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TTC: Other Items (catch all)

I was going southbound from Sheppard West last night right before the incident at St. Clair West. Are the out of service announcements louder and clearer than before or is it just me?

Incident at St Clair West?

Oh how I miss the garbled announcements of the H4 trains.
 
TTC Board approves 2024 budget that freezes fares, increases service, and improves system safety

Dec. 20, 2023

Today, the TTC Board approved a 2024 operating budget that freezes fares, continues to increase service, and invests millions of dollars in system safety and cleanliness.

The $2.6 billion combined operating budgets for both conventional and Wheel-Trans services, and represents a 7.5 per cent increase over the approved 2023 budget.

Among other highlights, the 2024 budget:
• Freezes TTC fares at 2023 rates in recognition of the impact current economic conditions have on its customers;
• Fully funds the unplanned in-year service increases made in 2023 (to 95 per cent from 91 per cent) in response to increased and changing demand;
• Funds a further service increase to 97 per cent by September 2024;
• Increases Wheel-Trans service hours to meet the rising demand, estimated to reach 84 per cent of pre-pandemic levels by year-end 2024;
• Invests more than $28 million in the TTC’s Community Safety, Security and Well-Being program;
• Addresses substantial inflationary pressures for things like vehicle parts, service contracts, and escalating employee benefit-related expenses;
• Invests in increased maintenance capacity for Line 2 as well as for new and existing streetcars to be delivered in 2024;
• Funds operating and maintenance costs for the opening of Lines 5 and 6 in 2024 as well as full-year operations on the Line 3 SRT bus replacement service; and
• Envisions 2024 fare revenues based on 80 per cent of pre-pandemic ridership levels by year-end;

“The TTC is the lifeblood of this City, and it needs to be properly funded if it is to truly be the better way,” said Mayor Olivia Chow. “Frequent, safe, and affordable transit is something I have committed to supporting for the people of Toronto, and this budget makes improvements in all of those areas.”

“This budget will ensure the transit needs of our customers and employees are protected and enhanced,” said TTC Chair Jamaal Myers. “I’m confident that with this budget we can start to return transit service to where it was before the pandemic while laying the groundwork for further improvements. I want to thank TTC finance staff for their hard work preparing this budget and our front-line employees for delivering this important service every day.”

“TTC customers are coming back quicker than we expected, and this budget allows us to meet their needs for the next year,” said TTC CEO Rick Leary. “This budget balances our need to deliver safe and reliable service while addressing the increased operating costs associated with inflation and new transit lines that we need to manage.”

The TTC Board also approved the $12.4 billion 2024-2033 capital budget plan.
Highlights include:
• Fully covering the City/TTC’s one-third share for the Subway Car procurement to ensure readiness to proceed with the procurement of 55 subway trains, should matching funding from the Federal government be available;
• Advancing accessibility projects at Warden and Islington stations, and capacity improvement projects (including Bloor-Yonge Capacity Improvements and Line 1 and Line 2 Capacity Enhancement projects);
• Providing ongoing funding for 60 new Streetcars and associated infrastructure projects at Hillcrest and Russell, and 336 Hybrid Buses, 340 eBuses and charging infrastructure based on revised delivery schedules;
• Enhancing cybersecurity initiatives.

The TTC Board also considered a revised Capital Investment Plan report.

That report shows that despite significant capital/state-of-good-repair investments, there’s a growing backlog estimated to reach $8.244 billion by 2033, with unmet capital needs anticipated at nearly $17.916 billion over 10 years and $35.458 billion over 15 years.

The report notes that investing in the TTC’s future remains crucial for the city’s vitality, offering economic, environmental, and social benefits, not only for Toronto, but also for the GTA, Province of Ontario, and Canada at large.

The Board also heard a presentation from the University of Toronto’s Mobility Network highlighting the benefits of investing in public transit. Key economic metrics included in the Value of Transit Investment Interim Findings report show that investment in TTC operations and capital works translate into:
• Every dollar invested would add an additional $0.81 dollars in GDP, generating a value-added impact resulting in an increase in profit, taxes and spending on labour;
• Every dollar invested would create the equivalent of $2.14 of economic activity (Gross Output); and
• Every $1 million invested creates 13 new jobs.

Transit also brings numerous social equity and environmental benefits, the interim report notes.

All budget reports and presentations are available at https://cdn.ttc.ca/-/media/Project/...48df9ab&hash=FCE56B024DB420B1DBAEB952F24D30C7
 
TTC Board approves 2024 budget that freezes fares, increases service, and improves system safety

Dec. 20, 2023

Today, the TTC Board approved a 2024 operating budget that freezes fares, continues to increase service, and invests millions of dollars in system safety and cleanliness.

