Editorial Archive

Time to rethink transit priority on TTC’s busiest route – King Street

6/28/13 6:00 AM

The TTC recently published details around its next-generation, wheelchair accessible fleet of streetcars and how they will be deployed, starting with the Spadina and Bathurst routes next year.

These new streetcars will have much greater capacity than existing streetcars. And all-door boarding will enable faster servicing of stops.

But there is little benefit of introducing state-of-the-art (also air-conditioned!) vehicles to only then see them snarled in heavy traffic.

To that end, we have proposed a study to identify ways to make our busiest streetcar routes move more smoothly through the downtown area during rush hour.

My view is that nobody is satisfied with the status quo on city streets. Transit riders become frustrated when streetcars bunch up or are held up by other vehicles making left turns or parking illegally. In turn, car drivers get frustrated by having to wait while packed streetcars take excess time to service stops.

On King Street (the TTC’s busiest of all surface routes with 56,700 riders a day), the situation will reach an even higher boiling point when new residential developments to the east and west come on stream.

What is being proposed, then, is for the TTC to work with the City to look at a range of options, including:
> Improved enforcement of already-dedicated streetcar lanes.
> Consideration of increased left-turn restrictions.
> The potential for a transit-only zone on central King Street for a two-hour period during the morning rush.

The study would fully evaluate the impact on traffic and businesses. Clearly cars and trucks have to go somewhere – where they go and the impact on businesses is what a serious study would consider.

No, the proposal is not universally popular. But it is my job to advocate for transit riders and to deliver continuous improvement of our service. To me, it makes absolute sense to look at how our busiest routes can run more smoothly to properly move the TTC’s 1.7 million daily riders.

Latest News

 New Corporate Plan cover

TTC Corporate Plan 2018-2022

Advancing to the next level.

Corporate Notice

COVID-19 update: positive test at Mount Dennis Division.

In Memoriam

Catenacci, DiSimone, Middleton, Morrison, Niemeyer, Olsen, Shaw, Smith, Steele, Vitale.

The Coupler wants to keep you connected

The Coupler invites all employees and pensioners to sign up for TTC news and headlines via our mailbox at coupler@ttc.ca. Simply send us an e-mail request from your personal e-mail address and include your full name, badge number or pensioner number and work location or home address. Note: personal information is for verification purposes only. Please call Senior Communications Advisor/Editor Mike DeToma at 416-393-3793, or e-mail mike.detoma@ttc.ca, for more information.

Editorial