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Old September 18th, 2007, 12:04 AM   #1941
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New pics from the Canada Line website of the North Arm Bridge.


















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Old September 18th, 2007, 02:30 AM   #1942
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New pics from the Canada Line website of the North Arm Bridge.


I can't decide whether I'm more excited to ride the train over this bridge for the first time or ride my bike over it the first time!

Is there a final design document for the pedestrian/bike part of this bridge?
Just wondering because I hope it will be brightly lit at night and that it will have security cameras all along the way. Anybody using it will be practically invisible while croosing the bridge.
I'm also curious how they will deal with the approaches on both ends of the bridge.
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Old September 18th, 2007, 05:11 AM   #1943
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Do you think there's enough room for one more separate extra track for maintenance rail vehicles to pass through the bridge for nightly work, like the Skybridge for E-Line?
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Old September 18th, 2007, 05:50 AM   #1944
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The renderings of the bridge had the towers as upsidedown v-'s, very slender structures. I'm a little dissapointed in that regard, still impressed however.
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Old September 19th, 2007, 02:46 AM   #1945
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Yea, I noticed that difference too. Would have been a lot nicer looking if they followed that rendering for sure. Can't think of why they decided to go with this design. Cost or structural perhaps. Not sure.
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Old September 19th, 2007, 05:10 AM   #1946
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WHOA! -
When did Bombardier get the contract for the Beijing airport line?? (OK, so the article says 2006) - that one was under the radar! Definitely MKII ART - due to the "reaction strip" between the tracks.

By the looks of the interior shots - it must be the wider JFK type cars (10ft wide) - but with the articulated gangway - this is the first 4-car MKII configuration with the "C" car that we have seen.

Original SSC post here:

http://www.skyscrapercity.com/showthread.php?p=15362734

*********************

Personally, I like the "needle tower" configuration for the North Arm Bridge. Reminds me of the Millau Viaduct in France.

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Pics of the Yaletown Station and the Sept 8th TBM breakthrough (second bore) at Yaletown Station from the Canada Line website:



















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Old September 21st, 2007, 04:08 AM   #1947
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After looking at the pictures of the train, I feel much more relieved. It looks much more spacious inside. Also, it looks much longer than I have pictured it. Now, it looks like the capacity of Two B-Line busses. I am sure that it would be able to handle the capacity for at least 10 years after opening. After that.... I have no comments. With all the highrises in Richmond being constructed (OVER 20 projects) and EVEN MORE on the way, I can forsee the line to be full in a few years.

I guess that it would be good anyhow because people can use it as an excuse to get the parallel Arbutus corridor developed and the Richmond Streetcar system (City council is planning about that right now) developed in the forseeable future.
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Old September 22nd, 2007, 05:05 AM   #1948
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More pics by Tafryn:

YVR Station, near Templeton Station and Waterfront Station

http://canadalinephotos.blogspot.com/

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Old September 23rd, 2007, 04:36 AM   #1949
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Metro Vancouver Transit Discussion

Use this topic to discuss news and developments regarding Metro Vancouver's public transit network.

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Riders question logic of trolley buses

By Magda Ibrahim

Sep 13 2007

Are environmental benefits negated by malfunctions and public discomfort?

At a time when many cities in North America have abandoned the trolley bus system, Vancouver’s transit provider, TransLink, has bucked the trend and invested $273 million in buying a brand new fleet of 228 trolley buses, the first batch of which hit the roads in the summer of 2006.

The electricity-powered buses are deemed to be far greener and quieter than those using diesel engines, but despite their sleek, modern look, they still seem to be plagued with problems. The sight of a bus ground to a halt at an intersection, with its poles detached from the overhead wires, holding up traffic in all directions, is an all too familiar one.

With just two cities left in Canada with a trolley system (Edmonton is the other), questions are being raised over whether TransLink’s investment was really worth it, or if the system, whose wires were first installed in 1948, are simply outdated and need to be brought down.

David Drucker, an online advocate for an improved transit system in Vancouver, says his main concern is that the new trolleys appear to have the same flaws as the old ones.

