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Vancouver's Millennium SkyTrain Line

fever

Member
Messages
14
Points
1
The Millennium Line began full operating in September 2002. It runs through large areas of underused former industrial as well as a few established commercial and residential centres. A major goal of the the regional governing body is to shape the region by encouraging dense transit oriented development along areas accessible to rapid transit. In total, the line is 21 km long with 13 stations and takes 26 minutes to travel from end to end.

SkyTrain is an automated and completely grade-separated system with a capacity of roughly 25000 people per hour per direction. Minimum headways are officially 75 seconds, but I've witnessed headways of as little as 60 seconds. Vancouver has two lines. The original was built in phases beginning in 1985 and connects to the Millennium Line at that line's ends.

Here are the photos, beginning in the West and going East (away from downtown), and a map to orient yourself:

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Commercial Drive/Broadway Station entrance.
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The platform for the Millennium Line
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The overhead connection to the Expo Line.
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The connector from the outside
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Downtown behind the Millennium Line portion of the station
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Renfrew Station
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Between Renfrew and Rupert stations
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A new Mark II train
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inside the train
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fever

Member
Messages
14
Points
1
Rupert Station
millennium11.jpg

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Gilmore Station (We're now in Burnaby)
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Brentwood Station
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Holdom Station
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Sperling/Burnaby Lake Station
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The skyline around Lougheed Station from Production Way Station
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Production Station
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Lougheed Station (my favourite. this station looks awesome from some angles, but unfortunately not from the parking lot).
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fever

Member
Messages
14
Points
1
millennium32.jpg


Braid Station (In New Westminster now)
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Sapperton Station's platform
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The outskirts of New West
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The wheel inside Sapperton Station (each station has different public art, you can move the wheel from inside the station).
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Sapperton from the outside
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Surrey's skyline across the Fraser River
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A new station is being built between Sperling and Production: Lake City Way Station
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Plan Man

Cyburbian
Messages
125
Points
6
A fantastic system, at east what I have seen and used - quiet, quick and well designed. Two thumbs up...
 

ecofem

Cyburbian
Messages
203
Points
9
very cool. I want one! I want one!

How is ridership? It doesn't look very busy....
 

H

Cyburbian
Messages
2,846
Points
24
Impressive, looks nice. Puts the one here in Miami to shame.

I have no basis for this, but it looks German.
 

nerudite

Cyburbian
Messages
6,536
Points
30
The ridership has been excellent when I've been there... I have not been through the industrial area though. I usually take it from downtown to MetroTown, which is only a few stops. It's quiet and easy to access, plus there are some great views of the city (and occasionally the Cascade Mountains). Nice pictures! :)
 

fever

Member
Messages
14
Points
1
Thanks for the replies.

I took these on a holiday a couple months ago. The ridership on the line is much less than the Expo Line, but it is less than a year old.

When the Expo Line was built, much of the land surrounding its stations was unused industrial. Some of those stations are now in the middle of dense residential and commercial centres. For example, before the Expo Line metrotown in Burnaby (about 5 km south of Brentwood Station) wasn't much. This is it now..

metrofrombrent.jpg



The Millennium Line is supposed to encourage the same sort of thing around it. With more residential around it, ridership should increase significantly.
 

Greenescapist

Cyburbian
Messages
1,167
Points
24
Those are great pictures. I hope that Seattle is looking at what Vancouver has done with this sky train and finally settle on something to solve their transit woes. This Vancouver system looks like regional train system in Amsterdam.
 

MitchBaby

Cyburbian
Messages
198
Points
7
Being from Vancouver, the skytrain line is great - but we need the connection to the airport and richmond to truly make this system a regional system.

As for appearances, its a really nice looking system with great architecture for the stations. Admittedly its a little imposing in some areas, but I think it grows on people.
 

The Irish One

Member
Messages
2,266
Points
25
Beautiful stuff. We have a new rail coming into fruition in my part of the world. I hope it has nice stations like Vancouver's. People need protection from the sun here. I'm photographing the progress.
 

LouisvilleSlugger

Cyburbian
Messages
216
Points
9
Runner said:
Great pics, I'm ready to leave for Vancouver today!

same here. it's a great system!!! I've done coutless papers on it and research. whats going on with the possible RAV line? will they use skytrain for it?
 

fever

Member
Messages
14
Points
1
All the info on the RAV line you'll ever need (or at least all you're gonna get your hands on at this point) is on this website.

The RAV line will be grade-separated. Starting in the south, it must be elevated in Richmond because the water table is too high to allow for tunnelling. It will cross the Fraser River (north arm) as a bridge and then travel up Cambie (a major arterial) elevated in the median. Around 15 to 30 blocks inland it will either dip down into a trench for a short period and then into a tunnel or go directly into a tunnel. The section following that must be in a tunnel because the grade is too steep for it to be elevated and there is no median or space for columns anyway. It will then cross false creek in a tunnel and through downtown, also in a tunnel.

At this point, the technology that will be used is anyone's guess.. but my guess is that skytrain will be chosen, for several reasons.

This line will be largely in tunnels. SkyTrain cars are narrower than regular heavy rail cars, making tunnelling cheaper. Where it isn't tunnel, it's elevated. SkyTrain is an obvoius choice, although I've heard Hitachi also produces elevated systems similar to Bombardier's SkyTrain. Also, Vancouverites are used to SkyTrain.. it looks good, it's proven to attract ridership, and it's generally well-liked. But maybe most importantly, the Fed's are paying for a substantial portion of the cost, and I don't think they'll miss the opportunity to support Bombardier.
 
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