About the Project
How has COVID-19 impacted the project?
The Broadway Subway project remains on track with no change to the timeline, and is currently in the final stages of procurement.
However, the community office located at 1212 W. Broadway is temporarily closed to help protect the health of our community and project team. Our re-opening is tentatively planned for September 2020.
The health and safety of construction workers is a top priority. The construction contractor will ensure protocols and policies are in place that follow the requirements of the provincial health officer to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
What is the Broadway Subway project?
The Broadway Subway project is a 5.7-kilometre extension of the existing Millennium Line SkyTrain from VCC-Clark Station to Arbutus Street. Read the project overview.
Why is the Broadway Subway project needed?
The new line will make it easier to live, work, travel, shop and access services in the Broadway Corridor, adding to regional livability.
The Broadway Subway will have the capacity to move three times as many people as the current 99 B-Line bus route to Arbutus Street. The 99 B-Line route is the busiest bus route in Canada and the U.S. and can no longer effectively meet demand. Buses get caught in traffic congestion and people are often passed up by full buses.
Once in service, the trip from VCC–Clark Station to Arbutus Station will take 11 minutes, saving the average transit commuter almost 30 minutes a day and relieving congestion along Broadway.
As an extension of the Millennium Line, it will connect to the current SkyTrain network, including Expo and Canada Lines, and will integrate with the regional bus network.
What is the budget for the Broadway Subway project?
Budget for the construction of the Broadway Subway project is $2.83 billion.
Who is paying for the Broadway Subway project?
On September 4, 2018, the Governments of Canada and British Columbia confirmed the business case and funding for the Broadway Subway project. The funding breakdown for Phase 2 is:
- Government of Canada: $888.4 million
- Government of British Columbia: $1.82 billion
- City of Vancouver: $99.8 million (in-kind contribution)
An additional $17 million went towards the full project cost under Phase 1.
The Broadway Subway is a key part of the rapid transit program in the Metro Vancouver Phase 2 Mayors’ Council 10-Year Vision. That vision is funded by the Governments of Canada and British Columbia, Metro Vancouver municipalities, and TransLink.
Who will operate the Broadway Subway?
Once constructed, the Broadway Subway will be integrated with the regional transit network and operated and maintained by TransLink.
Where will the stations be located?
The Broadway Subway will connect businesses, jobs, communities and people with six new underground stations at:
- Great Northern Way: on the east side of Thornton Street, just north of Great Northern Way
- Mount Pleasant: at the southwest corner of Broadway and Main Street
- Broadway–City Hall: using the existing entrance to the Canada Line at the southeast corner of Broadway and Cambie Street
- Fairview–VGH: on the southwest corner of Broadway and Laurel Street, near Oak Street
- South Granville: on the northeast corner of Broadway and Granville Street
- Arbutus: at the northeast corner of Broadway and Arbutus Street.
Note, interim station names were chose for wayfinding purposes and are not considered final at this time.
What will the stations look like; what amentities will be included?
Residents, businesses, transit users, stakeholders, and the public have helped to shape the Project to date.
Stations will be integrated within the existing streetscape along Broadway, and will include street furniture and bike parking.
Stations will be designed with “Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design” principles, including:
- Good lighting and an open, transparent design to maximize visibility and safety
- Security cameras and emergency phones
Inside the stations, there will be:
- Up and down escalators and elevators
- Clear wayfinding and passenger information
- Accessible surfaces, such as tactile strips
- Public art
- Capacity to accommodate future passenger growth
When does construction start?
Construction is anticipated to start in fall 2020 with the line in service in 2025. Once the contractor who will design and build the project is selected in mid-2020, we will have further details about construction methods and timing.
How will the Broadway Subway be constructed?
The Broadway Subway Project will be mainly constructed by underground tunneling methods. Street-level construction can be expected in areas and blocks where stations will be constructed, and at each end of the line.
