Transit not meeting demand, say residents of Vancouver's new East Fraser Lands
TransLink says area is home to 2 of its busiest and fastest growing bus routes, service improvements coming
The former industrial lands south of Everett Crowley Park in Vancouver will eventually house 12,000 residents, but new arrivals there say TransLink already needs to do more to help them get around.
"I moved in in December and I really like the community. The only problem is the bus transit," said Felicie Delatorre.
The East Fraser Lands, or River District, is located south of Marine Way between Kerr Street and Boundary Road. The area was rezoned in 2008 and 2010 to pave the way for new housing units.
Since then, the 51-hectare site has been the scene of a massive transformation, with no shortage of cranes for workers to build multi-unit condo buildings, and new amenities.
But with more housing on the way, residents already say transit needs to be improved in the area.
"You have to wait several times to get on the bus," said Sophie Dansereau, while playing with her child at a local park on Sunday.
The local MLA for the area, George Chow, held an open house on the issue on Sunday to gather input from residents, including suggestions for new routes to pass on to TransLink.
"I think it's just a matter of devoting the resources," he said.
TransLink says it is aware of the growing pains.
It says demand for transit in the region was up six per cent in 2017. Chow's riding is home to two of its busiest and fatest-growing bus routes — the No. 100, which runs between 22nd Street SkyTrain Station and the Marpole loop, and the No. 49, which goes between Metrotown Station and UBC's Dunbar loop.
TransLink says the No. 49 ranked fourth out of 214 routes in 2016 for number of boardings, and handled more than a million extra annual boardings between 2012 and 2016, when it registered 7,506,000 boardings.
The No. 100 ranked 21st out of 214 routes. Ridership grew by 37 per cent in the same period.
TransLink says it has increased the frequency of buses on the No. 49 route and will add more service to the No. 100 this September.
The agency says it's also working with the City of Vancouver to review and explore further transit expansion in the area.
With files from Susana da Silva.