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Translink Buzzer Blog

I Love Transit 2014: Celebrate with us from August 25 to 29!

I Love Transit 2014 Banner

 I Love Transit 2014 Flyer

Our sixth annual I Love Transit Week starts up in a couple of weeks time, from August 25-9. We’ll have stories, prizes, and more every day. See the poster above for exactly what’s happening and share it with your friends!

Author: Allen Tung

Spinal Cord Injury BC’s Bus Stop Hop showcases accessible transit

Access Transit's Matt Human with his teammates Soung-Han Kim and Richard Peter!

Access Transit’s Matt his teammates Soung-Han and Richard!

Using transit with your wheelchair or mobility aid for the first time can be a daunting task if you don’t know what to expect. That’s the reason why Spinal Cord Injury BC (SCI-BC) organizes the annual Bus Stop Hop.

They aim to showcase just how accessible Metro Vancouver’s transit system is and provide wheelchair and mobility aid users an opportunity to become familiar and comfortable with the system. It is the only wheelchair accessible urban scavenger hunt in Vancouver.

In the 14th year of this Amazing Race-inspired event, developed in partnership with TransLink, teams of four raced across the city using public transportation to complete challenges and collect points by answering trivia questions and participating in activities. Each team consisted of two ambulatory participants and two who use mobility aids.

Matt Human and Sarah Chung, Community Relations Coordinators with Access Transit, both attended this year’s event on Saturday, July 26. Matt competed on a team called the Lightning Boys with Soung-Han Kim and Richard Peter from SCI-BC, while Sarah was a facilitator for one of the challenges at the Bridgeport Bus Loop.  TransLink’s Norm Fraser and CMBC’s Liina Marshall also participated and finished a close second in a spirited sprint to the finish.

In sum, ten different teams participated in Bus Stop Hop. The event took them on board the bus, SkyTrain, and SeaBus to Olympic Village, Science World, Lonsdale Quay, YVR-Airport and Richmond-Brighouse.

“Our team may not have finished first, but we had a lot of fun racing across Metro Vancouver completing the challenges,” Matt says. “The hardest part of the day was keeping cool, but our air-conditioned cars on Canada Line really helped!

“It was a great experience and a fantastic way to showcase the accessibility of TransLink’s network of services. Helping passengers who use mobility aids to become familiar with public transportation is really important so that everyone can get where they need to go and be confident doing so.”

“TransLink is constantly adjusting service to meet the needs of the region, so it was good to showcase all of the accessibility features as they evolve as well.”

Since adopting the Access Transit Strategy in 2007, TransLink has implemented a number of initiatives to make the transit system more accessible for more people.

A low-floor bus with a ramp for mobility devices

A low-floor bus with a ramp for mobility devices

TransLink’s fleet of buses, community shuttle minibuses, SkyTrain, SeaBus and West Coast Express vehicles are all fully accessible. Low-floor vehicles have ramps and high-floor vehicles have lifts, and all SkyTrain stations have elevators.

The entire bus fleet in 2008 was outfitted with annunciators and LED displays that automatically announce and display the next stop for passengers. On the web, TransLink’s website conforms to the Web Accessibility Initiative’s Priority Level AA.

Currently, TransLink is piloting wayfinding signage that provides information in both visual and tactile media. There is also a program in place to share the cost of improvements to bus stops with municipalities to improve accessibility around the region.

Through the Access Transit Department, TransLink offers a variety of programs to ensure people with disabilities, seniors and new immigrants are comfortable and confident when using public transit.

These include presentations, group tours and one-on-one orientations on the accessibility features of the transit system. Coast Mountain Bus Company also offers training sessions at the Vancouver Transit Centre on how to board and exit a bus using a mobility aid.

“Thanks to SCI-BC and all of the other sponsors for their support of this great event and we look forward to participating again next year.”

More information about Accessible Transit can be found by clicking here.

Author: Allen Tung

Have you spotted the TELUS Wi-Fi bus?

Enjoy free Wi-Fi from TELUS while you ride!

Enjoy free Wi-Fi from TELUS while you ride!

If you’re a regular rider on the 99, 351, or 555, you might have spotted our buses wrapped in TELUS branding offering free Wi-Fi!

TELUS has an arrangement with Lamar Advertising, who manages advertising on Coast Mountain buses, to pilot this service to our customers for a limited time. The service is available for all mobile digital devices that are enabled for Wi-Fi.

So sit back, relax, and enjoy free Wi-Fi while you ride! You can tweet @TELUSsupport if you are having issues.

The specific buses are 8125, 9258, and 9266.

