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Changes to Burnaby bus service riles local rider

TransLink says it is optimizing bus service to ensure the buses are there to serve where demand is highest. As a result, many routes with lower ridership are getting less frequent service. - NewsLeader file
TransLink says it is optimizing bus service to ensure the buses are there to serve where demand is highest. As a result, many routes with lower ridership are getting less frequent service.
— image credit: NewsLeader file

A regular transit user is upset at changes to service in Burnaby that will have him waiting more than twice as long for evening buses.

Burnaby resident Alex Grace said last week that the changes, which took effect April 18, mean that after 8 p.m. he’ll have to wait an hour instead of 30 minutes for the 101 bus he catches at the Lougheed bus loop.

“I’ll have to wait in the cold outside for an hour.”

The reasons given on the signage was that the change reflects public demand for the service, he said.

But Grace noted he was on the bus at 10:30 p.m. on Wednesday last week and the number of riders was almost the same as during the day.

It was also, incidentally, the night of a Vancouver Canucks playoff home game.

A TransLink spokesman could not be reached for comment. However, the TransLink website announcing the permanent changes said they’re part of a “service optimization initiative” which it began planning a year ago.

The initiative aims to maximize productivity of its 2005 transit expansion with a goal of achieving a two per cent improvement in productivity of the bus service.

Guidelines include “putting service where it’s needed most” and “making transit a more viable transportation alternative,” the website says.

For more details on the changes, click here.

wchow@burnabynewsleader.com

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