My T-Comm site gets its 15 minutes of fame

Earlier today, a few local blogs mentioned my T-Comm website (a live map of all the buses in Metro Vancouver): This real-time Vancouver bus tracking map is pretty obsession-worthy (Vancouver Is Awesome) Vancouver bus tracking map allows you to track movement in real time (Vancouver Courier) This map will tell you where every public transit bus in Metro Vancouver is (Urbanized Vancouver/Daily Hive) The site wasn’t really designed for day-to-day navigation, but more for transit enthusiasts who are looking to find specific buses (e.g., the double decker test buses we have on the streets right now, 1008 and 1009).  In Continue Reading

Fun ways to get from Richmond to Downtown Vancouver on transit

I commute from Richmond to Downtown Vancouver every day for work.  Normally I take the Canada Line, which is a quick and reliable way to and from work.  As much as I like trains, some days it just seems boring; after all, the majority of the ride is underground. So I tasked myself to find five different ways to get to work (potentially one for each day of the week), if I wanted to take a break from the Canada Line.  Let’s assume we’re commuting from Richmond Centre to Waterfront.  Obviously we’re not optimizing for travel time. Option 1: 403, Continue Reading

The end is near for Whistler’s hydrogen fuel cell buses

In one week, Whistler’s fleet of hydrogen fuel cell buses will be parked as their five-year pilot project ends. Nova Bus diesel buses will be replacing them as of April 1st, 2014. The fleet of twenty buses is currently the largest fleet of hydrogen fuel cell buses operating in the world. The fuelling station for the fleet is also the world’s largest hydrogen filling station. The hydrogen fuel cell buses were brought to Whistler by a five-year demonstration project sponsored by the federal, provincial and municipal governments, and the Canadian Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Association. The buses arrived in late Continue Reading

Transit highlights from my Toronto trip

While I was in Toronto these past few days, I got a chance to see two of Toronto Transit Commission’s (TTC) newest transit vehicles. For those unfamiliar with public transportation in the Greater Toronto Area, a number of transit authorities provide local transit service within different regions in the GTA.  The TTC provides transportation services within the Toronto proper, including the subways, streetcars and bus service.  I suppose a more detailed introduction to the different public transportation services would be ideal in a separate post. The articulated buses The first were the Nova Bus LFS articulated buses. These buses, introduced Continue Reading

Side Project 1: Real Time Bus Map in Vancouver

Since TransLink released their new mobile Next Bus site with real-time GPS updates of bus locations, I’ve been trying to find ways to get the data and rehash it into something that  Metro Vancouver transit enthusiasts (more specifically, enthusiasts who chase buses and monitor the transit system’s operation) will find useful. There were two main shortcomings of TransLink’s site from the viewpoint of a transit enthusiast: Can’t search for a specific bus.  Often times transit enthusiasts “chase” a particular bus, usually a new bus, a fresh bus after a midlife refurbishment, or a bus with a new advertisement wrap. Can’t Continue Reading