SQUAMISH(NEWS1130)- It’s hoped a unique part of local transportation history will soon be back on public display.
A SkyTrain prototype car is currently sitting out in the elements in an old Squamish rail yard, partially hidden by a fuel tank and shed.
The Bombardier-built Mark II looks like it could use a good wash and wax, but is otherwise said to be in fine condition – complete with its original wheel sets.
Don Evans at the West Coast Railway Heritage Park says it was used as a test vehicle back when the Millennium Line was being constructed.
“The reason that they built it was to test a longer car on the line. You may remember the original SkyTrain cars that debuted in 1985 and Expo 86 are shorter, boxy cars. The second generation they called Mark II are more streamlined and much longer cars,” he says.
Evans says the SkyTrain car was donated to the railway park by the BC Rapid Transit Company, the TransLink subsidiary that operates SkyTrain.
“We had interest in preserving it because we do preserve BC’s railway heritage, and of course, SkyTrain is part of that heritage now,” he says.
It’s hoped the Mark II will one day be on display in a second facility at the park called the Museum of Railway Technology, which will explore how railway technology progressed from the 1880s and the steam engines to today’s SkyTrains.
Day Out with Thomas continues this weekend at the West Coast Railway Heritage Park, and a train trip with the world’s most famous tank engine will take you right past the SkyTrain prototype.