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SkyTrain washrooms may be long wait

TransLink board chair Marcella Szel and CEO Ian Jarvis outside the newly upgraded Scott Road SkyTrain station in Surrey. - Jeff Nagel / Black Press
TransLink board chair Marcella Szel and CEO Ian Jarvis outside the newly upgraded Scott Road SkyTrain station in Surrey.
— image credit: Jeff Nagel / Black Press

The first of seven SkyTrain stations getting a major upgrade now has a new elevator, but TransLink has no immediate plans to install public washrooms on its rapid transit lines.

Officials with the transportation authority unveiled the upgraded Scott Road SkyTrain station in Surrey Wednesday with provincial and federal representatives.

TransLink CEO Ian Jarvis said Scott Road and other Expo Line stations being upgraded, as well as all new stations on the Evergreen Line, are being built with plumbing to allow public washrooms to be added in the future – just not yet.

"It's a matter of operating costs and safety," Jarvis said.

"My personal view is in that in the future is something we're going to have to accommodate in terms of an aging population."

Coquitlam city council has previously called for publicly accessible washrooms to be built at all Evergreen Line stations.

Jarvis said TransLink is trying to partner with retailers in some of its stations to provide and maintain public access to their washrooms.

The $6.9 million in upgrades at Scott Road station include a redesigned bus loop, new shelter, pedestrian walkways and improved lighting, in addition to the new elevator.

Scott Road station is TransLink's first and largest park-and-ride, with 1,500 stalls.

Expo Line upgrades worth $164 million are underway or planned at Main Street-Science World, Surrey Central, Commercial-Broadway, New Westminster, Joyce-Collingwood and  Metrotown.

The work means nearly three years of construction and delays in order to lengthen the stations to take longer trains and ensure the line can handle an influx of new riders that will connect via the Evergreen Line.

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