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Translink Buzzer Blog

(Video) 6 things TransLink is doing to prepare for more wintry weather


Despite our best West Coast efforts, a snowy winter has arrived in Metro Vancouver.

And it looks like this is just the beginning because there is another dumping of the white stuff forecasted to hit before the week is out.

That means lots of extra safety and operational procedures to keep the transit system running smoothly and safely.

Remember! Buses can only go as the traffic allows. Be sure to check your municipality’s website for snow removal schedules and give yourself some extra time for your transit trip.

Here are six things that TransLink is doing to prepare for the winter weather:

  • Trolley anti-icing trucks will deploy spraying the entire trolley overhead system if there is a forecast risk of frost or ice.
  • SkyTrain De-icing – De-icer spray trains are used to keep the power rail free of ice. De-icing stations will be set up in covered areas and tunnels to prevent ice and snow compacts on the trains.  During times of overnight snow, some SkyTrain cars will run throughout the night to keep tracks clear.
  • Additional bus tire traction – Operators have a snow/ice switch which gives the bus tires better traction in the snow.
  • Bus switch outs –  If needed, we’ll switch out articulated buses for traditional buses. Although articulated buses are great for turning and maneuvering throughout our streets in Metro Vancouver and allow for quick movement of large numbers of passengers, when travelling up hills or on streets that have poor conditions, the back halves are heavy which can create some traction problems.
  • Canada Line Anti-icing and sanding – ensures the power rail and tracks are clear of ice. Canada Line cars have a braking system similar to ABS brakes on your vehicle which helps avoid slippage in this weather.
  • Extra staff on transit – Extra staff including SkyTrian Attendants and Transit Police will assist customers in getting where they need to go. HandyDART will send two staff out in each vehicle to ensure customers get safely to their door, and assist in digging out the bus if required.


 

Watch the replay of our Facebook live stream, or catch it on Periscope below!


Know before you go!

If there’s snow or ice ensure you plan ahead with Trip Planner or m.translink.ca on your mobile device, and make sure to allow yourself extra commuting time.

Sign up for transit alerts so you’ll be the first to know if there are changes in the transit schedule.

Follow our customer information team on Twitter (@TransLink) and save their number (604) 953-3333 on your mobile device.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Bus Route Buzz: Port Coquitlam and northeast Coquitlam – 159/188/C37/C38/C40

Bus Route Buzz
159 188 C37 C40 map
Ta da!!

Introducing brand new bus service for northeastern Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam!

These routes will now provide direct connections to the new Evergreen Extension.

Community Shuttle buses across the Tri-Cities are also being renamed.

New Routes:

New routes list

  • 159 Port Coquitlam/Braid Station – All trips on the 159 will travel via Pitt River Road
  • 171 Fremont/Coquitlam Central Station and 172 Riverside/Coquitlam Central Station serving the former C37 areas with new service to Dominion Triangle and a direct connection to the Evergreen Extension.
  • 173 Cedar/Coquitlam Central Station and 174 Rocklin/Coquitlam Central Station cover the route previously served by C38.
  • 175 Meridian/Coquitlam Central Station (previously C40) providing a new connection to the Millennium Line Evergreen Extension.
  • 170 Port Coquitlam Station/Port Coquitlam South (previously C36) has no route changes.
  • 188 Port Coquitlam Station/Coquitlam Central Station gets increased capacity.

Stay tuned for the next Bus Route Buzz post where the 169 Braid Station route will take centre stage.

Plan ahead! Visit Trip Planner to map your route – use December 19 or later as your travel date.
Have questions? Contact Customer Information at 604.953.3333 or tweet @TransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Join TRAMS for their annual holiday lights tours around Metro Vancouver

Courtesy of TRAMS

Courtesy of TRAMS

Do you love outdoor holiday decorations AND old transit vehicles and memorabilia?

Well then, you’re in luck! Because TRAMS (The Transit Museum Society of Vancouver) is hosting their yearly holiday lights tours!

bus

Let Rudolph lead the way to festive fun!

Hop aboard the Rudolph-themed bus and explore the region’s best decorated homes and buildings.

