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TransLink on the Move: Transportation Improvements

TransLink on the Move Transportation Improvements

Today wraps up our TransLink on the Move series. Over the past five weeks we’ve shared bite sized pieces from our 2016 Annual Report – Mark III SkyTrains, Evergreen Extension Stations, Ridership numbers, Compass, and now Transportation Investment.

You’ve likely heard about The Mayors’ Council’s 10-Year-Vision. Implementing this plan was the first step towards bringing Metro Vancouver the biggest transportation expansion in nearly a decade. With $2 Billion invested in transportation services, Phase One of the plan addresses some of our biggest rider complaints and aims to both reduce overcrowding on our transit system and ease congestion on our roadways. But there’s more to Phase One than new transit services and improvements. This first phase has additional region-wide impacts to alternative travel modes like cycling and walking paths, that brings real improvements to the way Metro Vancouver residents travel.

The next 10 years promise big things for transportation in Metro Vancouver and we hope you come along for the the ride.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

TransLink on the Move: Compass points the way

TransLink on the Move Fare gates

TransLink on the Move is back again with more info unpacked from the 2016 Annual Report. It’s amazing the changes a year can bring! Today, May 8th marks one year and one month since the full closure of all fare gates at SeaBus and SkyTrain Stations across the system. With Compass in full operation we now have 463 fare gates closed, including the recently opened, or rather closed, permanent Compass fare gates at Metrotown Station!

In year one, Compass celebrated 1 Million active Compass Cards on the system, as well as full integration into our two secure bike parkades! One card loaded with Stored Value gets transit travel and bike parking all in one!

You asked, we listened! Earlier this year, due in part to overwhelming customer demand, we lowered the minimum Stored Value requirement on your Adult Compass Card from $10 to $5, making transit more accessible to more customers.

And that’s not all on the Compass front! Our recent partnership with United Way Lower Mainland brought five Compass Donation Kiosks to SkyTrain Stations across Vancouver giving customers the ability to donate their unregistered Compass Cards to a great cause.
Year one has been chock-full of great Compass News, and we’re excited to see where the future of Compass takes us!
Want to know more about highlights to the transit system in 2016?
Stay tuned to the blog for a new feature every week!
Author: Sarah Kertcher

TransLink on the Move: Looking back on record ridership

TransLink on the Move Ridership

For TransLink on the Move this week, our five week series where we look at some of the many highlights from our 2016 Annual Report, we’re taking a look back on ridership from 2016 where we logged 384.83 million boardings! Our highest ever!

Last year saw an increase of 4.5% over 2015’s ridership levels, and we have YOU, our riders to thank for that! Thank you for helping us build and maintain momentum. We are proud of the work we do, and strive to continue improving with a commitment to focus on what matters to our customers.

Snapshot

In 2016, we launched our new Accountability Centre, a one-stop-shop in tracking performance of our regional transportation system, as well as customer satisfaction to ensure we’re meeting our goals and satisfying customer needs.

Want to know more about highlights to the transit system in 2016?
Stay tuned to the blog for a new feature every week!

Author: Sarah Kertcher

TransLink on the Move: Evergreen means Go!

TransLink on the Move Evergreen

Last week marked the start of our TransLink on the Move series where we’re breaking down some of the highlights of our 2016 Annual Report.

This week, we’re featuring the long awaited Evergreen Extension!

The opening of the Evergreen Extension was a milestone event for TransLink and for Metro Vancouver. This significant expansion of our integrated transit network brings us to 79 km of SkyTrain meaning that TransLink now operates the world’s longest fully-automated rapid transit system!

Included in the Evergreen Extension is a two-kilometre Tunnel (the longest in the SkyTrain network) connecting Coquitlam to Port Moody, a new SkyTrain operating pattern and six new stations connecting riders to more destinations in our region.

The Evergreen Extension boasts beautiful new open concept stations with plenty of glass allowing for natural light, picturesque views and beautiful public art.

