Rider Stories


“I have pride in how popular the 99 is to UBC, not having an expedited method to campus is taxing on the whole of Vancouver. People who commute – like myself – often have 2-3 busses plus the Skytrain. This puts extra pressure on the intermediary transit by crowding, which leads to multiple missed busses. By extending the skytrain to UBC, you will allow commuters to get to campus faster and free up space on buses that would take the commuters for those who skytrain is not an option.”

SFU Researcher

“I hate the commute to UBC so I rarely do it by transit. It involves 4 transfers and is very long — almost twice as long as driving. I’m a researcher at SFU and would love to visit UBC more to build collaborations between the universities but rarely go because of the commute. I would go MUCH more if the Skytrain went directly there, and this would be true for many researchers.”


“My commute has been the same, throughout my undergraduate degree and now during my work career. As a student, my lengthy transit commute discouraged me from staying on campus after class and getting involved in student clubs, extra-curricular activities, and enjoying the greater campus. Now as a staff member, I’ve started to drive in to campus when I have to because it takes half the amount of time as compared to transit.”


“I, and many, many others, need the Skytrain to UBC because it has been a hard 5 years to beat the lineups and the clock, just to get to classes on time. Having such a long commute has been extremely challenging and negatively impacted my university experience, including my ability to consistently be at campus early for work and classes, or staying late in the evening for an event. The long commute makes it hard to plan out schedules for meeting people because of the need to factor in 2 hours of travel time before and after the activity. I have to plan all of my activities around my commute. Students shouldn’t have to choose between attending or declining an event because of their commute. In anticipation of an early morning final exam, I often find myself paying for an overnight stay in the Walter Gage commuter student hostel a couple months in advance because there are a very limited number of rooms available. A Skytrain line that transports people directly to campus would not be a waste of money since it will decrease travel time substantially. In fact, it would be a great investment. Skytrain is not affected by traffic jams because it operates in the air. Translink should do away with their concern about seeing “decreased ridership” as soon as the school year is over. UBC is a city within a city. There will always be people heading into or out of UBC. Events occur on campus year-round. Skytrain will reduce the number of cars on the road entering and exiting campus on a daily basis, and it solves the problem of not having enough parking spaces at convenient locations. It will encourage people to use public transportation and will help alleviate the problem of reduced bus service that frequently happens on the weekends or once the school year is over.

Having Skytrain extend to UBC should reduce the problem of full buses passing by stops, the problem of poor reliability, and the problem of reduced service. With Skytrain to UBC, I will be able to make more commitments to school and work (I am currently employed on campus). It can reduce the stress of early morning travel and help students avoid the rush of cars on the streets. It means I can stay on campus longer in the evenings to study or attend a workshop and be reassured that even if my last bus leaves the loop, I can still use the skytrain to get partway home. It also means that I can avoid the congestion in Vancouver and on the highways. It will be a more efficient way to get to and from campus. UBC is growing steadily as a community of faculty, staff, and students. I think Translink’s customer base has been growing along with it. Overall, I think that Skytrain to UBC is a good option that has the potential to benefit many generations of students to come. It would provide a positive, noticeable difference to daily commutes.”


“As someone who lived in the Kitsilano area for 2 years, I feel strongly that a skytrain is needed to relieve the immense strain on the bus system. I was fortunate to live close to campus, but as one of the last stops in Kitsilano by the time buses arrived they were at full capacity and would pass up the stop. Generally speaking on an average day I would be passed up 3 times before successfully boarding an overcrowded bus, largely due to a sympathetic driver allowing us to stand as close to the front as safety allowed. Some days I have been passed 6-7 times. Additionally, bus routes often changed on the weekend so sometimes you would end up unexpectedly stopping prematurely before reaching campus if you had a weekend commitment. All of this made it very difficult to predict how long it would take to arrive on campus and I have missed portions or all of my morning class on especially bad days. A reliable Skytrain option within walking distance of Kitsilano residents would relieve strain on the remaining campus bus routes and give students a consistent option for getting to class on time.”