Tours are taking place December 16, 17, 18, 21, 23 and 30.

This two (and a bit) hour tour leaves from 22nd Street SkyTrain Station at 7 p.m.

Fares:

  • Adults – $25
  • Senior/Student –$15
  • Children – $5
  • Children under 2 years of age ride free!
  • Family rate – Bring four children for the price of two
  • Members of TRAMS receive $2 discount for each member of their travel party

Reserve your spot online today! You can pay online ahead of time or with cash or credit on the bus. If you are paying cash, please have exact change.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Santa Claus is rolling into town on the West Coast Express!

Santa02

Alllllllllllll aboard the West Coast Express Santa Train!

For its 21st year, the West Coast Express Santa Train is back spreading holiday cheer and bringing smiles to children’s faces on the train trips and on Christmas morning.

santawaving

Hi Santa!

This annual toy drive makes the beautiful 65 km trek from Mission to Vancouver for two Saturdays of festive frivolity before Christmas arrives!

The toys are collected on behalf of the Northeast sector Christmas Bureau – including SHARE Society in the Tri-Cities, the Maple Ridge/ & Pitt Meadows Christmas Hamper Society and the Christmas Bureau in Mission.

Last year, we had nearly 3,000 riders on the Santa Trains who generously donated 3,272 toys!

Here’s how it works:

On December 10 and December 17, you will receive a return ticket for the special Santa Train in return for a new, unwrapped toy. You can donate the toys at any of the West Coast Express Stations in exchange for the one, same day return ticket.

Carolers

There they are a’wassailing on WCE!

The Santa Train departs Mission City at 10 a.m. and stops at all WCE stations along the way. Once in Vancouver, you can enjoy a day of holiday fun before returning home from Waterfront Station at 4 p.m.

Santa will be available for pictures at The West Coast Express North Pole Station (aka Waterfront Station) at 2:45 p.m. so be sure to bring your camera!

This year is especially cool because if you can’t stay downtown for the whole day, you can take the SkyTrain out to the Tri-Cities now with the newly opened Evergreen Extension!

**Please note that if you choose to take SkyTrain home, regular fares will apply.

The full schedule and more details can be found here.

All ages are welcome! Bring your friends, family and neighbours out for this great event that helps make Christmas brighter for those in your communities.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Bus Route Buzz: Southwest Coquitlam – 143/151/153/157

Bus Route Buzz
143 151 153 157 map
Welcome back to Bus Route Buzz!

In this post we’re exploring more of Coquitlam with routes in the southwest area of the city getting more service.

Down to business!

143 Burquitlam Station/SFU

This route connects SFU and Burquitlam Station with a high-capacity all-day service to SFU with articulated, 60′ buses.

This route will no longer serve Como Lake Avenue.

Why shorten the 143? Well, there is vastly different ridership demand on the two segments of the 143.

The section between Burquitlam Station and SFU has higher demand than the section along Como Lake to Coquitlam.

By separating this route, we can adjust service to demand much more easily!

151 Coquitlam Central Station/Burquitlam Station

This route will run seven days a week between Coquitlam Central Station and Burquitlam Station along Como Lake Avenue, picking up the local area removed from the 143 route.

153 Braid Station/Coquitlam Central Station

The 153 extends from Poirier Community Centre to Coquitlam Central Station via Mariner Way.

157 Lougheed Station/Burquitlam Station.

The 157 extends from Poirier Community Centre to Burquitlam Station via Foster Avenue and Cottonwood Avenue.

Stay tuned for the next Bus Route Buzz installment where we’ll examine some route name changes and brand new bus routes in Northeast Coquitlam and Port Coquitlam.

Plan ahead! Visit Trip Planner to map your route – use December 19 or later as your travel date.
Have questions? Contact Customer Information at 604.953.3333 or tweet @TransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling

TransLink receives Outstanding Employer Award for Take Your Kids to Work Day

2016 Outstanding EmployerEvery year, TransLink participates in Take your Kids to Work Day.

Kids aged 14 are invited to job shadow their parents or come along on a guided tour at BCRTC, CMBC and Transit Police to explore future workplace opportunities.

work%20day%20for%20kids%202016

Some of the grade nine students on the job for Take Your Kids to Work Day

This year we had 52 grade nine students take part in this event and it was a big success and not just the day!

