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Translink Buzzer Blog

Category: Something Neat

A talon for getting rid of pigeons – TransLink’s Falconry Project

Falconry Project

In a bid to develop a humane solution to address the long-standing pigeon problem at SkyTrain stations across the region, we have partnered with our feathered friends at Raptors Ridge for a six-week falconry project around six of our most bird populated stations. Falconers will be bringing predatory birds, falcons and hawks, to these stations in order to change the habits of the pigeons and deter them from returning.

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Going the distance. Rogers LTE wireless comes to the Burquitlam Tunnel

Mark II staredown. #mytranslink #vancouver #translink #transit #skytrain

A post shared by Adam Ulrich Rinne (@atomadam90) on

Earlier this week, Rogers completed installation of the LTE wireless network in the 2.5 km Burquitlam Tunnel on the Evergreen Extension. This marks the last section of SkyTrain that was without cell coverage since service expanded to the Dunsmuir and Edmonds tunnels in July 2016, and New Westminster this past August.

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Vancouver Technical Secondary students deliver mugs of cheer to bus operators (2017)

Van Tech bus operator hot chocolate

Photo courtesy of Ken Li

For over 20 years, students elves at Vancouver Technical Secondary School in Vancouver have been rolling out of bed extra early on the last day of school before winter break to give back to the bus operators who have been getting them to school all year long.

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Merry giftmas and happy giveaway!

The holiday season is upon us and to kick off the festivities, staff members from across the enterprise have joined together to wish you a very happy holiday!

TransLink is a very diverse and multicultural employer. We showcased just 22 languages (not including dog!) which is a small fraction of what can be found among our many employees. Can you name all of languages captured in this video?

But what would the holidays be without gifts?! Enter below for a chance to win a cool TransLink merch gift pack just in time for the holidays!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Author: Sarah Kertcher

‘Tis the season for toys! Toys for Tots returns for 32nd year

Toys For Tots 2017

Sparky the Elf, on behalf of TransLink and its operating companies, upped the ante today by committing to a donation of 3.500 unwrapped toys to the Lower Mainland Christmas Bureau (LMCB) this holiday season. That’s 500 more than last year’s commitment!

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Ride the West Coast Express Santa Train on Dec. 9 and 16!

All aboard the West Coast Express Santa Train! It runs on Dec. 9 and 16, benefiting your community toy bureau!

The West Coast Express Santa Trains are back for its 22nd year, benefiting community toy bureaus! It’s a great kick-off to the holiday season and such a worthy cause.

Please bring your entire family and invite all of your friends on Saturday, Dec. 9 and 16, and help make Christmas brighter for kids in your community!

What makes the Santa Trains special is you get a free ticket to ride the West Coast Express in exchange for a new, unwrapped toy donation (worth about the same as a WCE pass) for your community toy bureau. It’s a great way to give to those in need in your community, and have a fun-filled day at the same time!

The Santa Train departs Mission City at 10 a.m. on Dec. 9 and 16, and stops at all West Coast Express stations along the way, arriving at Waterfront Station at 11:15 a.m. Once in Vancouver, you can enjoy a day of holiday sights and sounds before returning home from Waterfront Station at 4 p.m.

Make sure you stop by the West Coast Express North Pole Station (at Waterfront Station), beginning at 2:45 p.m., for holiday activities and a photo op with Santa! As well, our friends at Dairyland will provide a taste of egg nog while you wait for your trip home. So bring your camera and your Christmas cheer, and we’ll see you there!

Shop the pop-up December 6 – 8, 2017

pop-up shop

TransLink recently launched an online store selling a wide variety of apparel, home goods, accessories and more.  For now, this is a virtual store with no brick and mortar location, however to help Metro Vancouverites kick off their holiday shopping, we will be hosting a pop-up shop from today, Wednesday, December 6 to Friday, December 8, 2017 at Gilmore Station on the Millennium Line. So pop on by any time between 3:00 pm and 7:00 pm each day to touch, feel, and try some of our new and amazing transit inspired merch!

Can’t make it to the pop-up shop? Shop online anytime at translinkstore.ca.

Do you have a favourite piece of merch?

