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Ontario Line (was Relief Line South, in Design)

W. K. Lis

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TheTigerMaster

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Post published 4 hours ago.

They should write an article on how the Ontario Line will never properly relieve the Yonge Line congestion. In fact, maybe that’s why they stopped calling it the Relief Line!

Ontario Line: Small trains for a more congested commute!
 
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44 North

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People on this site were keeping track of the massive PR team Metrolinx was building during the previous party. I guess this is the outcome, articles of sorts. Maybe they should hire Lyndsey Vanstone and roll the whole thing into Ontario News Now. Viewership will be in the dozens. Dozens!!
 

TheTigerMaster

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They can’t build transit effectively, Presto is a dumpster fire, but at least they have really good PR and a whole lot of secrecy to absolve themselves of any public accountability whatsoever

Back when that other party was in power, I used to joke that Metrolinx was just a glorified PR agency, but damn they've really outdone themselves under the PC government
 

salsa

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They should write an article on how the Ontario Line will never properly relieve the Yonge Line congestion. In fact, maybe that’s why they stopped calling it the Relief Line!

Ontario Line: Small trains for a more congested commute!
Did anyone notice how all the talk of how the relief line must go all the way to Sheppard in order to actually work, has completely died since the debut of the Ontario Line? I await the article that will explain the terrific news that the Line 1 capacity crisis is not as severe as we were previously told. An article that will explain how all their previous studies were bunk, therefore the Eglinton to Sheppard leg is not a priority anymore.
 

MisterF

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The fact that stuff is being built now has nothing to do with Metrolinx, and everything to do with the increased availability of funding for transit construction. This stuff would be getting built with or without Metrolinx.
I'd argue that the establishment of Metrolinx has helped give a larger and more unified voice to transit expansion in the GTA. It has helped push it forward on the public agenda in a way that a dozen separate municipalities never would have on their own. It could be argued that without Metrolinx there would be no regional transportation plan and no GO expansion. How much Metrolinx is a cause or a symptom of the increased importance of transit is of course debatable.

You just have to look at how Metrolinx was used to secretly cancel the Sheppard East LRT, without telling their municipal partners, to see how detrimental Metrolinx has been to the process. If Metrolinx did not exist, and we went back to the old days where Queen's Park would just write the TTC a cheque to build the thing, the SELRT would've been running for five years now.

It's a similar story with the Finch West LRT as well.

Cannot emphasize enough that without Metrolinx's involvement , the SELRT and FWLRT would be up and running, and the Crosstown would be mere months from revenue service, save for any construction-related delays (which Metrolinx is not immune to either). Their principal job is to deliver transit expansion. They've demonstrably failed. All the regional coordination in the world doesn't mean anything if these projects aren't getting delivered.
The key word in your post: used. Metrolinx was used to cancel the Sheppard LRT, but that's not the fault of the existence of a regional transportation agency. The provincial government was cancelling transit projects long before Metrolinx was ever dreamed up. Toronto's own mayor unilaterally cancelled Transit City, and his brother cancelling the relief line was a decision that came out of the premier's office. Toronto going it alone would never have come up with GO expansion, something with far more benefit to Torontonians than the SELRT or FWLRT could ever have.

If politicians are using Metrolinx to cancel transit plans and push their own pet projects, that's a criticism of how Metrolinx is structured, not of the concept of a regional transportation body in general. Toronto going it alone would only make things worse.
 

Kyle Campbell

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They should write an article on how the Ontario Line will never properly relieve the Yonge Line congestion. In fact, maybe that’s why they stopped calling it the Relief Line!

Ontario Line: Small trains for a more congested commute!
Well.... Smaller trains in and of themselves isn't necessarily bad. Many European cities run smaller trains, but they have a much denser metro network. If this is the only subway they build for the next 50 years (given how long it's been since the last one) it's definitely underbuilt. However, if Metrolinx comes up with a vision where there's going to be a much grander network then you'll be way better off than you are now.


Sadly I know which outcome is the likely one.....
 

raptor

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19-140 - Program Management Services Consultant/Owner’s Engineer for the Subway Program

DESCRIPTION
In the 2019 Budget, the Province of Ontario committed to building four new rapid transit projects as part of its new Subway Transit Plan for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area. This historic transportation vision will better connect people and reduce travel times across the region. The four projects (each, a “Subways Project”) are the Yonge North Subway Extension project, the Scarborough Subway Extension project, the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension project and the Ontario Line project.
In order to support this initiative, the PMSC/OE shall provide project controls and program management services in relation to the Subways Program as described in the Scope of Services.
 

mdrejhon

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Well.... Smaller trains in and of themselves isn't necessarily bad. Many European cities run smaller trains, but they have a much denser metro network. If this is the only subway they build for the next 50 years (given how long it's been since the last one) it's definitely underbuilt. However, if Metrolinx comes up with a vision where there's going to be a much grander network then you'll be way better off than you are now.

Sadly I know which outcome is the likely one.....
Glass half full view.

