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GTHA Transit Fare Integration

afransen

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It literally doesn't matter what the TTC thinks, and how financially advantageous it would be. They are a recipient of decisions like this, not deciders.
 

ARG1

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I agree, it's certainly not ideal. The ideal solution is the one presented by the Board of Trade but now that it has been presented, Metrolinx probably won't go for it if for no other reason than they don't want to copy an idea that wasn't theirs.

That said, if the TTC flatly refuses to accept any scheme that would hurt their books then perhaps this is the only way to go.
I have no idea why you'd believe that. Johnathan English has very close ties to Metrolinx as an organization, and if anything I'd be more concerned that Metrolinx would just copy the TRBOT suggestion verbatim, including all of its flaws.
 

ARG1

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What do you see as its flaws?
The big one is that despite English's best attempt at making it mode neutral, it really isn't and strictly following municipal borders does lead to significant mode favouritism. The first example is the Kitchener Line.
1624601123239.png

From the fare information seen on the right, Brampton -> Toronto does exist as a zone pair, going from Brampton to Zone B should cost a regular base fare, however because lines like the Kitchener cut the corner of Mississauga, trips along the Kitchener line could charge an additional $2.50 just for making these corner cuts, especially since stations like Malton exist which are unambiguously in Mississauga, and if we were to hand that station over to Zone D, people would have to be charged extra for no good reason if travelling south to Mississauga which doesn't make much sense either. This also means that if you were to take a direct bus from Bramalea to Woodbine Centre, you would save $2.50 compared to taking the Kitchener Line, which the fundamental idea of mode neutrality should try to avoid. This could be solved by creating gray areas in the zone system (making some stations or areas both Zone C and D simultaneously for instance) but this is an area of consultation and discussion that could take some time and would be a significant modification from the proposed plan.

The second issue I've talked about previously and that's Zone A. While conceptually the idea of having to pay more to get further into the core of a major city is arguably a good one, and is a good model when considering a commuter travelling from Brampton or Vaughan to Toronto, when you consider how radial GO and how every line travels through Zone A, this does create a few consequences. For instance if one were to travel from Mississauga to Scarborough, you'd have two options. 1) Take the Kitchener Line through Union, and assuming it will throughrun to the Stouffville Line, continue along it to Kennedy or Agincourt or wherever you need to go, or 2) Take the Kitchener to Mt. Dennis, transfer to Line 5, ride all the way down to Kennedy, then transfer onto Stouffville or Line 2 or whatever. The way the proposal is set up, the Eglinton Line route would allow the rider to avoid Zone A, and save $2.50, however it being a Low Floor LRT with a fairly significant at grade portion means that it will likely be significantly slower than a direct Kitchener -> Stouffville route and thus the faster mode will also end up being locked behind a paywall (And before anyone asks, I did personally ask English if a GO train ride that just passes through Zone A would add to the zone count you pass through and he confirmed that this is indeed the case). To give a more extreme situation, theoretically if one were to ride from Mississauga to Pickering, theoretically if you were to somehow get from Long Branch or Mimico to Eglinton, ride the Eglinton Line to Eglinton GO, then transfer back onto the Lakeshore Line, one could save money by again, going on slower modes, which is something the proposal theoretically wants to avoid.
 

DirectionNorth

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The big one is that despite English's best attempt at making it mode neutral, it really isn't and strictly following municipal borders does lead to significant mode favouritism. The first example is the Kitchener Line.
View attachment 330336
From the fare information seen on the right, Brampton -> Toronto does exist as a zone pair, going from Brampton to Zone B should cost a regular base fare, however because lines like the Kitchener cut the corner of Mississauga, trips along the Kitchener line could charge an additional $2.50 just for making these corner cuts, especially since stations like Malton exist which are unambiguously in Mississauga, and if we were to hand that station over to Zone D, people would have to be charged extra for no good reason if travelling south to Mississauga which doesn't make much sense either. This also means that if you were to take a direct bus from Bramalea to Woodbine Centre, you would save $2.50 compared to taking the Kitchener Line, which the fundamental idea of mode neutrality should try to avoid. This could be solved by creating gray areas in the zone system (making some stations or areas both Zone C and D simultaneously for instance) but this is an area of consultation and discussion that could take some time and would be a significant modification from the proposed plan.
Gray zones should be enough.
The second issue I've talked about previously and that's Zone A. While conceptually the idea of having to pay more to get further into the core of a major city is arguably a good one, and is a good model when considering a commuter travelling from Brampton or Vaughan to Toronto, when you consider how radial GO and how every line travels through Zone A, this does create a few consequences. For instance if one were to travel from Mississauga to Scarborough, you'd have two options. 1) Take the Kitchener Line through Union, and assuming it will throughrun to the Stouffville Line, continue along it to Kennedy or Agincourt or wherever you need to go, or 2) Take the Kitchener to Mt. Dennis, transfer to Line 5, ride all the way down to Kennedy, then transfer onto Stouffville or Line 2 or whatever. The way the proposal is set up, the Eglinton Line route would allow the rider to avoid Zone A, and save $2.50, however it being a Low Floor LRT with a fairly significant at grade portion means that it will likely be significantly slower than a direct Kitchener -> Stouffville route and thus the faster mode will also end up being locked behind a paywall (And before anyone asks, I did personally ask English if a GO train ride that just passes through Zone A would add to the zone count you pass through and he confirmed that this is indeed the case). To give a more extreme situation, theoretically if one were to ride from Mississauga to Pickering, theoretically if you were to somehow get from Long Branch or Mimico to Eglinton, ride the Eglinton Line to Eglinton GO, then transfer back onto the Lakeshore Line, one could save money by again, going on slower modes, which is something the proposal theoretically wants to avoid.
My solution would be to calculate it by minimum amount of zones to get to destination, rather than zones travelled through. Let's take your Mississauga to Scarborough example. Here, you would pay the price of $5, because the minimum amount of zones travelled through is 2, even though you pass through 3 zones. Or if you're going from Waterloo to Brampton using GO, even though you pass through 4 zones, you pay the price of 3 zones.
 

