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Translink Buzzer Blog

Category: Something Neat

#MyTransLink – February 20, 2017

Hey Buzzer readers! We’re back with another edition of #MyTransLink, sharing your photos from around the system!

With a transit network spanning land, sea, and Sky(Train), it’s no surprise that you, are riders are able to capture some of our best photos.

Here’s what you shared this week!

 

[=]’These are the days we’ve been waiting for’ [=] #vancouver #burnaby #SkyTrain #MyTranslink

A post shared by Kobie Huang (@kobiehuang) on

Bridge life #newwestminster #mytranslink

A post shared by Rich Elliott (@therichelliott) on

This is why i love #beautifulbritishcolimbia.. taken from #carvolthexchange in #langley.. @translinkbc

A post shared by FerretLover (@atomikangel69) on

Want to be featured on the blog? You know you do! It’s easy!
Simply follow us on Twitter and Instagram, tag us and use the hashtag #MyTransLink.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

Donate your Compass Card to a great cause!

Compass Card Donation Bins

Moving people is what we do, and now through a new initiative with a long standing partner, the United Way Lower Mainland (UWLM), you can help!

Simply donate your new or semi-used, unregistered Compass Cards into one of our donation kiosks located around Vancouver. There are currently five donation kiosks for customers to donate their unregistered Compass Cards:

Canada Line kiosks

  1. Waterfront Station
  2. Vancouver City Centre
  3. Broadway–City Hall

Expo Line kiosks

  1. Granville Station (Dunsmuir exit)
  2. Compass Customer Service Centre (Stadium–Chinatown Station)

We hope to install more donation kiosks in the coming months at key locations around Metro Vancouver where customers are likely to tap in to their generosity and support this program and the United Way.

Transit plays an important role in helping people live full successful lives, whether it’s going to work,  job interviews, healthcare appointments or other activities that enrich their lives.

“Some of the region’s most vulnerable populations are reliant on both United Way funded programs and services – and on TransLink,” said Cathy McLay, CFO and EVP, Finance and Corporate Services, TransLink. “I am extremely proud of this new initiative and the ongoing commitment employees across the TransLink enterprise display to our United Way campaigns each year.”

To donate a Compass Card, simply deposit the unregistered Compass Card into your nearest donation kiosk. You can unregister your existing Compass Card by calling Compass Customer Service at 604-398-2042 or by visiting the Compass Customer Walk in Centre. The value from collected Compass Cards will be converted to Compass Tickets for distribution by UWLM to selected agencies working directly with those in need.

Author: Sarah Kertcher

My TransLink – February 7, 2017

Another edition of My TransLink coming atcha’!

ICYMI: My TransLink is a rider-focused series where we want you to share your transit photographs from across the system on social media and in turn, we share your amazing pics right here on the Buzzer blog. Basically, this is all about you!

Let’s see what you’ve captured over the last few weeks!

The daily commute 🛳 #mytranslink

A photo posted by Jaemie Sures | 📍Vancouver (@jaemiesures) on

I’m in love with this photo #95 #bline #95bline #135sfu #mytranslink @translinkbc

A photo posted by Damien (@rainyday59) on

55 #sfu #burnabybc #burnabymountain #winter #snow #britishcolumbia #mytranslink

A photo posted by Vancouver, Persian Style (@persianyvr) on

Want to be featured on the blog? You know you do! It’s easy!
Simply follow us on Twitter and Instagram, tag us and use the hashtag #MyTransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Celebrate the Chinese New Year with parades and events around Metro Vancouver

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2017 is the year of the rooster

Cock-a-doodle-doo! It’s almost the year of the rooster in the lunar calendar.

The Chinese New Year, also known as the Spring Festival in China, is this Saturday, January 28 and there are lots of activities around the region to ring in this new year.

One of the bigger celebrations is in Richmond at the Aberdeen Centre which boasts the largest Chinese New Year celebration in North America and is easily accessed from the Canada Line!

The events at Aberdeen are already underway with the Chinese New Year Flower and gift fair. Next up is the countdown on Friday then the Golden Dragon and Lion dance on Saturday.

For more Chinese New Year fun, head to Lonsdale Quay on the North Shore, a special Chinese New Year dinner at the Cloverdale Rec Centre in Surrey or check out FlyOver Canada’s special showing of Flight of the Dragon at Canada Place until February 26.

