Where’s My Streetcar?

Tess Kalinowski, writing in today’s Star, tells us of the job that TTC Route Supervisors have in managing service.  We learn of great hopes for vehicle location technology so that supervisors will actually know where cars might be up and down their lines, but the telling comment comes here:

Frequent mechanical problems mean supervisors have to scramble to find another car. These days, the 30-year-old Rockets are failing so fast the TTC expects to be running buses on some routes by the end of the year to keep service levels up.

“There are days when you’re constantly scrambling to find a piece of equipment,” says [route supervisor Doug] Smith.

This is the reality of TTC operations at a time when the St. Clair line is partly shut down for reconstruction.  A report on fleet plans is due later in 2009 for all modes including streetcars.

Toronto needs to know how its service will be provided, and the streetcar system needs an infusion of confidence.  The last thing we need is the feeling that “streetcars mean bad service” just as we are trying to expand LRT into the Transit City network.