April 26, 2012
7th Floor Boardroom
1900 Yonge Street
Valdo Tammark, Chair
Brayan Bratanov, Co-Vice Chair
Scott McArthur, Co-Vice Chair
Carol Anne Monet
Valdo Tammark, Chair, called the meeting to order at 1:06 p.m. and attendance was taken.
On motion by Howard Wax and seconded by William Castor, ACAT reviewed and approved the agenda with amendments.
On motion by Howard Wax and seconded by Brayan Bratanov, ACAT approved the March 29, 2012 minutes.
Howard Wax circulated to all members a copy of the Report on the 2012 Taxicab Industry Review for the City of Toronto. Within the report was background information used during the brainstorming sessions. It was presented to ACAT members for information and possible future discussion with TTC staff and ACAT to better guide the Taxi Industry in the City of Toronto and the TTC in providing better Public Transportation to persons with mobility impairments who require an affordable and reliable means of transportation.
A more complete report will be available over the next couple of months after the consultation process is completed.
There is no major update but some highlights.
On March 29, 2012, TTC held its second Town Hall meeting at York University where Andy Byford, Chief Operating Officer, and Chris Upfold, Chief Customer Officer, welcomed and acknowledged the Customer Liaison Panel (CLP).
On March 30, 2012, there was a formal announcement at the Commission Meeting of the Customer Liaison Panel and its members.
The TTC went through many recent changes with new Commissioners, CEO, and its structure. Chris Upfold now has a staff person to assist with the CLP minutes and agendas.
CLP has finalized a schedule for 5 meetings in 2012 - June 20, July 18, September 12, October 17, and November 14. Meetings will be from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. The location is to be arranged and Mazin will check to see if the meetings are open to the public. Should ACAT want to pass on concerns to the CLP, Mazin will bring them to the Panel.
A session on Transit 101 will be held to make the CLP members familiar with what TTC does (orientation). Mazin will not attend, but Chris Upfold will update Mazin on this event.
Design Review Subcommittee (DRS)
Glenn Johnston relayed the regrets of ACAT Design Review Subcommittee (DRS) Chair Dorothy Creaser who was not able to attend the meeting. On behalf of Dorothy, he read the notes summarizing the activities of the DRS.
Two DRS meetings were held during April. Gary Carr of the TTC’s Service Planning Department was the TTC’s staff representative at the April 4, 2012 meeting and Bill Dawson of the TTC’s Service Planning Department was the TTC’s staff representative at the April 18, 2012 meeting.
Queens Quay Intersection Design
The entire meeting on April 4, 2012 was devoted to a detailed examination of the options and considerations pertaining to TTC customers moving safely and efficiently between City of Toronto sidewalks and the TTC’s current and future streetcar services.
Mr. Adam Nicklin of the design team presented the current and potential design elements including roads, pedestrian walkways (promenades), bicycle paths, and streetcar service alignments/stops.
Numerous design considerations, particularly those which would especially impact TTC’s customers with disabilities, were discussed and issues were brought to the attention of all present. Mr. Nicklin and Mr. Carr are to undertake further assessments in light of the comments from the Subcommittee members and made a commitment to respond further in the near future.
LRT Station Design Considerations (Transit Expansion Project)
The designs and development schedules for three more LRT (Transit Expansion) stations were reviewed namely, Bathurst Station (30% design stage - second presentation), Caledonia Station (10% stage), and Chaplin Station (10% stage). The comments from the Subcommittee will be shared with the Transit Expansion Program engineers and architects and, in the case of intersection design and pedestrian access, also with the appropriate City of Toronto department(s).
PRESTO Fare Card/Device Accessibility Update
Representatives from Metrolinx and their consultants were present to update the Subcommittee on efforts to design a system that would be acceptable to the TTC and its customers, particularly customers with disabilities. Also present was Donna Bryant of the TTC Fare Card Project Office.
There were a number of matters raised that the PRESTO team will respond to through Donna Bryant. A commitment was made by PRESTO to respond in time for the Subcommittee to give further consideration to the accessibility of the system, including the devices to be used in TTC vehicles and facilities, before finalizing any operations or designs. Donna Bryant requested that PRESTO make a presentation to ACAT after the project team has assessed the advice from the Subcommittee and determined how the requested improvements would be carried out.
Mr. Jeffrey Rankin of the Light Rail Vehicle section of the Transit Expansion Projects delivered a presentation to the Subcommittee members and responded to numerous questions. He asked for representatives from the Subcommittee to join in an assessment of a mock-up of an LRV vehicle that is at a GO Transit bus garage.
