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Jan 06, 2020                                                                    Lauron Collins

Surrey’s RapidBus route to launch in January.

Starting Jan. 6, 2020, Surrey will have its first “RapidBus” route. In Surrey, the R1 King George Boulevard RapidBus will run between Guildford Town Centre and Newton Exchange, along King George Boulevard and 104th Avenue. This route is the upgraded 96 B-Line.  In 2018, TransLink recorded an average of 17,510 daily boardings during weekdays. According to TransLink, it will have eight-minute service during peak hours.

Outside of peak house, all RapidBus routes will have 15-minute service or better from 6 a.m. to midnight, seven days a week. RapidBus service will build on the “successful elements of the B-Line,” according to TransLink.

TransLink says that “to ensure RapidBuses can deliver fast and reliable service and don’t get stuck in traffic,” it’s worked with local governments “to identify street and traffic changes that will speed up bus-travel times.”

The RapidBus service, according to TransLink, will be “up to 20% faster than local bus service” with its bus-only lanes, signal priority, queue jumps at intersections, fewer stops and all-door boarding.

The Surrey route is one of four launching on Jan. 6. The other three routes are the R3 Lougheed Highway, R4 41st Avenue and R5 Hastings Street. There is a fifth route, R2 Marine Drive, which will launch between February and April of 2020. The five routes will serve 11 communities and will be able to take on 12,000 passengers per hour during rush hour. The service increases will add 65,000 more annual bus service hours to TransLink’s system and allow for 20,000 more people to ride the buses each weekday.

Two additional RapidBus routes in Surrey, Delta and Richmond are planned to launch in 2021, and five additional routes are planned for phase three. TransLink says that with the RapidBuses, it will be retiring the “B-Line” moniker, with the exception of Vancouver’s 99 B-Line, which won’t be retired “until the opening of the Broadway Subway in 2025.”

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