Another popular celebration is the 44th Vancouver Chinatown Spring Festival Parade at 11 a.m. on Sunday, January 29.

Map-2017From 5 a.m. until 4 p.m., Pender, Carrall, Columbia and Gore will be closed.

The following bus detours will apply to allow for the parade route:

5 a.m. to 4 p.m.

50 Waterfront Regular route to temporary terminus on Cambie & Pender.
50 False Creek From temporary terminus on Cambie at Pender via Cambie, Georgia, Seymour, Cordova, regular route.

9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

23 Davie Regular route to Quebec & Expo Blvd then Expo Blvd regular route.
23 Main Regular route to Pacific Blvd & Abbott then Pacific Blvd regular route.
210 Vancouver Regular route to Powell & Main, then via Powell, Water, Cordova, Howe, regular route.
211 Vancouver Regular route to Powell & Main, then via Powell, Water, Cordova, Howe, regular route.
3 Downtown Regular route to Main & Dunsmuir Viaduct, then via Dunsmuir, Homer, Hastings, regular route.
3 Main Regular route to Cordova & Cambie, then via Cambie, Georgia, Main, regular route.
4 UBC Regular route to Main & Hastings then via Hastings, Granville, regular route.
7 Dunbar Regular route to Main & Hastings then via Hastings, Granville, regular route.
8 Downtown Regular route to Main & Dunsmuir Viaduct, then via Dunsmuir, Homer, Hastings, regular route.
8 Fraser Regular route to Cordova & Cambie, then via Cambie, Georgia, Main, regular route.
19 Metrotown Regular route to Pender & Cambie then via Cambie, Georgia, Georgia Viaduct Main, regular route.
19 Stanley Park Regular route to Main & Dunsmuir Viaduct, then via Dunsmuir, Homer, Hastings, regular route.
22 Knight Regular route to Pender & Cambie then via Cambie, Georgia, Georgia Viaduct, Prior, regular route.
22 Downtown Regular route to Prior & Gore then via Prior, Dunsmuir Viaduct, Dunsmuir Homer, Pender, regular route.

For more information including bus detours maps, visit translink.ca/alerts.

Kung Hei Fat Choi!!

Author: Adrienne Coling

My TransLink – January 24, 2017

Welcome to the first official post of My TransLink!

A couple of weeks ago, we asked you to be our photographers on your commute and share with us your transit pics from across the system on social media.

The social team wants to share your content, your views of transit and our community.

Here are just a few from the first installment – including some very snowy scenes!

As seen from the Skytrain.

A video posted by Trevor Jansen (@tr3vorjans3n) on

The next station is… Inlet Centre.

A photo posted by Juan M. Sanchez (@jmsuncheese) on

the night shift #TransLink #Buses #NightRides #Vancouver #SFU #burnaby #mytranslink

A photo posted by Kobie Huang (@kobiehuang) on

Thanks to everyone for their photos. Keep them coming!

Want to be featured on the blog?
Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, tag us and use the hashtag #MyTransLink.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Buzzer blog repost: Story of the SkyTrain Chime

Podcasting SymbolWe’re mining popular Buzzer blog posts from days gone by to reignite fun and interesting conversations about transit!

Today we’ll be heading back to 2008 when Jhenifer Pabillano, the blog’s creator, was playing around with podcasts and looked into the story of the SkyTrain Chime.

Enjoy!

The Buzzer blog podcast is back!

This time, I’ve got the story behind the SkyTrain chime for you to hear. Ian Graham, operations planner for SkyTrain, talks all about how the chime was recorded, why we ended up with that particular sound, and who in the world actually played the chime.

 

To listen to the podcast, press play on the player above, or download the mp3 here. You can also subscribe to our podcast via RSS, so this audio file will download straight into iTunes or your RSS reader, and you’ll get all the future Buzzer podcasts by refreshing your subscription.

(And seriously, would you have guessed the SkyTrain chime was recorded at the same studio where Bryan Adams and AC/DC laid down albums?)

You can also listen to our previous podcasts:

What do you think? Should the Buzzer venture back into podcasts? Comment below and let us know!

Author: Adrienne Coling

A heartwarming transit story

HUGS Random Acts of Kindness

If you’ve lost faith in the kindness of strangers, this story is for you!

One of our riders, Kajal, shared with us a heartwarming story of an elderly lady sharing kindness and “hugs” on a recent transit trip.

