Ferry refit could cause commuter headaches

Russ Francis

(The Bowen Island Undercurrent, September 17th 1993, p1: with permission)

Bowen commuters should leave their cars at home for the next three weeks, as the Queen of Capilano takes a three week absence for its annual refit starting Monday.

From September 20 to October 12, the 70-car Mayne Queen will replace the 85-car Capilano and, based on previous years, drivers can expect full ferries at peak times.

"What we're asking people to do is car pool, if they're able to," said BC Ferries communication manager Ed McKenzie.

McKenzie said he expects the first five sailings from Bowen on Monday morning to be full until the Capilano returns.

Another BC Ferries official who did not want his name used had another suggestion: "Everybody must drive a Honda Civic next week.

Meanwhile, Bowen foot passengers can expect less risk from cars at Horseshoe Bay, once renovations now under way are finished.

The Snug Cove ferry will then dock at berth one -- on the Sewell's marina side -- except in extreme weather conditions.

As a result, passengers will walk on and off the ferry without having to cross vehicle lanes.

The renovations will also physically separate passengers on other runs from cars.

The $950,000 upgrading was recommended earlier this year by the company's scheduling and safety task force.

The project includes an overhead walkway between the upper level Langdale holding deck to the administration building, new waiting area and foot passenger ramps at the upper level ramp, and a new tweo-level control tower.

The work is due to be completed by November 30.

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