The Canada’s Outstanding Employer Award recognizes employers for their outstanding performance and contribution to Take Our Kids to Work day activities.

Criteria for the award includes:

  • Promoting the importance of staying in school
  • Promoting pursuing post-secondary studies
  • Demonstrating creativity and innovation through engaging and exciting activities for visiting students
  • Supporting and explaining career choices and benefits of early career exploration

It was a very competitive process, but TransLink, along with 14 other outstanding organizations, stood out to the selections committee.

TransLink and its operating companies were chosen “For providing students with engaging and interactive opportunities to explore career options and learn about TransLink, Coast Mountain Bus Company, BCRTC and Transit Police as a future workplace. Students were given a tour of TransLink’s new Mark III train and received an in-depth look at technology that powers TransLink trains. They even got the opportunity to work with a K9 unit in Transit Police and the Fire Prevention Technicians that oversees fire prevention across the transit network.”

TransLink is honoured as an Enterprise to accept Canada’s Outstanding Employer 2016 Award for our participation in this annual event of fun, learning and exploring transit jobs.

We can’t wait until next year to host more eager students looking to get behind-the-scenes job experience in the world of public transit!

Author: Adrienne Coling

More Evergreen Extension Moments from opening day on December 2, 2016

 

We had a blast opening up the Evergreen extension on Friday! If you missed it, check out these videos and images as well as our post on Friday.


BC Ministry of Transportation

TransLink’s Cathy McLay named one of Canada’s most powerful women of 2016!

Cathy 640

Growing up as the only girl among four brothers and working in traditionally male dominated sectors hasn’t stopped TransLink’s CFO Cathy McLay from reaching top jobs and being recognized as an inspiring leader.

“I remember when I was working in forestry and I was at an executive dinner. One of my colleagues leaned over and asked me if I was ever uncomfortable working with all these males. That’s when I realized that I was the only female at the table,” says McLay who is one of 100 women from across Canada from various disciplines to be named 2016’s Most Powerful Women in Canada by the Women’s Exchange Network (WXN).

Cathy’s refusal to let her gender dictate her career is something she attributes to the strong work ethic she learned from her mother and grandfather. When McLay was living in Prince George and a mother of two small children she completed her Accounting designation by correspondence without any outside help. Her tenacity lead to her quickly rising the ranks during her 15 years in forestry and later in transit.

This latest award is one of many McLay has won over the years. One of them being a BC CFO of the Year award for her efforts in corporate growth, strategic decision making, solid business principles and overall performance excellence and financial reporting.

When asked if she had any advice for women who want to follow in her footsteps McLay replied with some words of wisdom,

“Women need to take calculated risks. When we [women] look at taking on new responsibilities we sometimes look at the things we have deficiencies in, rather than the strengths we can bring to the job. I would encourage women to value the contributions that we bring and know that we need to allow ourselves the luxury of learning along the way.”

I hope you can join TransLink in congratulating Cathy in another well deserved honour!

Author: Robert Willis

Bus Route Buzz: Central Tri-Cities – 97 B-Line/160/190/C24

Bus Route Buzz
97 BLine 160 190 C24
This round of Bus Route Buzz is dedicated to the Central Tri-Cities including the 97 B-Line.

97 B-Line

Wave goodbye to the 97 B-Line and hello to Evergreen!

The B-line will be discontinued as of December 19 and riders will now have a rapid transit option with SkyTrain on the Evergreen Extension.

This is much like what happened in Vancouver with the introduction of the Canada Line.

Travelling to school at Port Moody Secondary? The school will continue to be serviced by the 180 (formerly C24) and the 160 route.

We are also increasing the capacity of these routes during peak periods to help accommodate student demand. This means frequency will increase to 15 minutes and the route will now have full size conventional buses.

C24

This route is getting a new name!

The C24 will now be the 180 Moody Centre Station/Lougheed Station and operate with a larger 40-foot conventional bus plus receive 15 minute frequency during peak periods.