If you haven’t yet had a chance to check out the new stations, have a look at some of the shots captured by transit enthusiast Ivan Chan. Or better yet, become your very own #EvergreenExplorer by checking out some of the great java stops along the new route.

Want to know more about highlights to the transit system in 2016?
Stay tuned to the blog for a new feature every week!

Author: Sarah Kertcher

TransLink on the Move : 7 new Mark III trains rolled into service in 2016!

TransLink on the Move

We’ve recently posted our 2016 Annual Report. For those of you who are unable to comb through it, we’re picking out some highlights among many for our TransLink on the Move series. First up, new SkyTrains!

Last year was a big year for transit in Metro Vancouver. One of the improvements we made was adding seven new Mark III trains to our fleet! That’s 28 additional SkyTrain cars on the system. Our passengers can now enjoy an enhanced transit experience with a more spacious ride, less noise and more natural light. The new Mark III SkyTrain cars are equipped to hold more passengers with extra space for wheelchairs, bikes and strollers than their Mark I & Mark II counterparts.

The Mark III’s journey started back in October of 2015 when they left the Bombardier facility in Ontario to begin the cross country journey out West to our SkyTrain OMC yard in Burnaby.

Mark III

After their arrival, much of the summer was spent in testing to ensure the new SkyTrain cars were rail ready for our passengers.

The big day arrived on August 18th, 2016, with all of the anticipated fan fare! The first Mark III car entered service with SkyTrain President & General Manager Vivienne King and TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond on board, among a host of excited transit enthusiasts.

Want to know more about highlights to the transit system in 2016? We’ll be posting one a week for the next four weeks.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

#WhatsTheLink: TransLink helps with goods movement and the economy

"The Goods"

“The Goods”

For this latest week in the #WhatsTheLink series, we’re looking at goods movement in the region.

TransLink helps 418,000 people get where they need to go and 107,000 cycling trips in Metro Vancouver possible each day.

How do we do this?

We provide a hard working and reliable transit system2,300 lane kilometres of major roads, five bridges, as well as cycling and walking infrastructure that has shaped communities!

#WhatsTheLink between everything? A part in Metro Vancouver’s economy – ensuring goods and people get where they need to go!

Miss 604: TransLink Helps to Make our Regional Economy a Thriving One

Have you ever wondered about the journey the coffee you drink took? If you’re like many in Metro Vancouver, you probably haven’t.

That’s because the goods we use each day are usually readily available on the shelves, and we take it for granted. One of the reasons we don’t have to worry about finding fresh milk, fuel for our vehicles or materials to build our homes is because of the efficient movement of goods and people in our region.

Sany Zein

Sany Zein

Although Metro Vancouver’s ports have been identified as a gateway to Asia, Sany Zein, Director of Infrastructure and Network Management for TransLink explains many of the trucks we see on the roads are serving the local economy.

“While gateway-oriented goods movement is a very large part of our economy, most of the trucks we see on the roads are serving the local economy,” says Zein.

“Almost everything we have in our homes and businesses is delivered by truck. Without an efficient Major Roads Network, we wouldn’t have a thriving economy.”

These trucks not only rely on the Major Roads Network, but an efficient transit system as well.

Wait…what?!? Trucks depend on an efficient transit system? Yup!

Vancity Buzz: 3 Ways TransLink Helps Free Congestion in Metro Vancouver

"Count on it!"

“Count on it!”

Besides being an important mode of transportation for people in the region, transit helps free up congestion on the roads.

By moving trips away from the road to SkyTrain, West Coast Express, SeaBus or bus, TransLink helps the region avoids huge traffic congestion problems.

Did you know? Six out of 10 people in Metro Vancouver take public transit to work or school!

When truckers aren’t using the Provincial roads network, they look to the Major Road Network to get them where they need to go. It is the backbone for the movement of goods in the region.

This year, TransLink is providing $42 million dollars towards the Major Road Network.

Infrastructure projects funded by TransLink such as the Golden Ears Bridge and Roberts Bank Rail Corridor are important too! They help alleviate congestion and bottlenecks on the roads network.

