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Transit Service Discussion (Articulated/Conventional/Shuttle/Skytrain/Seabus)


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20 minutes ago, DJ1400 said:

Hopefully translink should make 340 going to Langley central as an express route, keep 342 as local between Newton and Langley central

But why ? Can you elaborate on that idea a bit more. 

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1 hour ago, DJ1400 said:

Hopefully translink should make 340 going to Langley central as an express route, keep 342 as local between Newton and Langley central

The 340 could theoretically be replaced with a RapidBus route if they would reroute it via 72nd Ave instead of Kittson Pkwy due to the lower demand along Kittson, but then another route would be required to replace the lost coverage along Kittson.

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7 hours ago, Ninja Bus Fan said:

But why ? Can you elaborate on that idea a bit more. 

An idea is getting direct and express service from New West to Langley central

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4 minutes ago, DJ1400 said:

An idea is getting direct and express service from New West to Langley central

Skytrain to Langley is far more economical and faster by a longshot, not to mention a single transfer to the 503 is still as convenient.

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Still surprised TransLink hasn't tried to institute any service (even peak-hour peak-direction trips) on the eastern half of the South Fraser Perimeter Road. We could be seeing:

Scott Road Stn - Bridgeview - Hwy 17 - Hwy 15 - Cloverdale

Scott Road Stn - Bridgeview - Hwy 17 - Hwy 15 - Hwy 1 - Carvolth and Walnut Grove

Scott Road Stn - Bridgeview - Hwy 17 - Hwy 15 - Fraser Hwy - Langley Center

From experience there's never been any congestion on the SFPR; if anything, the Cloverdale option would shave a LOT of time off of existing 320 and 395 options, and the speed of these two highways with no stops would speed up commutes to all three destinations.

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3 hours ago, FlyingPig said:

Scott Road Stn - Bridgeview - Hwy 17 - Hwy 15 - Fraser Hwy - Langley Center

Too indirect

3 hours ago, FlyingPig said:

Scott Road Stn - Bridgeview - Hwy 17 - Hwy 15 - Cloverdale

Not really a destination riders want

3 hours ago, FlyingPig said:

Scott Road Stn - Bridgeview - Hwy 17 - Hwy 15 - Hwy 1 - Carvolth and Walnut Grove

I'll give it 6/10, maybe a few more points if it passes by Port Kells Industrial.

===============

Themes I always see in (conventional) fantasy route creation:

1) Connecting 2 places wherein one or both places have a weak ridership base

2) Trying to connect 2 far-apart destinations using major roads where either multiple minor delays snowball into each other, or major delays happen on a daily basis

3) Indirect routing that attempts to take roads never taken or tries to compete with existing rapid transit options (exception: My personal gripe with TransLink forcing ridership to use skytrain instead of actually providing decent options)

4) Peak/express/Limited routes which either are a combination of 1 and 3, or fails to accomplish what actually needs to be done.

I almost never critique/say anything about fantasy maps because the routes largely fall into those categories.

Making connections are important, and so is having options. However my belief is that we should be building hubs to form the ridership base and then connect them. That is done with shorter, direct routes.

Nowadays there is that option to live in abbotsford and work in Port Kells because Carvolth has established itself as a hub (albeit largely suburban-like as it's still a park-and-ride which urbanists say encourages driving). 

Still in 3rd year geography but those are my 2 cents.

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1 hour ago, Express691 said:

My personal gripe with TransLink forcing ridership to use skytrain instead of actually providing decent options

I'm not sure what the issue with using the SkyTrain as the main connector is. I personally think that the purpose of local buses is to feed riders onto BRT and rail lines, rather than to serve as A to B transportation. In my view, it's the only way that transit will ever compete with cars for the convenience factor. 

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7 hours ago, Zortan said:

I'm not sure what the issue with using the SkyTrain as the main connector is. I personally think that the purpose of local buses is to feed riders onto BRT and rail lines, rather than to serve as A to B transportation. In my view, it's the only way that transit will ever compete with cars for the convenience factor. 

