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TTC approves video monitors despite criticism


The TTC approved the controversial rollout of 139 video monitors in its stations yesterday at the end of a raucous meeting where outraged opponents decried the spread of advertising. One even suggested the screens would be smashed.

The monitors, now in a handful of stations, will replace the aging Metron screens.

Commissioners voted down a proposal from chairman Howard Moscoe that would have added another 70 monitors and generated another $1 million for the TTC because they were worried about the advertising.

In additions to ads, the screens will carry news, weather, sports, the time and announcements.

Toronto-based OneStop Communications will pay $14 million to install and operate the screens for the next seven years, guaranteeing the TTC $775,000 in ad revenue. The company is also promising the TTC 10 per cent of ad revenue — thought to be $3 million to $4 million — and that non-profit and charitable groups will have access to ad space on the screens. The TTC will own the screens at the end of the contract.

David Sheen, a member of the public who voiced his opposition, warned some are so opposed to the advertising “people will just smash them, that’s it.”