Advance View: Compass card still off kilter


The Compass Card system is facing another delay, another technical glitch. TransLink is working on it, of course. TransLink has been working on perfecting their not-quite-ready-for-prime-time system for well over a year. In fact, the Compass Card system was a year overdue as of this past summer. The cards have difficulty “tapping out” of buses, which could mean being charged for a three-zone ride after taking the bus a mere mile.

Those on the outskirts of Metro Vancouver – in the Langleys, in Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows, and parts of Surrey and White Rock – can only watch this mess and feel an extra degree of bitterness. We’ve been paying more than our fair share for years. And while we can’t expect transit service to every rural property, now that parts of our communities are booming, we should have had big increases. Nope.

At the province’s behest, money has been poured into fare gates for SkyTrain (which does not reach us) and on a card system that seems to be broken, while new bus routes are few and far between. There is no new money, we are told again and again. Meanwhile, the population here grows and grows, and our needs expand, and the buses do not come.

There could have been a referendum on TransLink funding as of this Nov. 15, with the civic elections. That was pushed off to 2015, too. We still don’t know what the question will be for this future vote. 

Meanwhile, the vote only serves to distract attention from the fact that the province has no interest whatsoever in helping put more people on buses. TransLink, for all its real and perceived faults, cannot raise more money without Victoria giving it new powers, or without raising property taxes, a move no one particularly wants.

So here we sit, winter coming in, the days getting darker, the weather wetter. And all the transit users and would-be transit users have to stand and fume, like people stuck in the rain waiting for a bus that’s always late.


Just Posted

VIDEO: Saturday was devoted to the arts in Langley City

The 25th annual Arts Alive festival took over a main thoroughfare.

Arena opens at Aldergrove Credit Union Community Centre

Grand procession brings Aldergrove ice arena users to new facility

‘Beauty amongst such tragedy:’ B.C. photographer captures nature’s trifecta

David Luggi’s photo from a beach in Fraser Lake shows Shovel Lake wildfire, Big Dipper and an aurora

Air quality advisory continues in the Lower Mainland

Smoke from Interior fires brings fine particulate

VIDEO: Tire recycling at Kal Tire

All tires will be recycled back into products to be used in British Columbia

‘We will not forget:’ Thousands attend funeral fallen Fredericton officers

Hundreds of officials marched in the parade, which included massed band, several police motorcycles

Lions give up late TD in 24-23 loss to Argos

B.C. falls to 3-5, fumbling away last-minute chance in Toronto

Eagle tree cut down legally a 1st for B.C. city

Planned eagle preserve ‘a first for City of Surrey’

Smoky skies like a disappearing act for sights, monuments around B.C.

Haze expected to last the next several days, Environment Canada said

Canadians react to death of former UN secretary-general Kofi Annan at age 80

Nobel Peace Prize-winning former UN leader died early Saturday following a short illness

44 drownings so far this year in B.C.

Lifesaving Society urging caution to prevent deaths while on lakes, oceans and in pools

Some of B.C.’s air quality levels worse than Jodhpur, India

Okanagan, northern B.C. seeing some of the worst air quality globally

VIDEO: Ground crews keep a close eye on largest B.C. wildfire

Originally estimated to be 79,192 hectares, officials said more accurate mapping shows smaller size

Most Read