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Latest Transit Toronto News

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Read these daily “on schedule” posts to find news and other information that affects your daily commute. You’ll learn about public meetings, special events and construction projects that affect transit services today.




In the news: Monday, May 2, 2016



Greater Toronto and Golden Horseshoe area media report on public transit issues today.

Greater Toronto Area
  • BlogTO post, “Traffic nightmare coming to St. Clair West this summer”, here.
  • BlogTO post, “It’s official! All TTC buses will get PRESTO this year”, here.
  • BlogTO post, “Get ready for a summer of gridlock in Toronto”, here.
  • Brampton Guardian article, “Brampton Transit joins other communities in proposed electric bus trial”, here.
  • Canadian Press article (from the Canadian Manufacturing website), “Bombardier CEO says $1.2B TTC streetcar debacle ‘disappointing’”, here.
  • CBC News report, “Ottawa earmarks $10.9M to upgrade 400 rail crossings this year”, here.
  • CBC News Thunder Bay report, “Bombardier union waits for fallout from TTC streetcar delivery changes”, here.
  • CBC News Toronto report, “Metrolinx weighing options for streamlining GTHA transit services”, here.
  • CBC News Toronto report, “Man wanted for violent assault on TTC streetcar on Queen St. W.”, here.
  • CBC News Toronto report, “Bombardier will only deliver 16 new streetcars to TTC this year”, here.
  • CBC News Toronto report, “Toronto lays out plans for ‘very ambitious’ summer construction season”, here.
  • Chronicle - Journal (Thunder Bay) article, “Streetcars to roll out faster from factory”, here.
  • Chronicle - Journal (Thunder Bay) article, “Gov’ts keep in touch: Wynne”, here.
  • CityNews Toronto report, “TTC streetcar delays could mean more buses on streetcar routes”, here.
  • CP24 report, “Presto card readers to begin appearing on some TTC buses”, here.
  • CP24 report, “Bombarider to futher reduce streetcar deliveries to Toronto in 2016”, here.
  • CTV News Toronto report, “Bombardier to delay, reduce tTC streetcar deliveries for 2016”, here.
  • Daily Commercial News article, “$10 million in funds for urban transit research”, here.
  • Daily Commercial News article, “Station to station: demo key to future Crosstown hubs”, here.
  • Financial Post article, “Five things you should know before you start your work day on May 2”, here.
  • Financial Post article, “If the Toronto-Waterloo region is to stay competitive, it needs a better transportation link”, here.
  • Global News Toronto report, “Car with Alberta plates drives 600 metres into Toronto streetcar tunnel”, here.
  • Global News Toronto report, “Ontario to invest $10 million over 4 years for transit innovation”, here.
  • Global News Toronto report, “Man sought after making racist comments, spitting in woman’s face on Toronto subway”, here.
  • Globe and Mail article, “TTC streetcar contract issues being addressed, Bombardier CEO says”, here.
  • Globe and Mail article, “TTC chair says Bombardier aid would be a ‘slap in the face’ to Toronto”, here.
  • Globe and Mail article, “Bombardier delays to TTC streetcars could hold up Metrolinx light rail”, here.
  • Globe and Mail article, “Bombardier halves promised TTC streetcar delivery schedule in latest delay”, here.
  • Globe and Mail column, “City-building Asia-style makes Toronto look like a backwater”, here.
  • Globe and Mail article, “Toronto police looking for man who sucker-punched a blind subway passenger”, here.
  • InsideToronto.com article, “Questions remain on Greater Toronto fare integration between TTC and Metrolinx”, here.
  • InsideToronto.com article, “Bombardier promises to speed up delivery of Toronto streetcars, but TTC chair is skeptical”, here.
  • InsideToronto.com column, “THE CITY: Roots of messy Bombardier streetcar deal go back to 2009”, here.
  • InsideToronto.com article, “Toronto police looking for man in connection with threats to TTC streetcar passengers at Dundas and Spadina”, here.
  • InsideToronto.com article, “Toronto police looking for suspect after woman reports sexual assault on streetcar”, here.
  • Metro Toronto column, “Toronto downtown residents lacking a voice in city hall debates”, here.
  • Metro Toronto article, “The push to get more bike parking at TTC subway stations”, here.
  • Metro Toronto article, “Is Bunz Trading Zone a hotbed of TTC fare evasion?”, here.
  • Metro Toronto article, “Local video producer wants museum for TTC fleet”, here.
  • National Post article, “Bombardier bailout would be ‘slap in the face’ for Toronto because of streetcar delays: TTC chair”, here.
  • National Post article, “This vehicle somehow drove 600 metres down a streetcar tunnel in Toronto before its owner abandoned it”, here.
  • National Post commentary, “Apps promise to cut through gridlock, now if only Torontonians would learn how to drive”, here.
  • Newstalk 1010 report, “TTC vows to keep pressure on Bombardier over troubled streetcar deal”, here.
  • Newstalk 1010 report, “LISTEN: Anxiety growing that Bombardier delay could hold up Eglinton Crosstown”, here.
  • rabble.ca post, “Want to pay more for subway? Time to raise alarm over Metrolinx’s secretive fare scheme”, here.
  • Railway Age post, “Byford, Tory berate Bombardier on streetcar delays”, here.
  • South Bayview Bulldog post, “Now LRT cars overdue from lost-in-space Bombardier”, here. +TBNewswatch post, “‘Importance of the company’: Wynne urges patience for Bombardier”, here.
  • Toronto Star editorial, “Bombardier has failed Toronto transit riders”, here.
  • Toronto Star article, “Mayor John Tory ‘dismayed’ by ongoing TTC streetcar production delays”, here.
  • Toronto Star article, “A new era for Toronto transit fares: Metrolinx considers three options”, here.
  • Toronto Star article, “Metrolinx vs the TTC: Here’s how Toronto’s transit heavyweights compare”, here.
  • Toronto Star article, “Police looking for man who spat on woman on Toronto subway”, here.
  • Toronto Sun column, “The Way We Were: The history behind Toronto’s streetcars”, here.
  • Toronto Sun editorial, “Toronto streetcar deal a mega-mess”, here.
  • Toronto Sun article, “Third-party review urged for Bombardier’s TTC deal”, here.
  • Toronto Sun article, “Bombardier streetcar delivery deadline ‘unacceptable’”, here.
  • Toronto Sun article, “Streetcar operator slugged: cops”, here.
  • Toronto Sun article, “Vehicle abandoned 600 metres in streetcar tunnel”, here.
  • Toronto Sun article, “Off the rails doc rides into Toronto”, here.
Elsewhere in the Greater Golden Horseshoe