Does this mean Wi-Fi is coming to all buses?

TransLink is committed to providing the best possible service to our customers across Metro Vancouver, while running an efficient transportation system with the resources available. At this time we do not have the resources to provide free Wi-Fi across the system. =(

That doesn’t mean it isn’t a possibility in the future. We are always looking for ways to improve the customer experience which includes looking at future advertising arrangements and possibly long-term partnerships to provide better mobile connectivity throughout the entire transit system in Metro Vancouver. =)

Author: Allen Tung

Announcing I Love Transit 2014: August 25-29!

 

I Love Transit 2014 Banner

Drum roll please! Dum dum dum dum dum dum dum dum…

Doo doo doo!

Announcing – I Love Transit Week!

If you haven’t heard about I Love Transit, you’ve been missing out! Now in its sixth year, I Love Transit is the one week where we celebrate what we love about transit!

From August 25-29, the blog will be packed with interviews, essays, submissions from Buzzer readers sharing just why they love transit! In the past, we’ve had haikus, reflective essays, pictures, stories about finding love on transit, and even a song!

An example of one of the buses we might use for the week!

An example of one of the buses we might use for the week!

During the week, we’ll also have a vintage bus in Downtown Vancouver from TRAMS with a vintage bus operator for you to see. There will be buttons, contests, and more to thank everyone for riding transit! There will be a contest with the chance to win a three-zone FareCard too.

Not only that, we’ll be holding our first-ever I <3 Transit Camp on Tuesday, August 26! A small group of young riders will have an opportunity to visit the SkyTrain Operations and Maintenance Centre by Edmonds Station.

What’s in store? A chance to get a behind the scenes look at how we keep the system running! To top it all off, we’ll head to Waterfront Station for a tour of the SeaBus facilities, jump on a 40-foot bus and talk to Transit Police! It’ll be a fun day with food, games and hands-on activities.

“Sounds great, but how do I get into the camp?!”

We will be announcing an application process for children aged eight to 12 for a chance to win their way in! People say I have a good hunch and it’s telling me it will have something to do with telling us why you love transit. ;)

And as always we want to give you a platform to share your transit love! Send your submissions to thebuzzer@transink.ca and we’ll feature as many as we can on the Buzzer blog.

Feel free to be as creative with form and content as you like—haikus, essays, photos, videos, songs, podcasts, and the like are all fair game! We look forward to seeing your submissions.

More details about the vintage bus and I <3 Transit Camp will be announced very soon!

Psst…tell your friends! 

It's that time again!

It’s that time again!

Author: Allen Tung

Explore with TransLink – Bird sanctuary, urban revitalization, Little Saigon, and more!

Explore with TransLink banner

Come Explore with TransLink as we spotlight some interesting places in Metro Vancouver that you might not have been! 

As we have told you through our #WhatsTheLink series, TransLink is responsible for much more than transit! We own and maintain five bridges – the Knight Street Bridge, Pattullo Bridge, Golden Ears Bridge, Westham Island Bridge, and the Canada Line pedestrian and bicycle bridge.

We are also responsible fund the operation, maintenance, and rehabilitation of the 2,300 lane kilometre-long Major Road Network.

This week, we’re going to explore some interesting places that TransLink takes you on our roads and bridges! Since 90 per cent of Metro Vancouver residents are within walking distance of a transit stop or station, many of these places are accessible by transit too.

George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary

Suggested by Cliff

Are you a bird and wildlife enthusiast?

Located on Westham Island just west of Ladner and Delta, is the George C. Reifel Migratory Bird Sanctuary – home to over 280 species of birds.

Sandhill Cranes, Canada Geese, and Mallard Ducks are just some of the birds that make this 850-acre site their home.

It is open daily from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., including statutory holidays. Admission is $5 for adults and $3 for children (2-14 years old) and seniors (over 60 years old).

The sanctuary is only accessible via the Westham Island Bridge off River Road in Delta.

Steveston Village

Steveston Village

Steveston Village

Steveston was founded as a fishing village in the late 19th century, but now is a popular tourist destination and locals, who want access to fresh seafood!

You’ll find boats docked at Steveston Harbour with fishermen selling a variety of fresh B.C. catch including salmon, tuna, crab, and more.

The Gulf of Georgia Cannery and Britannia Heritage Shipyards National Historic Sites is a time capsule back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The cannery offers visitors a glimpse into what it is like to work in one, while the historic site is complete with authentic buildings and boatyards from yesteryear.

It’s also where B.C.’s first—and I believe only—scramble intersection is located, so if you’re into that kind of stuff, you might want to check that out too!