I was on the 4 bus on Tuesday around 1pm when a lovely old lady with a walker came and sat beside me. She struck up a conversation with a gentleman sitting across from him who was offering his seat up for her so she could be more comfortable. Refusing, she in turn responded that she wanted to give him something.  

Seeing his confused look, she pulled out a stack of these little cards with “hug” expressed in bold red letters. Laughing, she began distributing cards to everyone on the bus. Soon, everyone on the bus had received a hug save for me. 

When she saw me sitting beside her laughing, she exclaimed “did you get a hug? You didn’t! You have to holler at me, I’m 92 years old so I don’t hear very well!” and with a beautiful smile, she passed a card to me.  

As I exited the bus, I could hear her spreading joy among strangers who felt like familiar friends. Days like these I appreciate Vancouver more and more. 

After sharing this story on our Instagram Channel, we quickly realized that Kajal’s story is not unique! Azalea also met our lovely “hugs” lady, and knows her by the name of Anne, a 90 something transit rider who loves the bus and a good pizza from Main & Hastings!

“Anne” has been spotted riding the number 004 – POWELL/DOWNTOWN/UBC, 020 – VICTORIA/DOWNTOWN, and at the SeaBus.

Have you seen Anne the hugs lady? We want to catch up with her!

If you’ve seen Anne, or received a “hug” of your own, please share the details below in the comments section!

Author: Sarah Kertcher

Evergreen Explorer: Caffeinate your Commute

Evergreen Explorer

Coffee and commuting go hand in hand, no? If you’re anything like me, your go-to travel companion is your to-go coffee mug. Whether you’re making your daily commute, or just looking for a transit friendly stop for coffee with a friend, here’s a list of locations along the Evergreen Extension to get your daily grind.

Production Way–University Station – Looking for coffee at this stop? Look no further than Mac’s Convenient Store. It’s no gourmet coffee shop, but if you’re in need of a quick pick-me-up, this location is just a few steps outside the station!

Lougheed Station – For an extra special latte, look no further than Coffee Monster. Their latte’s are amazing, but their latte art puts them over the top — you wont be disappointed. Located on North Road, just down the street from Lougheed Station this is the perfect stop to perk you up! Bonus! If you have a 2017 Entertainment Book, check it out for valuable coupons! Lougheed Mall is home to Starbucks Coffee, Tim Horton’s, and a David’s Tea.

Coffee bar at Connected Minds Cafe & Roastery

Burquitlam StationConnected Minds Cafe & Roastery boasts fresh coffee as unique as you. Get your custom roasted coffee, roasted right before your eyes in 20 minutes! Delicious pastries and other treats can also be found here.

Evergreen Explorer

Moody Centre – Try something different by visiting the Lazy Den Tea House for a bubble tea to go. Known for their amazing pies, Gabi & Jules does more than one thing right! Visit this cafe on Clarke Street in Port Moody and enjoy you java with a slice — or the whole pie! Gabi & Jules gives back with a portion of all pie proceeds to two not-for-profit, volunteer organizations have been advocating for support services for families dealing with Autism.

Inlet CentreGallagher’s Coffee Bar and Starbucks are a short jaunt down the way into Newport Village. A unique village with quaint shops and a variety of watering holes.

Coquitlam Central – If you’re in a rush, Creekside Coffee Factory is unlikely the place to go. Not for a lack of service or timeliness, but like a good cuppa-joe, you’re going to want to sit and enjoy this place. There is almost always a rush and buzz of people at Creekside Coffee Factory, and while it could be for their delicious beverages and treats, I personally think it’s for their well known stuffy mascot Bearicano!

Caffe Divano

Lincoln Station – This is the most convenient station to Coquitlam Centre Mall, home to Starbucks, David’s Tea, and Tim Horton’s. Also just down the street from Lincoln Station is Him & I Cafe. This quaint location has ample seating and big bright windows perfect for nestling in with a good book, catching up on your studying, or people watching! Their homemade pastries and cakes are to die for. Try the Black Forrest Cake!

Lafarge Lake–Douglas – A short walk from the terminus station you can find one of three Caffé Divano locations (also located in Burnaby and Port Moody). Fun Fact: Owners Patrick and Lisa Beecroft also own Gabi & Jules located near Moody Centre! Bonus! If you collect Belly rewards, Caffé Divano is a participating member. If you’re craving a Canadian Coffee & doughnut fix, Douglas College just up the street is home to a small Tim Horton’s.