The $2.6 billion combined operating budgets for both conventional and Wheel-Trans services, and represents a 7.5 per cent increase over the approved 2023 budget.

Among other highlights, the 2024 budget:
• Freezes TTC fares at 2023 rates in recognition of the impact current economic conditions have on its customers;
• Fully funds the unplanned in-year service increases made in 2023 (to 95 per cent from 91 per cent) in response to increased and changing demand;
• Funds a further service increase to 97 per cent by September 2024;
• Increases Wheel-Trans service hours to meet the rising demand, estimated to reach 84 per cent of pre-pandemic levels by year-end 2024;
• Invests more than $28 million in the TTC’s Community Safety, Security and Well-Being program;
• Addresses substantial inflationary pressures for things like vehicle parts, service contracts, and escalating employee benefit-related expenses;
• Invests in increased maintenance capacity for Line 2 as well as for new and existing streetcars to be delivered in 2024;
• Funds operating and maintenance costs for the opening of Lines 5 and 6 in 2024 as well as full-year operations on the Line 3 SRT bus replacement service; and
• Envisions 2024 fare revenues based on 80 per cent of pre-pandemic ridership levels by year-end;

“The TTC is the lifeblood of this City, and it needs to be properly funded if it is to truly be the better way,” said Mayor Olivia Chow. “Frequent, safe, and affordable transit is something I have committed to supporting for the people of Toronto, and this budget makes improvements in all of those areas.”

“This budget will ensure the transit needs of our customers and employees are protected and enhanced,” said TTC Chair Jamaal Myers. “I’m confident that with this budget we can start to return transit service to where it was before the pandemic while laying the groundwork for further improvements. I want to thank TTC finance staff for their hard work preparing this budget and our front-line employees for delivering this important service every day.”

“TTC customers are coming back quicker than we expected, and this budget allows us to meet their needs for the next year,” said TTC CEO Rick Leary. “This budget balances our need to deliver safe and reliable service while addressing the increased operating costs associated with inflation and new transit lines that we need to manage.”

The TTC Board also approved the $12.4 billion 2024-2033 capital budget plan.
Highlights include:
• Fully covering the City/TTC’s one-third share for the Subway Car procurement to ensure readiness to proceed with the procurement of 55 subway trains, should matching funding from the Federal government be available;
• Advancing accessibility projects at Warden and Islington stations, and capacity improvement projects (including Bloor-Yonge Capacity Improvements and Line 1 and Line 2 Capacity Enhancement projects);
• Providing ongoing funding for 60 new Streetcars and associated infrastructure projects at Hillcrest and Russell, and 336 Hybrid Buses, 340 eBuses and charging infrastructure based on revised delivery schedules;
• Enhancing cybersecurity initiatives.

The TTC Board also considered a revised Capital Investment Plan report.

That report shows that despite significant capital/state-of-good-repair investments, there’s a growing backlog estimated to reach $8.244 billion by 2033, with unmet capital needs anticipated at nearly $17.916 billion over 10 years and $35.458 billion over 15 years.

The report notes that investing in the TTC’s future remains crucial for the city’s vitality, offering economic, environmental, and social benefits, not only for Toronto, but also for the GTA, Province of Ontario, and Canada at large.

The Board also heard a presentation from the University of Toronto’s Mobility Network highlighting the benefits of investing in public transit. Key economic metrics included in the Value of Transit Investment Interim Findings report show that investment in TTC operations and capital works translate into:
• Every dollar invested would add an additional $0.81 dollars in GDP, generating a value-added impact resulting in an increase in profit, taxes and spending on labour;
• Every dollar invested would create the equivalent of $2.14 of economic activity (Gross Output); and
• Every $1 million invested creates 13 new jobs.

Transit also brings numerous social equity and environmental benefits, the interim report notes.

All budget reports and presentations are available at https://cdn.ttc.ca/-/media/Project/...48df9ab&hash=FCE56B024DB420B1DBAEB952F24D30C7
This is the City's spin on things, for a more balanced view, Steve Munro has his usual in-depth and thoughtful analyses. See: https://stevemunro.ca/
 
None of these seem like meaningful changes if they are not accompanied by bus only lanes on every major road with a bus line.

Dream with us...
 
None of these seem like meaningful changes if they are not accompanied by bus only lanes on every major road with a bus line.

Dream with us...
Doesn't matter, even with exclusive rails like line 2, they still manage to create a long backlog at the terminals.
 
None of these seem like meaningful changes if they are not accompanied by bus only lanes on every major road with a bus line.

Dream with us...
He does make a reasonable point that you don’t need an all or nothing mentality. That said, we do need sections of road with bus lanes, better enforcement, transit signal priority and more.

The core of his presentation is that by making some changes on some routes the TTC could run fewer buses more reliably but achieve better (perceived?) service. This would allow those buses to be rebalanced to improve other routes. I think that’s an interesting proposition to examine.
 
