The August 31 schedules will see a return to fall service across the system as well as several other changes. At long last (I have been distracted with other events, and there was a lot to do this month) here is the consolidated list of service changes. The list combines all types of change because there are overlapping seasonal, construction and service improvement effects.
The table linked here has been updated to correct errors missed in its creation. Thanks to Timor Urakov for catching these.
2014.08.31_Service_Changes (Revision 2)
Major changes include:
- Return of streetcars to 510 Spadina
- A major change of the 504 King schedule to provide added running time
- Return of 504 King and 505 Dundas streetcars to Broadview Station
- Route split of 501 Queen for Gardiner Expressway construction at Humber Loop
- Route split of 116E Morningside Express to 198 UTSC Rocket
Something I have not included here, but will add in a future update, is a list of all of the Standby Buses (and a few streetcars) that are spotted around the city for various reasons. They don’t show up in the route-by-route info, but there is a substantial chunk of the fleet used to provide this service. Due to a bus shortage, the number of standby vehicles scheduled for fall 2014 is lower than originally planned.
Streetcars will return to Spadina between Bloor and Queens Quay with all service running through to the south end of the line. The route will be scheduled based on CLRV capacity, and new Flexities will take over runs one by one as cars become available. Current plans are for through service to Union and a resumption of streetcar service on 509 Harbourfront in October.
At the end of the AM Peak, 508 Lake Shore trippers operate a westbound trip as 506 Carlton to provide extra capacity to the UofT St. George campus. These trips previously operated back to Roncesvalles Carhouse, but they will be changed so that the cars switch over to 510 Spadina which has more cars during the midday than the AM peak.
Previously, this interlining was done using 503 Kingston Road cars from Russell, but with the move of 510 Spadina to Roncesvalles, trippers from that division will be used.
504 King Running Time Changes
In an attempt to reduce the need to short turn much of the service to keep operators on time, the TTC is changing the round trip times during all periods of service on this route.
King Round Trip Time Changes September 2014 Weekdays Saturday Sunday Aug Sept Aug Sept Aug Sept AM Peak 104+8 120+8 M-F Midday 100+8 122+5 PM Peak 115+8 135+7 S-S Early Morning 85+5 105+5 78+2 95+4 S-S Late Morning 97+7 111+6 94+5 109+5 S-S Afternoon 97+7 111+6 94+8 109+5 Early Evening 95+7 116+6 97+4 111+4 82+8 97+3 Late Evening 85+6 99+4 83+7 100+4 76+4 95+4
In the table above, the “before” times are shown under “Aug” and are taken from the schedules in effect until Aug. 30. The “after” times are shown under “Sept” and are taken from the schedules effective Aug. 31.
The time is given as running time plus recovery time. For example, the AM peak running time of “120+8” means that cars will have 120 minutes of driving time to make a round trip plus 8 minutes of terminal recovery time. Some of the changes increase the total time by 20%, a very substantial increase.
Whether this will translate into a noticeable reduction in short turns remains to be seen. One potential problem will be the accumulation of “early” cars at terminals where it is already possible to find lineups of cars. From my own knowledge of the line, some of these changes appear to be excessive and will probably have to be rolled back.
501 Queen & 508 Lake Shore
From September through December, reconstruction of the Gardiner Expressway at Humber Loop will close off the underpass between the loop and Lake Shore Blvd. The outer end of the Queen route will once again switch to a shuttle bus connecting with the streetcar.
Yonge subway operations will be changed to base more trains at Davisville Yard. This will give more time for maintenance work as the last service trains will be clear of the line sooner than on current schedules. An early morning non-revenue train that carries Station Collectors to work will be replaced with a shuttle bus.
On the Bloor subway, service will be improved weekday middays and evenings, and on Saturday afternoons to reduce crowding.
In anticipation of the arrival of more Flexities, some runs will be shifted to other locations. Exhibition Loop will now be used to store some 511 Bathurst runs as well as 512 St. Clair runs already at that location.
The 510 Spadina route will operate from Roncesvalles where the Flexities will be based, and to make room, all runs on 505 Dundas will operate from Russell.