Steveston Village is accessible by car from Steveston Highway off Highway 99 and on transit on the 410 22nd Street Station/Railway bus.

Westminster Pier Park

Interested in seeing the results of urban revitalization?

Then the Westminster Pier Park in New Westminster is for you! This nine-acre park is a recent addition to the city’s waterfront that opened in June 2012.

The land that the park now occupies was an area that was  formerly remnants of an old shipping dock. Today, it is complete with green space, basketball and volleyball courts, benches, two playgrounds, and much more! Believe it or not – there are even plans to add an urban beach to the park!

Aside from the park, it is located close to River Market and the Fraser River Discovery Centre. It’s the place to be if you’re interested in learning more about B.C.’s most famous river and the role it played in the province’s development.

The park is located on Front Street, across from Columbia Station, and is accessible from the Pattullo Bridge.

This park has picked up ten different awards including the National Brownie Award from the Canadian Urban Institute for sustainable remediation technologies.

Badminton Vancouver

Are you a badminton fan? Then you might want to check out the Badminton Vancouver, which bills itself as North America’s premier badminton facility.

The facility has a 33′ foot ceiling and is complete with twelve tennis courts using Olympic quality flooring.

Fees range from $2 per person to $7 per person for drop-in. Want to play with a group of friends? Court rentals are also available ranging from $12.70 an hour t0 $21 an hour.

Badminton Vancouver is open seven days a week at 110-13100 Mitchell Road on Mitchell Island off the Knight Street Bridge.

Taking public transit? You can do that too! Just take the 430 Metrotown Station/Richmond-Brighouse to the Mitchell Island stop.

Hours of operation are 9 a.m. to 12 a.m. from Sunday to Thursday and 9 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Surrey Art Gallery

Are you interested in art? Then the Surrey Art Gallery might be for you!

This contemporary art museum is located at 13750 88 Avenue in Surrey, just one block east of King George Boulevard.

It is complete with works from local, national, and international artists.

On exhibit now is ARTS 2014: A Juried Exhibition of Visual Art and Change: Contemporary Ismaili Muslim Art.

The gallery is located right on the Major Road Network, but you can also take the 96 B-Line and get off at 88th Avenue.

Little Saigon

Kingsway in Vancouver is unique in that it stretches diagonally from the northwest to the southeast in a city where streets run parallel to each other. It’s also unique in that it is one of the most culturally diverse streets in the region.

This street, between Fraser and Knight Street, is home to Vancouver’s Vietnamese neighbourhood, Little Saigon.

Named after Vietnam’s largest city, it is filled with mom-and-pop businesses ranging from grocery stores, cellphone dealers to pho restaurants. There’s also Chinese restaurants that are sprinkled through out Little Saigon as well.

Kingsway is part of the Major Road Network and the corridor is serviced by the 19 Metrotown Station/Stanley Park bus.

(There’s also a Little Saigon restaurant that is worth checking out too!)

Koreatown

Although this distinction is not official, the juncture of North Road and Lougheed Highway in Burnaby and Coquitlam is often recognized as the region’s de facto “Koreatown” owing to its large Korean population and businesses.

Interested in trying Korean food? There’s no better place to go since this area is home to a wide number of restaurants and businesses.

If you are a keener and want to cook at home, there are two Korean supermarkets – Hanahreum Mart on one side of North Road and Hannam Supermarket on the other.

North Road and Lougheed Highway are both part of the Major Road Network and this unique neighbourhood is located in close proximity to Lougheed Town Centre Station.

Ready to go?!?

If you’re planning to take transit, use Trip Planner or contact our Customer Information team at 604.953.3333 or tweet them @TransLink, 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. Driving? Use Google Maps to plan how to get there.

Share your adventures in the comments section below let us know of some other awesome Metro Vancouver attractions you can access using our Major Road Network and bridges!

Author: Allen Tung

What’s that green sign with the running person at Main Street-Science World SkyTrain station?

What's that green running thing?!

What’s that green sign with the running person?!

If you’ve been to Main Street-Science World since the east stationhouse upgrades were completed, you might have noticed some new signage.

A closer look at the new sign, courtesy of ISO!

A closer look at the new sign, courtesy of ISO!

There are green signs here and there throughout the station showing a person running out a doorway.

What are they?

Well, they are the new emergency exit signs!

Jeff Deby, Senior Wayfinding Specialist at TransLink, tells us these signs were adopted in the B.C. Building Code in 2012 and the National Building Code of Canada in 2010.

These will replace the text-based, red ‘EXIT’ signs as the standard emergency exit sign in all new building facilities in Canada.

