Following in the footsteps—or tracks more precisely—of transit commissions in major cities such as London, New York, and Toronto, TransLink has released its own merchandise line ahead of the holidays.
Available in a new online store starting today (November 21) and at a pop-up shop at Gilmore station from December 6 to 8 (from 3 to 7 p.m.), the transit-themed collection boasts more than 30 products, including T-shirts, water bottles, pillows, and scale models of the SkyTrain and SeaBus. A quick browse through the website reveals items like onesies, beach towels, and even iPhone cases adorned with the regional authority’s wayfinding icons, maps, and retro graphics.
They range from $3.95 for a set of pencils to $38.50 for posters to $90 for a white shower curtain emblazoned with TransLink’s SkyTrain routes. Surprisingly, there are no umbrellas.
“We want to create some pride in Metro Vancouver and our transit system,” Dawne Indra, TransLink’s corporate marketing specialist, told the Straight by phone. She adds that the commission has been hearing a demand for TransLink-branded merchandise from users for some time.
The TransLink line is designed in-house and produced by a Toronto-based manufacturer. According to the agency, the collection will not immediately serve as a revenue stream due to the small scale of the launch. However, if interest in the items grows over time and TransLink begins to turn a profit, the money will be reinvested in regional operations.
“The products we’re coming out with are ones that we’ve been interested in and people have already requested,” stated Indra. “So we’ll see what ones sell well, what people want more of.”
Despite the mixed reactions that some transit-related goods have seen—the TTC’s revamped gift shop inspired a range of parody merchandise last year—Indra is confident that the concept will do well. “It’s been successful in other cities…so I don’t really see this going away,” she said.