Streetcar service will return to Broadview Station after a temporary absence in July-August.
Since the re-opening of the Broadview & Queen intersection, carhouse trips from Russell westbound have resumed using the west-to-north curve that was taken out of service for safety concerns in October 2012.
Six Points Project
The reconstruction of the Kipling-Dundas-Bloor interchange begins in September and this will trigger diversions of various routes around Kipling Station.
Not really. There is the 102D (Markham Rd North), 105B (Dufferin North), 107B/C/D (Keele North), 129A (McCowan North), 160 (Bathurst North), and 165D/165F (Weston Road North).
Markham has had the 102 number long before the bus even reached Steele, let alone entered York Region, and I believe that McCowan North had the 129 number before it went north of Steeles. I suspect there may be a couple of others like this.
Steve: One of the early “100” routes was “101 Glenorchy” that is now called “162 Lawrence-Donway”. When the routes were originally numbered, they used the range from 1 (Armour Heights) to 99 (Yonge Night) in alphabetical order, although that didn’t last long. There were gaps in the numbering that would sometimes be inherited by routes “nearby” in the alphabet, at other times completely randomly. The big push into the hundreds came mainly with suburban expansion, and the numbers were assigned sequentially (although you can see blocks that relate to the same major network change such as the SRT opening).
A good trivia game is to know all of the recycled route numbers and their earlier histories.
Then there are the TTC routes in the 100s that are not contracted to York Region (100 Flemingdon Park all the way up to 172 Cherry Street, not to mention the rockets in the 190s). Then there are the TTC routes that are contracted to York Region that are not in the 100s, such as 17A (Birchmount), 24D (Victoria Park North), 35D (Jane), 68B (Warden), 224C/D (Victoria Park North).
Not exactly what I would call a consistent patter of placing a 1 in front of a route number to denote York Region contracted service.
Interesting sidenote of trivia: The 224D Victoria Park North route that is contracted to the TTC weekedays is the only route in York Region that YRT has one of its own contractors operate on weekends. To be consistent, it is numbered 224B though it is named Woodbine.
Another interesting sidenote of trivia relates to route numbering patterns. YRT generally reserves route numbers in the 200s for GO Shuttle routes, that operate to and from a GO station to provide neighbourhood local service to GO stations in the mornings and afternoons. The Woodbine 224B is one of two routes that are not GO shuttles (the other is the 224 Beaver Creek Shuttle).
Steve: I am waiting for some bright soul who has probably never had to use a transit system in his life to come up with a scheme for “regional integration” that will require every single route to get a new number, possibly in the interest of “fairness” or “clarity”. Such a person should be marched out the soor as soon as possible, although they may face a new career as a politician telling their constituents how hard done by they are to have such low, or high, route numbers.
In regards to the 509, I highly ever doubt artic buses would ever be intentionally scheduled. These buses are known as road blockers which can easily block off Adelaide, Richmond, Queen or King. This is the same reason why artic buses on the 6 Bay is a horrible idea and whoever came up and decided to publicly announce that the 6 Bay is getting artic buses a year ago clearly has no idea of the actual situation.
Occasionally we do see artic buses doing emergency streetcar shuttles or subway shuttles. Those are usually taken away from busy routes such as Dufferin! Not intentionally dispatched. The 193 is a good route for artic.
That bright soul will likely chair a committee of bright souls who have never had to use a transit system, but will have this as one of their tasks. 😉
When YRT was formed from smaller municipal agencies, each had a handful of routes that were, for the most part, numbered with a single digit number. Forget duplications, there were triplications and quadruplications of route number that had to be dealt with.
The solution was not overly complicated. The busiest of routes kept their original route numbers (Markham’s routes 1 and 2, and Vaughan’s route 4 come to mind).
Most other routes simply got a prefix digit assigned to each municipal operator. For instance, Richmond Hill’s number is 8 (not exactly random, as the fire halls in Richmond Hill are numbered “8-x”). So, Richmond Hill’s route 5 on 16th Avenue became route 85 originally. There were the occasional odd renumbering, such as Markham’s route 4 becoming 40 instead of 44.
