Commuters rush aboard Evergreen Line for opening day

The long-awaited Skytrain extension will connect Tri-Cities to downtown Vancouver



The long-awaited Evergreen Line opened to the public at noon on Friday.

The 11-kilometre, $1.43-billion SkyTrain extension connects 70,000 Tri-cities residents per day with downtown Vancouver, according to Port Moody-Coquitlam MLA Linda Reimer, making Vancouver’s fully automated rapid transit system the longest in the world.

The construction and rollout hasn’t been smooth sailing. Difficulties with the boring machine during a two-kilometre underground stretch in Port Moody led to long setbacks. The original target operating date was in late 2014, set by then-Transportation Minister Kevin Falcon in 2008. The province did, however, beat its latest goal of early 2017.

People who came out to the Coquitlam Centre Station for the inaugural public train ride said they’re glad the Evergreen Line finally here.

“It’s almost shocking that it’s here and ready to go,” said Coquitlam resident Ken Scherk, who came out with his family to try out the new line. “We’ve been waiting a long time.”

The extension runs from Lougheed Town Centre in Burnaby, with stations in Coquitlam and Port Moody, the last being next to Lafarge Lake in Coquitlam. It will connect to express buses running to Pitt Meadows and Maple Ridge.

TransLinks shared the cost with the provincial and federal governments via an additional two per cent gas tax started in 2011.

The NDP have criticized the long wait times for the Evergreen Line’s completion.

“Evergreen joins a long line of projects for Christy Clark that are late and over budget, in this case costing our transit system over a hundred million dollars that should have gone into improving services,” said NDP TransLink critic David Eby.

 


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

 

 

Just Posted

Rollover crash in South Surrey

One person airlifted following incident near 40 Avenue and 160 Street

Surrey council approves modular housing projects for homeless after lengthy hearing

Vote comes after three-hour-long public hearing over supportive housing projects in Whalley, Guildford

Surrey mayor appoints his Safe Surrey Coalition to police transition committee

McCallum dissolved the city’s public safety committee last week in favour of the new committee

Another 250 units proposed for booming block in Clayton neighbourhood

New developments join list of projects popping up near new Salish Secondary, future community centre

PHOTOS: Beach day in White Rock

Summer heat brings locals and tourists to the beach

VIDEO: Young couple found dead in northern B.C. had been shot, police say

Chynna Noelle Deese of the U.S. and Lucas Robertson Fowler of Australia were found along Highway 97

Hazmat incident closes down Lower Mainland street

One person is believed to be dead, police said

VIDEO: Man found dead near B.C. teens’ truck could be linked to a double homicide

RCMP said they are looking for Kam McLeod, 19, and Bryer Schmegelsky, 18, of Port Alberni

Latest plan is to fly trapped fish by helicopter over Big Bar slide

Multi-pronged plan set in motion to freesalmon blocked by landslide in the Fraser River

Family of missing B.C. senior with dementia frustrated with situation, heartened by community support

Nine days since Grace was last seen the question remains: ‘How can an 86-year-old just disappear?’

Unsealed record suggests U.S. man convicted of murdering Vancouver Island couple left DNA on zip tie in 1987

William Talbott is set to be sentenced Wednesday in the murders of Jay Cook and Tanya Van Cuylenborg

Okanagan Air Cadet challenges gender-exclusive haircut policy

Haircut regulation inspires challenge around gender identity

Pride flags stolen from Lower Mainland church

Went missing sometime Friday night, says Maple Ridge reverend

25 new wheelchair-accessible cabins open at Cultus Lake Provincial Park

Maple Bay Campground is now home to 25 new wheelchair friendly cabins, a first for BC Parks

Most Read

l -->