TTC Riding Up, But Not Quite Enough

TTC’s Operating Budget results for the first eight months of 2009 were published in the Chief General Manager’s Report on the Commission Agenda for the meeting of October 29.

Although riding is up 1.9% over 2008, the budgetted expectation was 2.5% and, therefore, the TTC faces a shortfall in farebox revenue.  The drop came mainly in July and August which were affected by the civic workers’ strike and other employment losses.  Although September is beyond the scope of the report, preliminary data shows that ridership is climbing back up to the projected level, and full-year ridership is now projected at 471-million (compared to the budget figure of 473-million).

The average fare is expected to come in at $1.78, two cents below the budgetted value of $1.80, because Metropass and other concession fare use is above budget.  The combined effect of the lower average fare and ridership is $15.7-million less farebox revenue for 2009 that expected.  To put this in perspective, that is on a base of about $900-million in budgetted fares, or less than 2%.

Expenses for 2009 are expected to be almost on target due to a mix of overruns and savings that are roughly in balance.  These arise mainly from unexpected factors such as the severe winter and lower than projected utility costs.

Overall, the TTC projects a deficit $22-million higher than its original budget. 

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