That’s my take on local routes as well. You don’t necessarily need strong anchors for each and every route when there’s faster options (RapidBus or SkyTrain) to get you to those anchors. The purpose of local routes is to provide service coverage, the purpose of express/rapid routes is to reduce travel times and increase capacity while improving overall regional connections. I also think TransLink should be investing more into demand-dependent regional/commuter services (ex. Carvolth to YVR-Airport with the only stops in between being Guildford Exch and Surrey Central Stn) to improve A to B connections and alleviate overcrowding across the network, which is something I am currently working on my map and plan to talk more about it in the coming weeks when I have more routes completed.

8 hours ago, Express691 said:

Themes I always see in (conventional) fantasy route creation:

1) Connecting 2 places wherein one or both places have a weak ridership base

2) Trying to connect 2 far-apart destinations using major roads where either multiple minor delays snowball into each other, or major delays happen on a daily basis

3) Indirect routing that attempts to take roads never taken or tries to compete with existing rapid transit options (exception: My personal gripe with TransLink forcing ridership to use skytrain instead of actually providing decent options)

4) Peak/express/Limited routes which either are a combination of 1 and 3, or fails to accomplish what actually needs to be done.

I almost never critique/say anything about fantasy maps because the routes largely fall into those categories.

Making connections are important, and so is having options. However my belief is that we should be building hubs to form the ridership base and then connect them. That is done with shorter, direct routes.

Nowadays there is that option to live in abbotsford and work in Port Kells because Carvolth has established itself as a hub (albeit largely suburban-like as it's still a park-and-ride which urbanists say encourages driving). 

Still in 3rd year geography but those are my 2 cents.

I’ll just toot my own horn and say I usually take any and all feedback into consideration. However, I also look into ridership data, regional connections, etc. to determine what I think the best course of action should be based on the feedback received.

Do I have a degree in Urban Planning? Nope, but I seem to be doing a better job at creating a regionally-efficient future long-term transit network than TransLink’s own planners with 4-year degrees. In two years of working off and on it, my map is 75%-80% complete, yet it took TransLink over a year and a half to provide two rapid transit network options with routes that would be lucky to see the light of day by 2050 by ridership numbers alone (*cough* Austin Avenue *cough*).

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14 hours ago, Express691 said:

Too indirect

Not really a destination riders want

I'll give it 6/10, maybe a few more points if it passes by Port Kells Industrial.

===============

Themes I always see in (conventional) fantasy route creation:

1) Connecting 2 places wherein one or both places have a weak ridership base

2) Trying to connect 2 far-apart destinations using major roads where either multiple minor delays snowball into each other, or major delays happen on a daily basis

3) Indirect routing that attempts to take roads never taken or tries to compete with existing rapid transit options (exception: My personal gripe with TransLink forcing ridership to use skytrain instead of actually providing decent options)

4) Peak/express/Limited routes which either are a combination of 1 and 3, or fails to accomplish what actually needs to be done.

I almost never critique/say anything about fantasy maps because the routes largely fall into those categories.

Making connections are important, and so is having options. However my belief is that we should be building hubs to form the ridership base and then connect them. That is done with shorter, direct routes.

Nowadays there is that option to live in abbotsford and work in Port Kells because Carvolth has established itself as a hub (albeit largely suburban-like as it's still a park-and-ride which urbanists say encourages driving). 

Still in 3rd year geography but those are my 2 cents.

Not in any year of geography, so with due respect to any experience you have, my response:

1. Having weak ridership bases

I assume this means Cloverdale. I would say that Cloverdale is, especially in peak hours, an area with quite some demand. From a 2016 TSPR report, the #395, whose customers are almost exclusively from Cloverdale and Clayton (along 64th, as Fraser Hwy commuters would likely choose a more frequent 502), averaged some 700 passengers daily. With other services running through the area, I would argue that the number of commuters from Cloverdale likely hovers at a number that is even higher. With such demand, I would say that a 25-minute bus ride straight to Scott Road would be preferable for the majority of these riders. But even if such a place has low ridership, I still think that peak trips do the job admirably. Translink should be providing new options for people to say "perhaps I can not drive today, and still get to work in a reasonable amount of time". That increases ridership, rather than keeping it stagnant because the only option is a bus that takes 40 minutes just to get to Surrey Central. I think that having buses straight from the suburbs to rapid transit is also a precursor to transit-oriented development. That looks like Carvolth-area housing developments advertising a "555 express bus straight to the Skytrain". I imagine that such encouragement to use transit would exist symmetrically in Cloverdale if the message read something like "333 express bus straight to the Skytrain".

