Submittted. The Route #66 Fraser Valley Express (#66 FVX) is ready to roll. The interregional connector that links BC Transit’s Chilliwack and Abbotsford systems to Langley and TransLink’s integrated transportation system begins on April 6, 2015. The first day of service on the 66 FVX is free to encourage new ridership.
Today, members of the Government of British Columbia, the Chair and members of the Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD), the Mayors of Chilliwack and Abbotsford and BC Transit’s Chief Operating Officer invited the media for an honourary ride to raise awareness about the Fraser Valley Express.
The creation of the route is based on the Central Fraser Valley’s long-term Mission-Abbotsford Transit Future Plan, Chilliwack’s Transit Future Plan and the Strategic Review of Transit in the Fraser Valley. The final service details came as result of extensive public consultation. More than 1,000 people participated in open houses, stakeholder workshops and online surveys over the past year to develop the Fraser Valley Express.
The limited-stop, express service is intended to quickly deliver passengers through the region with a total of six transit stops; three in Chilliwack, two in Abbotsford and one in Langley. The Route #66 FVX will see 17 round-trips Monday through Friday and four round-trips on Saturdays. The route covers 65 kilometres from start to finish.
Cash fares are $5 on the Fraser Valley Express. Adult monthly passes are $100, senior and student monthly passes are $85. A book of 10 tickets is $45. BC Bus Pass is accepted on the Fraser Valley Express. Children 8 and under ride for free.
Fares are not transferrable from local BC Transit systems in Chilliwack or Abbotsford. Fares are non-transferable between BC Transit and TransLink systems. U-PASS cards are not valid on the Fraser Valley Express.
There are three free park and ride locations to support the Fraser Valley Express. Chilliwack’s Lickman Park & Ride, and in Abbotsford both the McCallum Park & Ride and Highstreet Shopping Centre can accommodate vehicles.
The park and ride at TransLink’s Langley Carvolth Exchange is $2 a day or $40 per month.
“I am certain the Fraser Valley Express will be an instant hit with transit users,” said Abbotsford South MLA Darryl Plecas. “Residents will be able to get to and from their destination faster and with fewer stops, which may make the express bus a much more attractive option for many commuters.”
“Making Route 66 a reality offers abundant benefits to Fraser Valley residents,” said Chilliwack MLA John Martin. “Efficient and affordable access to businesses and services in neighbouring communities while protecting air quality and reducing highway congestion are just some of the reasons why Fraser Valley residents won’t want to miss this bus,” Martin explained.
The Fraser Valley Express will cost approximately $1.35 million dollars annually with Abbotsford contributing $411,897, Chilliwack at $233, 709 and BC Transit/Province at $704,813 in 2015/16.
FVRD Chair and Chilliwack Mayor Sharon Gaetz said, “The FVX is a great example of true collaboration in our region. We are so pleased that this service has become a reality for our residents and for students at UFV. It is an important link that will assist in our economic development and make the Fraser Valley an even more attractive place to invest.”
“Abbotsford is extremely pleased to welcome this new regional connector service” said Mayor Henry Braun of Abbotsford. “The communities south of the Fraser River are some of the fastest growing in the province and this route connecting our Cities will be a welcome service for our residents and an essential part of our regional transportation network.”
“We are pleased to support our partners in the Fraser Valley with the introduction of this much anticipated service,” said BC Transit Vice President of Operations and Chief Operating Officer Brian Anderson. “The Fraser Valley Express will help BC Transit connect passengers to work, school, friends, family and community resources within the Central Fraser Valley and to Greater Vancouver.”
For more information on routes and schedules please consult www.bctransit.com/central-fraser-valley or www.bctransit.com/chilliwack.