Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Transit users face September sweat threat

with 10 comments

The second part of the Sun‘s week long series add very little that any transit user will want to read, and nothing that I feel is worth comment.

Except for the table below, which I think will be useful. Of course, this does not tell anyone how many buses are scheduled to run out in the morning peak – and how many actually make it. We have been hearing for some time from the union that less than 1,000 of the 1,347 are actually in service at peak times. Some will of course be undergoing routine maintenance, others sidelined by collision damage or breakdowns. Some will not be working as there is a shortage of operators – and the impact of this will vary day to day depending on who actually reports for work.

And I also wonder why if we can count containers as TEU (20 foot equivalent uints) there is not a similar FEU for buses – an artic being 1.5FEU and a community shuttle 0.5 (the last is a wild guess and may be less).


Total: 1,347, plus 162 community shuttles

– 40-foot diesel: 840

– 40-foot Compressed Natural Gas (CNG): 143

– 40-foot trolley: 188

– 60-foot diesel (articulated): 136

– 60-foot trolley (articulated): 40


– 40-foot diesel/CNG: 32

– 60-foot diesel/CNG (articulated): 21

– 60-foot trolleys (articulated): 20

– Community shuttle buses: 20

UPDATE Sept 6, 2008

From the Georgia Straight – Houlahan and Sierpina duke it out over the number of buses, service hours and so on

Written by Stephen Rees

September 3, 2008 at 10:52 am

Posted in transit

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10 Responses

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  1. “The second part of the Sun’s week long series add very little that any transit user will want to read, and nothing that I feel is worth comment.”

    What’s the point of denigrating Randy Shore’s article? I actually thought it was well done. I thought the personal hygiene issue was one that will resonate with many who opt out of transit for that very reason.

    49 bus rider

    September 3, 2008 at 11:15 am

  2. Denigrating? Really? If you are a transit user you learn nothing you did not already know. If you are not a transit user here is another good excuse to keep driving.

    Stephen Rees

    September 3, 2008 at 12:53 pm

  3. Any mention on how many buses are going to be retired in 2009?

    Malcolm J.

    September 3, 2008 at 1:23 pm

  4. You would have to trawl through the Translink site looking for “replacement” as opposed to “expansion” buses. As my flickr page testifies there are a lot of buses heading for the scrap heap or export

    Stephen Rees

    September 3, 2008 at 1:34 pm

  5. Drew Snider was on “Breakfast Television” this morning doing quarterly transit updates (Wires down at Broadway/Arbutus… passups reported on the 135… Skytrain running smoothly). I didn’t catch if this is to be a regular feature or just during “Hell Week”.


    September 3, 2008 at 2:00 pm

  6. They seemed to suggest it was a new regular feature – maybe the salaries freed up by dumping Simi Sara, Dave Geary and Tasha Chiu.

    Ron C.

    September 3, 2008 at 3:40 pm

  7. SkyTrain running smoothly is a news item?

    Malcolm J.

    September 4, 2008 at 6:46 am

  8. No, more like a traffic report, today there was “a one to two train wait at Broadway” at around 8:15.


    September 4, 2008 at 10:34 am

  9. The order coming in early 2009 is for 141 buses — 109 replacements (for the 1991 models) and 32 for expansion, hence the 32 figure. There are some odd numbers in the table; there are only 75 natural gas buses in the system and 34 60-foot trolleys on order, not 20. Not sure about the exact number of 40-foot diesels but I wouldn’t be surprised if the Sun’s figure is incorrect.

    A shuttle should be equivalent to 0.3 to 0.35 forty-footers; shuttles can carry 22 passengers and no standees.

    Ian King

    September 4, 2008 at 12:32 pm

  10. I was asked to do a week-long overview about what people could expect to face during the first week of Sept. I think the series did that pretty well.

    Randy Shore

    September 26, 2008 at 8:42 am

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