Third platform at SkyTrain's Stadium-Chinatown Station to open for shuttle train

May 21 2019, 10:06 pm

For the first time in many years, the third standalone side platform at SkyTrain’s Stadium-Chinatown Station will be reopened and used by passengers, albeit temporarily.

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TransLink says it is opening up the platform for passenger service on most nights from May 21 to approximately the end of June for trains running in the inbound direction towards Waterfront Station.

Dan Mountain, a spokesperson for TransLink, told Daily Hive this platform is being used for late night service during this period to accommodate rail pad and running rail maintenance work between Stadium-Chinatown Station and Main Street-Science World Station.

Stadium-Chinatown Station SkyTrain

Third side platform of SkyTrain’s Stadium-Chinatown Station. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

Due to the work, trains will be unable to operate on the inbound track between Commercial-Broadway Station and Burrard Station, and it necessitates the use of multiple shuttle trains on the outbound track between Commercial-Broadway Station and Waterfront Station.

Late night shuttle train service and the usage of Stadium-Chinatown Stadium’s third platform will take place from 11 pm to the end of service from Monday to Thursday and from 10 pm to end of service on Sundays.

Regular service will be maintained for the busier late night periods on Fridays and Saturdays.

“As a change to our more common single-tracking operations, we will be using the side platform at Stadium-Chinatown Station for westbound trains,” he said.

“The Stadium-Chinatown side platform is not equipped with an elevator, so customers travelling westbound who have accessibility needs should proceed to Granville Station and then catch an eastbound train to Stadium-Chinatown.”

There are two access points to this third platform; doors leading to a stairway on the north end — located next to the vacant retail space formerly occupied by Waves Coffee House — and another entrance on the south end that leads directly to Expo Boulevard, outside the fare gate concourse area.

Stadium-Chinatown Station SkyTrain

Entrance to the north stairway into the third platform of SkyTrain’s Stadium-Chinatown Station. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

Stadium-Chinatown Station SkyTrain

North stairway into the third platform of SkyTrain’s Stadium-Chinatown Station. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

This platform has seen extremely little usage since the Expo ’86 World’s Fair when it was operated to provide a shuttle train service between the main World’s Fair site at False Creek and the Canada Pavilion, now known as Canada Place.

“The SkyTrain link enabled Canada Place to remain part of the Expo grounds, even though Canada Place wasn’t actually at the Expo site,” explained TransLink’s Buzzer Blog in 2010.

“When you reached Waterfront Station during Expo, its platform was actually divided in half with fencing, separating passengers going to Cordova Street from fairgoers heading to Canada Place. With the third track, regular service could continue on the main tracks while this special shuttle service operated during Expo.”

TransLink has refrained from using platform for regular service as it would actually complicate train operations more than it streamlines them.

Normally, the platform is only used for training purposes, train storage, and special events.

As well, an additional station entrance with a corridor that burrows underneath Beatty Street, through the current Lost Properties Office, was closed shortly after the World’s Fair.

The northernmost end of this corridor was filled in with sand, and its street entrance at the northwest corner of the intersection of Beatty Street and Dunsmuir Street was sealed with concrete. Remnants of the entrance ramp structure at the intersection are still visible today.

Stadium-Chinatown Station SkyTrain

Sealed Stadium-Chinatown Station entrance at the northwest corner of Dunsmuir Street and Beatty Street. (Kenneth Chan / Daily Hive)

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