TTC and GO Transit/Metrolinx staff will co-ordinate the site visit to examine the LRT soft mock- up.
The Subcommittee discussed issues with the Toronto Rocket door chimes, the Sherbourne Street bike lanes, and TTC elevators. All these matters will be discussed in further depth at future Subcommittee meetings.
Service Planning Subcommittee (SPS)
Anna Noviss, Chair, reported that there was one SPS meeting held in April.
The Subcommittee received documents summarizing the assessments of the public’s comments from the 2011 Public Forum. Members who formed the 2011 Service Planning Subcommittee observed that the 2011 Public Forum was well accepted and appreciated by the public and that the successful processes and procedures should be repeated in 2012. The document which contains excerpts from the minutes of the 2011 Subcommittees was developed in part as a guide to the 2012 ACAT Service Planning Subcommittee as it takes over the assessment and other tasks for 2012.
The Subcommittee also received documents pertaining to the communications plan for the 2012 Public Forum and the arrangements for the venue at the Queen Elizabeth Building, and on such matters as updates on the Subcommittee’s outstanding and ongoing tasks.
The following matters were addressed:
- The draft February 15, 2012 minutes were approved after minor changes were noted. The approved minutes were subsequently forwarded to Grace Santos for inclusion in the May ACAT meeting package.
- The Subcommittee was updated on the Public Forum which will be held on Thursday, May 10, 2012, 7:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Queen Elizabeth Exhibit Hall, Exhibition Place, 180 Princes’ Boulevard. The event invitation and further details can be found on the TTC website and is noted in PA and electronic signs in TTC subway stations.
The Subcommittee was provided with a further update on arrangements for captioning, ASL, shuttle bus service, elevator operation, signage, and staff to guide customers at Bathurst Station. As part of TTC Marketing Department’s communications plan, invitations were sent by regular mail and by e-mail, and various departments and Valdo Tammark were requested to review last year’s presentations.
SPS would ask that all members of ACAT attend the TTC’s 2012 Public Forum, if possible.
- The Subcommittee removed the following items from the Outstanding List as of April 25, 2012:
- The Public Forum - collecting information and ACAT advice for the 2011 Public Forum. The work pertaining to the 2011 Forum was concluded with the Subcommittee’s approval of notes in January of this year.
- Train the Trainer initiative - the review of the materials and training format was concluded at the January 11, 2012 Subcommittee meeting. Due to budget constraints, staff are not available for this project in 2012. However, the Subcommittee felt this would have been a beneficial program and is considering sharing advice on this with staff and ACAT. The Subcommittee suggested Mazin Aribi, the ACAT representative on the Customer Liaison Panel, to give further consideration to this and discuss it with ACAT as he determines appropriate.
- Station Managers – There is no budget for the expansion of this program and it was subsequently decided to delete it from the list. The Subcommittee requests ACAT to do the same for its Outstanding Items List.
- The Subcommittee updated its list of Major Ongoing Items/Priorities as follows:
- Improve Service Integration – Improving the integration of the TTC’s conventional and specialized services is an ongoing objective and a Commission priority. On April 25, 2012, the Subcommittee was briefed on a Metrolinx study including potential improved service integration. SPS is to identify potential improvements.
- Training Front Line Staff – As requested, SPS will provide advice and assistance to both the TTC’s Training Department and Wheel-Trans.
- Public Forums – SPS has the lead role amongst the ACAT Subcommittees to assist staff with the annual event and the assessment of comments from the public. On April 25, 2012, the Subcommittee was briefed and reviewed the arrangements for the 2012 event.
- Accessibility Standards and Policies – As a result of the AODA and integrated Accessibility Regulations and Commission initiatives, the TTC may face a number of potential changes in policies in 2012 and beyond. On April 25, 2012, the Subcommittee was briefed on recent discussions between Provincial and Transit Industry representatives. The Subcommittee will assist as requested.
Wheel-Trans Operations Subcommittee (WTOS)
WTOS Chair Penny Lamy was not present to provide an update.
Communications Subcommittee (CS)
Howard Wax was elected as Chair of the Communications Subcommittee at the March 30, 2012 Subcommittee meeting.
On April 20, 2012, CS held a joint meeting with WTOS wherein they reviewed and approved the March 15, 2012 WTOS minutes. The CommunityLink Newsletter insert regarding the 7-day advance booking was reviewed. Howard wanted to thank Janet O’Sullivan, Ross Visconti, Tom McPherson, and everyone in Customer Service for the good work on the insert.