“It’s nice to see the investment, and they’re obviously being well used, but $273 million is a lot of money, and I’d have expected the system to be vastly improved with that,” says Drucker. “The overhead lines themselves are not really bad, but it’s quite a shame that the bus poles lose their connection to them so often. Not a week goes by that I don’t see some driver trudging out with their temporary orange uniform to coax the poles back into their overhead tracks.

“A design that keeps the poles more connected might help the situation, or, at the very least, clear directions and warnings to drivers of the most precarious places — if they don’t know already.”

Drucker adds that he is not impressed with the seating in the new trolleys; they have 30 seats — eight fewer than the old ones — but can hold an extra 12 people in total because of increased standing room. The pull-down seats at the front of the bus have proved to be a struggle for older people.

Since they were introduced to Vancouver transit riders, the buses, which are manufactured by New Flyer Industries of Winnipeg, have come under fire for various faults. In January, 39 of them were taken off the roads after some drivers reported a temporary loss of power steering at intersections.

One TransLink driver, who did not wish to be named for this story, told WE that he has had numerous complaints from passengers, and he has his own niggling concerns about the buses. “A lot of passengers don’t like them, and some feel there’s nothing for them to hold onto in the front part of the bus,” he says. “They’re fairly difficult for the drivers to drive because they’ve got a lot of small problems which need to be changed.

“Every time you buy something brand new you’ll find problems, but I don’t think these trolleys will hold up as well as the old trolleys; they’ve already got rattles on them after 25,000 kilometres. I do think the trolleys are a good idea, but I think TransLink could’ve done more research before going with these ones.”

The 600-volt wires have their own issues. On August 20, the whole downtown trolley circuit was knocked out for two hours when an overhead wire came down at Seymour and Smithe Streets, forcing TransLink to put diesel buses out on the streets as replacements. In the meantime, buses stacked up along Seymour Street, with passengers getting off and walking to their destinations. Police redirected pedestrians away from Seymour because of the danger posed by the fallen wire.

According to TransLink spokesperson Drew Snider, the breakdown happened at about 6:45 p.m. and the trolleys were back in service by just before 8:30 p.m. He adds that this is not uncommon, and such problems are usually caused by vehicles like large trucks catching the wires.

The trolley bus network may have a number of problems, but its green credentials mean that Vancouver could well have the last laugh in the sustainability race.

Snider says one of the environmental benefits of the new trolleys arose from the fact that when TransLink bought the buses with a loan guaranteed by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities, it was required to use the money saved from the lower-than-normal interest rate to invest in ‘green’ electricity generation, like waterfalls and wind farms.

The trolleys don’t produce emissions, unlike their diesel cousins, but use electricity provided by BC Hydro. That electricity comes from hydroelectric power, produced in some 30 stations in the Columbia and Peace rivers, and is generally considered to be greener than power from, for example, a coal-fired plant.

Professor Lawrence Frank has researched urban transport in the city through his post as Bombardier Chair in Sustainable Transport at the University of British Columbia.

“One of the benefits associated with the trolleys is the lack of emissions, and if the energy used comes from hydro-electric power, then they’re much more sustainable,” says Prof. Frank. “Admittedly the wires aren’t particularly aesthetic, but I would gather it was a cost-effective decision for TransLink because there’s a concentrated population in the city, and that’s where trolleys work very well.

“Adding buses to the fleet is critical here because they’re operating at crush load; a lot of times they’re packed, which is very unusual, because a lot of North American cities have empty buses.”

Only seven trolley-bus systems are still left in North America, including the two in Canada. Vancouver’s is the second largest after San Francisco.

But even though the trolleys themselves may look thoroughly modern, the overhead lines look antiquated, particularly against the backdrop of newly-built towers in the downtown core. But that may simply be the aesthetic toll Vancouverites have to pay for the knowledge they’re taking an emissions-free ride.

“I think the downsides are negligible, and I speak as a transit user and someone who does ride the trolleys,” says Margaret Mahan, executive director at registered charity BEST (Better Environmentally Sound Transportation). “The new trolleys do have some design questions; they’re really designed for people to stand and they’re not as user-friendly as the old buses. But [at a time] of seeking greater efficiency, that might be the price we have to pay.”