2. Using major roads that can have delays

The SFPR is not your average Massey Tunnel. There have not been any delays to speak of along this route. The majority of traffic is truckers leaving ports and intermodal terminals - not rushed commuters driving home.

3. Indirect routing

Yes, this route is indirect in terms of mileage. However, it is not indirect in terms of time. Any trip down Fraser Highway is plagued by traffic, red lights, and even one-lane sections in Green Timbers. A trip by Skytrain/503 to Clayton is a good 50 minutes if you're lucky - the drive down the SFPR, with no stops in the middle of farmland, takes a comparatively short 25. Perhaps when the Skytrain opens on Fraser Highway the need for this route will be mitigated. Until then, we have a 4-5 year period with long commutes for all. As such, the routings to Langley Center and Carvolth are not as indirect as they seem.

-------------------------

My own thoughts about the debacle of frequent hub-to-hub transport

I would say that routes that connect to a rapid transit option very quickly along major roads (like the SFPR) are part of the convenience that the bus should bring to riders. This is basically what NJ Transit does - run routes right into the center of NYC from individual, small neighbourhoods in NJ. Granted, the population is higher, but the same principle can be applied to the majority of downtown Vancouver commuters as well. They would likely wait longer for a one-seat ride than spend time transferring through hubs no matter how frequent this service could be. If the Skytrain departed every 15 seconds but I had to get off at each station to catch another train to the next, I would much rather wait 20 minutes for one that takes me all the way to the end. Convenience will largely outweigh other aspects for most commuters, which is why trips like the 509 exist rather than having people go for a more frequent 501->562.

Anyways thanks for reading this long spiel. I'm no urban planner but I do have some thoughts here and there on how we can expand transit and incentivise more people to ride.

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22 hours ago, FlyingPig said:

 

1. Having weak ridership bases

 

Not to mention that any "weak ridership basis" arguments have some serious chicken-and-egg/induced demand problems associated with it. Of course no one wants to use a bus route that doesn't exist yet or has such low frequency that no one can effectively use it without planning well in advance. Putting a few-times-a-day bus on a route and then declaring the route pointless because no one uses the unusable bus is stupid (although pretty standard for transit agencies). 

Living in Victoria, where we are purely bus-based, I go places the bus can take me, I don't go places the bus can't take me. If you build it, they will (possibly) come. 

I also take issue with the claim that all buses should purely serve rapid transit corridors. Yes, they should connect at some point, but you also need the ability for someone in Langley to get to Superstore, and a transfer is going to decrease their desire to use transit for such a journey by about a billion percent and thus few use transit within outlying communities for travel within outlying communities. Transit isn't just to get people to Vancouver. Hub-and-spoke only works if you have a lot of hubs and the spokes run frequently and conveniently. Which they don't, not in outlying communities, at least. 

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50 minutes ago, InfiNorth said:

I also take issue with the claim that all buses should purely serve rapid transit corridors. Yes, they should connect at some point, but you also need the ability for someone in Langley to get to Superstore, and a transfer is going to decrease their desire to use transit for such a journey by about a billion percent and thus few use transit within outlying communities for travel within outlying communities. Transit isn't just to get people to Vancouver. Hub-and-spoke only works if you have a lot of hubs and the spokes run frequently and conveniently. Which they don't, not in outlying communities, at least. 

The way I think the best approach to basic service coverage is if you’re paying taxes to make the routes operate, then you should have access to at least basic coverage within a 1km walking distance in urban & suburban areas and within 2km walking distance in rural areas (thinking of farms), running every 30 min or better from 6a-9p on weekdays and 7a-9p weekends & holidays. The basic coverage routes should connect to at least one transit exchange (RapidBus stops could be considered as well), but it doesn’t necessarily need to be an anchor if it’s travelling to populated areas with noticeable demand. This could also be done in a form of On-Demand Transit.

Commuter/Regional routes should be used to connect major destinations like city/town centres, tourist attractions, major transit hubs (not every SkyTrain Station if it’s running along portions of a SkyTrain route), and the service spans should be based on demand.

