An unmatched variety of cuts are being made to TransLink service levels beginning today as a significant step to help the public transit authority weather through its financial crisis due to COVID-19

The cuts are focused on preserving as numerous major services as possible for the around 75,000 individuals who still count on public transit each weekday, consisting of numerous essential and frontline workers.

Cuts are being made to all modes of public transit, with TransLink struggling losing approximately $75 million each month due to the collapse in fare revenue and fuel and parking tax revenues.


Here is a complete breakdown of this week’s service cuts:

SkyTrain

All three SkyTrain lines will be affected by service cuts.

Starting on Wednesday, April 22, the Exposition Line and Centuries Line capabilities will be further reduced. The Expo Line will see its capacity cut by 20%during peak hours, and 20%to 40%throughout mid-days, early evenings, and weekends.

Too, the Centuries Line’s capacity will see a 15%cut throughout peak hours, and 20%to 40%over mid-days, early evenings, and weekends.

Both cuts to the Expo and Millennium lines are in addition to the 17%reduction made throughout peak hours and 20%reduction on Friday and Saturday nights made in March.

Additionally, capability on the Canada Line will be axed by 18%throughout peak hours.

Bus service

Beginning on Friday, April 24, a dozen bus paths will be temporarily cancelled, including 2 paths that were freshly launched:

  • 15 Cambie/Olympic Village Station
  • 32 Dunbar/Downtown
  • 50 Waterfront Station/False Creek South/Granville Island
  • 68 UBC Exchange/Wesbrook Town
  • 105 Uptown/New Westminster Station
  • 131 Hastings/Kootenay Loop
  • 132 Capitol Hill/Hastings
  • 143 Burquitlam Station/SFU
  • 222 Willingdon Express
  • 480 UBC/Bridgeport Station
  • 414 Richmond Oval/Bridgehouse Station
  • R3 Lougheed Highway RapidBus

TransLink states many of these routes have other transit as alternatives.

By early May, another 47 routes will be briefly cancelled: 251, 252, 262, 280, 281, 282, 370, 563, 564, 044, 170, 181, 182, 231, 241, 247, 258, 345, 352, 354, 391, 393, 394, 395, 416, 509, 602, 603, 604, 606, 608, 614, 616, 617, 618, 619, 719, 722, 733, 741, 744, 748, 749, 791, 042, 150, and179 Much of the staying paths later on this spring will likewise see their frequencies cut.

The public transit authority states its bus service cuts are being prioritized to maintain service to medical facilities and other healthcare facilities.

The paths picked for suspension either replicate other paths or are in low-ridership areas.

In addition, in addition to the cuts to frequency, the physical distancing policy of 50%seat capability and the ban on standing capability has actually lowered bus service capacity to around just 30%of typical levels.

When all of the planned service reductions are implemented, the number of individuals that can proceed TransLink’s bus systems will decrease even more, to around 20%of normal levels.

SeaBus

Starting on Wednesday, April 22, SeaBus will end service earlier, with the last sailing of the day set up for 7: 30 pm from Lonsdale Quay and 7: 45 pm from Waterside Station.

SeaBus will continue sailing frequencies of every 30 minutes throughout its everyday operating hours.

West Coast Express

Starting on Wednesday, April 22, West Coast Express trains One, Three, and Five will continue to operate on existing schedules, but will have fewer cars and trucks.

Trains Two and Four stay momentarily cancelled.


Ridership is down by 83%throughout the public transit system. On buses, not only is ridership down, but fare collection on buses has actually been suspended to permit some physical distancing between the driver and passengers.

To cut costs, approximately 1,500 staff with TransLink and its operating subsidiaries of Coast Mountain Bus Business (bus and SeaBus) and BC Rapid Transit Business (SkyTrain Exposition and Millennium lines) will be briefly laid off. Senior executives and board reimbursement will be cut by 10%.

Through the end of the year, TransLink will utilize its cash reserves to sustain existing necessary service operations. It is dealing with the provincial government to guarantee there is emergency operating funding to allow TransLink to reverse layoffs and go back to near-regular operations in time for the brand-new school year in September.

” This has been an extremely hard choice and one we do not take lightly. We have actually done our finest to attempt and decrease expenses through other ways, but TransLink is losing $75 million each month, and we’re entrusted no other choices,” said TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond.

” It’s not lost on me what an effect this decision will have on the lives of our workers and their households. I fully expect those affected will be recalled once TransLink go back to regular operations, which we are now planning for back-to-school in September, if consistent with provincial standards.”

Also, the public transit and provincial government are in the process of dealing with a plan to resolve the long-term financial sustainability of TransLink to make sure transit services and crucial jobs in 2021 and beyond can continue.

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