skytrain shutdown vancouver

Vancouver transit strike is officially happening this week

Downtown Vancouver commuters had better allot some extra time to get where they need to go this week, because the city's SkyTrain is officially shutting down tomorrow.

The news follows a 72-hour strike notice that was issued last Friday.

The service disruption comes as part of a strike by approximately 900 SkyTrain employees, whose union hasn't been able to come to an agreement with the B.C. Rapid Transit Company over issues like wages, sick-leave policies and staffing levels.

The LRT trains will not be running on the city's popular Expo and Millennium lines — as well as the latter's Evergreen extension — from 5 am on Tuesday, December 10 until 5 am on Friday, December 13.

Stakeholders are resuming talks today, but it looks like the rumoured strike is most likely still going to happen.

Vancouverites are especially frustrated because they just got over the scare of another, unrelated transit strike late last month when the city's transit workers threatened to walk off the job and completely suspend bus service.

Translink's SkyTrain network is the longest rapid transit system in Canada, and the Expo and Millennium lines alone see a daily ridership of more than 320,000 people between 38 stations in and around metro Vancouver.

The public transportation authority notes that the city's north-south Canada SkyTrain Line, West Coast Express commuter railway, HandyDART accessible transit service and all buses will still be operating normally. But, it has warned riders that "all other transit modes will be busier than usual" due to the SkyTrain strike.

Update: Thankfully for residents, a tentative agreement was reached between SkyTrain workers' union CUPE 7000 and B.C. Rapid Transit Company early in the morning on December 10 after hours of negotiations. Though the strike was averted, transitgoers encountered some early service delays.

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