“The new signs follow the ISO international standard and are commonly seen in Europe and Asia,” Jeff says. “It will be more familiar to international travellers, and the graphic method of communication is easier to understand for people who don’t read English.

Here's the old exit sign found at Sapperton and most SkyTrain stations

Here’s the old exit sign found at Sapperton Station and other TransLink facilities

It is also clearly separate from the wayfinding system (which helps people navigate the transit network) because it is so distinctive, making it clearer in cases when an exit is for emergency use.”

Since this sign is the new standard in B.C., it will start to appear in more facilities across the transit network in the coming years.

This includes all six new Evergreen stations and other SkyTrain stations that have been identified for major upgrades.

Author: Allen Tung

Buzzer illustrator interview: Chloe Ezra

That's Chloe on the right and her illustration on the left!

That’s Chloe on the right and her illustration on the left!

If you’re new to the Buzzer scene, we feature a different illustration and artist on each issue of the print Buzzer and on the blog.

We reached out to Chloe Ezra to illustrate the cover of the July 2014 issue and she came up with this unique ilustration! She kindly took time out to do an interview with us:

Who is Chloe Ezra?
I’m a freelance illustrator who creates stories, animations and games in my spare time.

How did you come up with your illustration for the Buzzer?
The idea came to me surprisingly quick. I wanted to illustrate in a style not used before, so pixel art was the first option to come to me.

There’s an 8-bit feeling to your illustration. Are you a fan of video games and the 80s?
I am a huge fan of both, for sure! Video games back then have an unique aesthetic to them that has come back in recent years. What they were able to accomplish with the limitations in technology and design back then is very inspiring to me.

Do you take transit? If so, what’s your favourite mode?
I do, and my favourite is probably the sky train, Canada Line. It’s especially nice to live close to the Brighouse station ’cause I almost always get a seat.

What’s your favourite colour and why?
It used to be lilac purple. Nowadays… pink, maybe? Black too, if it counts.

Peer into your crystal ball, and tell us what you see for yourself in the future.
I’ve been working hard towards a larger published book/comic of my work. To see that through would be a dream come true.

Fan of her work or fan of the Vancouver Canucks? Check out some of her other illustrations on her Tumblr and what she has done for the Canucks blog, Pass it to Bulis.

Thanks again to Chloe for her illustration and doing an interview with us!

Author: Allen Tung

West Coast Express wants you to stand as far back as you would from a guy with garlic breath

"Stand Back from the Yellow Line as Far Back as You Would Stand From That guy with the Garlic Breath"

West Coast Express’s Yellow Line Campaign poster

Over the years, more and more people have been turning to West Coast Express to get around in Metro Vancouver. In fact, average ridership has doubled since its launch in 1995 and its growth doesn’t appear to be stopping!

For West Coast Express that means finding new and creative ways to let riders, who may not be used to commuting via train or familiar with station and platform protocol,  know about the dangers of not following safety warnings.

The challenge, though, is that most safety messages lack the ability to engage and often simply blend into the woodwork.  As a result, they don’t have the desired effect for changing people’s perceptions or habits.

That’s why West Coast Express has developed new experimental materials for its annual Yellow Line Campaign to raise awareness about standing too close to the platform edge!

A series of posters were rolled out in 2013 at the station’s platforms asking people to stand as far back from the Yellow Line as you would stand from a guy with garlic breath.

The campaign returned and was kicked up a notch earlier this month!

Rather than using traditional print signage, a series of “About as far back as…” pay-off lines were chalk-sprayed underneath existing  ‘Stand Back From The Yellow Line’ messaging on the platforms.

These pay-off lines were crowdsourced from West Coast Express riders and were updated on a weekly basis – creating a level of anticipation amongst the riders since some of the lines were created by them.

The real key is that in order for the people on the platform to be able to read the pay-off lines (printed on the pavement), they’d have to stand back so that they aren’t stepping on the printed lines. As a result, they’d actually be standing further back from the Yellow Line!

The messaging at work forcing people to stand back from the yellow line!

The messaging at work forcing people to stand even further back from the yellow line!

This five-week campaign started on July 7 and was developed with five different lines to be used. Each week, a new line appears at a station and will culminate with a final line that isn’t a joke, but a sobering reminder of the realistic dangers from standing too close to the platform edge.

So far, the pay-off lines that have been released are:

  • As far back as you’d stand from the guy doing the robot with no music playing.
  • As far back as you’d stand from the guy wearing a speedo.
  • As far back as you’d stand from the boss before their morning coffee.

There are still two more lines to be released, so keep an eye out for them at West Coast Express stations!

