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Downtown SkyTrain riders, look out: late-evening maintenance work in SkyTrain’s Dunsmuir Tunnel runs July 13-24

Downtown SkyTrain riders, look out: late-evening maintenance work in SkyTrain’s Dunsmuir Tunnel runs July 13-24

Ride SkyTrain in downtown Vancouver late at night? Watch out — for two weeks starting July 13, SkyTrain will start the first stage of work in the Dunsmuir tunnel, to address water seepage and related drainage issues.

The lower level of the tunnel (the “eastbound” track) will close early to allow work crews in at 10 p.m., with more work planned for fall—the work requires more time than available in the limited nightly system closure hours.

Here’s a bit of background: The major part of SkyTrain’s underground section in downtown Vancouver uses the Dunsmuir Tunnel built by the Canadian Pacific Railway in 1932, linking the transcontinental railway terminus (Waterfront Station) to the previous freight yards and maintenance shops in False Creek – now a distant memory save for the Roundhouse centre in Yaletown.

Groundwater leaching through the tunnel walls contains natural minerals which accelerate corrosion of track components, as well as creating slippery conditions for maintenance crews and emergency passenger evacuation routes.

Shuttle train to be used between Stadium and Waterfront

The following service changes are in effect Monday to Friday, July 13 to July 24, from about 9:45 p.m. to the end of the service day:

  • All Expo and Millennium Line trains from the east will terminate at Stadium Station, at the normal service frequency (8 minutes each; combined 4 minutes between Columbia and Stadium);
  • A single train shuttle will operate every 12 minutes on the normally “westbound” track between Stadium and Waterfront, stopping at Granville and Burrard in both directions.
  • All passengers must change trains at Stadium Station. Passengers can expect a two to 10 minute wait at Stadium, depending on their arrival time and travel direction.

Exceptions for the fireworks festival and B.C. Lions game

  • On Wed July 22nd there will be no work due to Celebration of Light (SkyTrain will run full “rush hour” service throughout the evening to accommodate the thousands of fireworks spectators).
  • On Fri July 24, maintenance will start 90 minutes later due to the B.C. Lions game at B.C. Place (SkyTrain will provide frequent extra service for Lions fans, as usual; shuttle operation will start at 11:15pm).

Additional SkyTrain staff will be on hand at affected stations to provide directions and assistance. We thank you for your patience and cooperation as we keep our system in good repair for your overall service.