– Train offers miserable experience

from Rail for the Valley

by zweisystem

More unhappiness from South of the Fraser – From the Delta Optimist – Train offers miserable experience

It seems that the RAV/Canada Line is not swaying the transit customer’s minds to happily use the metro. It’s crowded, but over crowding could be the result of TransLink deliberately underestimating Richmond and South of the Fraser buses ridership, to crow about packed trains to a very complacent media. Obviously, TransLink isn’t operating enough capacity on the RAV/Canada line, to meet the capacity of buses serving the metro. Why is there not enough cars to handle all the bus traffic serving the metro?

One clue is that TransLink exaggerated vehicle capacity by 20%, when in fact car capacity is 163 persons as advertised elsewhere by ROTEM and not 200 persons as advertised by TransLink. This translates into a calculated lack of capacity, crowded trains, and unhappy transit customers. The letter also points to the fact that RAV is heavily used by people with concession fares or U-Passes, which means less revenue for TransLink. If one apportions fares for the U-pass, the RAV/Canada Lines share of revenue for a student is $8.33 to $12.50 a month! One can’t fund a metro at those prices and certainly points to the reason why TransLink is in a fiscal free-fall.

Also the RAV/Canada line seems not to have taken a car off the road and those 200,000 car trips off the road as promised by premier Campbell and other politicians are mere ‘pixie dust‘ promises, meant for the ever complacent mainstream media who continually mistake political hyperbole for news.

Here is a question that should cause one to think: “If the RAV/Canada Line is at capacity now, how can it cope with an estimated 30% higher ridership during the Olympics?”

Train offers miserable experience

the Delta Optimist


It’s been approximately six weeks now since we lost our direct 601 bus service into Vancouver. I, like a lot of transit users, have had to ride the Canada Line.

For many commuters this means two bus rides and the Canada Line to get to the same place they used to get to by just riding the 601. My transit time has increased by 25 minutes.

It is not only the time and inconvenience of this but the actual experience is miserable. I rarely get a seat on the Canada Line, which is usually crowded with many people dragging luggage, strollers, carrying skateboards and bringing their bikes on board.

Getting on and off is particularly hazardous and the chance of tripping is great, especially for seniors. Plus, on several occasions, I have witnessed pushing and shoving to get onboard. There are few seats on the Canada Line and most people have to stand.

There are no seats or benches at the Bridgeport station where the 601 goes now and many of us have stood and waited for up to a half hour for the bus. If it is later at night you can stand for an hour.

I have heard many stories of how people’s lives have been disrupted since the loss of the 601 into Vancouver. One woman, who is brain damaged, used to ride into town to visit friends. She could do so as it was one bus ride. Now she cannot go as she cannot handle the frustration of transferring and waiting.

A senior who has never driven cannot get off and on the six times involved in going into town and coming back, plus there is no guarantee of a seat.

Another person has a mentally handicapped niece who used to ride from Vancouver to the exchange to visit. She can no longer do this without being accompanied.

Also, I know of many people who are now driving after commuting by transit for years.

For many of us the loss of the direct 601 service into Vancouver is a frustrating, time-consuming experience. For others, it is a barrier and their quality of life and enjoyment has been diminished.

TransLink has to get 100,000 riders on the Canada Line a day or it has to subsidize its private partner. How many lives are affected or what are the transit needs of our community is not a concern for them.

Now TransLink has announced there will be a fare increase for what is essentially a decreased service for many.

I have an appointment in Vancouver this week and I’m driving. I have stood all the way into Vancouver in crowded cars, been pushed by those onboard and been nearly tripped too many times now. Riding the Canada Line is not worth the risk.


Explore posts in the same categories: 2010, BC, Canada Line, Commentary, Research, skyTrain, Translink

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