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Translink Buzzer Blog

Links and tidbits for Thursday, April 29

Two TransLink staff were out on the morning of Thursday, April 22, letting people know about the UBC Line consultation.

Two TransLink staff were out on the morning of Thursday, April 22, letting people know about the UBC Line consultation!

Another week, another tidbits and links list! If you have links & tidbits to suggest, or a photo to showcase on these posts, e-mail me at

Tobias Ottahal: Buzzer illustrator interview!

Tobias sent along this self-portrait, which I've put next to his Great Ride illustration!

Tobias sent along this self-portrait, which I've put next to his Great Ride illustration!

The fine tradition of interviewing our Buzzer illustrators continues! Here is Tobias Ottahal, who drew the cover of the April issue.

Tell us a bit about yourself and your art!

I’m a Swedish native who came to Vancouver about five years ago to study design, but started out as an illustrator. My career began at my junior high newspaper :)

How did you come up with the Buzzer cover? Can you talk a bit about the other concepts?

Since the theme was related to the “Bike the Blossoms”-ride, I wanted to do something that conveyed the massive change from barren tree branches to the explosion of leaves and cherry blossoms that occur around this time of year. The general idea was to let the blossoms have centre stage
and to see it from a Stanley Park-visitor’s perspective.

Read more »

Look out: bus service changes start Monday, May 3

Keep an eye out: we’re making seasonal bus service changes on Monday, May 3.

Make sure to check the full list of bus changes for May 3 to see if you are affected!

Creative use of resources provides a few improvements

We do these bus changes every spring to reflect lower demand—and this time around, even though our budget won’t allow expansion, creative use of resources is providing a few improvements.

For example, with Canada Line in service, Vancouver-bound customers are now leaving home later for work. Service is being reorganized to reflect the higher demand later in the morning, with more trips for the following routes between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m.:

  • 351 Crescent Beach/Bridgeport Station
  • 352 Ocean Park/Bridgeport Station
  • 354 White Rock Centre/Bridgeport Station
  • 602 Tsawwassen Heights/Bridgeport
  • 603 Beach Grove/Bridgeport
  • 604 English Bluff/Bridgeport
  • 601 Bridgeport Station/South Delta/Boundary Bay (the 601 will see more trips between 6 a.m. and 8 a.m.)

As well, some buses that run “not in service” on Granville to reach their 5 Robson/6 Davie routes will now run as 10 Downtown on those first trips. Yay!

More key changes to know about

There are also a few more key changes that you should know about.

  • the 15 Cambie/Downtown will run less frequently, as many going downtown are using the Canada Line. Look for it every 12 minutes instead of every 10 minutes during morning and afternoon rush, and every 15 minutes instead of 12 minutes at midday.
  • the 239 Capilano University/Park Royal will see extra University service trips removed between Phibbs Exchange and Capilano University, running every 20 minutes instead of 10 minutes during the morning and afternoon rush hours, and every 30 minutes instead of 15 in midday. (The frequency will be restored in September.)

    However, the frequency between Park Royal and Phibbs Exchange will not be changing, Monday to Friday. There are no changes to the weekend timetable either.

  • the two bus bays near New Westminster Station for the 112 Edmonds Station/Lougheed Station will move one block north to Carnarvon Street, due to construction of the Plaza 88 project. See this map for full details. UPDATE: The 112 service will reroute effective Wednesday May 5, due to road paving!

These are only a few highlights: make sure to see all the May 3 changes!

Again, we make these seasonal adjustments to bus service just four times a year, reflecting major passenger ebbs and flows in April, June, September, and December. Look out for the next set of changes in June!

Transit on film: Fringe

A scene from the Fringe episode "White Tulip" was shot aboard a West Coast Express train! Publicity still from Fox found via IGN.

Joshua Jackson investigates! A scene from the Fringe episode White Tulip was shot aboard a West Coast Express train. Publicity still from Fox found via IGN.

