Editorial Archive

Fixing hot subway cars, tracks a TTC priority

7/8/16 6:00 AM

Summer is here and while that means halcyon days spent at the cottage or on a patio, it also brings headaches for a subway that has not received the investment it needed over the last two decades.

The TTC’s inaugural five-year plan is progressively tackling the effects of that lack of funds, rectifying deficiencies that should have been addressed years ago. My team is putting intense focus on getting the basics right, including the replacement of switch heaters that cause smoke-related delays, a targeted cleanup of the track and stations, and adherence to proven operating disciplines to keep the service moving.

Hot weather means we have to pay particular attention to track conditions. Very high temperatures can cause rail to buckle, and summer downpours cause flooding in areas of poor drainage or worn out track.

To keep you safe, we sometimes need to impose speed restrictions until problems can be fixed – either overnight or during weekend closures. The real solution is to replace track and other infrastructure, a multi-year task that is underway.

On Line 2 Bloor-Danforth, very hot weather puts additional pressure on the single air conditioning units per car. We are working hard to fix this via a design modification, a process that is scheduled to be completed by next year. Here again, asset replacement is the optimum solution, and we are putting together plans for a total modernization of trains, track and signals on Line 2.

Such changes take time and increased funding. They also need corporate determination to improve all aspects of your journey.

With targeted investment now underway and a customer-focused management team at the helm, the elements are in place for the ongoing renaissance of the TTC.

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