What are your suggestions for a pay-off line? Let us know in the comments section below! No promises, but we might even feature some of the best ones!

Author: Allen Tung

The July 2014 issue of the Buzzer is on the system

July 2014 BuzzerBig news from our July 2014 issue of the Buzzer – I Love Transit Week this year is August 25 to 29!

This year, we are introducing I Love Transit Camp where we’re inviting a small group of younger riders to tour our SkyTrain and SeaBus facilities and more. More details will be announced soon!

If you see something, say something. Transit Police has launched an iOS and Android app that lets you report and track crime and get all the latest information right from the palm of your hands on transit and everywhere else.

The 27th Annual Caribbean Days Festival is taking place on July 26 and 27. Summer season is also detour season, so a reminder to check out Transit Alerts before you go!

Phase 2 of the Downtown Bus Service is now complete and get involved in the Northeast Sector Area Transit Plan.

And #WhatsTheLink? We are the link! TransLink is the link to shaping communities, moving goods, and a connected transportation system – from the Major Road Network and five bridges to transit service and cycling infrastructure.

The Buzzer wouldn’t be complete without our usual favourites – the Contest Corner, Back Issues and Coming Events!

What are you waiting for?! Pick it up today on the bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus, and West Coast Express or by downloading it here.

Author: Allen Tung

Links and Tidbits – July 18, 2014

Links and tidbits is our semi-regular roundup of interesting fodder about transportation from the last few weeks or so. If you have links to contribute, put them in the comments, or email us.

» Chris shared this photograph of his family riding SkyTrain on Twitter:

» Paging all armchair transit planners! Transitmix lets you draw your own bus route, pick the frequency, and the number of buses required and the cost per year to operate will be calculated for you. (Thanks Sean!)

» The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Lausanne have developed an electric bus that can charge in as little as 15 seconds at each bus stop.

» Six men from Great Britain recently broke the Guinness World Record for riding the entire New York City subway system in the shortest time. Their time? All 1,355 kilometres in 22 hours, 26 minutes, and 2 seconds.

» Langara College recently uploaded the 2014 iteration of their Merging Time Vancouver series of  “creatively fused images of old and modern Vancouver.” I see streetcars on Granville Street!

» TriMet in Oregon has this clever poster warning on its buses warning commuters to stay alert for oncoming light-rail trains. Not to toot our own horn, but our West Coast Express signage is not too shabby either.

» SkyTrain map in Super Mario Brothers 3 style? You betcha!

» skyTran—not a typo! Dubbed as the “future of public transportation on private vehicles,” this proposed public transport system will see people travel in elevated pods.

» Austin, Texas is wants to build a light rail-streetcar hybrid system. What’s that? “Austin’s urban-rail cars will be designed to accommodate the tighter turning radii of a streetcar as well as the higher speeds of light rail.”

» In London, they built an entire bus stop using 100,000 Lego pieces!

» CFL players are like us too! Ride the SkyTrain and you might just catch them studying their playbooks.

» Looking for some SkyTrain pictures? Check these out from @wetcoastlife, @bcorchard, and @maitomike!

» Have you ever seen two people beg in the same subway car at the same time? Check out “Panhandler Party” on the New York City subway! (Might not be suitable for all audiences!)

» This one’s for you, transit enthusiasts! Here’s a video of train and subway door closing, beeps and chimes from rapid transit systems around the world. SkyTrain is at 1:36 of the video:

Author: Allen Tung

#WhatsTheLink: TransLink is the link

#WhatsTheLink Week 8

Now you know #WhatsTheLink! ;)

Through out the course of our #WhatsTheLink series on The Buzzer and our partners Miss 604, Vancity Buzz, and Vancouver Observer, we have been telling you all about what TransLink is responsible for in the region.

Now as our series draws to a close, we are here to answer the question: What’s the link? We are the link.

How do we deliver the link? Through the Major Road Network, five bridges, transit, cycling, a connected and hard working transportation system, community shaping, and goods movement of course!

Major Road Network

Our Major Road Network is 2,300 lane kilometres of roads in Metro Vancouver that help facilitate the safe and efficient movement of people and goods across the region.

Line ’em up and that’s long enough to stretch from here to San Diego, California!

In 2014, over $45 million has been committed for the operation, maintenance, and rehabilitation of the network.

Five bridges

There are 200,000 crossings each day over the Fraser River that happen on one of TransLink’s five bridges! No typo!

They are the Knight Street, Golden Ears, Pattullo, Westham Island, and the Canada Line Pedestrian-Bicycle bridges.

