Children and families won’t be hopping on the Stanley Park Railway this Easter weekend.
The Vancouver Park Board has announced that the annual Stanley Park Easter Train event has been “put on pause this year due to required repairs following a recent assessment.”
Miniature train service has been derailed since last fall amid what the park board called “mechanical issues affecting the antique engines and passenger cars.”
Those issues prompted the board to cancel two other popular seasonal events, the Stanley Park Ghost Grain and the train component of December’s Stanley Park Bright Nights.
The Firefighters’ Burn Fund said the loss of the train helped to contribute to a 50-per cent drop in donations to the annual winter fundraiser.
In November, Technical Safety BC outlined a number of issues with the miniature train line, including corrosion and damage to both the track and railcars, overgrown vegetation disrupting sight lines and decaying infrastructure.
Technical Safety BC has mandated an independent engineer assess the equipment.
In an email, a park board spokesperson said repairs on the train would not begin until the board reviews that assessment.
It said the railway’s four locomotives and the majority of its 13 passenger carriages “have no significant issues” but all still need repairs to pass future inspections.
“A final report will be delivered shortly to the Vancouver Board of Parks and Recreation, providing an overview of specialized diagnostic non-destructive testing (NDT) results regarding structural deficiencies to the Stanley Park Train and formal scope of repairs needed,” the board said.
“Overall, initial results were positive and a comprehensive timeline for repairs and regular train operations will be shared with the public as soon as possible.”
In a media release, the park board said it has proposed a recommissioning plan to get the train back on track by late spring or early summer and that it would share a comprehensive timeline for repairs as soon as possible.
While the train remains out of service, the park board is encouraging families to take part in one of numerous other Easter activities, including Easter egg hunts being organized at multiple community centres around the city.