Canada Line Increased Demand Dilemma: More Trains or Larger Stations?

There has been a remarkable increase in the number of people who use Metro Vancouver for daily commute. However, the growth in commuters has put the transit authority in a limbo over the future of SkyTrain.

Kevin Desmond – the TransLink CEO recently admitted that the company had been short-sighted with the Canada Line project in the past, which has now brought them to a standpoint where it’s tough to choose the ideal way to overcome the problem.

As a short-term solution to immediately address the increased influx of passengers, the service has ordered new train cars, at least 22 of them. These cars, however, will be on track earliest by next year.

That’s not all. TransLink faces bigger challenges in the wake of adding new train cars. For starters, the stations along the Vancouver-Richmond line were initially built to manage just two train cars at a time.

This means the company just has two options – both of them expensive. They could either dig through an expansion of the platforms or simply increase the frequency of the service.

“It’s a little bit of a challenge, ultimately, how much throughput we can get on the Canada Line,” said Desmond.

According to him, for the next ten to fifteen years, the company would be better off adding new train cars to the existing service in an attempt to curb the demand a little if not completely.

“There were a number of decisions at the time made like that. The planning in the corridor wasn’t done in advance. We’re doing that differently now.” said Desmond reassuringly.

With the development of the massive condo on the Cambie Street corridor, the problem is only expected to worsen further.

Canada Line runs right beneath the Cambie Street corridor and an increased population in the area will largely spike the number of commuters.

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Meagan Kozlovs

About the Author: Meagan Kozlovs

Meagan Kozlovs is a reporter for Debate Report. She’s worked and interned at Global News Toronto  and CHECX. Megan is based in Toronto and covers issues affecting her city. In addition to her severe milk shake addiction, she’s a Netflix enthusiast, a red wine drinker, and a voracious reader.

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