12/02/2014 01:11 EST | Updated 01/31/2015 05:59 EST

Burrard Otter II begins ferrying passenger as TransLink replaces old vessel

The Burrard Otter II made its maiden voyage Monday morning as TransLink launched a new, more fuel-efficient SeaBus. 

TransLink says the new vessel, which will transport six million passengers across Burrard Inlet every year, is more environmentally-friendly than the original Otter it replaces. 

The Burrard Otter II costs $21 million to build with the federal government providing $19 million through the federal Gas Tax Fund and TransLink picking up the remaining $2 million.

The original Otter went into service on June 17, 1977, the year the SeaBus began operations. Since then, it's made 43,920 crossings, travelling the 3.24 kilometre distance between downtown Vancouver and the North Shore every 15 minutes during the day and every 30 minutes at night.

The Burrard Otter II will carry the same amount of passengers and won't operate more trips than the old vessel but will use less fuel and produce 20 per cent less carbon dioxide than previous vessels. 

In a statement, TransLink said commute and wait tiles will be reduced because the new vessel is more efficient.