use face paint or make‐up instead of a mask. If you must wear a mask, enlarge the eyes for better vision and push it back off your face when you are walking in and around train stations and in busy pedestrian areas.

Happy Halloween!

Author: Laura Tennant