Where is your favourite place to caffeinate along the Evergreen Extension?

Author: Sarah Kertcher

2017 Transit resolutions

2017 Transit Resolutions

With 2016 in the rear view mirror, your 2017 New Years resolutions should be in full swing. If by chance you’re still humming and hawing for a resolution that resonates with you, consider making your way through 2017 with some of these goals.

    1. 1. Get Active
      Metro Vancouver is a beautiful region full of near endless areas to explore. Just steps from TransLink’s Metrotown station is Burnaby’s Central Park, home to scenic walking/running paths, an outdoor fitness circuit, and playground. And for when the snow melts, enjoy tennis courts, horseshoe pits, golf, lawn bowling and more.

 

    1. 2. Try Something New
      Whether your interest lies in learning a new language, hobby, sport or otherwise, transit connects you with a host of enriching opportunities. The Evergreen Cultural Centre, now easily accessible from the Evergreen Extension, offers improv classes, art direction, or even tickets to a show! If food is your jam, try some new eats at one of Daily Hive’s 45 places to eat along the Evergreen Extension.Metro Vancouver, and our local ski hills, have been inundated with snow this season. Now’s a great time to get out and enjoy some Nordic or Alpine skiing or riding, snowshoeing, tubing or tobogganing — with daily trips to Grouse Mountain, there’s no reason not to!

 

    1. 3. Reduce Your Carbon Footprint
      At TransLink, we care about the environment! Did you know that CMBC operates many CNG buses in order to reduce carbon emissions and lower maintenance costs? Consider parking your car and taking transit and be a little greener this year. If parking your car indefinitely isn’t an option for you, consider a multi-modal option like riding your bike part way! Every bus in the CMBC fleet is equipped with bus bike racks to help facilitate your multi-modal journey. Various car sharing and bike sharing options are also available within a close proximity to most SkyTrain stations.

 

  1. 4. Save Money
    Did you know that Stored Value on a Compass Card never expires? If you’ve been travelling with single use, or paper fare media, now’s the time to make the switch to Compass. Not only does your stored value never expire, you have access to other great features and benefits such as Auto Load and Balance Protection. Additionally, travelling with a Compass Card gives you a discounted per trip price as well as full transferability across all modes of travel!

     

  2. 5. Unplug
    We know that many Buzzer Blog readers use their time on transit to listen to music, read, play games, and even “zone out”, but what if you put down the smartphone for any, or all of your commute and took the time look up and be present! You never know, you might just even find love!

Do you have a New Years Resolution for 2017?Let us know in the comments section!

Author: Sarah Kertcher

TransLink 2016: A year in review

Squared
Another trip around the sun. 2016 – what a year! It’s been a busy and productive 366 (leap year) days for TransLink.

Let’s take a look back at 2016 in the world of Metro Vancouver transit!

New CEO.

In the spring, we welcomed new CEO, Kevin Desmond. Kevin came to TransLink from King County Metro Transit that serves the Seattle area.

Kevin jumped in with both feet to lead the charge of a very full and important year while emphasizing our customers’ needs, transparency and excellent service.

We’re so happy to have him at the helm!

Compass.

This word was on everyone’s lips this year!

Compass Card tap outAfter a roll out that started with Upass users then West Coast Express, the general public adopted Compass with Monthly Passes at the beginning of this year.

Then, on April 4, 2016, the fare gates closed requiring riders to tap in on buses and in and out at all gates to pay their fare.

With Compass, you can travel seamlessly across the TransLink transit network with one card! Compass also allows us to gather important data on peak periods, bus route ridership and more – helping us better plan and run the transit network.

Expo ’86.

May 2nd marked the 30th anniversary of Expo ’86 – the 1986 World Exposition on Transportation and Communication held on the north shore of False Creek.

This was North America’s largest World’s Fair and a monumental event for Vancouver that left a lasting legacy – our SkyTrain system starting with none other than the Expo Line!

SkyTrain started regular service on January 3, 1986.

100 years of the Buzzer. 

Happy birthday, Buzzer! The print Buzzer hit a major milestone anniversary of 100 years!

