The TTC will implement several service changes on August 4, 2019. Normally this is a quiet time of the year for schedule work, but TTC Service Planning is working through “reliability enhancements” for many routes with a batch in the August schedules and more to come in future months.
Unfortunately, the changes almost always involve running the same number of vehicles on wider headways so that there is more driving time, but most importantly, more recovery time at terminals. However, nothing has changed in the TTC’s standard that “on time” has a range of +1 to -5 minutes, and there is no indication that service reliability will actually improve without active management of headways.
The following routes have reliability enhancements that result in less frequent service:
- 11 Bayview
- 61 Avenue Road North
- 62 Mortimer
- 63 Ossington
- 83 Jones
- 88 South Leaside
- 506 Carlton headways will widen at many times. Late Sunday evenings, Carlton will go to a 10’30” headway thereby removing this route, technically speaking, from the 10 Minute Network. This condition will be corrected in the fall when Carlton gets a new schedule for low floor car operation.
- 512 St. Clair (weekends)
The TTC has not published crowding stats since March 2019, and so there is no indication of the effect of the wider scheduled headways on crowding levels. The real test will come in September when demand rises with the end of the vacation period.
One construction project, at Royal York Station, is now complete and the route structure here will be restored to its normal arrangement.
- The 15 Evans and 48 Rathburn routes will no longer interline during weekday daytime periods.
- The 73 Royal York and 76 Royal York South routes will no longer interline.
- The 315 Evans night bus will no longer divert to Islington Station as its northern terminus.
Additional running time which had been added to 33 Forest Hill to compensate for construction on the Crosstown will be removed, and the route will revert to a 30′ headway at all times.
Even more running time will be added to 505 Dundas to compensate for the effects of watermain construction downtown, and scheduled headways will be wider during most periods. Whether the TTC will do anything about the tendency of buses on this route to operate in herds of two or more vehicles remains to be seen. The change is expected to be in place until the October schedules.
Planned improvements include:
- One additional “gap” train will be added on 2 Bloor-Danforth in both the AM and PM peak periods.
- Late evening service on 39 Finch will be extended to Old Finch & Morningview.
- Early evening service on 64 Main will be improved from every 20′ to every 12′.
- The 176 Mimico GO shuttle will be changed to loop via Marine Parade rather than at Park Lawn Loop to improve its reach in the Humber Bay Shores area. The afternoon schedule will be adjusted to match the observed (usually late) operation of the GO service at Mimico.
Details of these and other changes are in the spreadsheet linked below.
I’m surprised that you didn’t remark about the increase in headways on the B-D. This is the first time, at least in modern history, that the TTC has attempted to run headways wider than every 5 minutes on either the Yonge or the Bloor-Danforth lines.
A harbinger of things to come, methinks?
Steve: I didn’t mention this because this is this is the summer schedule, and things go back to “normal” in September. All the same it is troubling to see wider headways and more lard built into the schedule. This has become a catch-all “fix” at the TTC.
What about the 8100 Orion VII NGs will they ever see service in Birchmount ever…..again…?
Steve: I have no idea. Try the bus forums on other sites.
Your chart says that routes 124 and 162 continue to be extended to the Roe Loop; however, the TTC has not yet implemented this change since June 23, 2019 when it was supposed to go into effect. NextBus still shows the Roe extension and the TTC sometimes has an extra bus on each route; however, the paving crews have still not shown up at Lawrence Station, and both routes still loop underground via Lawrence Station. Will it happen August 4?
Steve: The project list in the service memo still shows this extension as operating, and so I have left it in the chart. I will try to find out what is going on here.
Is there any known reason why Line 2 BD trains now have longer run times Saturdays with an exception of the morning period which now has less run time? Does it have anything to do with them switching to single train stepback operation which you mentioned in a previous board change post?
Steve: The TTC claims it is changing running times to match actual requirements. When this schedule goes into effect, we will see whether this is true.
Are they moving the 5 Avenue Road from Wilson to Mt. Dennis cause the 5 usually is out of Wilson.
Steve: No. 5 Avenue Road is shown as a Wilson route in the August service memo.