Extra "homebound" GO trains
after special events in May



This month, GO Transit is scheduling extra trains along the 01 Lakeshore West and 09 Lakeshore East lines to get you home more comfortably after major downtown events.

GO is operating extra homebound 01 Lakeshore West trains after these Toronto Blue Jays home games at the Rogers Centre:

GO will also operate an extra homebound 09 Lakeshore East train after the Blue Jays game Wednesday, May 18.

It’s also planning for an extra train to help disperse the crowds after the Beyoncé concert — also at the Rogers Centre — Wednesday, May 25.

GO schedules will not indicate these extra train trips, since their departure times depend on when the events end and passenger volumes. Be sure to check the departure board at Union Station and listen for announcements.




Industrial Parkway Aurora construction:
GO, YRT detours, May 2 to 16



Starting Monday, May 2, the Town of Aurora is closing:

  • Industrial Parkway South between Wellington Street East and Industry Street

during a project to rebuild underground roadway infrastructure.

GO Transit is detouring buses operating along this route, while the street is closed:

  • 65 Newmarket / Toronto.

York Region Transit is detouring buses operating along these routes, while the street is closed:

  • 31 Aurora North;
  • 32 Aurora South;
  • 33A Wellington.

Construction on Industrial Parkway South and the detours continue until May 16.




Subway closes early: Pape to St George,
11 p.m. April 30



Late_Open_Pape_to_St.jpg

The TTC is closing the 2 Bloor - Danforth subway line between Pape and St George stations at 11 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday, April 30 due to track work on the Prince Edward Viaduct. All Line 2 trains operate between Kennedy and Pape stations and between Kipling and St George station after 11 p.m. that day.

It’s replacing subway service with shuttle buses between the two stations. The shuttle buses start and end their trips in the bus terminals at Pape and St George Stations, then operate along Danforth Avenue, the Prince Edward Viaduct and Bloor Streets East and West. They drop off or pick up passengers at the intersections nearest to subway stations:

  • at Chester and Broadview Avenues, Castle Frank Road, Sherbourne, Yonge and Bay Streets.

All subway stations on the closed section of Line 2 remain open for you to buy tickets, tokens and passes or to connect with buses and streetcars.

If you need accessible transportation, Wheel-Trans buses also operate between Pape and St George stations. You can ask for the Wheel-Trans bus by speaking with a supervisor at these stations.

While this section of the subway is closed, TTC crews are replacing a track beam on the viaduct between Broadview and Castle Frank stations.

They normally complete this work Sunday mornings, requiring the subway to open late. The TTC is closing the subway early this time to avoid inconveniencing those participating in, and watching, the GoodLife Fitness Toronto Marathon Sunday morning.

Regular subway service resume 8 a.m. Sunday, May 1.


