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Fate of the SRT

What do you believe should be done about the SRT?


  • Total voters
    190

nfitz

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Most folks are heading to Kennedy anyway and will benefit from one less transfer and higher corridor speeds with a subway.
One less transfer perhaps, but even the first generation Skytrain vehicles average a higher speed than the subway! Check out the average speed the TTC reports the the SRT compared to the subway - particularly the similiar length Sheppard Line.
 

scarberiankhatru

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One less transfer perhaps, but even the first generation Skytrain vehicles average a higher speed than the subway! Check out the average speed the TTC reports the the SRT compared to the subway - particularly the similiar length Sheppard Line.

If the subway was routed straight to STC through Brimley & Lawrence (the most probable alignment), it'd be a shorter trip than the SRT, have two fewer stops, and eliminate a transfer, which, combined, more than makes up the matter of seconds gained via faster SRT vehicles. Nice try, though.
 

Voltz

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One less transfer perhaps, but even the first generation Skytrain vehicles average a higher speed than the subway! Check out the average speed the TTC reports the the SRT compared to the subway - particularly the similiar length Sheppard Line.

The average speed is higher on the SRT because of wider stop spacing and the fact that it spends less time at terminals. Does not really depend on the vehicle type.

The TTC could operate their subways faster than they do currently, but they don't.
 

Rainforest

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If the subway was routed straight to STC through Brimley & Lawrence (the most probable alignment), it'd be a shorter trip than the SRT, have two fewer stops, and eliminate a transfer, which, combined, more than makes up the matter of seconds gained via faster SRT vehicles. Nice try, though.

The difference will be fairly small even if the subway comes the winner.

Besides, extension with just one stop at Brimley & Lawrence is not the best solution. If a new subway tunnel is going to be built for 1.2 B instead of installing LRT on the existing guideway for 490 M, perhaps it is worth to spend a little more and build 2 or 3 stations between Kennedy and STC, to promote intensification.
 

scarberiankhatru

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The difference will be fairly small even if the subway comes the winner.

Besides, extension with just one stop at Brimley & Lawrence is not the best solution. If a new subway tunnel is going to be built for 1.2 B instead of installing LRT on the existing guideway for 490 M, perhaps it is worth to spend a little more and build 2 or 3 stations between Kennedy and STC, to promote intensification.

Nope, the actual difference would be quite substantial, even if the SRT physically travels 10 seconds or whatever faster per km. Two fewer stations, ~1km shorter trip, one less transfer, and potentially more than 10 total minutes. And the transfer isn't just waiting for the next vehicle, it's waiting for the next vehicle in service, it's getting from one platform to another via an unknown distance and number of stairs, and it's also waiting on a subway or SRT vehicle while it stops right before Kennedy to let vehicles by in the other direction. Even if the subway extension took the same alignment as the SRT, the loss of the transfer makes up for the marginally faster SRT vehicles several times over.

Spending a dime on the corridor that doesn't go towards extending the Danforth line is obscene and irresponsible.
 

unimaginative2

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Rainforest, how well do you know the area? Where would you put the additional stations? There just aren't a lot of suitable spots.

The time savings between Kennedy and STC would be substantial, but the real savings come from eliminating the useless Kennedy transfer.
 
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Coruscanti Cognoscente

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It's my belief that the subway should serve major centres. Hence why I support Sheppard and Danforth both serving STC. Also why I believe MCC should be served by subway. If the Bloor line served MCC, a lot more people would take the subway from Mississauga rather than driving on the Gardiner. Having Bloor-Danforth reaching from MCC in the west to STC in the east just makes sense to me, even if the vast majority of riders are NOT going from MCC to STC. It would still open up a lot of possibilities.
 

BMO

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It's my belief that the subway should serve major centres. Hence why I support Sheppard and Danforth both serving STC. Also why I believe MCC should be served by subway. If the Bloor line served MCC, a lot more people would take the subway from Mississauga rather than driving on the Gardiner. Having Bloor-Danforth reaching from MCC in the west to STC in the east just makes sense to me, even if the vast majority of riders are NOT going from MCC to STC. It would still open up a lot of possibilities.

amen, amen, but that would cost money, and we know how the ttc reacts to money :p
 

Rainforest

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Rainforest, how well do you know the area? Where would you put the additional stations? There just aren't a lot of suitable spots.