Turns out Fringe, one of the American sci-fi shows filmed in Vancouver, hopped aboard the West Coast Express in one of its recent episodes.

Look for “White Tulip,” which is episode 18 from Fringe’s second season. Several scenes were shot on board a West Coast Express train, where a character with time-travelling powers mysteriously wipes out everyone on board. (Ooohhh!)

I’m told by West Coast Express that the Fringe crew filmed on the train over at the Main St. VIA yard – they used our car for all the interiors and regular VIA equipment for the rest. It took them the better part of a week to film it!

Check out the episode preview, or watch the full episode at

And see the TransLink in TV & Film category for more of Vancouver transit on the silver screen!

Service for the BMO Vancouver Marathon, Sunday May 2

Look out, people! Runners will soon be booking it down the streets of Vancouver, as part of the BMO Vancouver Marathon on Sunday, May 2.

If you’re going down to the event, the Expo and Millennium SkyTrain lines will start 90 minutes early, leaving King George at 6:38 a.m. 5:38 a.m. and Waterfront at 6:20 a.m.

If you’re travelling by bus in downtown Vancouver, please know that a number of reroutes will be in place to accommodate the marathon.

Routes affected include the 3, 4, 6, 7, 8, 17, 19, 22, 50, 84, 210, 211, C21, and C23. Check the Alerts page for the most updated information; I’ve also pasted them below.

Read more »

#50 rerouted off Granville Mall on weekends and holidays, Apr 30 to Oct 31

A close-up of the reroute for the 50, which will take place on weekends and holidays from April 30 to October 31. Click the picture to download a much larger PDF of this map.

A close-up of the reroute for the 50, which will take place on weekends and holidays from April 30 to October 31. Click the picture to download a much larger PDF map.

Riders of the 50 Waterfront Station/False Creek South, heads up!

From April 30 to October 31, 2010, the Vancouver Police Department, in coordination with the City of Vancouver, will close down sections of the Granville Mall to provide more space for pedestrians in the entertainment district and improve public safety.

These closures will take place on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays/holidays and evenings before stat holidays, between 9pm and 5am the next morning.

As such, the 50 will be regularly scheduled off the Granville Mall during these times, using Seymour northbound and Howe southbound instead of Granville. (During all other time periods, it will remain on regular route.)

Check the top picture for the exact reroute, or download this PDF for a much larger version of the reroute map.

Friday fun post: what’s your favourite SkyTrain line?

If you like, skip to the end of this post to take the poll on your favourite SkyTrain line

From last week: do you have a favourite bus route?

Last week, I asked this question:do you have a favourite bus route?

With 143 votes in, 80% said yes, 20% said no, and 1 Pac-Man was clearly visible in the pie chart.

And I didn’t realize you would have so much to say on the matter! So many comments named favourites—and here’s Sean from CMBC, with a view as a passenger, and from behind the wheel:

Always liked riding the #250 out to Horseshoe Bay… Used to also enjoy the old #100 when it ran all the way out to PoCo city hall… It was called the Midway Connector way back then…
Of course, always liked my local #601. The A/C equipped buses are really nice on a hot summers day…

Haven’t tried it yet myself, but it’s never been easier to get from south Delta to Haney Place! The C76 takes you to 64th & Scott, then the newer #364 takes you out along 64th to Langley Ctr, and then (most trips) continue as the newer #595 out to Haney Place via the new Golden Ears bridge! Will have to try that one day soon! Oh, and the #160 is always an interesting ride from Coquitlam into Vancouver…

My favorite route to DRIVE doesn’t exist anymore, not in it’s original form anyways. That was the old #42 Chancellor/Spanish Banks route… A community shuttle does parts of it now…
I’d say I enjoy driving the #430 alot, and the #620 too… Something about limited stops appeals to me…

Here’s emily:

for scenery:
22 — love going through chinatown, never to seem to end up walking the neighbourhood, so might as well enjoy the view from the bus!
7 — love going by the old sugar refinery building, and the docks & vancouver port…also powell has some interesting older Vancouver buildings…
160 — so much contrast in all of Lower Mainlands different neighbourhoods: downtown Port Moody; beautiful stretch of Barnet Highway (view of the Inlet, even Indian Arm); bustling Italian North Burnaby; DTES (interesting in its own way); and then downtown!