Shuttle-bus alternatives

One way that you can reduce the impact of the closure is by planning ahead, leaving earlier than usually and giving yourself more time to get to where you’re going.

Although shuttle buses replacing subway service will be frequent, they may also be crowded.

Regular TTC buses and streetcars provide less frequent, less direct, but, perhaps, less stressful alternatives. Consider boarding, buses or streetcars east or west of the closure to by-pass the crowds, if you’re traveling to and from downtown.

  • ride streetcars operating along the 504 King route at Dundas West station. Connect with the 1 Yonge - University line at St Andrew or King stations.
  • ride streetcars operating along the 506 Carlton route at Main Street Station. Connect with the 1 Yonge - University line at Queen’s Park or College stations.
  • ride buses operating along the 94 Wellesley route at Ossington Station. Connect with the 1 Yonge - University line at Wellesley Station.

The TTC previously opened this section of the subway late Sunday, April 17.

It will also close this part of the subway this year:

  • Sunday, May 15 (opens late);
  • Saturday, June 4;
  • Sunday, June 12;
  • Sunday, June 26 (opens late);
  • Sunday, July 24 (opens late);
  • Saturday, August 13 and Sunday, August 14;
  • Saturday, September 3, Sunday, September 4 and Labour Day, Monday, September 5;
  • Saturday, September 24 and Sunday, September 25;
  • Saturday, October 8, Sunday, October 9 and Thanksgiving, Monday, October 10; and
  • Saturday, November 5 and Sunday, November 6.



TTC grinding rails on Gerrard East,
April 29, 30, May 5



As part of its regular program of maintaining its streetcar tracks in a state of good repair, the TTC is grinding the rails in a number of sections of its streetcar network that have developed roughness.

The next sections for grinding are on Gerrard Street East:

  • Friday, April 29 - between Bowmore and Gainsborough Roads;
  • Saturday, April 30 - between Glenside Avenue and Leslie Street; and
  • Tuesday, May 5 - between River and Parliament Streets.

By grinding the rails and removing roughness, the TTC is reducing noise and vibration levels, extending the life of the rail and providing smoother streetcar service through these areas.

The slow moving rail-grinding unit starts operating from about 9 p.m. until about 5 a.m. Afterwards, a street sweeper will clean the track area each day.

The TTC is detouring streetcars operating along these routes, while contractors grind the rails:

  • 306 Carlton overnight; and
  • 506 Carlton.

Shuttle buses replace the cars.




Weekend events affect transit services,
April 30, May 1



Two major marathons — the Mississauga Marathon in the City Centre, Erin Mills, Erindale, Clarkson, Lorne Park and Port Credit communities of Mississauga and the Goodlife Fitness Toronto Marathon in central and downtown Toronto — block streets and disrupt transit services this weekend.

The annual Khalsa Day Procession winds its way through the Malton area of Mississauga and the Rexdale area of Toronto this Sunday, an event that annually attracts more than 40,000 participants and also results in extensive transit detours.

Meanwhile, smaller events in Oakville, downtown Toronto and Waterloo also affect transit services this weekend.




GO buses head to Brantford this September



Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca jumped on a GO Transit bus to travel to Brantford Transit’s downtown terminal this morning.

They brought long-awaited good news to Brantford, announcing that the bus they arrived on was only the first of many to soon serve the terminal. GO Transit will start serving a new bus route, linking the city with McMaster University and Aldershot GO Station, this September.

GO buses will pick up and drop off passengers every hour Mondays to Fridays during rush hours and every two hours at all other times of the week. GO will operate 26 buses daily Mondays to Fridays along the new route and 18 daily Saturdays, Sundays and holidays.

At McMaster, Brantford passengers can connect with other GO buses operating along the Highway 407 corridor to and from downtown Hamilton, Square One GO Bus Terminal and York University. They can also connect to Hamilton Street Railway buses to continue their trips to other parts of Hamilton. McMaster will also be the western terminal for the future Hamilton light rail transit line.

At Aldershot, passengers can link with frequent trains to and from Toronto along GO’s Lakeshore West line. The Hamilton Street Railway and Burlington Transit also serve GO’s terminal at the station.

According to local on-line media outlet, Brant News,

“Wynne noted Brantford’s population was 94,000 in the last census in 2011 and by 2020 is expected to reach 115,000.

“‘This growth shows how much talent, capital and culture Brantford is attracting, so now is the time to build on this growth so that this community continues to flourish,’ the premier said in announcing the new GO service.

“‘Your elected officials have made the case over and over that this kind of connectivity is necessary for Brantford to flourish,’ Wynne said.

“Brant MPP Dave Levac, who together with city officials has long lobbied Queen’s Park for GO service for Brantford, urged people to ‘get on GO.’