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...Speaking of route creation, here is the phase 2 engagement report for Transport2050

As discussed/predicted the options are rather polarizing as highlighted by some generational differences:
https://dailyhive.com/vancouver/translink-transport-2050-skytrain-lrt-brt-preferences

A selection of content:

P.27

Quote

There was a generational split regarding network preference: younger people were more likely to support Network A, citing a perception that it would provide higher capacities, be more likely to meet future ridership needs, and that it would be more “efficient” or “reliable.” Older people, particularly those aged 55+, were much more likely to support Network B, deeming it more affordable (on a regional level) and citing a preference for a street-level network.

Quote

Lastly, a common sentiment expressed through different engagement tools was the perception that Network B would be slow in comparison to Network A.

 

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On 7/29/2021 at 12:07 AM, Express691 said:

...Speaking of route creation, here is the phase 2 engagement report for Transport2050

As discussed/predicted the options are rather polarizing as highlighted by some generational differences:
https://dailyhive.com/vancouver/translink-transport-2050-skytrain-lrt-brt-preferences

A selection of content:

P.27

 

This is going to sound very rude and inconsiderate but I don’t know how else to word it; but are we going to listen to the people who have less time on Earth or are we going to listen to the people who have more time on Earth for a long-term rapid transit plan? Plus, RapidBus is just a cheap excuse for BRT, so I don’t see why some of the street-level routes from Network B couldn’t be added to Network A. I mean, they never gave the rough budget estimates for the overall costs of either network even though they claim to have similar budgets. There’s a reason why I only take so much of the information they throw at face-value and question the rest.

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I saw the 2050 proposal and I honestly thought Translink was all in on one type, instead of a hybrid approach to it. There could be new skytrains built but also rapid bus networks and maybe even LRT in some areas that won't see ridership high enough to warrant a skytrain.

I also think the idea of running bus service along the SFPR is a good idea to an extent. Over the next few years there are lots of construction delays coming to Fraser Highway, so it is going to make the trips to the skytrain longer. So having buses detour to Scott Road via the SFPR and avoiding Fraser Highway and the construction delays is a good plan, but once the skytrain opens up the SFPR routes do not need to operate. 

I would take one suggestion and that would be to run a bus from Aldergrove, run it express to Langley Centre, then over to Carvolth, then to Scott Road Station via the SFPR. This way anyone coming from Abbotsford on the local bus to Aldergrove has an express bus also. I know there is the 66 but that is a little more expensive then the local bus from Abbotsford. Also it allows residents of Aldergrove to have a faster bus service to the skytrain as well. 

 

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2 minutes ago, brianc1981 said:

I saw the 2050 proposal and I honestly thought Translink was all in on one type, instead of a hybrid approach to it. There could be new skytrains built but also rapid bus networks and maybe even LRT in some areas that won't see ridership high enough to warrant a skytrain.

I would take one suggestion and that would be to run a bus from Aldergrove, run it express to Langley Centre, then over to Carvolth, then to Scott Road Station via the SFPR. This way anyone coming from Abbotsford on the local bus to Aldergrove has an express bus also. I know there is the 66 but that is a little more expensive then the local bus from Abbotsford. Also it allows residents of Aldergrove to have a faster bus service to the skytrain as well. 

 

Some of the RapidBus routes will take decades to get to SkyTrain levels of demand (if ever) and LRT would make sense on some of those corridors. In regards to the 66, it needs to run way more frequently and I don't understand what the big hold-up is for not connecting it to the SkyTrain directly already. That should have been done years ago. I would also support having little park-and-rides at almost every highway exit along with bus stops if it was more frequent (every half-hour) to encourage locals to use the bus to get to Vancouver.

46 minutes ago, 8010 said:

This is going to sound very rude and inconsiderate but I don’t know how else to word it; 

Allow me to be even harsher with this: I am in no way surprised that older, more car-addicted, status-quo generations don't want to pour money into things that will benefit society for the next century. Buses cause minor disruption to car travel and don't disrupt cars during their construction, and that seems to be a major focal point in arguments against high-investment rapid transit: we can't have good rapid transit for the hundred years in the future, simply because it would disrupt businesses for two years in the now. Also, the price argument gets old so quickly. You get what you pay for and transit is an investment. I love buses/street level transit (I loved Better Buses, Better Cities), don't get me wrong, but in a metropolitan area as big and sprawling as Metro Vancouver, you need rapid options to connect centres that are so far apart.

