TTC Service Changes Sunday, February 14, 2021

There will be few service changes in February 2021 in anticipation of the reassignment of bus services with the opening of McNicoll Garage at the end of March.

Weekday service will be trimmed in response to passenger demand on the following routes:

  • 2 Bloor-Danforth
  • 509 Harbourfront
  • 510 Spadina
  • 512 St. Clair

The 9 Bellamy and 913 Progress Express routes will be changed to operate via Progress Avenue. Bellamy buses will no longer serve stops on McCowan Road, Corporate Drive and Consilium Place (these are served by other routes).

The service changes are summarized in the table linked below.

2021.02.14 Service Changes (ver 3)

The project list has been updated to reflect construction on various parts of the streetcar system as announced by the TTC. This includes:

  • Overhead and station construction work on the east end of 506 Carlton.
  • Overhead reconstruction on various parts of 501 Queen.
  • The King-Queen-Queensway-Roncesvalles project.
  • Reconstruction of Dundas West Station Loop including expansion of streetcar platforms.

Between the construction projects and the reduced streetcar service, the peak scheduled streetcars now number only 126 (AM) and 127 (PM). Out of a fleet of 204 cars, this leaves a lot of room for “maintenance spares”. We must hope that when the TTC puts the entire network back together again late in 2021 that they will have enough working cars to operate it.

In spite of the considerable surplus of streetcars, there are still bus trippers scheduled on 505 Dundas and 506 Carlton.

The bus fleet will operate at less than capacity with a scheduled peak service of 1,520 vehicles compared to the garage capacity of 1,675 and a fleet size of over 2,000. Run-as-directed (RAD) buses are not included in this total, although there are fewer of them now that “regular” service levels have been restored on many routes.

The project list also includes some items for 2022 from the City of Toronto’s map of planned construction work, TOInview. This includes:

  • Completion of the KQQR project from Queen to Dundas (stop modifications).
  • Reconstruction of Broadview Station Loop. The status of a proposed expansion of streetcar platforms is not yet known.
  • Track construction on College from Yonge to Bathurst, and at the intersection of Church & Carlton. Whether the TTC will add curves in the southeast quadrant here to simplify diversions is not yet known. In a previous project at Broadview & Gerrard, the “institutional memory” forgot that there were plans to add a north-to-west curve, and a once in 25 year opportunity was missed.
  • Replacement of the intersection of King & Shaw.
  • Reconstruction of Adelaide Street from Charlotte to Yonge. It is not yet clear whether this will only involve the removal of long-inactive track or the restoration of Adelaide as an eastbound bypass for King and Queen service between Spadina and Church.

12 thoughts on “TTC Service Changes Sunday, February 14, 2021

  1. The 9 Bellamy and 913 Progress Express routes will be changed to operate via Progress Avenue. Bellamy buses will no longer serve stops on McCowan Road, Corporate Drive and Consilium Place (these are served by other routes).

    From 1985 to 1993, the 9 BELLAMY was served on Progress. It was rerouted to Corporate Dr when the 134 TAPSCOTT and 171 PROGRESS EAST buses began to serve Progress Ave. In 2001, the 9 BELLAMY and 134 PROGRESS gained present routings SB on Grangeway/Bushby and NB on Consillium.

    Talk about time warp Steve.


  2. “Weekday service will be trimmed in response to passenger demand on the following routes:
    … 510 Spadina…”

    The linked document suggest service is being increased on Spadina, not decreased. Or am I not reading correctly.

    Steve: A split service to Queens Quay and to Union is replaced by a single service to Union. For example, during the AM peak, there are now two services every 8’45” for a combined headway of 4’22” between Queens Quay and Bloor operated with 14 cars. In the new schedule, there is one car every 7′ with only 10 cars, and they all go to Union. Service on Queens Quay is slightly improved, but on Spadina it is reduced.


  3. Just curious, do you have any more information on the Dundas West Station reconstruction?

    Steve: All that the TTC has said in their notice is that platforms will be extended to make more room for multiple cars at the same time. I have not seen any design, but will try to get drawings if they are available.


  4. Do you have the final version of the route division allocations after McNicoll Garage open in March?

    Steve: I have replied to others already that, no, I do not have them. There are versions in the McNicoll thread on CPTDB’s site (see other comments for links), but there may have been revisions since they were posted.


  5. I’m so glad they are finally changing 913 to operate on Progress Ave (hence “Progress Express”) and no longer turn onto Corporate as it does not stop on any stops on Corporate.

    However, I’m upset about the decision to change the local 9 Bellamy. Many students who live in all the condos at Lee Centre/88 Corporate use the 9 to go to school (Tredway Woodsworth PS as well the other schools along Bellamy). Does that mean riders who live at Lee Centre/88 Corporate have to get off the 9 at Bellamy and Progress before it turns onto Progress Avenue and walk? Do they plan on keeping a bus stop at that intersection at least before the 9 turns on Progress? I get that rerouting it to Progress Ave will save time but I think it disadvantages riders who use it on Corporate.

    Steve: The TTC has not yet published details of the new stopping patterns and how they might relate to transfers with routes that will still serve the old 9 Bellamy routing.