This free, on-transit publication began on June 2, 1916 without a name. That soon changed and it has been delivering informative, fun and interesting transit and community related tidbits to the riders of the transit system ever since.

You can pick yours up on your ride or download here.

Federal funding.

PM Justin Trudeau made some lifelong transit friends when he announced more than $900 million will be invested – by the Government of Canada, British Columbia and municipalities – in public transit projects across the province.

This important funding promise allowed the Metro Vancouver Mayors’ Council to present Phase One of the 10-Year Vision for approval. But we’ll get to that soon enough!

LTE connectivity.

Rogers and Fido customers were treated to not one but two connectivity projects allowing riders to use their mobile devices.

In July, the Dunsmuir tunnel downtown Vancouver was connected and in November, the Edmonds tunnel followed suit!

Up next? We will continue to work with Rogers to build out wireless coverage along the Evergreen Extension, Columbia Station and tunnel and in New Westminster.

#Compass1Million.

This summer we hit one million active Compass Cards.

That means that a million riders across Metro Vancouver embraced the switch to Compass and were tap, tap, tapping their way to and from school, home, work and more!

With such great news, we had to celebrate with a fun contest to thank you for using Compass!

Mark IIIs.

These beautiful new SkyTrain cars were the hit of the summer! Especially because the A/C is just oh, so cool!

Press tourThese cars rode across country – on flatbeds – to reach out region.

Each 4-car set is fully articulated (you can walk from one end of the train to the other), has more room for standing passengers, wheelchairs, bikes, strollers and riders with luggage plus, they are more environmentally efficient!

Transit riders and enthusiasts eagerly awaited the first trip on August 18th and our Mark III VIPs got a front seat for the journey!

SkyTrain Wedding.

Something old, something new, something borrowed something… transit? Hey, whatever floats your SeaBus!Congratulations Nathaly and Jeff!

Jeff and Nathaly met on Canada Line and it was their dream to get married on transit.

Enter a white (naturally) Mark II SkyTrain, a full band, wedding guests and one interloping Buzzer blog writer and you’ve got a SkyTrain wedding!

It was a distinct pleasure to document this lovely couple’s big day aboard our beloved SkyTrain at Stadium–Chinatown Station.

I Love Transit Week.

I love transit week is a time for enthusiasts of all ages can say loud and proud, “I LOVE TRANSIT!”

Poems, colouring contests, a special Buzzer, HTC opening tour, kids camp and more – we felt the transit love from riders of all ages at a variety of events.

Interested in participating in next year’s festivities? Keep your eyes peeled for rumblings on the Buzzer blog in spring!

Hamilton Transit Centre.

In one September weekend we said goodbye to North Vancouver Transit Centre and hello to the brand new HTC building in Richmond! HTC

Did you notice? If not, that’s a good thing! CMBC made the seamless transition from one TC to the other and got your buses on the road from their no locale A.S.A.P.

Hamilton Transit Centre has capacity for 300 forty-foot buses, including up to 80 community shuttle buses and 150 Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) fuelled buses.

HTC performs three functions: dispatch, fuel and wash service as well as maintenance for buses servicing the Richmond, New Westminster, Burnaby and Vancouver areas.

Pattullo.

Opened in 1937, this bridge is one of the busiest Fraser crossings in the region. So, it’s unsurprising that while we go ahead with plans to build a new bridge, this ol’ girl needs some safety upgrades in the interim.

We know the evening and weekend closures impacted a lot of drivers and we appreciate your patience as we rehabilitated the crossing to ensure its safety for all.

Repairs included:

  • milling off the asphalt surfacing from the deck
  • removing all deck concrete down to the top layer of rebar
  • repairing concrete delamination and cleaning or replacing rebar
  • repaving the deck area with a concrete overlay

Crews managed to finish early allowing for goods and people to move freely over the Pattullo Bridge once again .

CUTA.

CUTA is the Canadian Urban Transit Association and this year’s Fall Conference and Transit Show happened right here in Metro Vancouver on November 5-9.

This year’s theme was Inspiring Sustainable Change with a variety of seminars and speakers discussing today’s demands, tomorrow’s challenges and the possibilities for transit in our country and around the world.

TransLink had many speakers engaging with experts and transit enthusiasts from around the globe. Including CMBC’s Derek Stewart who spoke about the impact of climate change to transit agencies.

New Westminster upgrades.

We are upgrading SkyTrain Stations across the rapid transit network.

