Community

Campaign calls for loos at loops

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A group of Lower Mainland commuters has launched a petition calling on TransLink to put more public washrooms at bus loops and transit hubs.

So far, more than 50 people have signed the online document, which said the lack of washroom facilities is inhumane and discourages transit use.

The petition points to the Coquitlam bus loop as one of the more egregious examples. The closest washroom to the bus loop is at Coquitlam Centre mall, close to a kilometre away, and is only open during mall hours.

For commuters travelling from places such Maple Ridge and Langley, which is about a 90-minute long trip, washroom facilities are essential, the petition said.

Ann Blackwell, a petition signer from Maple Ridge, said a lack of bathrooms has prevented her from travelling.

“I am elderly, disabled and I don’t have a car,” she wrote. “I do not go to Vancouver to see my family because it is too hard without such facilities.”

The city of Coquitlam is hoping to avoid some of the washroom issues when the Evergreen Line is built. Earlier this summer, council voted unanimously to urge the province and TransLink to change policies and have public washroom facilities in all Evergreen Line stations in Coquitlam.

TransLink has long maintained that having freely accessible toilets isn’t part of its mandate. The transit authority says it is too costly and that open washrooms are prone to vandalism and criminal activity.

Those who are interested in viewing the petition can do so by going to www.gopetition.com/petitions/washrooms-for-transit-riders/signatures.html.

gmckenna@tricitynews.com

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