Mission commuters will see some changes at the end of the year.
On Dec. 30, the West Coast Express TrainBus will be discontinued. However, a new service is set to start in Mission beginning Dec. 19.
The 701 bus service is being extended to Mission in order to replace the outgoing TrainBus.
The TrainBus is a coach-style bus that takes commuters who did not use the West Coast Express to downtown Vancouver, following the West Coast Express stations.
The TrainBus leaves once a day from Mission, at 10:30 a.m. There are three TrainBus trips in the afternoon from Vancouver back to Mission.
The new 701 service will provide more options.
“While today there is one westbound and three eastbound trips each day, after the 19th there will be four westbound trips and four eastbound trips,” explained Chris Bryan, a spokesperson for TransLink.
He said the decision to phase out the TrainBus and add the 701 was “driven by the opening of the Evergreen Extension,” the latest addition to SkyTrain services.
The 701 currently runs from Coquitlam Central Station to Dewdney Trunk and 248th Street.
It will now be extended to the Mission City Station for select trips.
“Essentially, what we are doing is providing the same departure times that they had on the TrainBus (but with additional trips),” Bryan said.
However, there are some differences.
The TrainBus is a “one-seat ride.” Passengers can get on in Mission and ride straight downtown without having to transfer.
The new 701 service will see commuters get on the 701 bus at Mission Station, travel to Coquitlam Central Station and then get on the new Evergreen Extension in order to make their way downtown.
“There will be a little bit of a difference in travel time, depending on the time of day. We are anticipating it will be about 10 minutes longer,” said Bryan.
The decision to phase out the TrainBus was made by TransLink because of the opening of the new Evergreen Extension. Talks were held with the District of Mission in order to continue providing commuters a service to Vancouver.
“Mission is outside of our service area, but the District of Mission has always paid us a contract to provide this service,” explained Bryan.
Fore more details about the new service or to plan a trip for 2017, visit translink.ca/tripplanner.