CUPE 7000 and B.C. Rapid Transit Company continue SkyTrain labour negotiations into the evening

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      Update: The union and management reached a tentative agreement this morning in the final hour before a planned walkout. More in this story.

      The 150,000 people who ride SkyTrain on a daily basis still don't know if the Expo and Millennium lines will be operating tomorrow.

      CUPE 7000 workers have threatened to walk off the job for three days, beginning on Tuesday (December 10) at 5 a.m. if they don't reach an agreement with B.C. Rapid Transit Company.

      It's a wholly owned subsidiary of TransLink.

      "This will be extremely disruptive," TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond said at a news conference today. "And to be very clear, there is no way to replace a system that reliably moves 150,000 people per day each weekday on the Expo and Millennium Line."

      Service on the Canada Line and West Coast Express would not be affected. Coast Mountain Bus Company (including SeaBus), West Vancouver Blue Bus, and HandyDart will also be operating.

      According to Desmond, there will be 15,000 more vehicles on the roads on Tuesday if the Expo and Millennium lines aren't operating.

      He also claimed that ridership on the transit system has declined since Unifor imposed an overtime ban when it was seeking an agreement last month.

      "So we've seen some softening of our ridership even last week—even after the bus strike was averted," Desmond said. "We've seen less ridership than we would expect and that means less farebox revenue. So it is important to try to get settled."

      If there is job action on Tuesday, the TransLink CEO recommended that transit users use park 'n rides, car pool, travel outside of rush hour, walk, or cycle, if feasible.