Providing an efficient public transportation system, managing the Major Roads Network and funding major infrastructure projects are three ways TransLink helps get you and goods we all need moving around the region.

Author: Allen Tung

Ask TransLink: our roads engineer Q&A helps move a sign, talks BC Parkway upgrades, and more

asktranslink

From April 15 to May 10, you can Ask TransLink! We’re spotlighting one TransLink staff member every week and inviting you to ask them questions about their work. Find out all about the series.

Peggy Gibbs, TransLink roads engineer!

Peggy Gibbs, TransLink roads engineer!

Roads engineer Peggy Gibbs will be wrapping up her Q&A on the blog at noon today, Friday April 19, 2013 – but just before she goes, here’s some of the highlights from her discussion this week!

We moved a sign blocking a cycling path in Richmond

Caption and photo from Voony’s blog: Sign on Knight bridge, at Mitchell Island interchange, resting in the middle of the pathway, also advertised as a bike lane.

Voony wrote in asking whether this construction sign on Mitchell Island belonged to us, as it was blocking the bike path he uses.

Peggy looked into it, and it got removed! Here’s what she wrote:

The temporary sign appears to be from the City of Richmond’s contractor, and we contacted the City to direct their contractor to relocate it out of the paved path. The sign has now been removed by the City’s contractor.

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#MyTransLink – October 16

If a picture’s worth a thousand words, there’s no denying that our Metro Vancouver photog community has a whole lot to say! This week’s edition of #MyTransLink  features evolving fall colours, the golden hour glow, those brisk clear blue sky’s that fall in this region is know for.

Every week, we ask you, our snap happy customers, neighbours and transit users to shoot and share with us your greatest photo captures in and around transit in our region. Take a look at the week that was and scroll to the bottom to see what’s happening next week!

 

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#MyTransLink – October 9

Line. Shape. Form. Texture. Pattern. Colour. Space.

The seven elements of photography which, intentionally or not, are contained in each and every photograph. By design, transit photography often contains strong leading lines, creating power and emotion in a single click. A highlight of the week is perusing Instagram for all of the amazing #MyTransLink shots that have made this weekly commuter series what it is today.

Last week we asked you to share your photographic love of transit in celebration of I Love Transit, and as always you did just that. Scroll down and check out the shots from all across the system and to see how to have your captures featured in the coming weeks.

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TransLink to provide grants up to $50,000 to university researchers

NMRG projects may range from one year to two years in duration and can span a range of disciplines.

Researchers at post-secondary institutions can now apply for up to $50,000 in research funding grants to explore new mobility issues and solutions.

The New Mobility Lab is our new engagement portal for post-secondary institutions, researchers, and university students.

New mobility is commonly defined as electric, connected, automated and shared transportation. Broadly, it can be defined as use of technology or other innovations to improve movement of people and goods, both in terms of consumer experience and overall efficiency.

TransLink aims to continuously explore, test, and implement innovative ways to improve mobility in Metro Vancouver and further three key goals:

  1. Enable seamless and efficient door-to-door mobility for people and goods;
  2. Promote safe, healthy, clean, and compact communities;
  3. Ensure affordable and equitable access for all.

We provide stable, multi-year funding towards a coordinated program of applied research aimed at answering new mobility related questions of relevance to us and our local government partners.

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Teachers! Send your class on a behind-the-scenes field trip to TransLink


I Love Transit Week is back this year, October 1-5, and our theme is Connections—the future of transportation in Metro Vancouver. Teachers, unleash your inner explorer and take learning beyond the classroom! We have two exciting contests for you and free bus travel for your students:

I Love Transit Camp contest (Grades 3–12)

I Love Transit Camp 2018

I Love Transit Camp is a unique opportunity for kids (and their teachers and chaperones!), grades 3 through 12, to get a behind-the-scenes look at TransLink operating companies’ facilities, tour the bus and SkyTrain yards, and much more!

One winning class will get the opportunity to attend I Love Transit Camp in October (date will be determined with the winning teacher) to learn about how transit works and have some fun at the same time. Check out all the fun that was had in 201420152016 and 2017.