So much for the 193 rocket. Looks like this is the final nail in the coffin for it.
The Canadian National Exhibition (CNE), or “Ex” is just about to begin, on Friday, August 16, 2019, and this means increased demand. As in past years, many people will choose to take the TTC to and from this popular late-summer event, and one way to get to and from the “Ex” is the “511 Bathurst” streetcar. This means more frequent service on this route. The new low-floor Flexity Outlook streetcars continue to arrive from Bombardier, and some of those are on the “511 Bathurst” route.
I’ve been going to the CNE ridden the “511 Bathurst” streetcar to get there, and there’s a high-spirited excitement of the passengers. The air show, which happens the last weekend of the CNE, adds extra excitement. In recent years, I’ve been going to the CNE when the air show was on, and have been ‘running late’ (the air show had already started), and myself and other passengers aboard the “511 Bathurst” streetcar watch the planes flying overhead through the streetcar’s large windows.
Steve: Looking at NextBus this morning (Aug 16), all cars on 511 Bathurst are Flexitys.
This year, unlike last, streetcars are here to stay on “511 Bathurst” for the duration of the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE) and beyond, thus guaranteeing people their ride on the streetcar to and from the CNE. Looking back to last year, shuttle buses began to replace streetcars on the “511 Bathurst” route on Sunday, September 2, 2018 – although some streetcars (mostly Flexity Outlooks) remained on this route.
That day, I took the “511 Bathurst” Flexity Outlook streetcars to and from the CNE. It was the weekend of the Canadian International Air Show, which adds extra excitement to the CNE.
The air show had already started when we were riding the streetcar south from Bathurst station down to the Exhibition loop, and watched the planes flying overhead and could see them through the streetcar’s large windows. After arriving at the CNE, I’d buy my lunch at the food building and eat it outside so I could watch the planes flying overhead; I’d move on to the bleachers to watch the rest of the air show, which ended with the Snowbirds. Just as the air show was wrapping up, I heard three generations of a family yapping away to each other in Spanish. They were originally from Venezuela. They were fascinated with military aviation – the Venezuelan Air Force use to be the most powerful in Latin America.
Steve: The September service has already been announced, and 511 Bathurst will remain as a streetcar operation.
Routes 124 and 162 were to be extended to the Roe Loop on June 23, 2019. After a delay of about 2 months, the extension finally occurred on August 21, and is expected to remain until late October according to posted notices.
Between June 23 and August 20, the TTC had an extra bus on each route which was generally stored at or outside of Lawrence Station until the next scheduled run at which time buses were rotated in and out of service.
The extra buses were often stored with their motors turned off. I noticed that Presto machines seemed to be out-of-service more often on buses leaving Lawrence Station than on buses arriving there. I wonder if turning off the bus motor would cause the Presto readers to go out-of-service. Sometimes, the readers would go back into service with a few blocks of leaving Lawrence Station.
As far as I have seen, the Presto machines have to start up any time a bus has been turned off and then restarted. This can take several minutes. So if a bus is started up at a busy loop, passengers boarding at the first few stops will see all readers reading ‘Out of Service’.
Whether the TTC expects passengers to get up out of their seats and tap their cards whenever the Presto readers finally boot up, I couldn’t say. I do see buses being turned off at loops, possibly due to a general anti-idling policy, or possibly due to local complaints about idling buses.
This year, the “511 Bathurst” route is operating exclusively with the new low-floor Flexity Outlooks for the duration of the Canadian National Exhibition (CNE). This is a smart move on the part of the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) as it expects increased demand, as many will be taking this route to and from the CNE. These low-floor steertcars are ideal for the CNE, as they are fully accessible and have the most seating capacity.
Will this route – “511 Bathurst” – revert to a mixture of Flexity Outlooks and CLRVs after the Labour Day long weekend?
Steve: According to the memo describing service for September, yes, CLRVs will return to 511 Bathurst in September. However, these cars are planned to disappear by year-end. 506 Carlton is supposed to begin its changeover with the October schedules, but details of these are not out yet. Much depends on the rate of Bombardier deliveries.