TJ O'Pootertoot

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I admit that all the mechanics of it give me headache and while the TRBOT plan seemed pretty good to me, I can understand why TTC had issues.

All I'll say about all the various models is... we're not reinventing the wheel here. We never are. We're always doing something everyone else did years ago. So, TTC is very proud of its flat fare - and justifiably so (as with their successful bus integration) - but it's reflective of patterns that just don't work anymore. It's time to accept that you are the biggest part (by far!) of a larger network and consider the realities of that instead of trying to hold on to something untenable.

Zones of some kind are going to be what works and the devil may be in the details but they have to make a decision and rip the band-aid off, already. The idea we might get to 2030 with the same fare system we have now is just too out-there to think about.
 
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Coolstar

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allengeorge

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Brampton leading the way in actually making transit work for people.
 

ssiguy2

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Technically it's great news but the reality is that this conversation between Brampton and Toronto should not be taking place because this is Metrolinx's job.

The whole point of Metrolinx is to coordinate transit in the entire GTHA so you don't get these one-off attempts making the fare system all but impossible unless you have a math degree. They increasingly seem to just be withdrawing from the whole process but for some unknown reason the people, politicians, and media in Greater Toronto seem to let them get away with it no questions asked.
 

EastYorkTTCFan

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Technically it's great news but the reality is that this conversation between Brampton and Toronto should not be taking place because this is Metrolinx's job.

The whole point of Metrolinx is to coordinate transit in the entire GTHA so you don't get these one-off attempts making the fare system all but impossible unless you have a math degree. They increasingly seem to just be withdrawing from the whole process but for some unknown reason the people, politicians, and media in Greater Toronto seem to let them get away with it no questions asked.
The problem is Metrolinx isn't doing it or what they are trying to do is get every transit system in Ontario to use fare by distance when most of them use a flat fare. Viva even switched from a fare by distance to a flat fare. I think a lot of cities have looked at Lon'don's zone fares and so no we don't want to do something that complex even when Andy Byford was the CEO of the TTC he rejected that idea.
 

ARG1

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The problem is Metrolinx isn't doing it or what they are trying to do is get every transit system in Ontario to use fare by distance when most of them use a flat fare. Viva even switched from a fare by distance to a flat fare. I think a lot of cities have looked at Lon'don's zone fares and so no we don't want to do something that complex even when Andy Byford was the CEO of the TTC he rejected that idea.
Viva was never fare by distance? It was just a zone system.
 

ssiguy2

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Metrolinx has abdicated it's responsibility when it comes to fare integration and it's Torontonians that are paying the price. Even if ML can't yet figure out how to coordinate all the systems together in a fair and easy to understand fashion that all transit agencies will accept, it does have 100% contol over it's massive GO system fares and it hasn't done anything in that regards either.
 

DirectionNorth

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The problem is Metrolinx isn't doing it or what they are trying to do is get every transit system in Ontario to use fare by distance when most of them use a flat fare. Viva even switched from a fare by distance to a flat fare. I think a lot of cities have looked at Lon'don's zone fares and so no we don't want to do something that complex even when Andy Byford was the CEO of the TTC he rejected that idea.
Why do you think it's too complicated for fare integration? The GTA is huge, a ride from Queen's Park to Union shouldn't be the same as Whitby -> Oakville.
 

turini2

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Metrolinx has abdicated it's responsibility when it comes to fare integration and it's Torontonians that are paying the price. Even if ML can't yet figure out how to coordinate all the systems together in a fair and easy to understand fashion that all transit agencies will accept, it does have 100% contol over it's massive GO system fares and it hasn't done anything in that regards either.
Politicians too... explaining to the public in Scarborough, Finch or Vaughan "oh sorry, your TTC fare will have to double because you live a long way from downtown" would go down like a bucket of cat sick!
The idea that a new fare system would be "revenue neutral" sounds okay for the transit agencies - but they'll always be winners and losers for members of the public. Nice if you only take the bus 5 stops and your fare is now much cheaper!

It does not surprise me that both the Liberals and the PCs have decided that no action is the best action.

(for context, in London - a Zone 1 to 5, peak time, single fare on 'pay as you go' with an Oyster card/contactless credit or debit card - a journey on average around 9.75 to 12.75 miles (15.7km to 20.5km) as the crow flies from Central London - currently costs £4.80. Paying in cash would be £6 - around $10 Canadian!
That would be $8.10 Canadian for a journey from Scarborough Civic Centre or Finch to downtown. Y'all are lucky!)
 

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