To enter, visit translink.ca/ilovetransit, fill out the form and tell us in 150 words or less what the future of transportation in Metro Vancouver looks like and what/where will it connect you to! Is it to your best friend’s house, perhaps Toronto, or somewhere even more ambitious like Mars? Photos, videos, drawings, recordings, poems and whatever else you can dream up that best represents your vision can accompany the submission. Let your imagination go wild. There are no wrong answers. Wanna put your class’ application over the top? Send us a video/drawings/poetry/song or whatever to thebuzzer@translink.ca with the subject, “I Love Transit Application” or drop it in the mail to The Buzzer, c/o Social Media Team, 400 – 287 Nelson’s Court, New Westminster, BC, V3L 0E7. See below for some ideas of winning submissions.

Contest closes at 4 p.m. on Friday, October 5, 2018 and you’ll want to read the terms and conditions.

Need some help to get started? Here’s the rubric our judges will be using and some prompts for your class:

  • Its 2028, describe your trip to work using public transportation of the future.
    (What’s new and changed? What’s stayed the same? What’s surprising about public transit 20 years from today?)
  • You are riding on a bus, reading with your head down. The bus stops to pick up some passengers and you look up. The view out the window is not what you expected! You’ve been fast forwarded to the future! What do you notice? How has transit changed for the better?
  • Use all of the following words in your essay about the future of transit: New, Faster, Fun, Moving, Sustainable, Future, More, Less, Happy.

The day will start at 9 a.m. and wrap up around 4 p.m. It will include snacks, a pizza lunch, prizes, t-shirts and a chance meet some of the key people (and the Transit Police dog!) that help TransLink move close to a half-a-million people a day and plan for the future.

Here’s the tentative itinerary:

Depending on the school of the winning class, we will pick up the winning team at their school and take a ride to the Burnaby Transit Centre (BTC)!

BTC is home to little-known transit operations such as fleet overhaul, where they fix and update almost everything on a bus, including bus painting and seat re-upholstering. We’ll also tour the bus yard where we’ll see both articulated and 40-foot buses! After that, we’ll have a little lunch then say goodbye to BTC.

Next, we’ll hop on the SkyTrain to head down to Edmonds Station where we’ll walk down to SkyTrain’s Operations and Maintenance Centre. There, campers will get a behind-the-scenes look at the facility where SkyTrain cars are maintained and cleaned, and visit SkyTrain Control! They will also get to try the SkyTrain simulator and SkyTrain staff will be on hand to answer questions.

A visit with Transit Police and Transit Security to tell us all about everything they do will cap off the day. I’m told they’ll be bringing their vehicles and a special guest if we are lucky!

Throughout the day we’ll be taking breaks for fun games and more!

Questions? Email thebuzzer@translink.ca and we’ll be happy to answer them!

Want an idea of what we’re looking for? Check out these submissions from the last year that impressed us!

DayPass contest (K-12)

K-12 students can ride the bus for free during I Love Transit Week (Oct. 1–5), so it will be a perfect time for teachers to plan a field trip on transit! You may have taken advantage of this in previous years during iWALK.

Want to take your class on transit another time? Enter for a chance to win up to 35 Compass Cards with a DayPass loaded for your class, including teachers and chaperones, to use for your next field trip! DayPasses provides unlimited transit use on all buses, SkyTrain and SeaBus for one day from the first tap in until the end of the service day.

*Please note that we have a limited number of Day Passes available, so not everyone who applies will necessarily win

Contest closes at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, October 5, 2018 and you’ll want to read the terms and conditions.

Free bus travel for students (K-12)

Students in kindergarten through grade 12 will eligible for free bus travel during I Love Transit Week.

We ask teachers who are planning to take advantage of free bus travel for field trips to plan the transit portion during off-peak hours, between 9:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m.

*Please note that this does not include SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express. As well, regular fares apply to adults accompanying children and high school students on the system. 

You’ll want to visit translink.ca/ilovetransit to learn more and enter our contests!