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Reece’s suggestions on improving Toronto buses:

* removing stops

Agree on this one whole heartedly.

Very conservatively the TTC could cut 20% of its local stops, and I think that would be hugely beneficial.

* express bus routes

I see a place for these, we have them now though, I think without finding ways to improve throughput and cut run times, the simple act of providing more express service either on more routes or in most time slots wouldn't be my highest priority.

* better stops with shelters

Agree on this. I think there is value in amenitizing stops to attract choice riders; though this is not a substitute for frequent, reliable service, merely a compliment to same.

and wayfinding

I won't repeat myself on wayfinding from other threads; I'll simply say I don't see this as as pressing an issue as some.

*****

Not touched on in any material way, that I think needs to be discussed:

1) Stop removals can and should work with traffic light removals, many of which were added to serve those peripheral stops, and serve to slow down buses directly (stop at red light whether stopping at a bus stop or not); and indirectly by way of greater traffic congestion.

2) Buses should not be handling cash fares at all.

3) All-door loading

4) Fare validators should not block doorways.

5) Ideally buses would be 100% low-floor

6) Additional entrance/exit doors at rear of vehicle (only works with 100% low-floor design)

7) Seats in areas for mobility aid using customers should be individual, flip-down, as they are on subways.

8) Loading standards should reflect full occupancy by persons w/mobility aids/using strollers (ie. if the standard is a fully seated loan on a 36-seat bus, but there are 2 spots for accessible seating, where a mobility aid or stroller customer would occupy 3 seats, then a full load should actually be 32, not 36 (allowing for the 4 seats occupied by strollers/mobility aids). The importance of this is the impact to dwell time when a customer with such a device needs to exit, and this forces standees off the bus and back on again. In a fully seated scenario, the dwell time is reduced.

9) Mid-block lay-bys should generally be eliminated so that TTC buses do not need to pull back into a traffic lane.
 
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Agree on this one whole heartedly.

Very conservatively the TTC could cut 20% of its local stops, and I think that would be hugely beneficial.

A prime example of this is the stop literally outside Warden Station the corner of Warden and St Clair.

Rather than walk inside the station, people wait at this stop for a bus they could have caught if they went inside. It is a pain because it delays the bus even if nobody is getting on as the driver slows down to see if anyone is waiting for that particular bus.

The only reason that stop is there is because it was previously a Sunday stop for church that used to be nearby and was used by a former night bus (which no longer exists).

Eliminating that particular stop would save a ton of time.
 
He does make a reasonable point that you don’t need an all or nothing mentality.
That may be true on lesser routes, such as the 44, 62, 76, 110, or 121, where there isn't really that much traffic to speak of.

However, when it comes to service on a major route, such as the 29, 96, 165, etc, an all or nothing mentality is the only way anything will actually materially improve. What good is it to cut stops and implement express bus services if the buses will still crawl along in the same traffic? If anything, cutting stops without implementing transit only lanes will make the problem worse - you see the bus getting close to your final destination, but instead of bailing sooner and walking the rest of the way, you will have to wait longer to approach whatever stop is preserved.
 
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A prime example of this is the stop literally outside Warden Station the corner of Warden and St Clair.

Rather than walk inside the station, people wait at this stop for a bus they could have caught if they went inside. It is a pain because it delays the bus even if nobody is getting on as the driver slows down to see if anyone is waiting for that particular bus.

The only reason that stop is there is because it was previously a Sunday stop for church that used to be nearby and was used by a former night bus (which no longer exists).

Eliminating that particular stop would save a ton of time.
Agreed with the general premise of cutting down on closely spaced stops, but the history here is that TTC converted this particular stop at Warden from Sunday/night to full time, and installed similar stops at Islington, as accessible transfer points given that the bus terminals are not accessible. Presumably they will remove these stops when the new bus terminals are completed.
 
Steve Munro has published an examination of how the TTC schedules have changed (or will change once they "return service to 95%"). https://stevemunro.ca/2023/12/28/when-95-really-isnt-95/

I mostly use two bus routes, the 75 Sherbourne and the 121 Esplanade and find it interesting that the 75, which is usually crowded, gets less service while the 121, which is almost empty unless it's Christmas Market week, is getting more!
 
Steve Munro has published an examination of how the TTC schedules have changed (or will change once they "return service to 95%"). https://stevemunro.ca/2023/12/28/when-95-really-isnt-95/

I mostly use two bus routes, the 75 Sherbourne and the 121 Esplanade and find it interesting that the 75, which is usually crowded, gets less service while the 121, which is almost empty unless it's Christmas Market week, is getting more!
It's a strange metric the TTC is using to justify this 95% figure
 

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