What’s This Photo Doing on Metrolinx’ Website? (Updated)

Updated January 29, 2013 at 1:45pm:  Metrolinx’ response has been added at the end of this article.

A discussion has been running in the comment thread on another article about one of the photos used on the Metrolinx site.  The first of four photos in a rotating display is shown below.


This is clearly an Intermediate Capacity Transit System line (ICTS), and it has been identified by readers as part of the Kuala Lumpur system.

A strange choice considering that Metrolinx does not plan to build any ICTS in Toronto, or so they claim.  At one point, it was clear that Metrolinx had no interest in LRT, and my advocacy of it at an early public speech by the former Chair Rob MacIsacc was not well-received.  Simply “extending” the SRT to the airport was the preferred technology choice until the City of Toronto put its foot down with the Transit City LRT plan.

Why does Metrolinx use an ICTS photo to illustrate their home page when this is not supposed to be part of their plans?  (The other three photos showcase GO, Presto and the ARL.)

I asked about this last week and am still awaiting an answer.  Meanwhile the photo remains up on the site.

Metrolinx responds:

The image in question is stock photography from a website known as Shutterstock. While the image may resemble the Skytrain, it has been chosen through a creative selection process.

It should be noted that the image was also selected according to Metrolinx brand standards. Photography plays an important role in Metrolinx print and communication materials, which includes our website. Our images represent speed and action, giving the viewer a powerful sense of perpetual motion and transformation.

When shooting or selecting photography, we always try to add a touch of green, or at least, select and/or use colours that will complement the primary colour palette and add to the unique flavour of Metrolinx.

In particular, the image in question was chosen for its interesting perspective on city life, and has been blurred for use on the Metrolinx website as an artistic representation of rapid transit.

We plan on changing the images on our website soon to in order to keep it fresh, and avoid the appearance of a static site.

Well, that’s the longest “Ooops” I have read in some time.  The shot does not “resemble” Skytrain, it is the same technology in use in another city, Kuala Lumpur.