The 180 will provide local service on North Road and St. John’s Street, via the College Park neighbourhood as the 160 continues to provide service on St. John’s Road, Ioco Road and Newport Village.

For local bus stops not serve by SkyTrain, take the 160 or 180.

Extended late night service on the N9 between Lougheed and Coquitlam Central Stations creates 24-hou service along the Millennium Line corridor.

Stay tuned for the next edition in our bus route where we look at some routes in Southwest Coquitlam.

Plan ahead! Visit Trip Planner to map your route – use December 19 or later as your travel date.
Have questions? Contact Customer Information at 604.953.3333 or tweet @TransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling

TransLink’s next Open Board Meeting is December 8, 2016

december_2016_open_board_meeting_buzzer_640x350

You are invited to TransLink’s next Open Board Meeting!

Attending this meeting gives the general public a chance to see behind-the-scenes on matters relating to TransLink’s mandate and responsibilities including the upcoming budget.

The meeting takes place on Thursday, December 8 at 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at TransLink Head Office in New Westminster.

You can apply to speak at the meeting and find the agenda on our website.

Can’t make the meeting in person? You can always watch our live streams on Periscope and Facebook and follow along with the .pdf of the agenda!

Author: Adrienne Coling

The Evergreen Extension is now open!!!!!

Premier Clark and more open up the Evergreen Extension

With the cutting of the ribbon the Evergreen Extension is open!

It’s official. The Evergreen extension is live! It’s been a fantastic day so far. Come on down and join us!

Here’s a run down of the day so far:

10 a.m.
Premier Clark rode the first official non-public trip of the extension from Moody Station to Coquitlam Centre Station.

10:30 a.m. The Premier, officials from all levels of government including First Nations as well as TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond announced the opening of the Extension.

We also live streamed on Periscope.

12 p.m. The extension opened for the first public trips!

12-7 p.m. The community celebration is being held at all of the six new SkyTrain station on the Evergreen Extension.

There’s a lot more fun to be had today and tomorrow on the extension like live performances, a photo book, SkyTrain cut outs, Transit Police with their dogs, a community outreach bus, TRAMS buses, food trucks, and Lego displace of one of the Lafarge Lake-Douglas station that is out of this world!
poster

First in line to ride the train.

First in line to ride the train.

 

Transit tips to manage inclement weather

Transit tips to manage inclement weather

We might be getting snow soon in Metro Vancouver sometime soon. Here are some transit travel tips that can help make your ride more comfortable for you and your fellow commuters.

Know before you go.
If there’s snow or ice ensure you plan ahead with Trip Planner or  m.translink.ca on your mobile device, and make sure to allow yourself extra commuting time.

Sign up for transit alerts so you’ll be the first to know if there are changes in the transit schedule.

Follow our customer information team on Twitter (@translink), Facebook (TransLink) and save their number (604) 953-3333 on your mobile device.

Step Carefully

Snowy floors can become slippery floors. Where possible, kick the snow from your shoes before getting on the your chosen mode of transit. Use handrails and please be courteous to other passengers and don’t put your feet up on open seats.

Dress Warmly

While your ride will be climate controlled, we can’t control the temperature outside of our vehicles. Make sure that you’re dressed warmly for your trip to and from your stop.

Be Courteous

Please remember that transit is a popular choice on snowy days, therefore you may see more people out than usual. Always use your common transit sense to ensure a comfortable ride for everyone.

 

We’re doing our part too! Here’s what we do on our end to ensure service runs smoothly during inclement weather:

Consistent monitoring

Winter weather forecasting means more staff, buses and SkyTrains can be quickly deployed to keep riders moving.

Slow and steady

During adverse weather, operators are instructed to drive slower and with added caution to keep riders safe. Additionally, operators have a snow/ice switch which gives the bus tires better traction in the snow.

Play it safe

If a street is not plowed, operators may refrain from pulling into bus stops to avoid getting stuck. In these cases, operators will stop in an area that is safe and accessible for riders.