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Another key observation:

It was determined that it respondents who identified as white were more likely to input option 'B'.

Someone else commented that the large presence of Oriental//Asian immigrant families esp. in the last few decades have a sentiment towards crowded subway trains.

I know some of you talked about harsh comments on this thread. Even though the consultation made such conclusion just be mindful of any comments about the conclusion of this survey.

======

My experience with the 21 last week was piss poor. It's every 2 hours mid-day/weekends and I had to eat up that time stuck in aldergrove as I missed the trip before by 20 minutes. 

There's also this schedule quirk on the 503 which is something like... failing to meet one of the mid-day trips because it is always late by 5 minutes.

Whether it's the 701 or the 21 there needs to be pressure towards TL/BCT + governments to provide a better service.

Someone posted a diagram about land transportation at YXX and I noticed that a bulk of it is privately run transportation/tour companies so thats maybe why we arent seeing the improvements to the 21 we keep suggesting.

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3 hours ago, Express691 said:

My experience with the 21 last week was piss poor. It's every 2 hours mid-day/weekends and I had to eat up that time stuck in aldergrove as I missed the trip before by 20 minutes. 

There's also this schedule quirk on the 503 which is something like... failing to meet one of the mid-day trips because it is always late by 5 minutes.

Whether it's the 701 or the 21 there needs to be pressure towards TL/BCT + governments to provide a better service.

I have said before that there need to be more service on the 701 to Mission, in fact I actually suggested on Facebook that there should be a 702 or whatever that is even more of an express service. It leaves Coquitlam Station and has 2 stops only. Haney Place and Mission City station. 

As for the 21 I have emailed BC Transit and the City of Abbotsford and suggested that it operates from 6am until 9pm or later Monday to Friday and on the weekends it operates from 7 or 8am until 9 or later. Along with that I have suggested that it runs hourly during middays, evenings and weekends and then during peak periods it runs every 20-30 minutes. The 66 is supposed to get extended to Lougheed Station which will be a bigger benefit but it will only work if the frequency is increased. The schedule right now is not enough to get people from Chiliwack or Abbotsford out of their vehicles. 

Another thing I would love to see is an amalgamation of transit services in the lower mainland/Fraser Valley. I would personally like to see Translink and Coast Mountain operating all service between Hope to Lions Bay and maybe even to Squamish and Whistler but that is a whole different discussion. If Translink took over service in Mission and Abbotsford all the way to Hope there could be all sorts of new transit services and even more express services. 

Going back to the topics I was replying to I think translink should definitely look into a hybrid of the 2050 plan with some skytrain, some LRT and more Rapidbus lines. The Rapidbus lines can easily be implemented and done sooner rather then later, and as the routes get busier then the decisions can be made about LRT. The Skytrain expansions could be built in areas we know will be necessary such as the North shore as well as into Port Coquitlam and possibly Maple Ridge. 

 

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All I’m going to say when talking about the conclusion of the survey is: Why the hell do they care about race? Seriously. What difference does it make if it’s an Asian man taking transit or a black woman? Never in the two years that I’ve been working on my map did I ever think “gee, I wonder what the white people of this particular neighbourhood are going to think of this change.” Metro Vancouver is probably the most diverse place in Canada, so I don’t think race is applicable here, nor do I think it should be applicable to any sort of transit planning. I have a politic-based theory for it but I know politics are a no-no so I’ll just say this: TransLink is more or less a government entity as I’m fairly certain tax dollars are used to cover part of their operating costs along with farebox revenue, so I think they’ll say whatever the government wants them to say. Obviously you can bring up isolated events that shouldn’t be overlooked that contradicts what I’m about to say, but I’ve always considered transit to be a very inclusive place, am I wrong? I’m also fairly certain TransLink was created as a way for the province to not deal with Metro Van’s transit, which is fair enough to be quite honest, except when we look at Fraser Valley connections in the forms of the infrequent 66 and the 21 that sounds to be running as well as the 749 according to what @Express691 said.