Author: Allen Tung

TransLink’s Summer Service Changes begins on June 25

Summer Service Changes start June 25

This Monday, June 25 we launch our Summer Service Changes on June 25, bringing better transit to our customers!

Ridership in Metro Vancouver smashed records in May thanks in large part to new transit service introduced as part of the 10-Year Vision. On June 25, we’re increasing service on the 319 Scott Road/Newton Exchange at busy times on weekdays to reduce wait times and pass-ups. This is the latest 10-Year Vision investment to improve our transit system.

We’re also adding extra trips on numerous routes to get you to and from popular summer attractions!

Summer is a time for exploring and there are so many places in Metro Vancouver that you can explore using transit, including amazing hikes and doughtnut shops, street festivals, farmers markets, parks and more. If you know some places accessible on transit that we haven’t covered, leave that info in the comments section!

Visiting summer destinations is why we’re adding extra trips to Stanley Park, Lynn Canyon Park, Buntzen Lake and White Rock Beach. We’re also extending service hours on the 620 route to get you to and from Tsawwassen Ferry terminal during the summer season!

On the 20 Victoria/Downtown route, we’re trying something new to improve reliability. Congestion in downtown Vancouver often affects this route’s reliability. That’s why we’re piloting a layover at Richards Street and W Georgia Street, which will allow buses to get back on schedule.

The 44 Downtown/UBC will no longer serve five bus stops to provide express service in downtown Vancouver.

We’re renaming the C45 and C46 as well as the C60 and C61 routes to improve customer experience for new riders!

They are now the 745 Haney Place/Cottonwood and 746 Haney Place/Albion, and 560 Langley Centre/Murrayville and 561 Langley Centre/Brookswood. Buses will operate exactly the same, only the destination sign will change. Customers can remain on the bus when the route number changes.

These are just highlights! You’ll want to visit translink.ca/servicechanges for a list of all the changes and details.

New platforms for Millennium Line at Lougheed Town Centre Station

We’re streamlining the way our Millennium Line trains move through Lougheed Town Centre Station to create a faster and more reliable trip for our customers.

Trains to VCC–Clark Station will depart from Platform 3 and trains to Lafarge Lake–Douglas will depart from Platform 1. Expo Line platforms will not change. Watch the video to learn more!

C-ya later!

The letter “C” used to indicate the route was served with only community shuttle buses. Today, we operate our bus fleet interchangeably, depending on demand, to better serve our customers.

We’re continuing to phase out the “C” on community shuttle bus routes. On June 25, we’re saying “c-ya” to the “C” on the  C43, C44, C45, C46, C48, C49, C60, C61, C62, C63, C64, C70, C75 and C76.

Know before you go! Sign up for Transit Alerts at translink.ca/alerts, visit translink.ca, follow @TransLink or call Customer Service at 604.953.3333.

#MyTransLink – May 8

There’s no denying that you were on track with this week’s #MyTransLink challenge. In this edition of our fun weekly photo series showcasing your best shots of transit life in and around our region, we asked for your West Coast Express shots and once again you delivered. Check out this week’s photos and scroll on down for next week’s challenge!

 

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TransLink leads the charge launching new electric-battery bus trial

At TransLink, sustainability is very important to us and we are always exploring innovative ways to reduce carbon emissions while providing efficient travel for our customers. That’s why we’re excited to announce our partnership with Natural Resources Canada, Metro Vancouver and BC Hydro to bring four fast-charging electric-battery buses to the region starting in 2019.

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#MyTransLink – March 27

Here’s lookin’ at you Metro Vancouver—literally! We’re back with the latest edition of #MyTransLink, our weekly photo series showcasing your best pictures of life in and around transit in our region. This week, we challenged you to capture the Metro Vancouver commuter! We were looking for the hustle and bustle of people on transit, and you captured just that in the most beautiful of ways. Photos, pencil and ink sketches, and watercolour paintings filled the #MyTransLink feed. Take a look at the week that was and make sure to scroll to the bottom to grab the theme for the upcoming week.

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