TTC Service Changes Effective May 11, 2014 (Update 4)

The May 2014 schedules will bring major changes across the system mainly in response to construction projects.  Extra running time will be provided on many routes in response to construction delays.  At some times, the current headway will be maintained, while at others the headway will be stretched.  In two cases (46 Martin Grove and 94 Wellesley), no buses are available to improve PM peak service to compensate for extra running time.

The budget for construction-related service is considerably less than what will actually be required.  Although the total hours operated will be greater than the budget for May, “regular” service will be below budget while “construction” more than compensates.  Some changes in the fleet and in service levels have been deferred until later in 2014.


This table is broken into four sections listing miscellaneous minor changes, construction-related changes, one route restructuring and seasonal changes.

Updated May 17, 2014:

Effective Tuesday, May 20, the diversions for the Queen & Victoria track project will be changed.

  • All westbound 501 Queen cars will divert via Church-King-York.
  • 501/502/503 shuttle bus services will terminate at Church Street.

The details are on the TTC service advisory page (scroll down to see the portion effective May 20).

Updated May 15, 2014:

The 501 Queen diversion has been revised so that two thirds of the westbound cars travel via Church-King-York to Queen with the remainder operating via Church-King-Spadina.

Updated May 9, 2014:

Recently I asked Waterfront Toronto about the status of work on the Queen/King bridge at the Don River. Here is their reply:

  • Bridge repair work is underway by Infrastructure Ontario (IO). The bridge footings were impacted by excavation work being done for the installation of the back flow preventer, which was part of the work being undertaken for the flood protection landform.
  • Monitoring of the bridge by IO is on-going. They are currently performing bridge movement monitoring 3 times daily and will continue to do so until work is completed. IO will be installing micro pilings at the footings to secure the bridge, but this work cannot begin until the back flow preventer is installed. Temporary bracing is underway. Once that work has been completed IO will install micro pilings, then install the permanent backflow preventer, after which bridge repairs will begin.
  • Because of the delays, IO has had to request extension of the closure of the bridge. The bridge is to remain closed until at least August/September 2014.
  • With respect to the closure and transit, IO has been working with the City and the TTC on staging. Restoring transit is contingent on the completion of the work, so we assume it will be early fall, at the earliest.

Updated May 5, 2014 at 11:00 pm:

Contrary to information in the memo announcing the changes for May 11, the westbound Queen 501 diversion around the Victoria/Queen track construction will be via Church-King-Spadina (the reverse of the eastbound diversion), not via Church-Richmond-York which was a bad choice thanks to watermain construction on Richmond.

No, I don’t know why they are not using the recently rebuilt northbound track on York to get cars back to Queen sooner (westbound at least) or to avoid traffic congestion westbound to Spadina. I suspect for consistency of diversions and to maintain a common transfer point to the subway at Yonge and University.

Introduction of Articulated Buses on 29 Dufferin Saturday Service

Effective with the May schedules, the Saturday service on Dufferin will be scheduled based on the larger vehicles.  The replacement factor increases the headway between buses by no more than 20% providing, effectively, an increase in capacity provided that service is reasonably spaced, always a challenge on Dufferin.

Construction Projects

The Metrolinx work on the Eglinton Crosstown line has now begun east of Yonge Street affecting many routes that use this portion of the corridor.  Service is adjusted accordingly on:

  • 34 Eglinton East
  • 100 Flemingdon Park
  • 54 Lawrence East
  • 56 Leaside
  • 51 Leslie

Interlining on the Leaside/Avenue Road and Leslie/Avenue Road North routes is discontinued during some periods.

City road construction will affect many routes:

  • 7 Bathurst (Bloor to Eglinton)
  • 36 Finch West (Kipling to Highway 27)
  • 45 Kipling and 46 Martin Grove (Kipling from Bloor to Dixon Road)
  • 54 Lawrence East (Markham Road to Kingston Road)
  • 94 Wellesley (Wellesley at Harbord)
  • 133 Neilson (Neilson Road)

Although the split operation of 501 Queen at Humber Loop will end on May 10, TTC construction will affect services using Queen Street:

  • 501 Queen will divert both ways via Broadview, Gerrard and Coxwell during construction of the new intersection at Leslie Street for access to Leslie Barns.  This work will begin with excavation for the sewer replacement now in progress on Leslie, followed by installation of the new intersection special work.
  • 502 Downtowner and 503 Kingston Road services will be converted to bus operation diverting around the construction via Greenwood, Dundas and Jones. 501 Queen buses will operate from Woodbine Loop. The downtown loop will be via Simcoe, Richmond and Duncan Streets.
  • Night service will be provided by 301 Queen streetcars using the same diversion as the day service, and 301 buses will operate from Neville Loop to University.
  • Changes in the ALRV requirements for the Queen car will cause some 504 King trippers to be operated with CLRVs instead of ALRVs.
  • Extra service will be operated on north-south routes in the construction area: 31 Greenwood, 83 Jones and 72 Pape, and there will be a slight increase on the 143 Downtown Beach Express.
  • Cars on 506 Carlton, 505 Dundas, 504 King and 510 Spadina will operate their trips to/from Russell Carhouse via Gerrard and Coxwell.

