VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — A major slowdown in ridership due to the coronavirus is prompting TransLink to tweak some of its schedules.
Spokesperson Ben Murphy says the adjustments are minor, including reduced frequency on some bus routes now that empty or nearly-empty buses have become common.
“There has been a very significant decline in ridership for transit over the past couple of weeks,” he explains. “But these are very conservative changes that we’re putting forward.”
SeaBus frequency will be reduced –with sailings every 15 minutes instead of every 10.
SkyTrain users may find themselves waiting an 30 seconds or one minute longer at stations.
Changes aren’t significant enough to impact staffing, and Murphy says no layoffs are planned.
Fewer people on buses and trains has, however, made maintaining a safe distance while travelling easier.
“From what I hear people are following the rules,” Murphy says. “Because ridership has declined so significantly over the past few weeks that has naturally made it easier for people.”
He adds routes will be monitored so freqeuncy can be adjusted if buses or trains become too crowded for effective distancing.
The customer service centre at Stadium-Chinatown Station and the West Coast Express customer service centre at Waterfront Station have been closed.