The Project will use some properties adjacent to above-ground station locations for off-street work and storage areas to support construction of the underground stations. This will help keep construction activity off Broadway and adjacent streets as much as possible to mitigate disruption and manage safety for people on foot, wheels or bikes, and in vehicles.
There will be excavation required to construct the stations, which will be covered to allow people to move through the corridor.
The Project will be built using a Community Benefits Agreement to help employ locals, women, Indigenous people and others traditionally underrepresented in the trades, and increase B.C.’s skilled and diverse workforce.
How can I work on the project?
British Columbia Infrastructure Benefits (BCIB) will be the employer for skilled trades workers on the Project. For construction employment opportunities, please go to their website and complete the online application form: https://www.bcib.ca/
Local contractors, suppliers and businesses who might be interested in working with, or providing products and services to the Preferred Proponent, can use the contact information on our procurement page.
How will construction impact residents and commuters?
Generally, there will be three lanes of traffic in each direction along Broadway, with one lane dedicated solely for buses (99 and 9 routes). In station construction areas, generally two lanes of traffic will be maintained in each direction for buses and other vehicles on Broadway, with the exception of Broadway at Main Street, where there is less room.
Construction of each underground station is anticipated to take approximately two years, and is expected to include approximately one block of excavation, which will be covered to allow traffic to move through the corridor.
Construction at the tunnel portal near Great Northern Way and Thornton Street will be active throughout the duration of construction.
Pedestrian access, including access for people of all abilities, will be maintained to local businesses, residences and medical services. The 10th Avenue cycling route will be maintained. During construction, the Project will reroute sections of the Arbutus and Central Valley greenways to safe cycling detour routes.
We will provide ongoing updates about any construction-related changes to local businesses, offices and the public in advance, through traffic news outlets, social media and our website.
What are you doing for business?
The project team is engaging closely with businesses on and adjacent to Broadway regarding construction, access and signage and completed an initial survey in 2019. The information gathered, along with technical requirements, will inform the traffic and construction management and mitigation plans.
A comprehensive communications and community and business relations program will be in place to:
- Provide timely information about the Project, including construction, traffic and parking information.
- Work with local businesses and residents to mitigate construction impacts where possible, and help manage issues as they arise.
- Work with the community to promote alternative travel choices during construction.
- Work with local businesses to maintain visibility and help customers access their shops and services
What will happen to parking?
Currently, parking is restricted on Broadway for about seven hours each weekday, in the morning and afternoon peak periods, with the curb lane dedicated to buses, taxis and cyclists. We anticipate this will be extended 24/7 to support the efficient movement of buses and all traffic throughout the construction period.
The Broadway Subway Project is working with the City of Vancouver to develop a parking management plan to address residential and business parking needs.
What are the Broadway Subway Early Works projects?
Trolley bus routes 14, 16 and 17 relocated to the adjacent streets in June 2020 to keep Broadway safe for workers and equipment while keeping buses people and traffic moving during construction of the subway project. For information on TransLink’s service changes, visit: https://new.translink.ca/schedules-and-maps/service-changes
In addition, some utilities are being relocated in advance of construction beginning in fall 2020.
Will the trolley wires be removed once these bus routes move back to Broadway after subways construction?
No. The trolley overhead infrastructure will remain in place so that TransLink can reroute trolley services in the event of an accident or other disruption to the normal routing, and for flexibility to adjust routes if customer needs or behaviors change as needed in the future.
Why not extend all the way to University of British Columbia during this construction phase?
Planning and analysis on this line have been underway for many years, and included the City, Province, TransLink and the region’s mayors as part of the Mayors’ Council. A decision was made by the mayors to fund and build rapid transit to UBC in two phases based on available funding. Funding is in place for the Broadway Subway Project, which is defined from VCC-Clark to Arbutus, with completion in 2025.
The City, TransLink and UBC are involved in a planning initiative to extend the subway to UBC. In the meantime, the Arbutus Street terminus will be designed to allow for future rapid transit expansion to UBC.