3 thoughts on “Long Term Fiscal Constraints Hamper Bus Service Growth

  1. Could the TTC not look at making a (perhaps multi-level) vehicle yard at Obico? The subway yard could have a bus garage above it, and if we were really looking at future-proofing, an extension of LRT along Queensway someday could lead to a spur up the Canpa sub to get a western streetcar yard. The question of $$ obviously comes up, but an integrated facility would likely have cost savings.

    Steve: What would be an intriguing combo would be a garage for electric buses co-located with a subway carhouse and yard. I don’t think there is much chance of a streetcar link because the Queensway LRT is only a glimmer in a Councillor’s eye, and unlikely to be built any day soon. The Western Waterfront LRT from Dufferin west via Sunnyside and Colborne Lodge Road to the proposed new loop at Park Lawn GO station will show up first, and that project is not top of the list.

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  2. Jcam: “Could the TTC not look at making a (perhaps multi-level) vehicle yard at Obico?”

    The perhaps ironic twist is that the TTC is already parking buses at Obico to deal with overflow from various active garages. By the time anything gets built there, the space may have already been consumed by existing fleet! (And if anything, an Obico Garage would most likely just replace Queensway Garage anyway, but with mildly more capacity.)

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  3. There is a reason why rent along a subway line is significantly higher than rent just a few bus stops away. Also a reason why many people that need to take the bus to the nearest subway station prefer to be driven there by car when possible. I prefer to take the subway downtown rather than drive; but I prefer also that a family member drive me to Kipling when doing so, when possible.

    Commuting most of my Toronto life by bus and subway, it has always struck me how TTC bus service is much like bus service in say, a disorganized Eastern European country (I am originally from one; so I know what I’m talking about). When will the bus arrive? Will it be on schedule? Is “frequent service” actually a bus every 7 minutes or two buses in a row every 14 minutes? How do you like showing up at the bus stop 10-15 minutes early in order to be sure you’ll catch the bus – in -20C weather? Then entering, in full winter gear, a super-crowded bus in which the operator has turned on the heating high enough so he can drive in a short-sleeved shirt? Yeah the buses are new and shiny and the drivers have a nice salary, but if I was looking at just organization and consistency of service, I’d swear I was in another part of the world…

    Considering that the subway is essentially full, and that most bus routes feed the subway in one proportion or another (a lot of them being primarily subway feeders), I’m wondering whether the TTC actually has an incentive to improve bus service. Maybe their thinking is yes, we’d pick up more bus riders, but it would just make subway crowding worse?

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