  6. Any chance Adelaide’s track actually survives the gutting? I don’t know that I’ve ever actually seen/read someone at TTC actually putting forth a case to keep it…or, return it to where it once existed. Though it would be pretty cool to see it replaced – and used. (and, who knows, maybe even some curves to hook it up to York & Victoria!)

    Steve: I have questions in at the TTC regarding Adelaide and other projects. Stay tuned.


  7. The TTC could also reduce service on many routes on weekends too. I rode the TTC on Sunday and there is little to no people on most TTC routes I took. That way the TTC could save money. I don’t know why the TTC wouldn’t.

    Steve: A few points here. First, there is more to be saved in service reductions on five weekdays than on one or two weekend days, and so the TTC concentrates on that. Second, contrary to your experience, some parts of the network are quite busy on weekends. This was compounded by the removal of weekend express buses on many routes without replacing them with trippers. For example, the Jane corridor lost half of its Saturday service. That is a long way from the TTC’s claimed 15% average drop in service operated.

    Given the lead time to change schedules, I suspect the TTC will not make major changes on weekends unless ridership stalls at its current level rather than recovering as we get through the current wave of infections and travel picks up again.


  8. On Adelaide, I certainly think that the track should be replaced and that it needs curves. Adelaide could be a very useful diversion route.

    When the track on York was replaced a few years ago they removed the curve(s) at Adelaide & York but, apparently, said (probably via Steve) that the east to north one would be replaced if/when track on Adelaide was replaced. There is already an east to north curve at Victoria – installed, if I remember right, about a decade ago when the track at Victoria & Adelaide was replaced.

    Steve: I am waiting to hear from the TTC what is happening with Adelaide.


  9. I’m not entirely sure I see a bright future for the Adelaide track, at least west of York. Maybe I’m missing something?

    An Adelaide track would provide eastbound diversions for King and Queen streetcars. Westbound diversions west of York would still have to crowd into one of the current corridors.

    Given the political and hopefully soon to be physical investment in the King corridor, we should be trying as much as possible to avoid closures of King.

    Situations that would block only an eastbound track on King or Queen but leave the westbound track open should be quite rare. For errant vehicles blocking the track, a well-organized towing operation is much cheaper than building and maintaining an extra track, and would anyway help all the other tracks in the area.

    An eastbound Adelaide diversion would allow closing eastbound lanes of Queen for events or festivals, but the westbound track would preferably be kept open to avoid crowding King. I don’t think the city or TTC has done half-street closures recently but I guess it could be a possibility if we get a bit more serious about organization.

    Rebuilding Adelaide could be useful if we plan to also add a westbound diversion track in the future. Richmond has just gone through a major rebuild (with watermain replacement) from York to past Spadina. Was a provision for a streetcar track built into the design – placing watermain and other utilities so that a track can be dropped in? Alternatively, Wellington hasn’t yet been rebuilt west of York – is there a plan to add a track there? But even then, Wellington would be best as a detour for King, and we shouldn’t be detouring King.

    As an aside, Adelaide has somewhat recently been resurfaced from Simcoe to past York, and the track there was removed or at least covered over very well.

    Having said all this – the TOINview info for Adelaide does say “Track Replacement (Tangent Track): Replacement of the streetcar tracks/rails and the underlying support materials. Work may include resurfacing or reconstruction of the adjacent road/traffic lanes.” so maybe they’ll do it anyway and use it rarely.

    If so – over-under on the chances of the TTC rebuild actually syncing with the Transportation Services plan to move the cycle track to north side of Adelaide?

    Steve: A primary purpose for diversions is to get around events at City Hall on Queen. A diversion via Richmond to York can achieve this, although in recent years they seem to prefer King so that Queen can be closed east of University. As for King, a major pain in the butt is the Tiff diversion, and the extra time needed is particularly bad eastbound. Adelaide would be faster once there isn’t a construction site every block or so to screw up traffic there. As for the bike lane, or the street generally, this would be a chance for a complete rethink over the length of the construction project. I hope the city makes use of this.

    The work from Simcoe to York was primarily to deal with the condition of the University Avenue crossing.


  10. Why is the TIFF diversion particularly bad eastbound? Because it’s inbound to downtown, or?

    Steve: Queen is more congested eastbound when TIFF pushes traffic north from King. Also, the diversion run the full length from Spadina to Church, whereas westbound it is only from York to Spadina. The absence of transit priority for several of the turns is a sore point.

    How many events per year at City Hall are so large as to fill up Nathan Phillips Square and spill over onto the street?

    Steve: This depends on what is going on (sports team wins, for example). Fewer than ten.


  11. Update February 4, 2021: The list of McNicoll Garage routes is in the February CEO’s Report: 10 Van Horne, 17 Birchmount, 39 Finch East, 42 Cummer, 43 Kennedy, 51 Leslie, 53 Steeles East, 57 Midland, 68 Warden, 115 Silver Hills, 122 Graydon Hall, 129 McCowan North, 167 Pharmacy North, 939 Finch East Express and 953 Steeles East Express.


Comments are closed.