With the new year comes some rejigging and tweaking of bus routes in and around Vancouver.
For regular transit users the changes won't be massive but could impact people with precise everyday routines. TransLink says some of the transit system changes are due to the ongoing effects of the pandemic and its impact on how people use the system.
"TransLink ridership is at approximately 60 per cent of pre-COVID levels and ridership is expected to be between 60 to 80 per cent of pre-pandemic levels in 2022," says the transit provider in a press release.
Some of the routes getting adjusted are significant ones.
The B-Line 99 Commercial-Broadway/UBC will drop from busses every 5 to 6 minutes Saturdays between 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. to every 6 to 8 minutes. On Sundays service will drop as well, notably from 7 to 11 p.m. busses will come every 12 to 15 minutes now.
Some of the RapidBus routes will be less frequent too. On Sundays R4 (41st Ave.) will frequencies drop throughout the day by a couple of minutes. On R5 (Hastings St.) during the morning and evening rush hours frequencies are being adjusted by up to two minutes.
Other Vancouver routes seeing adjustments include 2 Macdonald/Downtown, 3 Main/Downtown, 5 Robson/Downtown, 6 Davie/Downtown, 8 Fraser/Downtown, 9 Boundary/Commercial-Broadway/Granvill/Alma/UBC, 10 Granville/Downtown, 14 Hastings/UBC, 16 29th Avenue Station/Arbutus, 17 Oak/Downtown, 19 Metrotown Station/Stanley Park, 22 Knight/Downtown, 23 Main Street/Beach, 25 Brentwood Station/UBC, 49 Metrotown Station/Dunbar Loop/UBC, 210 Upper Lynn Valley/Burrard Station and 240 Lynn Valley Downtown.
For all of these frequencies are being reduced at certain times, generally only by two to five minutes. In some cases the adjustment is only more precise schedules (for example, route 3 will see busses every 10 minutes weekdays between 6 a.m. to 8 a.m., which is a change from every seven to 14 minutes).
Other Metro Vancouver routes are being adjusted as well.
Route 2 Macdonald/Downtown is also seeing its trips get extended while downtown as busses will continue down to Waterfront Station; Burrard Station is getting upgraded in 2022.
There will also be some improvements to service. On Route 84 UBC/VCC-Clark Station bigger busses are being added, with the 60-foot articulated busses being added starting Jan. 3.
Routes outside of Vancouver seeing improvements include 310 Scottsdale/Ladner where they're going to be using the regular 40-foot busses instead of the community shuttles (except when going to the Delta View Care Centre). An extra two hours of service is being added as well at the end of each day.
Two routes are seeing more frequent service, as well, with times between trips reduced by about 5 minutes: 630 Ladner Exchange/Scott Road Station and 323 Newton Exchange/Surrey Central Station.
On 321 White Rock/Newton/Surrey Central Station the route is being extended. Instead of ending (or starting) at Surrey Central Station it's now going to go on to Scott Road Station.