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1 hour ago, 8010 said:

the infrequent 66 and the 21 that sounds to be running as well as the 749 according to what @Express691 said.

Politics aside, it's almost like TransLink should control the entire Fraser Valley instead of having what is effectively one metro area having three and a half transit systems... but at least we're not the GTA, right? 

2 hours ago, brianc1981 said:

As for the 21 I have emailed BC Transit and the City of Abbotsford and suggested that it operates from 6am until 9pm or later Monday to Friday and on the weekends it operates from 7 or 8am until 9 or later. Along with that I have suggested that it runs hourly during middays, evenings and weekends and then during peak periods it runs every 20-30 minutes. The 66 is supposed to get extended to Lougheed Station which will be a bigger benefit but it will only work if the frequency is increased. The schedule right now is not enough to get people from Chiliwack or Abbotsford out of their vehicles. 

The 66 needs to be more frequent and needs a few more stops on onramps/offramps (similar to how the 70/50 operate in Victoria - yes I know that's a very different scale, just looking at the good mechanics of those bus stops). It's telling that whenever I drive through the Fraser Valley (what has it been now, a year?), when I see the 66, I think wow I saw a rare bus. That shouldn't be case, nor should it be the case that the bus flies through all of the Fraser Valley without a park-and-ride here and there. Yes, I am not a fan of park-and-ride oriented bus systems, but there's no way we're ever going to see a community bus along Interprovincial Highway to feed the 66.

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32 minutes ago, InfiNorth said:

Politics aside, it's almost like TransLink should control the entire Fraser Valley instead of having what is effectively one metro area having three and a half transit systems... but at least we're not the GTA, right? 

The 66 needs to be more frequent and needs a few more stops on onramps/offramps (similar to how the 70/50 operate in Victoria - yes I know that's a very different scale, just looking at the good mechanics of those bus stops). It's telling that whenever I drive through the Fraser Valley (what has it been now, a year?), when I see the 66, I think wow I saw a rare bus. That shouldn't be case, nor should it be the case that the bus flies through all of the Fraser Valley without a park-and-ride here and there. Yes, I am not a fan of park-and-ride oriented bus systems, but there's no way we're ever going to see a community bus along Interprovincial Highway to feed the 66.

I’m fine with TransLink taking over the Fraser Valley transit if they keep First as the contractor because I don’t think many CMBC employees want to travel all the way to the Fraser Valley to go to work. I think Sea-To-Sky is a bit of a stretch in my opinion.

I also think Park & Ride-oriented transit is fine if there’s no major developments planned for those interchanges as it will definitely improve transit access to many people who currently rely on their vehicles.

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I just looked at the basic distance from Waterfront to Hope and from Waterfront to Whistler, roughly the same distance so I’d say Sea-To-Sky shouldn’t be taken out of the equation when considering expanding the overall reach of the network.

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Okay I have no idea where else to put this, but while I was checking the (hilarious) ferry traffic this morning I saw an artic going to Vancouver Island... which looks like it is neither BC Transit nor TransLink. Any ideas?

busferry.jpg

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2 minutes ago, InfiNorth said:

Okay I have no idea where else to put this, but while I was checking the (hilarious) ferry traffic this morning I saw an artic going to Vancouver Island... which looks like it is neither BC Transit nor TransLink. Any ideas?

busferry.jpg

That would be a Translink bus. Not quite sure why it and an XN40 are heading to the Island. 

image.thumb.png.412e3a57c5a809b9857febe1b03b7ace.png
 

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2 minutes ago, Ninja Bus Fan said:

That would be a Translink bus. Not quite sure why it and an XN40 are heading to the Island. 

image.thumb.png.412e3a57c5a809b9857febe1b03b7ace.png
 

If it's a RapidBus vehicle, I would assume it's for BC Transit evaluation since the Victoria Regional Transit System has announced officially (as in not just part of some future plan) that bus rapid transit (RapidBus-style, not Ottawa-style) will be implemented soon along four corridors.

If that picture you shared shows it as a travelling clinic, maybe it's heading to small towns to do pop-up clinics?

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