I don't know that area too well, and my suggestion was based mainly on some previous posts I read here. Thus, there was a proposal to run the extension along Danforth - McCowan. In that case, stations could be added at Eglinton / Danforth, then Lawrence / McCowan (near the hospital), and Ellesmere.

But if that is not correct and no useful stations other than Lawrence / Brimley can be added, it is a disincentive for the subway extension. Just elimination of the transfer at Kennedy is not a good enough reason to spend 1.2 B (subway extension) instead of 490 M (building LRT on the existing, fully separate guideway).

The expected ridership volume should be examined more carefully though. The Metrolinx's Modeling Backgrounder gives a peak point projection of 6,400 pphpd in 2031, but obviously the model can't be very accurate for such a long perspective.

If I had the authority, I'd ask their modeling team to recalculate the SRT's projected peak point ridership under varying input assumptions. If it never exceeds 10,000, I would opt for the LRT as it will easily handle the volume, and save the difference for other GTA projects.

If the demand might exceed 10,000 - 12,000, then subway extension might be a better choice. Technically the fully separate section of LRT can be designed to handle 15,000 or more pphpd, but at some point that will defeat the interoperability with the on-street ROW sections (where longer trains can't run), and we will end up with too many transfers once again.
 

scarberiankhatru

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There's more involved in determining usefulness than robotically calculating ratios of largely arbitrary and biased figures. I don't know if planning by numbers is worse than planning by streetcar-philic ideology, though.
 

unimaginative2

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10,000 an hour on a streetcar? I know streetcar evangelists will claim that a streetcar can do just about anything, but I can't think of a system in all of North America that moves that many people. Sure, you can string a bunch of them together to create a subway train, a strange approach considering that streetcars cost more than twice as much as subway vehicles, but then you can't very well run them down the street, which is supposed to be the big advantage of LRT.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that there aren't too many subway lines in the world that have 10,000 people per hour at their second-last station.
 

Rainforest

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10,000 an hour on a streetcar? I know streetcar evangelists will claim that a streetcar can do just about anything, but I can't think of a system in all of North America that moves that many people. Sure, you can string a bunch of them together to create a subway train, a strange approach considering that streetcars cost more than twice as much as subway vehicles, but then you can't very well run them down the street, which is supposed to be the big advantage of LRT.

This has nothing to do with evangelism. Note that the particular light rail line we are talking about would run on the existing fully separated guideway, which is quite different from the on-street ROW planned for most of other Toronto's lines.

New cars for the light rail network are expected to have capacity about 170. So, two-car trains can carry up to 340. Running them on 2-min headways (which is certainly possible on the guideway, since it is fully separated) means 30 trains per hour, or about 10,000 pphpd.

Past the guideway, the route can be split into two branches on 4-min headways, or three branches on 6-min headway, or some trains can short-turn at STC.

Theoretically, the guideway can handle even more than 10,000, either running longer trains or operating with shorter headways. But then the integration with sections past the guideway might become tricky. Longer trains won't run there. Running a mix of say 50% short trains and 50% long trains would be a trade-off that limits both the capacity of guideway and the branching options. Sticking to short 2-car trains but trying to run them more frequently, say every 90 s or every 75 s, requires very precise timing of the trains from feeder branches entering the main route. That precision would be hard to achieve.

So, if a peak demand of more than 10,000 might be reached, then perhaps the subway extension is a better choice.
 
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Voltz

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10,000 an hour on a streetcar? I know streetcar evangelists will claim that a streetcar can do just about anything, but I can't think of a system in all of North America that moves that many people. Sure, you can string a bunch of them together to create a subway train, a strange approach considering that streetcars cost more than twice as much as subway vehicles, but then you can't very well run them down the street, which is supposed to be the big advantage of LRT.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that there aren't too many subway lines in the world that have 10,000 people per hour at their second-last station.

You can call it a streetcar as many times as you want, but you and everyone else knows that a modern LRT line has almost nothing in common with the TTC's existing streetcar lines.


It's my belief that the subway should serve major centres. Hence why I support Sheppard and Danforth both serving STC. Also why I believe MCC should be served by subway. If the Bloor line served MCC, a lot more people would take the subway from Mississauga rather than driving on the Gardiner. Having Bloor-Danforth reaching from MCC in the west to STC in the east just makes sense to me, even if the vast majority of riders are NOT going from MCC to STC. It would still open up a lot of possibilities.

