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The first faregate is installed at Marine Drive Station

The first faregate is installed at Marine Drive Station

The first faregate was installed at Marine Drive Station this afternoon.

We installed the first faregate at Marine Drive Station today, Monday August 13, 2012!

Check it out if you’re going by the station: the faregate is permanently installed, though it won’t be operational until sometime in 2013 when all the gates are ready.

Blair Lekstrom, BC's Minister of Transportation, speaks at the event.

Three key folks were on hand to put the faregate in the ground today:

  • Wai Young, Member of Parliament for Vancouver South,
  • the Honourable Blair Lekstrom, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure and Member of the Legislative Assembly for Peace River South, and
  • Doug Kelsey, chief operating officer for TransLink.

You can see a few more pictures from the event in this Flickr set.

How does the faregate work?

The card reader on the first faregate. Click for a larger version.

As mentioned, the faregate isn’t operational yet. But it works by tapping your smartcard on the angled panel on the side of the gate. The screen on top will then display whether your card has been accepted, and then the gates should open to let you through.

Also, this gate is particularly wide because it’s for people taking bigger items onto the system, like a stroller or wheelchair. A typical gate will be narrower. Here’s an illustration showing what the gates will look like when done.

So what’s next?

City of Langley mayor Peter Fassbender and Member of Parliament Wai Young unveil the first faregate.

The event marks the start of phase two of faregate installation. Phase one started in July 11, 2011 with stations undergoing various station improvements to prepare for the actual installations of the gates.

After this installation at Marine Drive, other SkyTrain stations will be outfitted with fare gates and accompanying fare media machines. Installation of faregates and fare media machines will begin on Canada Line stations first, then to the Millennium and Expo lines and SeaBus stations followed by West Coast Express. But as mentioned, the faregates, supporting machines and the Compass Card itself won’t be officially operational until sometime in 2013.

We’re installing everything now to make sure everything is in working order once the fare gates and  Compass Card are fully online. As you can imagine, with 47 SkyTrain stations as well as SeaBus and West Coast Express stations being updated for faregates and Compass Cards—it will take a little while to get everything in place. The exceptions are Main Street and Metrotown Stations—they will be undergoing major accessibility and capacity upgrades in the future, and we’re planning to install faregates as part of those upgrades in the future. (Due to funding challenges, those projects are currently on hold.)

Faregates by the numbers!

And last but not least, we have a fabulous infographic explaining a great deal of detail about the faregate project! Click the image for a larger version (yes, it gets even larger).

Click here to see a full infographic showing the faregate installation by the numbers!

Hope this answers a lot of your questions! Let us know if you have any comments below.