We live in Victoria, but spend a lot of time in Vancouver. For the first couple of months of this year, when teaching a course at UBC, we were over every week. I actually don’t mind the ferry ride itself. I enjoy the opportunity to get an hour of work done without the distraction of the internet.
It’s the bus trips between Victoria and Sidney and Tsawassen and Vancouver that suck hard. They’re long, tedious and you can’t really work. Plus, I’m inevitably sitting near some cell-phone-talking douchebag who wants the whole bus to know about their new Ugg boots, or whatever.
I heard about a possible new passenger ferry service between downtown Vancouver and Victoria (here’s a short piece from Global, after the ad, thanks to 8chocolate for the link). Nautisol is still in the market research stage, and we’ll probably be living elsewhere if and when they put boats in the water, but I was still intrigued. From their website:
- 90 minute travel between city centers Victoria-Vancouver
- Economy or Business Class
- E-Ticketing with multi-language function
- Kiosk ticket vending with multi-language function
- Telephone ticketing
- Terminal locations integrated with existing public and private transportation systems
- Full service terminals to include Wi-Fi, ATM and Food Kiosks
- Bicycle racks
- Shuttle Bus Services
I see somebody caught the capitalization plague.
They’re running a rather peculiar customer survey, full of push questions (“Liquid Natural Gas is the fuel used to power this ferry service. LNG is one of the safest and cleanest fuels available.”), but I’m intrigued. Two attempts at providing alternative services have failed in the past. There’s the infamous PacificCats, rusting away in North Vancouver shipyards. Before that there was the Royal Sealink Express, which I remember taking a few times as a student in the early nineties. It’s a pity that didn’t work out–it was very convenient. The last time I was in the SeaBus terminal at Waterfront station, I’m pretty sure I saw a fading Sealink brand on an office door.
I’d imagine that, at some point, there will be enough people wanting to shuttle more efficiently between Vancouver and Victoria to make such a service viable. Has that day come?