Trolley de-icer trucks will deploy spraying the entire trolley overhead system if there is a forecast risk of frost or ice. SkyTrain power rail and collector shoes on the trains will be de-iced as well as de-icing stations will be set up in covered areas and tunnels to prevent ice and snow compacts on the trains. Measures are also taken to make sure switches are protected from freezing.

During times of overnight snow, SkyTrain will run throughout the night to keep tracks clear.

If needed, articulated buses will be replaced by traditional buses as they’re more agile in and better equipped to handle hills or on streets that have poor conditions.

Canada Line trains are equipped with new breaking modes for train cars, similar to the ABS systems you find on some vehicles.

What are your tried and true snowy weather commuting tips?

Author: Sarah Kertcher

The big guy in red rides into Vancouver this weekend for the Santa Claus Parade!

Courtesy of Rogers Santa Claus Parade

Courtesy of Rogers Santa Claus Parade

Here comes Santa Claus, here comes Santa Claus right down Santa Claus la–…. actually it’s Georgia and Howe.

That’s right! The 13th Annual Rogers Santa Claus Parade is happening this Sunday, December 4, 2016.

Due to the parade route, that also means some detours for buses in the area.

DETOURS

Buses affected: 2, 5, 6, 17, 20, 135, 240, 246, 250, 257, C23

From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • 5 Robson Regular route to Richards at Pender, then via Richards, Pacific, Burrard, Robson, regular route.
  • 5 Downtown Regular route to Robson at Thurlow, then via Thurlow, Pacific, Seymour, Pender, regular route.
  • 6 Davie Regular route to Richards at Pender, then via Richards, Pacific, Burrard, Davie, regular route.
  • 6 Downtown Regular route to Davie at Thurlow, then via Thurlow, Pacific, Seymour, Cordova, regular route.

From 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

  • 2 Burrard Stn Regular route to Cornwall & Burrard then via Burrard, 4 Ave, Hemlock, 5 Ave, Granville, Seymour, Pender, Burrard, Dunsmuir then regular route.
  • 2 MacDonald Regular route to Pender & Burrard then continue Pender, Richards, Pacific, Pacific, Granville Bridge, West Cloverleaf, 5 Ave, Fir, 4 Ave,  Burrard, Cornwall then regular route.
  • 17 Oak Regular route to Robson & Seymour, then via Seymour, Pender, then regular route.
  • 20 Victoria Regular route to Robson & Seymoyr, then via Seymour, Hastings, then regular route.

From 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

  • 135 Burrard Stn Regular route to Howe & Dunsmuir, then via Dunsmuir, Burrard, to temporary terminus on Burrard at Dunsmuir.
  • 135 SFU From temporary terminus on Burrard & Dunsmuir, regular route.
  • 240 Vancouver Regular route to Georgia & Pender, then via Pender, Richards, Georgia, regular route.
  • 240 15th Street Regular route to Georgia & Seymour, then via Seymour, Pender, Georgia, regular route.
  • 246 Vancouver Regular route to Georgia & Pender, then via Pender, Richards, Georgia, regular route.
  • 246 Highland Regular route to Georgia & Seymour, then via Seymour, Pender, Georgia, regular route.

From 10: 30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

  • 250 Vancouver Regular route to Georgia & Pender, then via Pender, Richards, Georgia, Homer.
  • 257 Vancouver Regular route to Georgia & Pender, then via Pender, Richards, Georgia regular route.
  • 250 Horseshoe Bay Regular route to Georgia & Seymour, then via Seymour, Pender, Georgia, regular route.
  • 257 Horseshoe Bay Express Regular route Georgia & Seymour, then Seymour, Pender, Georgia, regular route.

From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

  • C23 Main Regular route to Thurlow at Davie, then via Thurlow, Pacific, Seymour, Davie, regular route
  • C23 Davie Regular route to Davie at Richards, then via Richards, Pacific, Burrard, Davie, regular route.

Santa has sent us some tips for enjoying the parade:

  • Dress warmly and for the weather
  • Umbrellas block views so wearable rain gear is best
  • Please be safe and don’t enter private property
  • Respect the parade officials and volunteers
  • Allow families with small children to sit in front
  • Avoid parking and traffic by taking transit to the parade! The route is right near the Burrard, Granville and City Centre SkyTrain and Canada Line Stations.

