As one who believes that supporting the local economy in every way possible is a patriotic duty, I am aghast at the letting of the contract for a new SeaBus to a foreign contractor.
Given that is seems now to be a done deal, my hope is that, unlike the design of the latest SeaBus, this new contract will insist that the windows, stern and bow, be of the same dimensions as those of the original SeaBus design. We take local pride in the view of water and mountains when making the crossing. Unfortunately, the designers did not take this into consideration when constructing the latest SeaBus, and as a result the spectacular view is severely restricted. Tourists now need to stand to take in the panoramic view and children often stand on the seats creating a rather dangerous situation.
Speaking of the seats, it would also seem that the plastic seats on the old SeaBus are considerably easier to maintain and, indeed, more sanitary than the newer cloth covered seats. Talk to the employees who attend to the SeaBus (which I am told the management at TransLink seldom does), and you will probably find as I have that they too would encourage a design that more closely resembles the SeaBus of old than the relatively new SeaBus now plying our waters.
I hope that the local tourist industry will speak up and lobby for good viewing from the newest SeaBus. After all, "a picture is worth a thousand words" not to mention the photos taken from the SeaBus being worth a $1,000 many times over when they are shown back home by tourists from around the world.
Don Robertson North Vancouver