CS and WTOS also went over the People in Motion Show preparations. Howard asked that any ACAT member who wants to volunteer at the Show to contact Janet, to assist her in making the volunteer schedule. The People in Motion Show will be advertised on the website after the Public Forum. At this year’s People in Motion Show, there will be no TTC staff or representatives; there will only be ACAT members.
Valdo Tammark provided an update to the Committee as follows.
The topics covered in the Quarterly Meeting include:
- Site survey of cut outs for new streetcars on Bathurst Street, at which City staff were impressed by ACAT’s input.
- Valdo requested TTC Chair Karen Stintz to advise all Commissioners that they should be present at the Public Forum.
- TTC Chair Stintz asked how the advertisement was progressing for the Public Forum. Valdo provided her with the media notification time line.
- Valdo also discussed the People in Motion Show. Chair Stintz and Andy Byford seemed confident in ACAT’s abilities.
In response to Mazin’s inquiry if these meetings are going to be regular quarterly meetings, Valdo indicated that these meetings were started by Sam Savona last year and both the Chair and CEO are committed to carry on these quarterly meetings.
Valdo Tammark reported on the March 30, 2012 Commission Meeting as follows:
- An announcement was made that Commissioner Glenn de Baeremaeker will be the interim TTC Vice-Chair until the four public members are selected. In October/November, the Vice-Chair would be selected from the public members. ACAT was provided with a list of TTC Commissioners with the agenda.
- A number of the CLP members were present and introduced.
- The Commission Meeting scheduled in April was moved to May 1, 2012.
Other Accessibility Matters
Howard Wax, Mazin Aribi, Brayan Bratanov, and Valdo Tammark attended the Town Hall meeting which was held on March 29, 2012. TTC staff were collecting public comments and questions and provided responses to them. A professional mediator was also present to handle the crowd/speakers which worked out well.
At the meeting, a comment was brought forward that the Braille signage in elevators was being vandalized.
Mazin commented that the location of the meeting, York University campus, was not easy to navigate. He recommended that drivers be given the information about the meeting location to assist them. He also noted that some WT registrants were also struggling - one on a WT bus and another on WT sedan taxi – as to the exact building location. In the future, conventional buses and WT vehicles should know where exactly the Town Hall meetings are. Howard advised that this issue will be addressed in the future.
Valdo recommends that, if any of the ACAT members has time, it would be worthwhile to attend the upcoming Town Hall meetings. The dates and locations of the upcoming Town Hall meetings are on the TTC website.
It was noted that the issue raised in Rosemarie Pavlic’s correspondence was also brought up at a Design Review Subcommittee (DRS) meeting. DRS felt that, since it was recorded that Runnymede Station will be finished in 2015, work has already started and there is nothing that ACAT or TTC can do to speed it up.
Tom McPherson advised that the TTC has already contacted the correspondent’s mother to let her know about the same day service to the subway.
On motion by Angela Marley and seconded by Howard Wax, the correspondence to Rosemarie Pavlic will be referred to TTC.
Howard Wax brought up the issue that the audible signals requested on the new Rocket trains which should indicate from what side of the train to exit have not been implemented. Glenn Johnston advised that the DRS will be addressing the Rocket audible announcements and will report back to the Committee.
Mazin Aribi brought forward the issue of moving people from WT to the conventional system. He noted that there are two components that would help, namely:
- Train the Trainer initiative done by Service Planning – due to budget constraints, this has been discontinued. On ACAT’s behalf, Mazin will bring this to the attention of the CLP.
- At the People in Motion Show, for many years, a conventional bus is displayed for people to try out and ask questions. This would assist manufacturers to determine what chairs would fit onto the buses.
Bill Frost responded that, in future, funding has been allocated for Operator training. Regarding the People in Motion Show, efforts are being made to arrange for an Operator to be available and the intention is to have a bus there.
Howard Wax noted that he would like to thank Bill Frost for setting up this chain of communication between Bus Transportation Superintendents and ACAT. At the Town Hall Meeting, Howard was approached by a Superintendent at Mount Dennis Division for him to talk to his Operators.
Lynn McCormick brought forward the concern that there are areas on the new Rocket trains where there are no hand holds for standing passengers. This will be added to the agenda for DRS to report to new members.
The next meeting of ACAT will be held on Thursday, May 31, 2012, in the 7th Floor Boardroom, 1900 Yonge Street.
On motion by Brayan Bratanov and seconded by Carol Anne Monet, the meeting was adjourned at 2:10 p.m.