Since the amalgamation, new routes numbers have sometimes followed this (Elgin Mills route 80) sometimes used a new prefix (former GO routes on Yonge and Bayview became 99 and 91 under YRT, then the parallel route on Leslie was given 90), and sometimes used rather obvious route numbers (a new route on 16th Avenue is route 16; a former branch route 2A on 14th Avenue is route 14; a new route on Major Mac east of Yonge is route 25, because Major Mac is regional road 25).
Would anyone even want to contemplate a GTHA-wide numbering system?
Perhaps it is time that the “thousands of cyclists” learned how to cross street car tracks without wiping out and killing themselves. There is a lot to be said for Darwin and survival of the fittest. Not to play down the danger of tracks to cyclists but they have been around for over a hundred years and it is only lately we have had an out cry about them. Perhaps you need to change tires.
What business would you expropriate on Adelaide or Richmond, or any other street downtown, that would not cost a few hundred million dollars? If you continue to make outrageous demands you will only hurt the chances for other cyclists to be taken seriously.
Double ended street cars are NOT being used in a number of transit systems in Europe that I rode because they increase the cost of the car, twice as many doors and control cabs, and decrease the number of seats because of the extra doors. It is true that a number of new lines being built are double ended but this is probably because the land for loops is too expensive to purchase. Double ended cars in downtown Toronto would be a waste of money because there is no place where you could put a spare track to hold a “short turn” car to wait its time because the roads are only 4 lanes.
The gap between the tracks has been filled with asphalt on Adelaide along the section with the bike lanes.
Steve, there are several typos and omissions in your table; I hope you don’t mind my pointing them out to you.
Steve: Thanks for catching these. I have updated my tables with all of the changes. They were built over a period of time merging information from the service change memo and the scheduled service summary (which do not always agree with each other), and in the process I missed/mis-copied a few things.
For example the peak period PM peak reduction on Scarlett Road is mentioned in the memo, but is not included in the service summary. Other parts of the memo list changes for construction but don’t include seasonal changes reliably.
YUS line: 1 train will be re-allocated from Wilson to Davisville carhouse on weekdays to increase maintenance window; as a result early AM revenue service will start approx. five minutes later between Bloor and Eglinton stations. Three trains will be operated from Davisville carhouse on weekends/holidays with resulting changes in deadhead trip times; but no changes to times of early morning/late evening revenue trips. (mention this in body)
There are also some seasonal changes (relative to March 2014) that were missed for the September Board and should be reversed for the October board – not sure if it will happen since the memo is not ready yet:
41E Keele Express: one bus removed during AM and PM peak periods.
134C Progress: one bus removed during AM peak, M-F midday and PM peak.
56 Leaside: AM peak school tripper removed (one bus).
Steve, could you elaborate more on the comments made for the 7 Bathurst?
I noticed that the TTC finally realized that the artics take longer to complete their trips and additional time has been added to the 3 artic routes. Does this mean that artics could possibly be removed from the 7 Bathurst?
Steve: The artics will have to be used somewhere, but, yes they have realized that these vehicles can’t make the same running times as the regular buses. To what extent this problem can be undone with a move to PoP and all-door loading remains to be seen. I am surprised that they are not concentrating these buses on routes like the York U Rocket which has, by definition, a strong end-to-end demand and a loading pattern that should be able to optimize the space usage and loading time. Bathurst was an odd choice given it already had fairly wide headways that were made even worse with the artics.
In theory Steve, should not most service either start at the ends of the lines, equally split between them? Has there been a serious discussion of an extension on the Yonge side just to achieve this end (ie more than you personally mentioning it on a previous thread). That is an extension to add turn capacity and enough yard space to have 1/2 the trains enter service there.
Steve: There have always been plans for some storage on north Yonge, but not for half of the trains. There simply has never been a piece of property large enough to be contemplated as a yard in North York (don’t forget that when Wilson was planned, the idea of the north end of the subway at even Steeles was considered a stretch).
The BD line was originally to have a yard at the west end, but the space the TTC had acquired for it was released to allow development at the Six Points.
