Service Changes Effective October 7, 2012

On Sunday, October 7, the TTC will improve service on many routes.  This is a continuation of the upgrades across the system made possible by Council’s allowing the TTC to spend unexpectedly high fare revenue on more service.

2012.10.07 Service Changes

This round of improvements begs an intriguing question.  These are improvements not driven by some Miller era ideology about improving transit service in the hope that more people will ride, but by the fact that ridership growth has pushed demand on many routes beyond the reduced service standards enacted by the Ford/Stintz administration.

A fundamental issue about cities with robust transit demand is that eventually you have to run more service.  We may make nips and tucks around the edges, but those pesky passengers just keep showing up at stops.

Will Council recognize this fact in the 2013 budget and allow the transit subsidy to grow, or will they cave in to the Ford ideology that no increase is the only acceptable policy?

Looking at the projected changes in average loads for many routes, it won’t take much more riding to bring them above the threshold for another service improvement.  This is not a one-time effect, and the TTC needs to produce a plan showing how it will deal with the growing demand on all of its network.

With the October schedules, the services on Queen will be back on their normal route except for the 502 Downtowner which will be extended from McCaul to Bathurst until mid-November pending completion of water main and track construction on McCaul.  The Spadina streetcar returns between Bloor and King in November, and to Queen’s Quay just before Christmas.

Service Changes Effective September 2, 2012 (Updated)

September 2012 will bring the restoration of “winter” service levels on routes across the system as well as many service improvements.  Most of these occur in the off-peak period thanks to constraints on the size of the fleet and of the operator workforce.

The bus fleet is constrained in the peak period by the many construction projects now underway.  These require either bus/streetcar substitutions, or additional vehicles on bus routes to deal with congestion.  Some of these will end as the fall progresses.

Updated August 26, 2012:

A fare policy experiment will begin on the 38 Highland Creek bus on September 1 and will run through until April 27, 2013.  Riders with GO fare media will be allowed to ride free between Rouge Hill GO Station and University of Toronto Scarborough Campus.

Summer Services

Seasonal services will end after Labour Day on the following routes:

  • 101 Downsview Park weekday service
  • 29 Dufferin to Princes Gates (the limited service that would remain will not operate to the CNE due to a construction diversion)
  • 30 Lambton service to High Park
  • 72B Pape service to Cherry Beach weekday daytimes and weekend evenings
  • 86 Scarborough to the Zoo (extended hours weekday evenings, weekend route extension)
  • 85 Sheppard East to the Zoo (extended hours weekends)

Rapid Transit Changes

The Yonge-University-Spadina subway will see improved midday service, and the transition between the AM peak and midday will be smoothed.

Running times on the Scarborough RT will be extended and headways will be widened.  This change is intended “to better reflect actual operation”.  How it will affect the SRT’s ability to actually operate all of its scheduled service (the target now is to operate at least 80% of planned trips) is a matter for conjecture.

Waterfront Changes

Service on 511 Bathurst will be cut from the summer levels, but will remain above the normal winter schedules to compensate for the construction on Queen’s Quay and on Spadina.

Service on the 509 Harbourfront bus will be cut slightly from summer levels.  However, all 509 buses will now operate to Exhibition and this will recover the time now wasted by many of them laying over in Spadina Loop.  Service west of Spadina will be greatly improved.

The 6 Bay bus will be restructured to provide somewhat improved service to the eastern waterfront and the new George Brown College campus.  In August, the Dundas branch of the route was extended south to Queen’s Quay.  Beginning in September, a new 6C Union to Queen’s Quay service will be added.

The combined service south of Front will see considerable improvement:

  • AM peak from 6’30” to 2’27”
  • Weekday midday from 12’00” to 6’40”
  • PM peak from 10’20” to 3’20”
  • Weekend afternoons from 15’00” to 7’30”

The 75 Sherbourne bus will also see improved service for the George Brown campus:

  • AM peak from 9’00” to 7’30”
  • Weekday midday from 12’00” to 9’00”
  • PM Peak from 10’00” to 8’30”
  • Saturday afternoon from 20’00” to 11’00”

Construction Route Changes

Dufferin street trackage will be rebuilt north from Dufferin Loop to Queen (skipping over the intersection at King) beginning in September.  The 29D Princes Gates service will divert to operate southbound via the “old” Dufferin routing of Peel and Gladstone to Queen, then east to Shaw, south to King, west to Mowat, south to Liberty, east to Fraser and north to King.  The northbound buses will follow the route via Shaw and Gladstone back to the regular route.

The temporary service arrangements for the routes operating on Queen Street will remain in effect with streetcars diverting between Broadview and Coxwell via Gerrard.

2012.09.02 Service Changes