T Rosen

“I live close to UBC and work downtown. I think for everyone affected – not only the directly involved with UBC such as students and staff- the transit improvement would be a triumph because EVERYONE will win, even nature. For someone like me, rapid transit will mean a more effective, less crowded, more reliable, and less polluting commute. For a rapidly-growing city like Vancouver it is not a matter of wanting but needing this type of transit. When thinking of the future, rapid transit is the only solution to move the growing population. Buses may have been practical in the past but now they are crowded, unreliable, and polluting machines. I live in fear during the winter when a little snow can paralyze our transit. I also detest the smell of diesel. No matter the angle, rapid transit seems logical.”


“I don’t let my kids apply to UBC, the commute time would be crazy from the North Shore – and they would just want to live on campus for one year and then rent a house in the UBC area. I can’t afford even part of renting a house in that area so the University is just off limits to my children. If there were a skytrain to the University it would change their opportunities, UBC is a great school – it’s just in too affluent of an area for most people to afford.”


“1000 buses a day come to the UBC Exchange loop! This is insane! Vancouver will keep growing and getting busier, it is mandatory that we start and develop this project now. We know it will take years and years before it is complete, so why wait any longer? Act now, vote, challenge the City, write petitions for funding, we are already behind!”


“My parents live in Coquitlam, and because I don’t have a car, the 2 hr (one way) commute combined with a heavy courseload (5-6 courses per term) drove me to find housing at UBC for the duration of my degree. While this was a great chance for me to become more independent and practice being an adult, it was also a huge expense to add on to my student loans. It seems pretty strange that somebody who grew up in the lower mainland would have to move in order to attend UBC. Although I will be graduated by the time the broadway extension is constructed, I fully support this project because it will improve accessibility and affordability of UBC for future students who are lower mainland residents. Having a more simple and fast commute allows students to have a more balanced school life, and reduces stress. It doesn’t make sense to me to only extend the line to Arbutus! Most people who take the 99 are going all the way to UBC! If the line is only extended to Arbutus, it won’t really solve too many problems. I really hope that the right decision is made here and the extension gets approved to go all the way to UBC :)”


“I take the 480 bus in every day. I get on at the second stop, but I usually have to wait a few buses before getting on because most of them are full by the time they get to me. The best part of my commute is the fact that the 480 is an express bus – and the reason why I don’t take the skytrain+99 is because there’s fewer stops, and I don’t have to transfer. The worst part of my commute is as stated – the fact that the bus is usually full by the second stop. The bus starts at richmond/bridgeport, and I’m sure a skytrain that connected to the Canada Line at Broadway/Cambie that went all the way to UBC would reduce the bus wait-times substantially. My commute is long enough that I often stay at the UBC commuter hostel. This way, I’m able to study on campus later, meet with friends, go to the gym on campus, and get to bed at a reasonable hour, and not have to get up 2 hours before my class is set to start. If I could afford it, I would live on UBC campus just for the sake of not having to commute – I’m able to be much more social, my study/life balance is much better, and I have more time for physical exercise when I’m not wasting 2+hrs of my day on transit.”


“(Now graduated). When I was attending UBC between 2013 and 2015 I never thought we’d be so close to having a one-seat ride from Coquitlam to campus. I lived in Maple Ridge at the time and commuted by bike and public transit 2.5hrs per direction every day. If Skytrain had been available between Coquitlam and campus, I estimate I would have saved 30 minutes per direction. 1 hr per day, 5 hrs per week, 20 hrs per month. That means a lot to me. As a student, I was a captive transit rider. I had no choice but to commute that distance. I couldn’t afford to move out of my parents’ home and I couldn’t afford car payments or insurance. The time-cost seemed like something I could afford. For many students who are captive like I was, extending Skytrain to UBC is an equity issue. By investing in rapid transit to the campus, we tell them that their time is as valuable as anybody’s. And by saving them this time and effort, we raise their ability to do whatever it is they do best.”