And surprisingly (or not?) lots of people talked about routes in other places. Here’s Dave 2:

The #15… in London England ;)

And here’s David Arthur:

The sights along no. 24 in London are rather nice, and it’s run with double-deckers that aren’t usually very crowded. And if you prefer the countryside, the 554/555/556 between Windermere and Keswick has some fairly spectacular bits.

As always, check out the rest of the comments for more favourite bus routes.

This week: do you have a favourite SkyTrain line?

Time for another simple poll, this one suggested by Ric.

Feel free to champion your favourite line in the comments :)

A roundup of UBC Line blog posts and articles

The Express display on a 99 B-Line. Go go B-Line go!

The Express display on a 99 B-Line. Go go B-Line go!

Quite a number of blogs, forums and articles are talking about the UBC Line Rapid Transit Study now, so I thought I’d collect them all here in one handy post.

I’ll keep this updated as new links come along. Feel free to e-mail me if you find new links to share!

(Remember, visit to learn more and take part in the consultation!)

Read more »

Notes from the UBC community consultation, Thu Apr 22

Some of the 60 people who came through the UBC Line community workshop on Thursday, April 22!

Some of the 60 people who came through the UBC Line community workshop on Thursday, April 22!

So we held our first public consultation workshop on the UBC Line Rapid Transit Study yesterday, at the SUB at UBC!

Judy Rudin was there (she’s one of our media relations folks), and she sent along a note on what happened.

A large crowd of 60 students and local residents first took time to view presentation boards of six possible alternatives for rapid transit in the heavily used Broadway Corridor.

People then got a short overview from Planning Project Manager Jeff Busby, who discussed the reasons for the study, its objectives and goals. An intensive, wide-open 2 hour workshop session led by TransLink staffers followed, with about 30 people staying to take part.

What can best be described as a kind of “transit speed dating” session soon followed. Smaller, breakout tables of participants saw all six transit options rotated around the room, and people at each table had a chance to analyze, discuss and ask questions about the possible issues, challenges and merits of each of the technologies.

Comments and questions were wide-ranging and the discussion was animated. But the most interesting part of watching this session was seeing people with differing opinions and viewpoints working together to provide a lot of great ideas and feedback to TransLink staff!

We’ll be doing this all over again on May 4, 2010, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., at St James Community Square (3214 West 10th Avenue, Vancouver). Join us there or see if another in-person workshop fits your schedule. Or visit to learn & discuss online!

Come to our Annual General Meeting… on the SeaBus! – Tue May 11

We’re having a floating Annual General Meeting this year!

Yep, we got creative with our venue — please join us on the new SeaBus on Tuesday, May 11.

Here’s the official invite:

On behalf of the TransLink Board, Chair Dale Parker invites you to TransLink’s 2009 Annual General Meeting. Hear an overview of TransLink’s operations for 2009 and from VANOC’s CEO John Furlong on the role that transportation played in delivering a successful Olympic Games. A question period will follow the speakers.

Tuesday May 11
10 a.m. to 12 p.m.
Onboard TransLink’s newest SeaBus, the Pacific Breeze.
* The SeaBus will depart promptly at 10:15am. Space is limited to the size of the SeaBus vessel.

Attendees are asked to board the SeaBus at the Waterfront station terminal. The SeaBus will travel around the inlet for 1 hour 15 mins and return for the question and answer period at 11:30 a.m.

See an overview of TransLink’s 2009 operations. For further details visit or or call 604-453-3096.

I’ll be lurking around the meeting with my camera: say hello if you attend!

Happy Earth Day 2010!