During the reconstruction of the Queen & Victoria intersection, bus services will divert via Church, Richmond, and Simcoe to Adelaide returning east via Adelaide and Jarvis to Queen.  Streetcars will divert westbound via Church, Richmond and York, while eastbound cars will run via Spadina, King and Church.  This diversion is expected to last about three weeks. Richmond Street is already constrained by water main construction in the south lane west from Church.

47 thoughts on “TTC Service Changes Effective May 11, 2014 (Update 4)

  1. On Saturday, I waited at the south west corner of Jarvis and Queen heading eastbound.

    I saw 4 shuttle busses heading westbound to Church street. However, none shuttles turned back (I assumed it would go south on Church, west on Richmond, south on Victoria, east on Adelaide, and back up on church to Queen), but it did not do that.

    I caught a streetcar 20 min later, but I would like to know where they are turning back?

    There is too much emphasis on meeting head ways rather than providing a service for the line. This morning I saw 2 of 3 streetcars being turned back at Kingston road and Queen with their signs changing or have been hanged at Parliament. Why don’t they simply turn one of them at parliament and come around at Broadview? I don’t get why they want to run 2 or 3 bunched streetcars while they can easily eliminate that when they can during the route.

    Steve: On Saturday, they were still trying to run the bus shuttles west to beyond University, but this practice has been abandoned to save on running time. As for short turns and maintaining regular service, don’t get me started. This has been a constant topic of complaint more or less since I started this blog. The basic problem is that trying to operate one route from Neville to Long Branch with two diversions along the way is simply impractical and a different service design with the route split into “normal” and “under construction” segments would have been easier to manage.


  2. Steve: The map at the bottom shows the new diversion via York, and the cutback of the shuttle buses to Church …

    So it does. But bizarrely, I just received an e-mail about a change in the 501/502/503 replacement bus routing (cutting back all the buses to Queen/Church), which clearly states that effective May 20 501/301 QUEEN streetcars will divert in both directions via Queen Street West, Spadina Avenue, King Street, Church Street and Queen Street East. The revision date within the PDF file is today, and the attached map doesn’t show any service on York.

    The lack of communication co-ordination is stunning.

    Steve: Yes, I received the same e-mail and have alerted the TTC to the inconsistency in their notices.


  3. Both westbound Queen cars that I saw Saturday evening went King/York/Queen. (I caught the second one.) The signage on the poles covered the York routing. There was no mention of Tuesday May 20 that I saw.


  4. For the sake of completion, one change included in the service memo for the May board, but not mentioned in Steve’s table above, is the addition of 3 stops on 195 Jane Rocket, at Falstaff, Shoreham and Threthewey.

    Steve: Actually, this is in the June board’s memo which just came out, although the change has already been implemented.


  5. Here’s one of those amusing changes where someone thinks they have a good idea but there’s no followthrough (assuming it really is a good idea in the first place.

    A SHORNCLIFFE 123B bus pulled into Kipling station last night. What on earth is a 123B, you may ask — I know several of us did that. The driver said “it’s a new designation, but it goes to Long Branch loop anyway”.

    It used to be that there was the 123, 123A (A for accurséd, in my opinion :-), and 123C. Now, on the destination signs, 123 has been redesignated 123B. Same bus, same route, different branch designation.

    Has the TTC website been updated with the new route designation? No.
    Has the “Next vehicle arrival” screen in the station been updated with the new route designation? No.

    Who thought this was a worthwhile idea? I don’t know. The route designation 123 for Kipling-Long Branch via Evans has been in place since 1994, according to Transit Toronto’s route history. Apparently that’s too long: time to shake things up.

    Steve: Virtually all of the bus routes are being relettered, but it was not supposed to start yet (the details are in the June 22 service memo which I will post in due course).

    The general pattern is this:

    The primary outbound destination (typically, but not necessarily, the furthest one out) gets the “A” suffix. A counter example is a route that has limited service and/or runs outside of Toronto. In that case “A” would go to something else.

    Other branches get “B”, “C” etc, although “E” is still reserved for express operations.

    Inbound to (usually) the subway, the route has no letter. Also, routes that have no variants show the unlettered route number in both directions.

    This is supposed to standardize things and help people, but of course they have to tell people first.

    Oh yes, in a few cases, the change will be implemented in two steps because the shuffle would be too confusing to do all at once.

    Coming to new streetcars: letter suffixes for destinations, although I suspect “S” will be the favourite one.


  6. I suppose the bus-route relettering campaign was brought to us by the same people who so proudly replaced the descriptive names for subway routes with numbers.

    Even though those numbers are routinely mixed up by the TTC’s own staff; e.g. the @TTCnotices twitter feed, which recently reported delays to Line 1 caused by problems at Dundas West station.

    I wear no tinfoil in my Tilley hat, and don’t think the money spent on renumbering could have funded a Lake Ontario Relief Subway to Rochester. But sometimes it’s better to leave well enough alone, or at least to be much more gradual about changing names that have been in place for a long time.

    (I do sometimes wear my tongue in my cheek, however.)


  7. I don’t know whether the problem lies with Nextbus for not knowing it’s a holiday here (thank you to our friends in the USA), or the TTC as I don’t know where the holidays are defined. All the same, this is a major Customer Service failure that they need to fix before Victoria Day.

    Was this fixed or not.

    Steve: You are catching up on old posts! Yes, it was a TTC problem. They did not define the “holiday” in the schedule feed to NextBus. This has been flagged as an issue for all future statutory holidays.


Comments are closed.