504A King Service Returns to Distillery Loop

Effective October 1, 2022, the 504A branch of the King car will return to Distillery Loop. The 504B branch will continue to operate to Broadview Station via Parliament and Queen as shown below.

Source: TTC Service Notice

This is a temporary arrangement pending completion of the re-electrification of switches at King and Sumach. Once that is completed, expected within a few days, the 504B will revert to the standard route via King between Parliament and the Don Bridge. If this situation lasts to Monday, October 3 or later, the 503 Kingston Road car will also continue to divert via Queen and Parliament.

This change will reduce streetcar congestion at Broadview Station because only half of the service will go that far east on the line. It will also eliminate some of the wheel squeal problems at King and Parliament, although not completely until the 504B service returns to its normal route.

Service will return to the Sumach and Cherry Streets that have been without reliable service since the beginning of August. The 504 shuttle bus was extremely erratic with very wide gaps in service, and it as cancelled completely on September 4 even though signs remained on transit shelters advertising its existence. The area is also served by the 121 Esplanade-River bus which has its own problems with reliability.

Updated October 1, 2022 at 7:10 am: The west end of the King car will divert to Wolseley Loop at Queen and Bathurst rather than operating to Exhibition Loop due to trackwork on Fleet Street. This also affects 511 Bathurst which diverts east to Charlotte Loop and 509 Harbourfront which short turns at Spadina and is replaced by a bus shuttle from the to the Exhibition. Normal service resumes on Monday, October 3.

9 thoughts on “504A King Service Returns to Distillery Loop

  1. Have you received the memo for the October 9 service change yet?

    Steve: No. But the GTFS schedule files are now online and they confirm that 501 Queen will be extended west to Sunnyside Loop.

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  2. So it will be almost 9 weeks before this place is fully operational again? Who will the TTC blame if not Toronto Hydro? Themselves?

    Steve: There have been a few cases where diversions were scheduled to begin before construction projects actually got underway. In this case, there was a two week delay before they got started in mid-August, and the work then seemed to take an inordinate amount of time. It was scheduled to be back to normal for the September board period, but as we know they missed that target by a mile. Physically, the intersection was open a week ago, but for some reason streetcars were not allowed to use it at least for east-west passage avoiding delays on the Parliament-Queen route. The issue seems to be that the TTC wants the electric switches hooked up before restoring full service. and that requires Toronto Hydro inspection.

    Meanwhile, although the 503 Kingston Road service was extended to Bathurst Street in September, Charlotte Loop at Spadina/Adelaide is still very much in use.

    506 Carlton won’t get back to Carlton Street until mid-October. The big problem for that route is that the running time via Dundas is inadequate for traffic conditions there.

    Actual construction at King-Shaw will start next week (Oct 3 or so) about a month after the diversion set up for it began. Don’t get me stared about KQQR which has been a huge problem from the outset.

    A valuable “lesson learned” might be to design diversions with contingency plans to implement them as needed rather than on the schedule change dates. This would not always be possible due to running times and crewing considerations, but there should be some thought to moving off the standard routings as late as possible and restoring service as early as possible.

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  3. 506 Carlton won’t get back to Carlton Street until mid-October. The big problem for that route is that the running time via Dundas is inadequate for traffic conditions there.

    For reasons unknown, 501 Queen’s Nuit Blanche diversion is also running on Dundas together with the 505 and 506 and it’s going about as well as the TTC’s latest junction replacements.

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  4. Any sign of the October timetables? Hopefully they’ve fixed the 506 schedule.

    Steve: They are not out yet. Carlton is expected to go back to the originally planned Bay-Dundas-Ossington diversion in mid-October, and this will at least get those cars out of Dundas Square.

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  5. I guess we are a bit off-topic – but mid-October is more optimistic than I heard before. That will help a bit.

    Even when they do go back to the current detour, the root cause of the 506 disaster is that they didn’t add one second to the schedule – even during August when the detour was going as planned. It’s a perfect case-study of why the schedule has to have enough time – and that even slightly less frequent service that is stable, is better than a more frequent service that is unpredictable.

    I’ve lived near Gerrard for about 20 years, and it’s never been this bad. I actually drove to downtown the other day for the first time when I wasn’t trying to transport something. Can’t go to the theatre when it’s going to be a 45-minute wait for a streetcar.

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  6. That section of track isn’t pantograph-operable?

    Steve: There are parts of the west end of the line (when it goes that far) that have not been converted yet, and so King is officially still a trolley pole route.

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  7. The Fleet closure has been extended until the 6th. 511 cars are looping at Queens Quay loop and 509 cars are sharing Wolseley loop with the 503. I don’t know why they don’t just cancel the 509 and extend the 511 to run between Bathurst station and Union station.

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