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TransLink 'still studying idea' of extending weekend SkyTrain service hours

(Photo by Dustin Godfrey for NEWS 1130)

TransLink says it's speaking with stakeholders, gathering feedback about possibly extending SkyTrain service on weekends

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – If you were downtown for New Year’s Eve, you might have noticed the SkyTrain running later into the night than usual.

It’s something that’s done on special occasions around Metro Vancouver, but what are the chances we could see longer hours happen on a regular basis?

“We’re still studying the idea of extending service hours later on weekend nights. Fridays, Saturdays, any other time,” TransLink’s Jill Drews says. “We think it’s a good discussion to have, and we want to see if there’s something we can do in terms of providing later night service.”

Drews explains one of the major obstacles to making this happen is the maintenance work that goes on overnight. TransLink is looking into how that work could be made up if SkyTrain hours were extended.

“Safety is the top thing, and any change to our scheduling of this nature could mean changing the scheduling on other days, as in shortening hours at other times,” Drews adds.

Despite this, she says talks are ongoing with various stakeholders to study the idea.

“We have some working groups put together. Members of the community, members of groups like law enforcement, politicians, interested parties like the business community, things like that. We’re taking all their feedback into account to see how we can best serve them, and serve our customers.”

For the 43rd year in a row, transit was free on New Year’s Eve. Fares were waived from 5 p.m. Monday until 5 a.m. Tuesday, with SkyTrain service extended an hour until 2:00 a.m.

-With files from Ash Kelly and Denise Wong