Vancouver British Columbia - If you've ever ridden on SkyTrain and heard that metal-on-metal squeal as your train navigates a curve in the track, it's easy to understand why TransLink received 441 noise complaints in 2016, up from 428 the year before.
That number is for all three SkyTrain lines, and includes complaints from trains, platforms, and the areas or neighbourhoods adjacent to SkyTrain.
The complaints are related to everything from station upgrade construction and after-hours rail grinding to station announcements and wheel noise.
The B.C. Rapid Transit Company, an operating company of TransLink, will soon retain a consultant to conduct a noise assessment on all SkyTrain lines.
The assessment will gather noise data created by the rapid transit lines, review best practices, and identify possible mitigation measures.
TransLink has also started a years-long running rail and track pad replacement that should reduce train noise.
Below are the five stations that were the subjects of the most complaints.
Most are on the Expo Line, which began operation in late 1985 and is the oldest part of the SkyTrain network.
TransLink also received 69 complaints from unidentified locations.
MAIN STREET-SCIENCE WORLD (VANCOUVER): 61
This station serves residents and businesses in the surrounding area, the bus and rail terminal and Science World.
On a typical weekday, the station averages 38,591 entries and exits (Compass tap-ins and tap-outs).
Complaints for this station run the gamut, announcements, station noise, train noise, and track noise, although track noise accounts for the majority (52) of complaints.
According to TransLink, track grinding has taken place in the area and the number of complaints has decreased.
More grinding is planned near Quebec Street this spring, where many of the complaints originated.
There were 21 complaints about the station in 2015.
COMMERCIAL-BROADWAY (VANCOUVER): 36
Commercial-Broadway is the busiest station on the SkyTrain network, with 90,000 station trips per day on the Expo and Millennium lines and 60,000 bus trips per day using the 99 B-Line and two other frequent transit bus routes.
It serves a neighbourhood populated mostly by single-family homes and businesses, and is a transfer point between the Expo and Millennium lines.
Station upgrades began in 2015 and will continue until spring 2018, which could account for some of the noise complaints in the area, there were three about station noise.
However, track noise generated the most complaints.
Grinding work has been done in the area.
There were 28 complaints in 2015.
COLUMBIA STATION (NEW WESTMINSTER): 29
Columbia is a busy transfer point for people travelling between the Expo and Millennium lines.
It also serves a dense neighbourhood of apartment and condo dwellers, along with nearby Douglas College.
The station has an average of 8,500 entries and exits each weekday, but that doesn't account for people who simply switch trains.
This station had the most complaints about announcements (18), followed by station noise, track noise, and train noise.
As TransLink prepared to change SkyTrain operating patterns and open the Evergreen extension, station and train announcements increased.
Since the campaigns concluded, complaints have decreased.
There were 17 noise complaints in 2015.
LOUGHEED TOWN CENTRE (BURNABY): 27
This station was already serving high-rise residents, a shopping mall, and a busy bus hub, but the station got even more traffic when the Evergreen extension to the SkyTrain line opened in December.
Lougheed sees almost 31,000 entries and exits on an average weekday.
Track noise accounted for most of the complaints (14), followed closely by announcements (11).
Station noise and train noise garnered one complaint each.
Announcements at Lougheed also ramped up in anticipation of the train pattern changes and the opening of the Evergreen Line.
Lougheed had 18 noise complaints in 2015.
STADIUM-CHINATOWN (VANCOUVER): 26
This station is in a dense neighbourhood, and sees huge crowds when there are concerts and sporting events at nearby Rogers Arena and B.C. Place Stadium.
It's also the gateway to the largest Chinatown in Canada.
Stadium has about 30,000 entries and exits on an average weekday.
Track noise again tops the list of complaints (21), followed by train noise, station noise, and announcements.
The station had more complaints, 31 in 2015.