SeaTrain – The Ongoing Columbia St. Station Fiasco

Yes, this is an ongoing problem but……………….

The flooding and closing of the strategic Columbia St. Station should have been dealt with ages ago, but no, not TransLink.

Always put off to tomorrow what should be done today and to hell with the customer!

I wonder if anyone at TransLink knows what a sump pump is?


SkyTrain Columbia Station reopens after flooding, regular service resumes

Nov 14 2021
Heavy rainfall throughout Sunday led to the flooding of SkyTrain’s Columbia Station tunnel in downtown New Westminster.
As a result, late this afternoon and into the early evening, Columbia Station was closed, and it forced the cancellation of all train service running through New Westminster, including the cancellation of all train services across the Fraser River to reach Surrey. Bus bridge shuttles were deployed.

As of 6:55 pm, the station reopened and regular service on the Expo Line resumed, but it will take some time for crowding to subside and for trains to return to their normal pacing. The Millennium Line was unaffected by the Expo Line’s issues.

Based on TransLink’s service disruption reports, a decision was made at approximately 5:30 pm to shut down Columbia Station and turn around trains.

But there were also flooding issues at this station earlier in the afternoon that affected train schedules. Regular Expo Line services resumed just before 5 pm, but only briefly, as flooding issues quickly returned.

Columbia Station’s tunnel is susceptible to flooding as the station’s tracks are exposed to the elements, allowing water to pool. As well, water funnels into the station from both ends of the sloping tunnel entrances.

This is not the first time there has been a major flood-related service disruption within the Columbia Station tunnel. On December 11, 2018, heavy rainfall flooding a segment of the tunnel led to hours-long service disruptions.

1 flood


5 Responses to “SeaTrain – The Ongoing Columbia St. Station Fiasco”
  1. Haveacow says:

    Was a sump pump for Columbia street Station, one of the minor projects in Translink’s 10 year spending plan that now has to be reassessed in the new spending plan?

    Zwei replies: I have been told that this is the 4th time this has happened.

  2. Haveacow says:

    I heard the rain and wet was biblical out there in BC, here’s hoping you and your family are warm, high and dry!

    Zwei replies: We live on a hill, but roads were closed due to flooding on the flats. The ditch in front of our house, which rarely has water in it, overflowed.

    I just hate to say this, but again the province was asleep at the switch. Washington St. was preparing late last week and evacuation orders were being give far before the event. In BC, the provincial government spent the first 24 hours on Saturday running in circles screaming shock and disbelief.

    I can say this, many of the landslides were caused by the summer’s forest fires and any forester worth his degree would have known this. The problem, which now has caused at least 3 deaths, was due to forest fires; poor logging practices, the stealthy construction of the pipeline and allowing housing to be built on flood plains without adequate diking. The Fraser Valley flood has been caused by the Washington State Nootsack river flooding, crossing the 49th.

    The news is preparing us for some more bad news today and there may be more dire news in the following days.

  3. Dan says:

    With all the flood damage is their still going to be money available for the antiquated wrongly called ‘SkyTrain’ expansions? I would not be surprised if the Surrey one gets delayed and the UNC/Arbutus one goes ahead yet both being delayed now would not surprise me either…..

    Zwei replies: I agree, The Broadway subway will go ahead due to the massive amount of politcal credibility invested, but, if costs overruns becomes an issue it must be truncated to Burrard, which makes much more sense that Arbutus.. My money is the Surrey extension delayed until 2030+.

    A lil Birdie told me that cut and cover may come back into play, but this very much informed rumour at this point. I do know TransLink had some hush hush meetings with the MoT. Certainly with the current fiasco, the provincial government will not entertain cost overruns on the subway.

  4. Haveacow says:

    It’s interesting that with the flooding, now everyone not just you guys on this blog, are questioning the cost of the Surrey-Langley Skytrain extension. I find it interesting that, the combined cost of both the phase 1 LRT line, the S N G line and the planned phase 2 Surrey to Langley LRT line ($3.5 Billion in 2019), is now less expensive than 1 above grade Skytrain line, without inflation. That means, 27 km’s worth of surface LRT service , including inflation is probably around the same price or possibly less costlier than, 16 km of above grade Skytrain service. There’s nothing like a good flood to refocus the mind on costs.

    Seriously though, I hope everyone is safe, warm and dry!

  5. zweisystem says:

    I maybe speaking too soon but I think the Langley extension is dead.

    The cost for the Coq to be rebuilt, is said now to be around $1 billion. The damage is said to be far worse than first thought. The Fraser/Thompson (#1) to Abbotsdford may cost over $500 million. The other highways affected will cost hundred’s of millions of dollars to mitigate.

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