In theory it would be nice to have half of the trains at each end of the line, but things don’t always work out. Just look at the Crosstown that lost its access to a Scarborough yard thanks to the SRT/subway decision.
To what extent would it make sense to concentrate these buses on the express and rocket routes? Is there enough demand on those routes to make the artics make sense? Also do they make sense on routes like Finch East and West where there is a very high loading?
Steve: I think the more important consideration is that routes should have strong demand but little “churn” with riders getting on and staying on for a substantial distance. This would lessen the problems of loading delays (carry few riders a long distance each rather than many riders short distances over the course of a trip).
I hate to say it by I am still hoping against hope that this conversion will revert in the name of common sense and good planning. Not only does it make implementation harder, but it is a phenomenal waste of money that will not improve transit nearly as much as the much less expensive alternatives. I think the pols and voters need to be thinking in terms of 3 stops 1 short line versus, 2 LRTs a BRT (or 2) and massive service improvements that cover the entire area.
The question then becomes what routes are like this. Rocket, and express routes would have less churn, but do enough of them have the ridership to justify Artics on those routes. Would it make sense to make the 199 Finch Rocket an Artic, (or is it?), or would this make the service too sparse?
Is the Long-Branch portion of Humber loop even useable still? Do you know if the TTC will even bother testing the new streetcars on this trackage?
Steve: Yes. Some 508 Lake Shore cars do extra trips at the end of the PM peak between Humber and Long Branch.
How long has Exhibition loop been used to store cars overnight?
Steve: This started with the July board period.
The new streetcars have been tested on every inch of useable track including the Long Branch turnback at Humber Loop. The only stretch they haven’t been tested on yet is Queens Quay, for obvious reasons.
The 508 PM peak trippers (six in total) that Steve is talking about are supposed to arrive at Long Branch coming from the downtown core via King. The first three then leave Long Branch at 5:42, 5:53 and 6:03 PM, respectively going back to Church & King as 508s and return to Dundas West Stn as 504s (leaving Church & King westbound at 6:52, 7:03 and 7:13 PM, respectively), before running in to Roncesvalles yard.
The last three 508 trippers are scheduled to leave Long Branch Loop at 6:25, 6:36 and 7:02 PM respectively and are supposed to travel only as far east as Humber Loop, then make another westbound trip to Long Branch (leaving Humber at 6:52, 7:03 and 7:29 PM). Lastly, they leave Long Branch at 7:20, 7:31 and 7:52 PM running in to Roncesvalles.
That is what the schedule looks like on paper. In practice, since the route is badly off schedule on a daily basis, what happens is that the first three trippers rarely make it past Bathurst or Spadina on their second trip toward downtown and the last three – the ones are supposed to use the Long Branch turnback at Humber – very often do not terminate at Humber Loop, but instead continue on eastbound and then head north to Dundas West Station (via Roncesvalles) to fill gaps in 504 service. In effect, almost every day there are three eastbound ‘507’ trips, that unintentionally mimic one proposal that I’ve read here about introducing a direct Long Branch – Dundas West Stn streetcar service.
And Steve, I’ve noticed this morning that your table does not include seasonal changes on 76 Royal York South (AM and PM peaks) and 191 Hwy 27 Rocket (AM peak, midday, PM peak).
Steve: I have updated the linked table. By the way, according to the Scheduled Service Summary there is no change to the AM peak on the 191 Rocket.
“The only stretch they haven’t been tested on yet is Queens Quay, for obvious reasons.”
Wasn’t the Queens Quay tunnel geometry what caused the Bombardier streetcar bid to be disqualified the first time around?
I have to agree that very, very few 508 cars turn back at Humber for another run to Long Branch. The TTC installed a stop pole for those cars at the northwest corner of the shelter, with actual run times (to the minute) in a fit of earlier optimism, but I don’t see the pole there any more. The tracks are also much too rusty for three runs a day to have turned there.
With 508 AM trippers going into service on 510, does that mean that Flexities will be running out to Long Branch?
Steve: I suspect you will see a change in those arrangements once the 510 Spadina service fully builds up to Flexity operation.