Tell me how that is not evangelism, especially with the amen amen response. I am not saying those subways are a bad idea, but just because you or anyone believes something should be done, or it just makes sense / it's only logical, without any kind of good reason to back it up does not sound like anything beyond evangelism to me.
 

unimaginative2

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This has nothing to do with evangelism. Note that the particular light rail line we are talking about would run on the existing fully separated guideway, which is quite different from the on-street ROW planned for most of other Toronto's lines.

New cars for the light rail network are expected to have capacity about 170. So, two-car trains can carry up to 340. Running them on 2-min headways (which is certainly possible on the guideway, since it is fully separated) means 30 trains per hour, or about 10,000 pphpd.

Past the guideway, the route can be split into two branches on 4-min headways, or three branches on 6-min headway, or some trains can short-turn at STC.

And here's the problem: the much-vaunted benefit of being able to branch out past STC becomes moot when you're running two-LRV trains. There's no way you can run what is effectively a four car train down the middle of the street. Remember, each of these new LRVs is longer than an ALRV. Then double that length.

Theoretically, the guideway can handle even more than 10,000, either running longer trains or operating with shorter headways. But then the integration with sections past the guideway might become tricky. Longer trains won't run there. Running a mix of say 50% short trains and 50% long trains would be a trade-off that limits both the capacity of guideway and the branching options. Sticking to short 2-car trains but trying to run them more frequently, say every 90 s or every 75 s, requires very precise timing of the trains from feeder branches entering the main route. That precision would be hard to achieve.

Well if you run long trains only on the existing RT route, and then short trains to continue on branches, then you're going to have even-more-abysmal frequencies on the branches. Let's say you run a train from Kennedy to STC every 90 seconds, which will be difficult enough to achieve. Then double that to every 3 minutes for the trains that actually continue past STC. With, say, three branches, that means a maximum theoretical capacity, in ideal operational circumstances, of 9-minute frequencies on the branches. Ellesmere already has a bus every 2 minutes in peak periods. That's a massive (and massively expensive) reduction in service.

And it's pretty needless to say, from the TTC's existing ROW operating experience, that very precise timing on a route with stoplights running in the middle of the street is impossible to achieve.

So, if a peak demand of more than 10,000 might be reached, then perhaps the subway extension is a better choice.

If a peak demand of more than 10,000 per hour might be reached, then the subway won't even be able to handle it. If there are already 10,000 people per hour riding at the third-last stop, there's no way people are going to be able to fit onto the trains at Broadview or Chester. And thus the Sheppard subway extension comes into play.

If you look back through the posts, I've also done a detailed examination of the relative costs of LRV trains versus subway trains. The former is almost three times as expensive in terms of vehicle costs based on the new LRV and Toronto Rocket order prices.
 

Rainforest

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And here's the problem: the much-vaunted benefit of being able to branch out past STC becomes moot when you're running two-LRV trains. There's no way you can run what is effectively a four car train down the middle of the street. Remember, each of these new LRVs is longer than an ALRV. Then double that length.

No four-car trains for on-street ROWs are suggested. I talked about a two-car trains route that gets branched.

Well if you run long trains only on the existing RT route, and then short trains to continue on branches, then you're going to have even-more-abysmal frequencies on the branches. Let's say you run a train from Kennedy to STC every 90 seconds, which will be difficult enough to achieve. Then double that to every 3 minutes for the trains that actually continue past STC. With, say, three branches, that means a maximum theoretical capacity, in ideal operational circumstances, of 9-minute frequencies on the branches. Ellesmere already has a bus every 2 minutes in peak periods. That's a massive (and massively expensive) reduction in service.

No contest. Sure, that kind of operation is not viable (and is not proposed).

If a peak demand of more than 10,000 per hour might be reached, then the subway won't even be able to handle it. If there are already 10,000 people per hour riding at the third-last stop, there's no way people are going to be able to fit onto the trains at Broadview or Chester. And thus the Sheppard subway extension comes into play.

Or DRL. If it diverts 30-40% of riders at Pape, people at Broadview or Chester will fit easily.

If you look back through the posts, I've also done a detailed examination of the relative costs of LRV trains versus subway trains. The former is almost three times as expensive in terms of vehicle costs based on the new LRV and Toronto Rocket order prices.

But the cost of vehicles is only a portion of the whole extension cost. The tunnel will cost more anyway.

Plus, the required number of new subway cars might be greater, since Danforth trains are 6-car long, versus 2-car LRV trains. The only way to reduce the number of needed new subway cars is to short-turn every 2-nd train at (or before) Kennedy.
 

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