It was a very Edmonton announcement shared with passengers on a Metro Line train last week.
As the train rolled into Health Sciences/Jubilee Station on Friday afternoon, the usual recorded voice announcing the name of the station was replaced by a live voice from the Operator’s cab.
“Hello, everyone,” said LRT Operator Todd Russell.
“This is Health Sciences/Jubilee LRT Station. A perfect time and place to give a huge thank you to all the health care workers who are on the front lines working to keep us all safe in COVID-19 pandemic.
“The City of Edmonton is proud to provide transit to our essential workers. This is Health Sciences/Jubilee Station. Stay safe, everyone.”
Craig McKeown, the City’s Director of LRT Operations and Maintenance, said the tribute was a symbolic gesture.
“Edmontonians are, for the most part, using transit only for essential trips or because they are essential workers, and that’s good,” said McKeown.
“We didn’t expect a lot of people would hear it, but we want the health care workers we help get to work, and whose workplaces we roll by, to know we don’t take them for granted. Today on World Health Day, and every day.”
The same announcement was made further north down the line as the train took the curve alongside the Royal Alexandra Hospital.
Give it a look and listen here:
LRT in Edmonton
McKeown said the LRT, whether carrying carloads of passengers in normal times, or leaner passenger numbers in strange times, quietly witnesses the city of Edmonton.
“In all weathers, in all conditions, the trains run through neighbourhoods, past schoolyards and playgrounds where kids are playing, past shopping centres and parks and factories, along university campuses and over the river,” said McKeown.
“We ride with Edmonton,” he said. “A vital part of Edmonton is its hospitals and health facilities and health care workers. Through just over 27 km of track, we connect hospitals, treatment centres, technical institutes and universities.”
Stay safe, everyone.