New Westminster was one of them. I say was because the work is done! On November 21, we officially completed and opened the overhauled station for riders to use and enjoy!

The completed upgrades at New Westminster Station include:

  • A new elevator and escalators to improve access for customers with disabilities
  • Improved lighting throughout the station
  • Glass panels to replace the mesh screens and improve station visibility from street level
  • Better integration with the surrounding community to make it easier to connect to and from the SkyTrain system
  • New public art that improves the experience of riders

10-year vision.

Our region is growing and along with that comes greater need for public transit.640x194_buzzer_blog-01

The Mayors’ Council 10-year Vision Phase One was approved by the TransLink board and council on November 23.

Along with the federal and provincial funding promised in June, municipalities will pitch in their share with TransLink for some much needed transit upgrades and projects.

Phase One improvements in 2017, 2018, and 2019 include:

  • 10% increase in bus service
  • 15% increase in HandyDART service
  • 20% increase in rail service
  • New or expanded transit services for neighbourhoods that currently have few or no transit options today
  • Safer walking and cycling routes
  • Reduced traffic congestion by fixing bottlenecks on major roads

Metro Vancouver residents will start to see added service in the new year with much more to come in the coming months and years!

Evergreen.

Sometimes, it IS easy being green! EmeansGo

On December 2, the Evergreen Extension to the Millennium Line opened to great excitement despite the rainy weather!

The community celebration at Coquitlam Central Station ran all day with riders eagerly awaiting the first official ride on Evergreen.

With this extension, TransLink has the longest, automated, driverless rapid transit system in the world!

Twitter Heroes.

If you’ve ever called 604-953-3333 or tweeted @TransLink, you’ve interacted with CI (Customer Information).

This crew works tirelessly to help keep riders informed on specific routes, transit timings, disruptions, detours and all things transit related!

Started in 2010 as a pilot project, to date our followers have reached over 135,000 people and CI has sent out 295,039 tweets!

A big thank you to these awesome people who keep us moving!

Well, that about wraps it up. We can’t wait for what 2017 will hold for our region and transit!

Author: Adrienne Coling

An important service reminder plus the Buzzer blog wishes you happy holidays!

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Yet again I have roped my colleagues into a group photo – this time, to spread some Christmas cheer to you, all of our amazing Buzzer blog readers.

We strive to bring you informative, fun and interesting transit happenings from our agency and from across the globe.

Thank you for being a part of our online community!

Just as a reminder, with Christmas drawing nigh, transit will operating slightly differently over the next few days.

Christmas Day – Sunday, December 25, 2016

  • Buses will run on a modified Sunday/holiday schedule; some routes will be adjusted from their normal schedule to reflect ridership levels. Use the Trip Planner (with the date of Dec. 25) to check your route and bus times, or read the Christmas Day Schedules below.
  • SeaBus and SkyTrain will operate with a modified Sunday/holiday schedule.
  • West Coast Express and TrainBus service will not operate.

Boxing Day – Monday, December 26, 2016

  • Buses will run on a modified Sunday/holiday schedule; some routes will be adjusted from their normal schedule to reflect ridership levels. Use the Trip Planner (with the date of Dec. 26) to check your route and bus times, or read the Boxing Day Schedules below.
  • SeaBus will operate regular Sunday/holiday service with extended evening trips.
  • SkyTrain will run Saturday service with extra trains running midday to accommodate shoppers.
  • West Coast Express and TrainBus service will not operate.

**Please check the website as timings are subject to change.

Bonus! On Sunday/holiday schedules you only need a one-zone fare to travel across all zones on all modes!

Remember, if you’re enjoying some libations during your merry merriment, please plan ahead for a safe ride home.

The social team will be off on December 24 and back December 28.
If you have questions please tweet @TransLink or call 604.953.3333.

Happy holidays!

Author: Adrienne Coling

Santa is ready to tap his way across the region – just in case!

Santa-01

Don’t make Santa’s naughty list – Be sure to tap in and out at all Compass gates!

We all know the Santa flies around the world on Christmas Eve in his sleigh with some help from Dasher, Dancer and the rest of the reindeer crew.

But what happens if the sleigh malfunctions or the reindeer catch a cold and can’t fly?

How ever will Santa get around Metro Vancouver?!?

Well, we’ve got you covered, Nick!

