TransLink’s SkyTrain maintenance, stations and safety projects get funding commitment from Canadian government

Aug. 16, 2021
The federal government has committed more than C$53 million to station upgrades and more than C$94 million for new maintenance facilities.

TransLink in Vancouver, British Columbia, received a C$147.7-million (US$117.86 million) funding commitment from the government of Canada that will go toward station upgrade projects and maintenance facilities to support its SkyTrain fleet.

The federal government will invest more than C$53 million (US$42.29 million) in TransLink’s Burrard Station Upgrade project and the Station Access and Safety Project, as well as C$94.7 million (US$75.57 million) for additional maintenance facilities needed to support additional SkyTrain vehicles for the Broadway Subway and Surrey Langley projects.

The government of Canada will provide C$28 million (US$22.34 million) to the Burrard Station Upgrade, which will be redesigned and upgraded to accommodate increased ridership along the Expo Line. The project will build a new four-level subsurface expansion of the station, improve the station entry and exterior plaza, install and replace a number of escalators and elevators, as well as rehabilitate station finishes including signage, cameras and public announcement systems. The upgrades will increase accessibility and capacity as well as improve customer experience and comfort. TransLink plans a two-year shutdown of the station – the network’s fourth busiest – to better manage the needed upgrades. Construction is expected to begin in early 2022 and be completed in 2024.

The federal government’s C$25 million (US$19.95 million) investment into TransLink’s Station Access and Safety Project will support the transit provider’s efforts to modify platforms to accommodate larger five-car, 85-meter (278.87-foot) trains on the SkyTrain network. The project includes extending up to 30 guideway walkways in multiple stations, modifying Guideway Intrusion Monitoring systems and adapting platforms to improve access for riders with disabilities.

"Investments in accessible and efficient public transit systems are at the heart of a green inclusive recovery that restarts our economy and creates good jobs. The funding we're announcing today will help transform public transit in the Vancouver region. Upgrades to the Burrard and other SkyTrain stations across the city will allow for a safe expansion of the network for the benefit of all users, which in turn will encourage increased ridership and lower [greenhouse gases],” said Hedy Fry, member of Parliament for Vancouver Centre, on behalf of the Honorable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Infrastructure and Communities.

TransLink is also planning new facilities to support its expanding SkyTrain fleet. The more than C$236.7 million (US$188.88 million) investment includes inspection and cleaning facilities with two bays and one wash track; maintenance shops with bays for vehicles and rail borne equipment; upper office space and indoor storage; roads, parking spaces, administrative and security spaces for maintenance staff; and natural gas and power connections and retaining walls.

The federal government has committed more than C$94.7 million (US$75.57 million) through the Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program’s Public Transit Infrastructure Stream and TransLink is contributing more than C$142 million (US$113.31 million). The federal portion of the funding is subject to requirements related to consultation with Indigenous groups and environmental assessment.

"This new funding for the Operations and Maintenance Center will allow us to store and maintain new SkyTrain cars required for the Broadway Subway Project and Surrey Langley SkyTrain. We thank our partners with the government of Canada for this investment that will help keep transit running safely, efficiently and reliably for years to come," said TransLink Acting Vice President of Engineering Jeffrey Busby.

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Group Editorial Director

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine and group editorial director of the Infrastructure and Aviation Group at Endeavor Business Media. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the editorial direction of the group and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.