One thing that is different this time with the 501 spilt is that there is also a secondary shuttle bus. This goes from Marine Parade Loop and services the condos near Brookers Line. This is because the underpass will be completely closed off including to pedestrians.
The Humber Loop east to west turn back is in normal use for turn backs and has been tested with no issues by the LFLRV. Steve is right about the PM 508 as 3 are designed to go back downtown and 3 are to turn back at Humber Loop eastbound. Since planning can’t give those runs the 30 extra minutes of running time they are used as 501 change overs, or as extra service for 504 to DWS. They seldom do their actual routing for the second trip.
There is no change to the AM peak on the 191 Rocket that would show up in the service summary. What is changing are the number of trips on the 191A branch at the end of the AM peak that were cancelled for the summer and are now being re-instated. Six new northbound trips on the 191A departing Kipling Stn (to Humber College) at 8:50, 9:10, 9:30, 9:50, 10:10, 10:30 AM. Four new southbound trips departing Humber College (to Kipling Stn) at 9:26, 9:46, 10:06, 10:26 AM.
Darwin: I was not involved in the procurement process at all, but as far as I know, the main issue with the initial Bombardier bid was the wheel flange angle which posed a derailment risk in very tight curves when computer simulations were carried out.
Steve: From talking to Stephan Lam at the TTC, I know that a great deal of work has gone into the whole question of truck, wheel and track dynamics. The fact that the prototypes have not been derailing all over the place is a testament to that work.
As for the Airport Rocket, the change is not mentioned anywhere (service memo or schedule summary). There was nothing for me to “catch” and report it.
As I remember, the Scarborough (Conlins Rd) yard is/was supposed to host SLRT and Sheppard LRT cars.
There was a talk about another facility in the Eglinton / Don Mills area, for Eglinton and Don Mills LRT cars. Of course, it is unlikely to happen as long as the Don Mills line is on hold, and Eglinton ends at Mt Dennis.
Steve: There was provision for track to allow shop movements between the SRT and Eglinton lines. Initially, the east end of Eglinton would run from Conlins Road, only shifting to another carhouse when there was one or more lines to support it.
In regards to selecting routes for Artics, the TTC should have considered routes that provides a feeder service to the subway than busy routes with riders taking it a few stops.
Both the 7 Bathurst and the 29 Dufferin aren’t good routes for artics. I think they should consider routes like the 191 Highway 27 Rocket and the 45E Kipling Express where people would just board the bus and all offload at Kipling Station. In PM peak, most of the riders originate at the station. The 196 York U Rocket works out well, but that route would be gone by 2017. There isn’t a lot of routes that fit these criteria which makes me wonder about the future of acquiring more of this vehicles for the purpose of saving operators.
Would they not still make sense on longer routes, where there was relatively few riders boarding at any given point. I note that while Finch East for instance has a similar number of riders as Finch West, it seems to have many more buses (nearly twice) on it (based on 2012 numbers) would that not indicate that the buses have less churning, and therefore likely making the route a better candidate.
Finch East has nearly twice the ridership of Bathurst and more than 3 times the buses. Would that not make it a good candidate for a good number of Artic buses, as opposed to Bathurst? Steeles East has slightly more ridership than Bathurst and twice the buses, again does this make sense as a route for Artic?
I realize that more detailed information than this is required to select routes, however, would not this type of logic make a good first sort, and then look in great detail at the route collection pattern on the street to decide. Also as you note POP and all door boarding may help resolve the issues with time spent in boarding.
Steve: You can’t just look at peak buses as an indication. Some routes have much better off-peak demand, and so the total passenger count is spread over far more vehicle hours. Each route requires its own analysis, although obviously there will be common patterns.
I was looking for a first cut based on information already collected. Another proxy for deciding on selecting candidates for study might be vehicle kilometres vs load. For instance the vehicle kilometers on Steeles East is more than twice that of Bathurst on a daily basis, with only 15% more riders, and Finch East has 3 times the kms with less than twice the load of Bathurst.
