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Canada Line carries its first passengers on a trial run

The Canada Line train approaches Vancouver International Airport Station.

The Canada Line train approaches Vancouver International Airport Station.

The Canada Line took its first passengers on a trial run from Bridgeport Station to YVR this morning!

I wasn’t there, but those on board included Premier Gordon Campbell, the Honourable James Moore (federal Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages, there on behalf of John Baird, Canada’s Transport and Infrastructure Minister), as well as Kevin Falcon, provincial Transportation and Infrastructure Minister, TransLink CEO Tom Prendergast, many more MPs and MLAs from the Vancouver region, and a number of members of the media.

The trial run marked a milestone for the Canada Line: testing and commissioning of the trains on the Bridgeport Station to YVR-Airport Station section of the Canada Line is almost complete. Testing is also currently underway on the Richmond and south Vancouver sections of the line, and construction continues on schedule for the line’s 16 stations. (Here’s the full press release for the event.)

Our CEO Tom Prendergast said a few words when the train arrived at YVR. Here's a photo of him speaking, flanked by John Yap, MP (Richmond Steveston), Olga Ilich, MLA (Richmond), Alice Wong, MP (Richmond Centre), along with Premier Campbell, Minister Falcon and MP James Moore.

Our CEO Tom Prendergast said a few words when the train arrived at YVR. Here's a photo of him speaking, flanked by John Yap, MP (Richmond Steveston), Olga Ilich, MLA (Richmond), Alice Wong, MP (Richmond Centre), along with Premier Campbell, Minister Falcon and MP James Moore.

Drew Snider, from TransLink’s media relations team, noted an interesting bit of trivia, too: who is the first person to take Canada Line for its intended purpose? The answer: Richmond MP Alice Wong, who left the event and got on a flight to Winnipeg, thereby using Canada Line to get to the airport and fly out.

Anyway, since not everybody got to ride the train from Bridgeport to the airport, all the remaining people in attendance on the platform were allowed to hop the train back to Bridgeport, if they wanted.

I asked Alan Dever, who is in media relations for Canada Line, what he thought of the ride and he said it was really smooth.

“The seats are really comfortable, and the front window is so big!” he said. “Everybody was crowding at the front to see out the window. It’s not small like the SkyTrain Mark II cars—the window is the full width of the car.”

And these two photos are all I have of the event so far, but Alan’s promised me to send me more from others at the event once he gets them. Stay tuned…


2 Comments

  • By Eugene Wong, November 12, 2008 @ 3:52 pm

    Thanks for sharing this with us! I appreciate the good news. :^)

  • By ;-), November 12, 2008 @ 6:42 pm

    I’m getting misty-eyed looking at the pictures and news video.

    The Richmond extension was long promised after the Scott Road extension since the 80’s. Priorities kept changing in the 90’s and Richmond being asked to wait. Richmond bridges face daily grid lock and badly needs this service.

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