Transit

You’ve heard the numbers — over 360 million system boardings and over 235 million passenger trips annually — but how many people actually take transit in Metro Vancouver each day?

418,000 is the number of people that take TransLink transit each day – that’s more than the population of Burnaby and Richmond combined!

Cycling

Part of TransLink’s multimodal mandate is to help support the people making the 107,000 bike trips each day in Metro Vancouver.

We contribute  up to  50  per  cent  of  capital  costs for regional  cycling  upgrades, including the Central Valley Greenway and BC Parkway.

Our transit vehicles are all equip to handle bicycles and we recently opened the first Secure Bike Parking facility at the newly renovated east stationhouse at Main Street-Science World Station.

A connected and hard working transportation system

Being a multimodal organization, TransLink is able to seamlessly connect all modes of transportation and deliver our customers a hard working, reliable transit system that gets you and where your goods need to go.

In 2013, the SkyTrain was on-time 95 per cent of the time for both the Expo and Millennium lines, West Coast Express was on time 98 per cent of the time, and 99.4 per cent of scheduled service for bus and SkyTrain was delivered.

Community shaping

Transit has guided growth and community design in the region from the very beginning! TransLink has helped shape sustainable communities by integrating with community planning throughout the region.

With future Transit Oriented Developments in the works, TransLink is actively involved in carry on this legacy. By 2018, we anticipate there to be over 70 integrated, transit-oriented developments around SkyTrain stations!

Goods movement

Our transit, roads, bridges, cycling and walking infrastructure all work in tandem to help with goods movement and Metro Vancouver’s economy.

TransLink manages major roads and helps to ease traffic congestion by moving trips away from the road to SkyTrain, West Coast Express, SeaBus or bus.

This way you can get the coffee, medical supplies and almost anything you can buy at a local store, hospital, school and more.

_

TransLink is the link to shaping communities, moving goods, and a connected transportation system – from the Major Road Network and five bridges to transit service and cycling infrastructure!

For more on #WhatsTheLink and for a chance to win a three-zone FareCard, read our partner posts on Miss 604 and Vancity Buzz.

Author: Allen Tung

Explore with TransLink – Night markets, theatre, trains, and more!

Explore with TransLink banner

For the rest of July, Explore with TransLink as we spotlight some interesting places in Metro Vancouver that you might not have been! 

TransLink’s buses service an area of 1,800 square kilometers and there are 8,400 bus stops around Metro Vancouver. SkyTrain is 68.6 kilometres long and has 47 stations spread out over the cities of Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster, Richmond, and Surrey.

As you can imagine, there are many places TransLink takes you. Here are seven interesting places that you might not have been that you can get to by bus or SkyTrain!

Richmond night markets

Richmond is home to two different night markets – the Richmond Night Market at 8351 River Road and the International Summer Night Market at 12631 Vulcan Way. The best part is, both are accessible by transit!

Both night markets are known for their array of Asian eats and is complete with vendors selling a selection of merchandise from stuffed animals to iPhone cases.

The Richmond Night Market is a seven-minute walk from Bridgeport Canada Line station. The International Summer Night Market can be accessed via the 407 and 430 buses.

They are open Friday and Saturday, 7 p.m. to 12 a.m., and Sunday and holidays, 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. until September. Admission to the International Summer Night Market is free, while the Richmond Night Market is $2.25. Children 10 & under and for seniors 60 & up get in for free.

B.C. Sports Hall of Fame and Museum

Photo: "BC Sports Hall" by Rebecca Bollwitt is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

BC Sports Hall” by Rebecca Bollwitt is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.

Located at B.C. Place Stadium‘s Gate A, the B.C. Sports Hall of Fame and Museum is a must-see for all sports fans!

Are you a Vancouver Canucks fan? See ‘King’ Richard Brodeur’s goalie equipment from the 1982 Stanley Cup playoffs and the hockey stick and puck used to score the team’s first goal in franchise history!

Relive the magic of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver and have a look at the Olympic torch that captured the imagination of Canadians from coast to coast.

The B.C. Sports Hall of Fame and Museum is located by Stadium-Chinatown Station on the Expo and Millennium Line. It is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Inuksuk

See one of the symbols of the 2010 Winter Olympics at English Bay – the inuksuk!

You might be surprised to learn the Vancouver 2010 logo, named Ilanaaq, was based on the inuksuk that sits at Beach Avenue and Bidwell Street in English Bay. The statue was originally commissioned for the Northwest Territories Pavilion at Expo 86 and was donated to the city following the conclusion of the exposition.

The C21 bus tops right across from the inuksuk and is a four-minute walk from the 6 bus at Davie Street and Bidwell Street.