20,000 bus pass-ups a fraction of true figure
News Features By Matthew Burrows
Publish Date: September 6, 2007

Bus passengers passed up at stops last year by full buses represent "one third of one percent" of the whole, according to the vice-president of customer service at Coast Mountain Bus Company.

In a phone interview with the Georgia Straight, Stan Sierpina said Coast Mountain, an operating subsidiary of TransLink, had a total trip count of approximately six million passengers "one way, from terminus to terminus" in 2006.

"Also in 2006, we had 20,000 reported pass-ups by our operators," Sierpina said. "Clearly, there may be cases, and I'm sure there are, where the operators don't call the pass-up in. For the purpose of context, 20,000 pass-ups on six million trips is 0.3 percent, or one-third of one percent. That doesn't seem like a lot–and in the overall scheme of things it isn't–but if you are the one customer passed up, that is a big deal to you, so I don't want to minimize the importance we attach to any pass-up. However, to totally eliminate all pass-ups would cost a lot of money."

When the Straight asked Sierpina if he could provide a dollar figure, he replied, "No."

After filing a freedom-of-information request, the Straight learned that Coast Mountain had recorded 20,219 total pass-ups from May 1, 2006, to July 8, 2007. This figure is the sum total from driver communication reports at all six transit centres–Burnaby, North Vancouver, Port Coquitlam, Richmond, Surrey, and Vancouver–as well as from the community-shuttle service. During that period, the 98 B-Line fared worst, with 2,049 recorded pass-ups–about 10 percent of the total–and the 99 B-Line was fourth-worst for pass-ups, with 945.

In a customer-service report obtained by the Straight, an irate transit rider left an after-hours phone message on June 5, 2006, lambasting the #104 bus from Annacis Island.

"I think it F*$&%ing [sic] sucks," the message stated. "It gets full and then it leaves us residential people waiting to get on the bus for another hour. You guys should have another bus tailing it to pick us up."

According to another customer-service report, a mother called in at 8 a.m. on October 5, 2006, complaining "that daughter waited until 8:40 for the bus". The mother said she counted 10 full buses go by and demanded "more service".

Now, with the new school year starting and students using those lines, service is once again stretched. Jim Houlahan, vice president at Canadian Auto Workers Union Local 111, which represents transit drivers, told the Straight by phone last month that Coast Mountain's figures are way below the reality out on the road.

"It is even more when you look at the percentage of drivers who have bothered to call it in," Houlahan said of driver communications. "I would say it [the 20,000 pass-up total] is 20 percent of what is out there, and we said at the top end of 2005 that the generous end of the scale is 50 percent of drivers calling in the pass-ups.…It is madness in the control tower, so that is a reflection of what's going on out on the road."

On July 17, Coast Mountain service-delivery manager Mike McComber told the Straight not to "take a one-day snapshot" when it comes to pass-ups.

"We check regularly to see if there is an anomaly or a higher average," he said. "Pass-ups happen in several different areas or different regions.…We have 900 complaints [for the May to July period], but we can match that with 900 commendations."

There is no commendation from Bus Riders Union organizer Zailda Chan, who told the Straight she still interviews bus riders to gauge their views.

"A lot of bus riders are not even bothering to call and complain," Chan said by phone. "But they complain to us."
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 04:39 AM   #1950
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Why not just resurrect the old thread? Edit: oh nevermind, it was in a different forum.

On topic, it's disappointing that the new trolleys still don't hold their wires. Understanding that I have no knowledge of the technology, couldn't they use dual side-by-side mini pantographs with catches on them to prevent them from slipping off? Or some camera & computer-controlled electronics to keep the trolley poles in place? (or even just a camera with cabin-controlled electronics so if the poles do dewire, the driver doesn't have to get out of the vehicle to reset them)?

