Editorial Archive

Maintaining the TTC amid expansion, new vehicles

3/18/16 6:00 AM

Our work to modernize the TTC continues apace with good progress being made on the rollout of the new PRESTO smart card, construction of the Spadina subway extension, modernization of our fleet and installation of a new signalling system on Line 1 (Yonge-University).

This year will see PRESTO rolled out at the remainder of our subway stations, on the entire TTC bus fleet and on Wheel-Trans buses. PRESTO users will find that this really is the easy and convenient way to pay as line ups become a thing of the past and tokens, transfers and tickets are confined to TTC history.

We are also replacing turnstiles in our subway stations with bi-drectional, paddle-style gates that will open at the touch of a PRESTO card, and that will accommodate wheelchair users.

Construction of the subway extension up to Vaughan in York Region has reached the 80-per-cent mark and it won’t be long before the six new stations are structurally complete and we can move to the testing and commissioning phase of the project.

Installation of our new signalling system on Line 1 continues to progress towards a phased introduction from the fall of next year, enabled in large measure by the work we are able to get done in our rolling program of weekend subway closures.

On streetcars, we now have 16 new, low-floor, air-conditioned vehicles in service with accelerated delivery promised by our supplier, Bombardier, from next month.

In the midst of all this activity, it is critical that we keep the existing network and fleet in a state of good repair – and that we drive up basic performance using the assets that we have inherited. This is no mean feat, as decades of under-investment and deferred decisions have bequeathed track and signals that are, in parts, 60 years old; streetcars that are basically worn out; and a Scarborough Rapid Transit system (Line 3) that requires urgent replacement.

Plans to address all these issues are well in-hand, but in the meantime, I salute the men and women of the TTC that keep the least subsidised transit system in North America going, day in and day out.

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Armstrong, Babcock, Baird, Barrow, Brown, Budd, Charles, Dean, Dudar, Frilles, Gianvecchio, Hales, Holloway, Jamal, Lachapelle, Martins, McCullough, Nelson, Nimmo, Ponte, Roberge, Rotolo, Sottile, Timal.

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