Capilano Salmon Hatchery

"Salmon Hatchery" by flightlog is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Salmon Hatchery” by flightlog is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

British Columbia is famous for its salmon and you can experience what B.C. has to offer by visiting the Capilano Salmon Hatchery in North Vancouver!

Check out the self-guided tour and interpretative centre to learn more about salmon in this province.

Watch the salmon run as fish jump the fish ladder to migrate upstream. Right now, it’s the best time to see the Coho Adults and Coho Juveniles! When you’re done that, hike one of the many trails nearby and enjoy a nice picnic on a sunny day.

This free attraction is located at 4500 Capilano Park Road and is a short walk from the 232, 236 and 247 buses. It is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Theatre on Granville Island

Are you into theatre? Then Granville Island is the place to go – it is home to over 15 theatres and theatre companies!

Carousel Theatre for Young People brings together children and teenagers with a passion for theatre as they perform a selection of plays including Shakespeare’s Love’s Labour Lost.

The Vancouver TheatreSports League is known for their improv comedy and are a must see. Their shows consist of TripImproviser, TheatreSports, Improv Test Kitchen, Ultimate Improv Championship, Late Night Laughs, and Rookie Night.

Tickets to a mainstage production from Carousel Theatre is $29. Tickets for the Vancouver TheatreSports League start at $8.

Aside from theatre, Granville Island is home to a number of other vendors and public market. Take the 50 Waterfront Station/False Creek South bus to get to Granville Island.

Miniature trains at Burnaby Central Railway and Bear Creek Park

Burnaby Central Railway and Bear Creek Park are the places to be in you’re interested in old trains and locomotives!

Go for a ride on 1/8 scale miniature trains at Burnaby Central Railway and on Eddy the Engine as he takes you for a ride around Bear Creek Park.

Burnaby Central Railway is located at 120 North Willingdon Avenue. It is open weekends and statutory holidays, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and $2.50 for a single ride. The C1 Kootenay Loop/Hastings at Gilmore bus stops right outside.

Bear Creek Park in Surrey is open daily 10:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. and is $5 for adults and $4.50 for children to ride the train. Take the 96 B-Line from Surrey Central Station or Guildford Exchange and get off at 88th Avenue.

Fraser Valley Heritage Railway Society

Here’s another attraction for you railway aficionados!

The Fraser Valley Heritage Railway Society has a restored heritage interurban car.

Speeder riders and car barn tours are now happening from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on weekends. You can visit them at 176A Street and and 56 Avenue in Surrey by taking the 320 or 341 from Guildford Exchange.

Ready to go?!?

Plan your trip using our Trip Planner or contact our Customer Information team at 604.953.3333 or tweet them @TransLink, 6:30 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Share your adventures in the comments section below let us know of some other awesome Metro Vancouver attractions you can access by bus or SkyTrain!

Author: Allen Tung

10 Heat Wave survival tips from TransLink’s Buzzer

A sunrise over the SkyTrain in New Westminster.

A sunrise over the SkyTrain in New Westminster.

In a few days, it’s going to be HOT with temperatures soaring upwards of 28 degrees Celsius—or 34 degrees Celsius if you factor in humidity!

We’re quite used to the temperate weather in Metro Vancouver, so it might get a little uncomfortable especially on crowded buses and SkyTrain cars.

Before you head out out the door, here are ten heat wave survival tips for traveling on transit!

1. Plan ahead

Summer season is also detour season! Festivals, marathons, and markets are taking place across Metro Vancouver, so be sure to follow us on Twitter (@TransLink) and check the Transit Alerts page before you go.

You can also plan your trip using our Trip Planner tool to find the fastest way to get to your destination with the least amount of walking and minimize layover time between transfers. And don’t forget to check out where your bus is in real time by clicking on Next Bus via m.translink.ca!

If you think you’ll need time to recover from the heat, it might be a good idea to start your trip a little earlier too. This way you aren’t running after the train and it will give you time to recuperate between transfers such as spending some time in the shade or grabbing an ice cold drink.

2. Ride beside others as you would have them ride beside you.

It’s at times like these we need to remember the Golden Rule of Transit: “Ride beside others as you would have them ride beside you.”

Since heat and crowded conditions can make people very testy, we need to be all the more mindful at these times of what we do around others. If you can, try to observe basic hygiene and don’t go too far with the cologne, after-shave or perfume, since so many people are severely allergic.

3. Dress smart

Our buses do not have a “dress code” as such, but for safety reasons, shirts and footwear are required on SkyTrain; so if you’ve been to the beach and take the bus back intending to transfer to SkyTrain, make sure you have a shirt on and something on your feet.