Inefficiencies nonwithstanding -- I think Metrolinxs' existence is going to be seen as an important factor in having exited the Transit dark ages (~1995-2015).
  1. While, GO RER is delayed, it's still GO Expansion with electrification planned.
  2. A decade ago, it was hourly service on Lakeshore lines. Now it's 15min-30min minute service.
  3. Like or hate the Presto system, the same fare card taps on almost all transit systems from Hamilton through Oshawa.
  4. Pearson turned a 180 from charging UPX for parking losses, to being all "rah-rah" cheerleading Union Station North happening. This is a big change in Pearson mentality.
  5. Many of our LRTs still survived from Transit City days. Sure, it's still RIP Jane LRT, but the due diligence is progressing for most of the routes.
  6. We actually have a new downtown subway initiative seriously being begun and will realistically at least start construction in under a decade
  7. We've got a TTC streetcar network that is quite noticeably LRT-ifying (new streetcars, pantographs, new right of ways) and will accelerate once more clean-sheet LRTs are built (Hurontario, Crosstown, Finch). King Transit Pilot will probably domino into a new King LRT within 25 years (considering its intersecting 6 subway stations combined, TTC + OL).
  8. Even the least-transit-friendly government is still rooting transit forward a lot more than yesteryear
  9. There is massively increasing pressures from climate change legislation (e.g. meeting goals, increased funding for transit, etc) which will keep transit-building momentum.
Toronto metro route builds will be far more frequent in the next 50 years than it has been in the last 50. One will need to stretch out timelines 1.5x to 2x but many buildouts feel like they are actually happening.
 
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W. K. Lis

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The TTC and GO needs a co-fare agreement. If so, then the GO Trains can become an "express" service for those within the City of Toronto.

Can someone update this article. It's from July, 2019. From link.

Government will stop funding subsidy for discounted GTA transit fares

The Ontario government will be cutting a subsidy that provides discounted fares for riders using GO Transit and Toronto's transit system in the same trip, leaving the two agencies to come up with a way to keep the popular program running.

Regional transit agency Metrolinx - which runs GO trains and buses through the Greater Toronto and Hamilton region - said it hopes to work with the Toronto Transit Commission to sustain the program when the provincial funds run out next year.

The so-called Discounted Double Fare was created by the previous Liberal government in 2017 and offers riders using both systems, as well as the Union-Pearson Express to Toronto's airport, a $1.50 discount for a single trip when using a Presto fare card.

The province paid $18.5 million a year to offset the cost of the discount for both transit agencies, but the current Progressive Conservatives say the funding was designed to be temporary. A three-year agreement on the subsidy is set to expire in March 2020.

Metrolinx CEO Phil Verster said in a June 18 letter to the TTC that a new cost-sharing agreement is needed for next year, when the provincial funding ends.

“Metrolinx proposes a sustainable strategy for continuation of this fare integration initiative, one that does not use a subsidy from the provincial government,” he wrote. “A new agreement and strategy is needed for next year and beyond.”

A spokesman for the Ministry of Transportation said Metrolinx's proposed strategy - where it and the TTC share the cost of providing the discount - would allow both agencies to “mutually benefit from the revenue generated through increased ridership.”
The program has become so popular that it exceeded the provincial subsidy in 2018-2019 by $2.5 million and is on track to exceed it again, this time by $10 million, in the fall, Verster said in his letter to the TTC.

He said a new agreement to save the program is needed by October.


“Metrolinx intends to adopt the aforementioned discount to GO fares even if the City of Toronto and TTC decide not to match the transfer discount on the TTC fare,” he wrote.

TTC spokesman Stuart Green said Tuesday that nothing had been finalized but noted that Metrolinx had advised the agency of “potential changes to this popular program.”

“We have not yet responded as we need to understand the unanticipated cost pressures on our operating budget and report those to our board,” he said in a statement.

In a report to the agency's board ahead of a meeting Wednesday, TTC CEO Rick Leary said a detailed cost-benefit analysis will be conducted before a decision is made in September.

“If the TTC continues with the program, there could be unanticipated budget pressures for the remainder of 2019 and all of 2020 due to the loss of the provincial subsidy,” Leary wrote.

NDP transit critic Jessica Bell criticized the government for cutting the subsidy, saying it should be promoting fare integration across transit systems in the region.

“Forcing commuters to dig into their pockets for an extra $1.50 per round-trip is going to hurt the monthly bottom-line for already-squeezed working people,” she said in a statement.
 

mdrejhon

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I'd like to hear an update to whatever wrangling is going on behind the scenes.

If this is lapsed, it will resurrect rather quickly after hell breaks loose. Can't have an empty Union Ghost* Station (haunted during offpeak), shall we, dear politicians?

*Happy Halloween
 
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Coolstar

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Glass half full view.

Inefficiencies nonwithstanding -- I think Metrolinxs' existence is going to be seen as an important factor in having exited the Transit dark ages (~1995-2015).
  1. While, GO RER is delayed, it's still GO Expansion with electrification planned.
  2. A decade ago, it was hourly service on Lakeshore lines. Now it's 15min-30min minute service.
  3. Like or hate the Presto system, the same fare card taps on almost all transit systems from Hamilton through Oshawa.
  4. Pearson turned a 180 from charging UPX for parking losses, to being all "rah-rah" cheerleading Union Station North happening. This is a big change in Pearson mentality.
  5. Many of our LRTs still survived from Transit City days. Sure, it's still RIP Jane LRT, but the due diligence is progressing for most of the routes.
  6. We actually have a new downtown subway initiative seriously being begun and will realistically at least start construction in under a decade
  7. We've got a TTC streetcar network that is quite noticeably LRT-ifying (new streetcars, pantographs, new right of ways) and will accelerate once more clean-sheet LRTs are built (Hurontario, Crosstown, Finch). King Transit Pilot will probably domino into a new King LRT within 25 years (considering its intersecting 6 subway stations combined, TTC + OL).
  8. Even the least-transit-friendly government is still rooting transit forward a lot more than yesteryear
  9. There is massively increasing pressures from climate change legislation (e.g. meeting goals, increased funding for transit, etc) which will keep transit-building momentum.
Toronto metro route builds will be far more frequent in the next 50 years than it has been in the last 50. One will need to stretch out timelines 1.5x to 2x but many buildouts feel like they are actually happening.
Jane LRT hasn't been cancelled, it's just low on the priority list. Sheppard East LRT is completely dead.
 

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