A near empty waterfront train platform is pictured in downtown Vancouver, Monday, April 20, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

TransLink returns to near-normal operations after COVID-19 leads to drop in ridership

Translink also said it would rescind layoff notices to nearly 1,500 employees

TransLink has resumed near-normal operations as of this week as B.C. enters Phase Two of its reopening plan on Tuesday (May 19).

The Metro Vancouver transit authority had heavily cut routes and laid off nearly 1,500 workers due to financial pressures from the pandemic. In April, TransLink said it was losing $75 million per month as ridership dropped by 83 per cent. The transit authority had suspended fare collection to move to rear-boarding mid-March but will resume paid trips and front-door loading on June 1.

Translink also said last week it would rescind layoff notices to nearly 1,500 employees after the province pledged to figure out a funding solution for the transit authority.

“With the commitment from the province earlier in the month, we have restored SkyTrain to about 90 per cent of what it was before the pandemic,” TransLink spokesperson Jillian Drews said, noting that service levels will return to 100 per cent sometime in the next week . However, capacity will remain lower as approximately half the seats have been blocked off to aid with physical distancing.

SeaBus is operating back at regular hours but with 30 minutes between sailings, while the West Coast Express is running three shorter trains.

The planned May 18 bus service suspensions have not gone into effect. However, five routes that serve universities – 32, 125, 143, 258, 480 – will remain suspended until further notice. Last week, TransLink said that three routes are being reintroduced for the summer: 42 Alma/Spanish Banks, 150 White Pine Beach/Coquitlam Central Station and 179 Buntzen Lake/Coquitlam Central Station.

READ MORE: TransLink suspending bus fares in response to COVID-19

READ MORE: TransLink to lay off nearly 1,500 workers, cut service further as ridership down 83%

READ MORE: TransLink scraps layoffs impacting 1,500 employees amid emergency provincial funding


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Want to support local journalism during the pandemic? Make a donation here.

CoronavirusTransit

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

South Surrey, White Rock seniors find their groove

Parking-lot line-dancing is helping keep Kent Street Activity Centre members moving during pandemic

‘Family meetup centres’ helping White Rock seniors reconnect with loved ones

Converted shipping container allows face-to-face time while ensuring physical distancing

Surrey seniors call Seniors’ Centre Without Walls, a new-to-B.C. program

‘Crazy coincidence’ saw program connect soon after COVID-19 pandemic hit

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Surrey pushing the poor out of Whalley, public hearing speakers say

‘There is a war on the poor here in Surrey,’ resident Dave Diewert tells city council

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

VIDEO: Internal investigation into aggressive arrest by Kelowna Mountie

A video allegedly shows a Kelowna Mountie striking a man several times

COVID claims 23rd Langley Lodge patient, making it the deadliest outbreak in B.C.

Coronavirus kills another senior at Langley care home, bringing B.C. total to 166

Family of dead B.C. football star urge changes to mental health policies in hospitals

Uko family disappointed in actions of Regina hospital, hosting public funeral service this weekend

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

Maple Ridge woman fights WorkSafe BC over police widow’s pension

Dalila Vroom says husband, Const. Rob Vroom, died as a result of PTSD from time with Abbotsford PD

B.C. ranchers, lodge operators say Indigenous land title shuts them out

Tsilhqot’in jurisdiction affects grazing, access to private property

Most Read

l -->