It’s a good idea to wear white or light coloured, breathable clothing since black and other dark colours trap heat. Remember to wear sunscreen and sunglasses—being inside the bus doesn’t protect you from harmful UV rays!

And remember to apply the Golden Rule – would you want to sit next to someone on a hot day without a layer of cloth between you?

4. Drink plenty of fluids

Generally, food and drink are not allowed on transit vehicles, but since it’s important to stay hydrated, I’m sure our drivers will cut you some slack and allow you to bring a bottle of water on board. ;)

Absolutely no drinks with no lids! It might be a good idea to stay away beverages such as coffee and pop since they could cause dehydration.

Be mindful that it is sometimes necessary for our transit vehicles to come to a sudden stop, so it’s probably not a good idea to drink while the vehicle is in motion. Even though it’s a hot day, I’m sure you don’t want to spill water on yourself or having your water bottle go flying across the bus and spilling.

5. Keep those windows open—or shut! 

The majority of TransLink vehicles are not air-conditioned, but some are! These include our Mark II SkyTrain cars, highway coaches, newer community shuttles, and newer buses in West Vancouver and Richmond.

Vehicles that are air conditioned have signage on the windows saying so and it’s important to remember to keep those windows closed. It can take some time for the bus to become cool if it just entered service, so be patient rather than opening the window. It will be worth the wait!

Mark I SkyTrain cars were built without air conditioning because in the mid-1980s, when they were built, A/C units were much heavier and more expensive than they are now. Since those issues were resolved by the time the Mark II cars were built, the newer cars and Canada Line have air conditioning.

If you want a window opened or closed, as a courtesy, it might be nice to ask around first in case somebody has a preference for the window to be opened or closed. They might have allergies!

6. Stretch the priority seating definition

Stretch your definition of who should have priority in seating. Our signage says seniors and people with disabilities have priority, but if you see someone on a hot day who looks like they need the seat more than you do, please be courteous and offer it to them.

7. Strategize

Figure out which seat will get you away from the sun and plan accordingly! It will make for a more comfortable and cooler ride. Consider waiting for an air conditioned SkyTrain car if you think you need it.

8. Adjust your travel times

Do you really need to hop on the bus at 2:00 p.m. in the afternoon to do grocery shopping? Consider travelling earlier or later in the day when transit is less crowded and the weather outside is a little bit cooler. Remember, it’s a one-zone fare after 6:30 p.m.!

9. Move to the back of the bus

Moving all the way to the back of the bus means more people can get onto the bus and more room for you too in this weather. We promise there’s no black hole in the middle of the bus!

10. BREATHE!

Above all, BREATHE! We all look forward to a warm summer and here it is.  Cut others some slack and enjoy the nice weather. Days like these don’t last long in this area.

Vancouver’s climate and transportation system are two factors that make it one of the most livable regions in the world. Observing these suggestions and maintaining your own “situational awareness” can make for a more pleasant experience all around.

Let us know in the comments section, tweet us @TheBuzzer, or email us at thebuzzer@translink.ca how you plan to beat the heat!

Author: Allen Tung

#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

Explore with TransLink – say hello to our July special post series!

Explore with TransLink banner

In the past, we’ve done a series for you to Ask TransLink, a spotlight about Life on Transit, TransLink’s roads and bridges, TransLink 101 where we answered basic questions about the organization, and of course, #WhatsTheLink.

For the month of July, we’re excited to be bringing you another special series called, Explore with TransLink!

What’s “Explore with TransLink” all about?

To say TransLink’s service area is “big” might be a bit of an understatement. The SkyTrain is one of the longest automated rapid transit systems in the world and our service area is larger than Montreal and Chicago, and twice the size of Toronto’s.

On top of that, we are also responsible for 2,300 lane kilometres of major roads and bridges as well as cycling infrastructure—so there’s a lot of places TransLink goes to!

This being summer and all, we’re going to explore Metro Vancouver with you by sharing a selection of fascinating places that TransLink takes you and you might not have been!

Every Monday for the rest of July, we’ll be making a post highlighting places that our bus, SkyTrain, SeaBus, West Coast Express, Major Road Network, and cycling routes takes you.

Tell us what places TransLink takes you

As always, we’d love your feedback to help inform our series! Tell us some ‘hidden gems’ in Vancouver or finish this sentence, “TransLink takes you…” in the comments section below or share it with us via email, thebuzzer@translink.ca.

We’re excited to showcase great submissions to spur more conversations!

Author: Allen Tung