Updated February 2, 2011 at 8:10 am:
The staff report regarding proposed service cuts is now online. The “Justification” section is worth repeating here:
The Commission should approve the service eliminations/re-allocations, as described in this report and as detailed in Appendix 1, because ridership is continuing to increase on the TTC and is projected to reach an all-time record-high of 487-million this year, an increase of 10-million customers over 2010. There is a need to add service to accommodate these additional customers, but sufficient funding is not available, so some of this funding must be found by re-allocating resources away from more lightly-used services to other services where better use can be made of the resources.
The process which has been followed in order to identify services for elimination/ re-allocation has been objective, consistent, and data-driven – in order to ensure fair and consistent treatment of all parts of Toronto – and reflects the concerns and input expressed by the public at the Open Houses held on this matter and in correspondence provided to the TTC.
The revised recommendations achieve the best possible balance between saving costs for the purpose of re-allocation to routes in greater need of resources, and retaining services which the public strongly advocated. [Emphasis added]
In other words, these cutbacks are implemented in response to a funding situation. Whether we call this a “reallocation” or a “budget cut”, the effect is the same. There is still no sign that the Commission will address the general issue of “reallocation” as a way to handle riding growth on the busiest parts of the system.
As for the remark about the “objective, consistent and data-driven” process, I must point that detailed data published on this site revealed the TTC had done a poor job of following its own criteria.
[Original post from January 31 below]