New park and ride lot will be pay lot, and bus service won’t be as frequent

The new lot on 86 Avenue will be a pay lot, and there will be fewer buses coming and going from it than planned.

The new park and ride at 86 Avenue and 202 Street, set to open in December, will be a pay lot.

Free parking will end at TransLink park-and-ride lots as the authority moves to pull in more cash.

Most lots already charged for parking, but the shift to all pay parking will come as a shock to motorists who use the 10 free lots, such as the South Surrey park-and-ride and the Walnut Grove lot near Colossus.

It may also mean users of the new 650-space Carvolth park-and-ride in Langley will also have to shell out to park there to take the new Highway 1 Rapid Bus.

Provincial government officials said just last week there was no plan to charge motorists there, but added it would be TransLink’s decision after Victoria hands over the nearly finished park-and-ride.

A minimum of $2 a day will be charged, according to TransLink’s new policy.

TransLink projects it will raise $2.2 million by charging at the free lots and raising the prices at some of the pay lots.

“Prices will vary depending on the local markets,” TransLink vice-president Bob Paddon said Monday. “It will bring us much needed revenues.”

TransLink’s service plan, released Monday, indicates that Rapid Bus service that was to be offered every 10 minutes all day over the Port Mann would only run that often during peak hours. It will only run every 30 minutes at off-peak times, according to the plan.

And it will only go from Langley to Braid Station — the full run to Lougheed Station is on hold. Transportation Minister Mary Polak told Greater Langley Chamber of Commerce Tuesday that the run to Braid is temporary, until all work on the Highway 1 project is complete. Buses will then run to Lougheed Station. She said the bus run between Langley and SkyTrain will take 23 minutes.

Meanwhile, Langley Township council voted unanimously to ask the transportation authority to install at least 10 bicycle lockers at the new park and ride, also known as the Langley Transit Exchange.

Council backed Councillor Charlie Fox’s motion, which called for TransLink to install a minimum of 10 lockers where cyclists can store their bikes before they ride the Rapid Bus to Braid and beyond.

Fox noted that the lockers, which he would like to see located in a well-lit and secure area of the park and ride, complements TransLink’s desire to see people access the transit exchange in a “green” way.

Councillor David Davis suggested that 10 lockers probably wouldn’t be enough.

“We should have them all over the place,” he said.

— with files from Natasha Jones and Frank Bucholtz, Times reporters

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