News Views: Straight line

New B-Line bus should stick to highway through Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows

A B-Line bus route is coming to Maple Ridge next year. (THE NEWS/files)

Maple Ridge didn’t get a SkyTrain line or a new West Coast Express station.

But it did get a new B-Line bus to compliment those services.

With a B-Line bus set to roll down Lougheed Highway by the end of next year, from Haney Place Mall in Maple Ridge to the Coquitlam Central SkyTrain station, Pitt Meadows will also be better served by transit.

The service will offer 10-minute or better frequency service along Lougheed Highway for rush-hour commuters and service on articulated buses every 15 minutes during off-peak hours. The service will run 18 hours a day.

That’s a lot better than the five morning and afternoon trains that head to Vancouver and back on weekdays.

But TransLink wants to make sure it gets the route right and is asking for feedback on where bus stops should be, the exact route the B-Line will follow and changes to the road that could help speed things along.

One way of getting that input will be a survey that starts on April 3.

Pitt Meadows Mayor John Becker was under the impression that the B-Line would cut through his city, along Hammond and up Harris roads and stop at the West Coast Express station there. But given the congestion on Harris Road on a good day, with all the train crossings that interrupt traffic, it makes no sense for the B-Line to follow that route.

Better to put a stop along the highway in Pitt Meadows and have a shuttle take commuters to it. It is called a B-Line, and there is no faster way to Coquitlam other than a straight line.

TransLink wants people to take the B-Line, so it must be as convenient as possible. This could help save families money, if they can rely on transit rather than needing a second or third vehicle, especially given current housing costs.

People in Maple Ridge and Pitt Meadows need easy access to transit just like those in Vancouver.

– Maple Ridge-Pitt Meadows News

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