Author: Sarah Kertcher

TransLink raises $1.5 million by selling carbon credits

One of the compressed natural gas buses in the Coast Mountain Bus Company fleet.

TransLink has sold its first set of carbon credits under British Columbia’s low-carbon fuel program. By doing so, we earned $1.5 million that will be invested into improving service for our customers! Read more »

Take Transit Home. TransLink launches first ever merchandise store with a giveaway!

TransLink Store Bus Blind Coffee Mug

You’ve asked, and we’ve delivered!

Starting today, Metro Vancouverites, transit enthusiasts, and tourists alike can take transit home… Literally!

To say we’re excited about the launch of our online merchandise store, Translinkstore.ca, would be an understatement. For some time customers have been asking, begging and pleading for the opportunity to get their hands on TransLink swag, and we’re thrilled to give both locals and visitors the chance to show off their love of our Metro Vancouver transit system with transportation themed apparel, home decor, accessories, and more!   Read more »

2017 Halloween wrap-up

2017 Halloween Wrap Up

Halloween 2017 started on a high note Friday October 27th with none other than a #SkyTrainParty hosted by Vancouver Public Space Network. This annual Halloween-themed celebration transforms SkyTrain with costume-clad commuters, tricks and treats, and even a DJ! This Halloween party is not an official TransLink event, but we love seeing creative passengers enjoying our public transit system! Check out some pictures from the fun night here:

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Record growth continues as ridership numbers follow trend

2017 is proving to be a record year for ridership in Metro Vancouver with over 306 million boardings system-wide. Our latest Compass data is in and it shows ridership numbers higher than ever before proving locals and visitors alike are choosing public transit as their mode of transportation. As of the end of September, 2017, monthly Boardings and Journeys are up +5.2% and +5.4% year-over-year, respectively. Average Weekday Boardings are up +6.9% and Average Weekday Journeys are up +7.0% year-over-year.

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TransLink wins 2017 APTA AdWheel Award

APTA Adwheel Award 2017

Congrats are in order as TransLink once again wins an APTA AdWheel award in the category of Best Marketing and Communications to Increase Ridership or Sales for our 2016 Evergreen Means GO Campaign!

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Where do our transit vehicles sleep at night?

Buses all settled and snuggled in for the night!

Our transit vehicles spend their days moving many people around Metro Vancouver, but have you ever wondered what happens to them after a long day of work? Each night, our SkyTrain vehicles, SeaBus vessels, buses and West Coast Express trains return to their homes for a well-deserved rest before they gear up for another busy day.

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Thank you for raising more than $2,100 for the Red Cross wildfire relief fund!

Since April 11, 1,249 wildfires have burned across the province leading to a state of emergency where many people were evacuated from their homes and more than one-million hectares of land was burned.

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Once upon a chime

Have you ever wondered where the iconic SkyTrain chime came from? Well, today is your lucky day because we’ve got an answer for you!

Once upon a chime…

Our story dates back to 1984, a few years before SkyTrain was operational. As a driverless automated system with no train operator on-board to remind passengers that doors were about to close and the train was ready to depart, we realized the need for some kind of automated on-board message.

FYI: SkyTrain opened in January 1986, on schedule and on budget ($854 million) with an initial 21.4 kms (13.3 miles) of guideway, 15 stations and 114 SkyTrain cars!

Once the decision was made to create an automated message, the next step was to determine what the message would sound like. We tested out many different ideas and even experimented with real bells, but nothing seemed to sound just right.  Since SkyTrain is an automated, high-tech system, the feeling was that a reasonably conventional sounding chime was needed.

Fun fact! The SkyTrain chime isn’t just for SkyTrain! The same chime can also be heard on-board our buses!

We decided to test out some different versions of the chime using a digital synthesizer at Little Mountain Sound Studio. It took some time to come up with a tone that would be usable and would catch people’s attention. After many trials and errors, we decided that the chime would have three tones going up and would serve it’s purpose to draw passengers attention to the train departing and the doors closing.

Did you know that the SkyTrain chime was recorded in the same studio that AC/DC, Bryan Adams, Aerosmith and many other talented musicians recorded in?!

Listen to the SkyTrain chime

This post originally appeared as a podcast on The Buzzer Blog on December 1, 2008.

Author: Christina Jakopin