These riders are on a zero-emission trolley!

These riders are on a zero-emission trolley!

Just a quick shoutout to our favourite planet today!

As you all know, travelling on transit, cycling, ride-sharing, and walking are several ways you can cut greenhouse gas emissions and be earth-friendly, and we have lots of online resources to help you out with these options.

Check out:

More Earth Day community events and tips can be found at the Earth Day Canada website.

Also, in case you’re interested, here’s a list of ways that TransLink and its subsidiaries help the environment, compiled for last year’s Earth Day :)

UBC Rapid Transit consultation workshops start Thu Apr 22

In case you don’t know, we’re hosting five in-person consultation workshops about the UBC Line Rapid Transit Study, with the first launching on Thursday evening. Come by if you can!

April 22, 2010
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Student Union Building, Party Room, 2nd level
UBC Campus

May 4, 2010
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
St. James Community Square
3214 West 10th Avenue

May 6, 2010
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
West Point Grey United Church
4595 West 8th Avenue

May 11, 2010
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Centre for Digital Media at the Great Northern Way Campus
122-577 Great Northern Way

May 13, 2010
6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Vancouver Masonic Centre
1495 West 8th Avenue

Each event starts with an open house, and then the workshop will begin at 6:45 p.m.

Make sure you check back to the official UBC consultation workshop page: it will be updated with meeting minutes and reports after the events.

As well, if you can’t make any of the workshops, visit to learn more about the proposed rapid transit alternatives, and discuss them in our questionnaire and in our forums!

Transportation links and tidbits for Wednesday, April 21

A photo from last week's trip out to Granville Street. Here is the trolley wire from Davie at Granville, terminating at one pole on the right, since there's no wire running up the street yet.

A photo from last week's trip out to Granville Street. Here is the trolley wire from Davie at Granville, terminating at one pole on the right, since there's no wire running up the street yet.

Tidbits and links time! Btw, if you have links & tidbits to sugest, or a photo to showcase on these posts, e-mail me at

Amelia Shaw, our manager of public consultation, shares some background on the UBC Line process

Amelia Shaw, TransLink’s manager of public consultation

Amelia Shaw, TransLink’s manager of public consultation

As you may know, we’ve launched the next phase of our public consultation on the UBC Line, or rapid transit along the Broadway corridor in Vancouver. (We’re also running a parallel study on Surrey rapid transit!)

Check out this post for more details on the whole consultation—we’ve opened up our online discussion boards, launched a website section about the rapid transit alternatives, and we have five in-person meetings are also planned for the coming weeks.

For some background on the whole consultation endeavour, I asked Amelia Shaw, TransLink’s manager of public consultation, to tell us about the process for UBC and Surrey rapid transit.

Amelia’s team runs ongoing public consultations for our policies, plans, and more, as well as joining in on TransLink’s behalf at community events.

It’s an important role: as she says, “TransLink is here because of the communities and people that we serve. We need to be reflecting that and we do that in a variety of ways: through the public consultation and also our community relations, so people get that hands-on experience of who we are, and conversely, we learn about them and their needs and wants.”

OK, now here’s a talk with Amelia!

Read more »

We want your thoughts on rapid transit to UBC!

As you may know, our staff has been hard at work over the last year in partnership with the Province of B.C., studying rapid transit options for UBC and in Surrey!

Stakeholders in both communities have helped us get to know the key issues and concerns. And with their feedback in mind, we’ve now identified six preliminary concepts for the Broadway corridor to UBC—and we want to know what you think. (The Surrey consultation is coming soon!)

Check out the video above to learn more about the corridor and the study (um, yes, that is me in the video, in case you’re wondering.)

Then visit our UBC Be Part of the Plan page to learn more about the alternatives, and share your thoughts in our questionnaire, on our online discussion boards, or at one of our five in-person workshops held throughout April and May.

Just like last time, I’ll be helping moderate the discussion boards—hope to see you there!

Read more »