Peter Fassbender, Minister of Community, Sport and Cultural Development and Minister Responsible for TransLink issued the following statement:

“I am pleased to report that I have spoken with Santa who confirmed that his Compass Card is loaded and ready to use on Christmas Eve.

“Santa informed me that in the event of an unfortunate sleigh malfunction, or in case Rudolph or any of the other reindeer need a quick rest during present-delivery duties, he will be depending on TransLink’s convenient public transit network to efficiently deliver presents to children across Metro Vancouver.

“Compass Cards facilitate travel on the region’s buses, SkyTrains and SeaBuses as well as the West Coast Express, which is why it is on Santa’s list of “recommended” stocking stuffers. The cards are already popular with Metro Vancouver residents – over one million Compass Cards are in active use by more than one in three people in TransLink’s service area.

“I also had the pleasure of speaking with Mrs. Claus who told me that while Santa and his elves have been hard at work this past month making lists and checking them twice, she did hear about the historic opening of the Evergreen extension and has packed a SkyTrain map alongside Santa’s Compass Card to ensure that he can easily navigate the longest, fully automated rapid transit system in the world.

“Both Santa and Mrs. Claus wish Metro Vancouver transit users a safe and Merry Christmas and look forward to seeing them on transit in the New Year!”

Author: Adrienne Coling

The Burrard Beaver splashes back into service as the original Otter sails its final voyage

Burrard Beaver Dec 2016

    The Burrard Beaver

What do beavers and otters have in common?

Well, besides being furry little water creatures, they are also the names of a couple of our SeaBuses!

The Burrard Beaver recently underwent a nifty little face lift to extend its life for another six years.

The Beaver renovations include:

  • New paint job
  • New carpets
  • New lighting
  • Repairs to the hull
  • New panels added to the Bridge

As we welcome back the Beaver, we say goodbye to a great vessel that has served our region well since the beginning of SeaBus service; the Burrard Otter.

The Burrard Otter went into service in 1977 alongside the Burrard Beaver after being built in the Victoria Shipyards.

With the first Otter being retired, the Beaver will now be used as our spare vessel for sailings.

Did you know??

  • Each of our SeaBus vessels is operated with a crew of four – The Master, one Mate and two Attendants.
  • SeaBus cruises at a speed of 11.5 knots
  • The crossing is 1.75 nautical miles
  • It takes approximately 12 minutes per sailing
  • There are 45,000 annual scheduled sailings

Take a look at the spiffed up SeaBus!

In mid-January, as part of Phase One of the recently approved 10 year vision, we’ll introduce some increases to SeaBus service!

Author: Adrienne Coling

The season of giving continues with thousands of donations for Toys for Tots

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Delivering our promissory note of 3,000 toys to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau!

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Lots’o’toys!

It was a unseasonably chilly morning when Sparky the Elf promised 3,000 new, unwrapped toys on behalf of TransLink and its operating companies to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau (LMCB), but the air was filled with warm, holiday cheer!

Toys for Tots in our region was developed by a group of BC Transit operators back in 1985.

Each year since, the employees of the TransLink enterprise have donated to the less fortunate during the holiday season.

Donations have been made at all eight transit centres, TransLink Lost Property as well as HQs for TransLink, CMBC, BCRTC and Transit Police.

How do we deliver these packages of Christmas joy to the LMCB? By reindeer bus and shuttle, of course!

Santa, Mrs Claus, Sparky, Prancer (that’s me) and some plucky helpers collected 6,111 toys and items from across the Enterprise! That is on top of over $500 of cash donations!

This year is record-breaking and it wouldn’t have been possible without the immense generosity from all of our staff to make this season a little brighter for those in need.

Author: Adrienne Coling

Buzzer blog reader submission: Winter poem

Poetry mosaic
Regular transit user and Buzzer blog reader Carrie Tomiye sent us this lovely poem she wrote about travelling on transit during the winter months.

Enjoy!

For my daily trip planner.    Snow snow, melt away.  Snow snow,

Not even for another day..     Please let go of freezing snow…  Let the sun shine,

Beyond us.    And the warmth of coziness.

Rain, sleet, go away,   just want a blizzard ice cream!

Really  just to eat .  Wish for the hard weather to go away.

Do you have interesting stories, fun photos or other transit tidbits to share?
Email us at thebuzzer@translink.ca.

Author: Adrienne Coling