Remember, this isn’t just a parade, it is one of the region’s biggest donation days for the Food Bank!

Since 2004, the parade has collected nearly 80,000 pounds of food for those in need in Metro Vancouver. So, remember to come out with your non-perishable food item or $1 loonie donation.

DID YOU KNOW??
For each dollar donated, the Food Bank can purchase $3 worth of food!

MOST NEEDED ITEMS:

  • Protein – canned fish/meat/beans
  • Natural peanut butter
  • Whole-wheat pasta and rice
  • Pasta sauce
  • Wholesome meals in a can – hearty soups/stews/chili
  • Canned fruit and vegetables
  • Healthy/low sugar cereal
  • Juices – natural fruit and vegetable
  • Infant formula and diapers

SCP 2016
You can download your own copy of the parade route here.

There are many other parades and festive events around the region this weekend and next. For a full list of detours and reroutes, visit translink.ca/alerts.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Bus Route Buzz: West End & Downtown – 5/6/C21/C23

Bus Route Buzz
West End downtown map
Back again with the next installment Bus Route Buzz!

Today we’re taking a closer look at the service changes for the West End and Downtown Vancouver, specifically the 5, 6, C21 and C23.

There are new trolley wires that have been installed along Cambie extending the 5 and 6 route.

6 Davie/Downtown

This 6 will now extend along Davie Street to provide better connections to Yaletown, Canada Line and Cambie Street.

Headed to the Expo Line? Transfer from the 5 at Burrard Station or the 5 or 6 at Cambie and Dunsmuir – one block away from Stadium–Chinatown Station.

C21 and C23

These routes are merging into the new 23 Main Street Station/Yaletown/Beach serving Beach Avenue, Yaletown–Roundhouse, Stadium–Chinatown and Main Street–Science World Stations.

The redesign is to make our bus service more useful for people in this area. The conventional buses have over twice the capacity of Community Shuttles reducing the chance of pass-ups and overcrowding.

Stay tuned for the next edition in our bus route where we look at some Central Tri-Cities routes.

Plan ahead! Visit Trip Planner to map your route – use December 19 or later as your travel date.
Have questions? Contact Customer Information at 604.953.3333 or tweet @TransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Bus Route Buzz: 135 SFU/Burrard Station/160 Port Coquitlam Station/Kootenay Loop

Bus Route Buzz
95 B line 160 map

As we mentioned yesterday, the Buzzer blog will be featuring the top 10 affected areas for this year’s Winter Service Changes and integration for the Evergreen Extension.

Today, we’re focusing on three routes; one is out, one is new and one has changed.

Let’s delve in!

95 B-Line

This brand new B-Line provides a more reliable and direct service with limited stop along Hastings.

Here’s the route:

The new B-Line will stop at: Burrard Station, Granville Street (Waterfront Station), Cambie Street/Abbott Street, Main Street, Commercial Drive, Nanaimo Street, Renfrew Street, Kootenay Loop, Gilmore Avenue, Willingdon Avenue, Hythe Avenue, Holdom Avenue, Kensington Avenue, Duthie Avenue and SFU Transportation Centre.

160 Port Coquitlam Station/Kootenay Loop

The 160 will provide local service in Burnaby and end at Kootenay Loop. This route change was made in order to provide better reliability and overall service.

Riders can continue to take the 160 from the Tri-Cities and transfer to the 95 B-Line along Hastings, beginning at Duthie Ave.

Heading downtown? The Evergreen Extension will now provide a faster and more frequent connected between the Northeast Sector and Downtown.

135 SFU

Starting December 19, the 135 is discontinued.

Stay tuned for the next edition in our bus route where we look at some West End and Downtown routes.

Need some more information on these routes? Check out our live stream with transit planner, Denis the Planner!

Plan ahead! Visit Trip Planner to map your route – use December 19 or later as your travel date.
Have questions? Contact Customer Information at 604.953.3333 or tweet @TransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling