After many, many years, the service improvements promised by the Ridership Growth Strategy are here. Starting November 23, we will see the rollout of more service on many, many routes to implement the following new service standards:
- Peak bus loading standards are reduced by about 10% (a route will be considered to be “full” with a lower average load). This triggers service improvements on many routes, but loading generally has been rising and there is already a backlog of changes waiting to begin. This affects 62 routes with a total of 89 more am and 65 pm peak buses.
- Off peak bus standards, as well as streetcar and rapid transit standards for all periods, are unchanged at, effectively, a seated load. Note that this is an average over an hour and local variations will occur.
- Routes with services less frequent than 30 minutes will be improved to the new 30-minute maximum headway. This affects 26 routes.
- All routes will operate seven days a week during all periods until at least 1:00 am. This affects about 86 routes.
Also, Mount Dennis Garage will open roughly a year after it was actually finished.
One caveat, of course, is the already known problems with hybrid bus availability. The degree to which the TTC can get and keep its fleet of these vehicles on the road will affect the full rollout of the new peak period services.
Meanwhile, I cannot help noticing the breadth of the changes across the system with 20% better service found fairly commonly on some routes and periods just to get average loading within the standards. This shows a combination of deferred improvements and of the unusual rate of riding growth on some routes.
Updates October 25:
A summary of the changes, boiled down from the 80-odd page original, is now available.
A table of the revised loading standards is now available.
Updates November 6:
A list of division assignments is now available.