Last edited by zonie; September 23rd, 2007 at 05:00 AM.
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 04:41 AM   #1951
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Quote:
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Why not just resurrect the old thread?
i couldn't find it.
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 05:07 AM   #1952
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I know for a fact that sometime in the 90s all of the existing overhead trolley wires were replaced with new high tensile steel cable (the old wire had a tendency to dip in the middle). The article seems to imply that the trolley wires haven't been replaced since 1948, and I don't see how that could be the case.

Whatever problems the new trolleys are having will eventually be ironed out, but I much prefer the trolleys to diesel buses; they have better acceleration and operation on hills, are quieter (especially for those outside the bus) and emit no pollution (from the bus itself). I've ridden on the new trolleys numerous times now along Broadway and downtown and I couldn't find anything to complain about.
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 06:11 AM   #1953
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The trolley buses could have been purchased for much cheaper if they accepted the Skoda/Neoplan offer, and they would have been built here and delivered sooner. Even though Neoplan USA did fold in 2006, Skoda was the actual bidder and would have to guarantee the delivery (which would have been way before Neoplan folded)
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 07:07 AM   #1954
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the new new flyer busses seem to be having some problems. i talked to a driver the other day who was telling me that they are hell to drive for multiple reasons. also they keep running them up to the top of sfu after dark, and as many of you know the bike racks are not in service after dark, which sucks for me cause i commute on my bike and live at the top of the hill... also the nova busses bike racks suck. i had my bike fall off of the rack the first time i rode one with a bike. the rack actually broke while my bike was on it cause theyre made out of plastic. i now refuse to put my bike on those racks which means sometimes i am waiting up to an hour for a bus home some nights, and the bus comes every 15 minutes
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 10:12 AM   #1955
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the new new flyer busses seem to be having some problems. i talked to a driver the other day who was telling me that they are hell to drive for multiple reasons. also they keep running them up to the top of sfu after dark, and as many of you know the bike racks are not in service after dark, which sucks for me cause i commute on my bike and live at the top of the hill... also the nova busses bike racks suck. i had my bike fall off of the rack the first time i rode one with a bike. the rack actually broke while my bike was on it cause theyre made out of plastic. i now refuse to put my bike on those racks which means sometimes i am waiting up to an hour for a bus home some nights, and the bus comes every 15 minutes
This may sound like a stupid question, but why not simply ride your bike home?
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Old September 23rd, 2007, 11:09 AM   #1956
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i live at the top of a massive hill. at least 3km of 8% grade and an elevation climb of around 1000 feet. i could do it but after a long day and 30-40km of riding im usually not up for it
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Old September 24th, 2007, 01:03 AM   #1957
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bus riders union were protesting fare increases yesterday

just want to go down and shoot them all put them out of their miserable lives really

they complain that they get crappy service and than they whine that they have to pay more

its still one of the cheapest fares in Canada

do they want everything handed to them on a gold platter? free cheap housing, free or cheap transit? ugh they are so annoying
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Old September 24th, 2007, 01:11 AM   #1958
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a question about skytrain - do they still run express trains during rush hour?

I remember a few years ago they used to run trains that had limited stops between downtown and surrey
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Old September 24th, 2007, 02:06 AM   #1959
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^I don't think they ever did one. It's not possible. With SkyTrains running almost EVERY minute during rush hour, we will need a total of four train tracks...

I don't see why people are complaining about electric buses. They are more expensive (aren't the like 1 million each?) but they don't run on disel (save fuel costs) which saves on maintanance. Long term investment...

The only thing I complain about the buses are the stupid squeeky brakes (same with the new flyer disel ones). GOD I love the Nova Buses more than the New Flyer ones. But yeah like worldwide said, their bike racks suck.

Now that reminds me of those fuel-cell buses now... oh my gosh they are expensive... 2 million adding to the fact that fueling the hydrogen bus costs a lot too (they had the article in the sun during the summer)
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Old September 24th, 2007, 02:25 AM   #1960
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^ they actually did have express trains, not sure if they still have them anymore. i recount being on the platform and trains with passengers don't even stop but just past by.

the article says that the trolley wires derail a lot, but being a frequent trolley user i've yet to see that happen.....not even once. the old trolleys always derailed. and the acceleration is a whole lot better, especially uphill.
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