Metro post-secondary schools operate as normal despite transit strike
Metro Vancouver post-secondary students hoping the transit strike will delay their term papers and exams may find themselves disappointed.
The University of B.C., Simon Fraser University and other schools are operating as normal and encouraging students, faculty and staff to consider carpooling, car-sharing and cycling, after the union representing transit workers warned that job action could escalate by the end of this week.
“Classes are proceeding, and faculty and staff are expected to attend work,” said a UBC campus notification sent out Tuesday. “However, you are advised to plan for a potentially longer commute.”
“All activities and operations continue as scheduled at SFU, including classes, labs, tutorials and exams,” an SFU update said.
Data source: TransLink
UBC says the Vancouver campus will not close in the event of an all-out strike. The university has formed a working group to keep an eye on the situation and find ways to mitigate any strike impact. SFU has a contingency-planning team doing the same, and says it will provide an update if transit disruptions escalate.
Both universities are advising students to contact their professors or instructors if they are unable to get to campus due to strike activity.
They are recommending students, staff and faculty proactively consider arranging alternative transport.
Meantime, BCAA’s car-sharing firm Evo says more customers are signing up for the service, which operates in Vancouver, North Vancouver, Burnaby, New Westminster and the Vancouver International Airport, as well as SFU, UBC and BCIT.
Evo spokeswoman Sara Holland said in an email that sign-ups were up 36 per cent in the days following Nov. 1, when job action began, compared to the same period last year.
“It’s hard for us to know if that’s tied to the transit job action, but we have seen an increase,” Holland said.
Holland said Evo is watching the situation closely, increasing staffing at its call centre, and may set up “pop-up” home zones as well as move cars close to SkyTrain stations and along busy transit corridors.
The company also recently started offering free metered parking which allows members to park closer to transit stations.