Steve: The AM peak scheduled speed of 7 Bathurst is 13.7 km/h whereas the various branches of 39 Finch East range from 21 to 24 km/h. It’s easy to rack up more mileage when the buses are travelling over 50% faster.
Again I am not saying that means that they would be good routes, but would this not be a way of looking for routes that make sense to study first. Give an idea of the gross average loading and trip distance based on existing available information. Just use this data as a sort to prioritize which lines to study first. Once you are on the ground you may discover that the loading pattern results in local areas of very high churn, and long portions of half empty bus. This of course would mean that this would not be a particularly good candidate for larger buses.
Clearly the fine detail of the route loading and alighting pattern is what will determine if it is good fit, however, are there not a fair number of Artics coming into the fleet?
Steve: There are 153 on order of which roughly half are here. The peak scheduled artic service for September is 63 buses. Sheppard East is converting in October.
re: assignment of articulated buses:
Officially, the September Service Summary has them as follows:
7 Bathurst (weekdays)
310 Bathurst (M-F overnight)
29 Dufferin (weekdays + Saturdays)
53 Steeles East (express branches)
Unofficially, I have seen 85 Sheppard East using artics in the early and late evening on 3 or 4 occasions, although service is scheduled as Orion 7s.
Steve: Sheppard East will convert officially in October. Other routes have seen artics in service on the standard 12m schedules before they officially became “artic” services.
I wonder if there are other cases where they regularly or occasionally migrate. Darwin O’Connor’s TransSee site has a feature allowing you to search by fleet number. Searching the numbers 9000 through 9152 gives the locations of all artics currently in service (as of 2:00 today, they were all on Dufferin and Bathurst).
Steve: At 5:30 some were also on 85 Sheppard East.
I would think that Dufferin loses some of the advantages of artics not just because of turnover, but because the biggest bottleneck is at Bloor, where the stop is not within a fare-paid area and therefore the artics are at a disadvantage due to longer dwell times (unless there is extra staff on hand to facilitate all-door boarding).
To what degree however, is this due simply to traffic, and to what degree is this due to the fact that the bus stops are more frequent and/or longer on Bathurst?
Steve: That requires a more detailed analysis of both routes, not to mention pulling apart times of day and location effects. This is a good example of the sort of simplistic comparisons people make between “buses” and “streetcars” except in this case, both routes are buses and it is the characteristics of the route which determines the vehicle speed, not the vehicle technology.
Service on the 199 Finch Rocket is pathetic and would be made worse with artics. They are either stuck on McCowan with few riders or bunched up together. I would image a 3 artic parade replacing the current 4 40-ft. bus parade. Half the buses should really just end at McCowan (like the old 39C Express branch) instead of heading to STC. The TTC should really focus on running a better service before considering a conversion to artics. Allocating more run time doesn’t help on long routes if they all ended up bunching in congestion. Also, in my experience, 199 rocket buses never passes any local 39 buses. The Steeles East Express buses are much more reliable than the 199 Finch Rocket.
Until the McNicoll garage opens, I don’t think I’ll see any artics on Finch East. Hopefully when the garage opens, 25 Don Mills and 116 Morningside could also be converted.
Steve with regards to the choice of vehicles I am asserting detailed study would be needed, but looking for predictive characteristics in available data.
One wonders if the TTC will keep the 196 as a Sheppard West Rocket once TYSSE opens?
I guess that it would be impossible to Long Turn vehicles to eliminate terminal congestion when too many get there at the same time.
I saw one operating on Sheppard Friday morning, though I cannot recall if it was just after 8 am when I arrived in the area, or a little after 9 am when I was leaving the area.
I wonder if there’s been any thought to using the artics on the Yonge night bus? It’s always so crowded, and virtually the entire ridership is going to Finch anyway.
Did you notice that the LFLRV went through the curves around Spadina Circle slower than the CLRV’s?
I wanted to get a feel of how smooth the bogied-modules are when they go through curves. The 3rd and 5th modules felt quite smooth (but the streetcar was travelling slowly). I didn’t try the 1st module yet.
Steve: I think we had a lot of trainee operators on the two cars today, and they were not exactly barreling down the street.