“‘If it’s not used, we have little likelihood of getting the train,’ [Brantford mayor Chris] Friel said.

Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca said the GO bus service to Brantford is estimated to cost $1.3 million a year to operate.

“‘We’re anticipating that we’ll grow the service over the next two years to carry about 1,000 (riders) over the course of a week. We expect that will be very sufficient, that will enable the service to be able to grow,’ said Bruce [McCuaig], president and CEO of Metrolinx.

“A GO bus like the kind Wynne arrived in for the announcement seats 57 people. If each bus were full each trip, they would carry 1,482 people daily or nearly 7,500 people a week.”




Peter Coulman (1956-2016)



PeterCoulman_2012SOCANAwards_CS.jpg

Image courtesy SOCAN.

I’m sorry to have to report that Peter Coulman, transit enthusiast, historian and frequent contributor to Transit Toronto, passed away on April 17 after a battle with cancer, three days shy of his sixtieth birthday.

I’ve known Peter for the better part of a decade, even though we never met in person. As I was working on the Transit Toronto site, particularly the bus route histories, I approached Peter to ask permission to use some of his work that had appeared on Alan Gryfe’s transit history website.

Not only did he grant me permission to reprint some of the information, he provided more information that he’d collected over time, including historical documents that had been purged from the Toronto Transit Commission in ages past. Over the next ten years, with the help of Jeffrey Kay and others, we did what I thought would have been impossible, and created a website documenting the history of every bus route to have been operated by the Toronto Transit Commission in its history (that we know of, anyway). Peter also helped in researching information on many other articles on this website, including the history of Toronto’s independent suburban bus networks.

Peter was passionate about transit history, even if he felt that the TTC lost some of its character when the tricolour rollsigns were phased out of its vehicles. He was always happy to talk on the subject, and we shared many great conversations by e-mail.

Transit history was not the only thing he was passionate about, either. He was a talented musician, composer and arranger, working for the CBC and the rest of the film and television industry from the early 1970s onward. His name can be found in the credits of numerous documentaries and television shows, and you may well have heard his work without realizing it. His work won him awards with the Society of Composers, Authors and Music Publishers of Canada (SOCAN), including sharing the SOCAN Domestic Animated Television Series Music Award for his contributions to The Busytown Mysteries and the SOCAN Children’s Music Award for his contributions to The Doodlebops. In 1998, he also won a Gemini Award for Best Original Music Score for a Dramatic Series.

I will miss the man who shared my interest in transit history, who helped me discover more of its breadth and depth, and who helped put together something of which I am immensely proud. I am lucky to have known him. My condolences go out to his friends and family.




TTC looking for part-time ambassadors



weilan ambassador.jpg

Ambassador Weilan Huang helps a passenger during a subway closure in February. (Weilan’s team, T2P Films, hosts the Virtual TTC Academy, where transit enthusiasts simulate Toronto subway operations.) Photo: TTC.

The TTC is using Great Connections, “one of Ontario’s most successful full cycle employment services agencies” to help it find individuals interested in working as front-line customer-service representatives or “ambassadors”.

Ambassadors direct and help passengers during subway closures, streetcar and bus diversions.

It’s currently recruiting for part-time weekend shifts, usually working from five to 11 hours each day, when necessary.

You can learn more about the position and how to apply here.

TTC ambassador.jpg

Photo: TTC.




MiWay raises fares, May 1



This Sunday, May 1, MiWay is raising some fares, while cash, student and child fares remain the same.

MiWay says that fares are increasing “to offset the cost of system enhancements and maintain the sharing of transit costs between riders and taxpayers.”

Cash fares remain at the 2015 rate of $3.50, while the student fare remains the same for students ages 13 to 19 years. The City of Mississauga has frozen the student rates at the 2009 level.

The cost to buy an adult ticket or to pay an adult fare with a PRESTO fare card jumps ten cents to $3. A monthly adult PRESTO pass goes up $5 to $130 a month.

Post-secondary students pay 20 cents more — $2.85 — to pay their fares with PRESTO. Seniors tickets or PRESTO fares increase by 10 cents to $2.

If you bought high-school student tickets before May 1, you can still use them as valid fare.

MiWay will no longer sell monthly paper passes after May 1.

You can buy new senior monthly PRESTO pass starting Tuesday, April 17 for May 2016 for $61.




Older Transit Toronto News Postings

Welcome to Transit Toronto

Welcome to Transit Toronto, a fan-run web site dedicated to public transit in the Greater Toronto Area. This is the main page of the web site, where the latest news items are listed. The content of the web site, including route histories, vehicle descriptions, et cetera, is grouped in various "divisions" which can be accessed by clicking on the relevant title in the menu bar near the top of this page.

Articles which don't fit the categories above can be found through these links below:

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