Yesterday I left the house around 12:45 p.m. and did not return until just after 4. I planned to pick up a hold at Central Library. Normally it’s about an hour, including a bus ride there, some wandering around library time, and then a bus ride back.
But yesterday, it took over three hours.
Ever since the Burrard Street Bridge Project commenced this spring, catching a bus is something of a guessing game. One morning, shortly after city workers cordoned off sections of the street near the intersection of Burrard and Pacific, I made my way to the bus stop only to find a sign that informed me that buses would no longer be stopping at Burrard and Pacific. I now had to catch the 22, 2 or 44 at Davie. This means every time I want to head downtown (north), I have to walk two blocks.
Fine. It’s understandable that things are going to get a little complicated when there’s major construction. Three Sundays ago I intended on heading out, but the entire road from Davie to the start of the bridge was blocked off. There was no notice telling transit users where one would catch a bus. Even the No, 6 going down Davie to Granville wasn’t running. I ended up returning home and settling in on the couch with a murder mystery.
Yesterday was the straw that broke the camel’s back. I walked to Burrard and Davie and waited for the 22 Knight, which is typically the bus I need to take when I make a trip to Vancouver Public Library. I waited for the 22 and I waited and I waited and I waited. And while I waited, four 2s went by.
Finally, I, and a handful of other people who had been waiting boarded the 44 Downtown, which stops at Georgia and Burrard. Everybody asked the 44 bus driver what happened to the 22. He replied that he knew the 22 no longer stopped on Burrard, he wasn’t sure
There had been no signs at the Davie bus stop. Just out of curiosity, I looked to see if there was one at the Georgia stop. There was. But all it said was that the 22 had been temporarily discontinued and gave no indication of where one could actually catch the 22 Knight.
I wasn’t really going to bother filing a complaint, but when I got up this morning, the whole incident really rankled. I phoned TransLink and explained the situation, stressing the fact that there were no signs or notices of any kind, except for the Georgia one, which hadn’t been very informative. The woman who recorded my “feedback” was very helpful. She said that sometimes people remove the signs. She also explained how to navigate their website, to check for road closures, re-routing notices, etc.
I suppose what really ticked me off were the four drivers of the Route 2 buses. Since the change had just gone into effect that day, you’d think they’d say something like, “If you’re waiting for the 22, it’s been rerouted. Hop on my bus instead.”
My theory is that all four bus drivers are parents of pre-school children who thought transit riders would like to create their own interactive adventure.