ACAT Meeting


Meeting Info

Date:Thursday, April 28, 2016
Location:1900 Yonge Street, 7th Floor Boardroom
Meeting No:303
  • Agenda
  • Meeting Minutes

Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.

Present

  • Debbie Gillespie, Chair
  • Angela Marley, Co-Vice Chair
  • Raymond Dell’Aera, Co-Vice Chair
  • Louise Bark
  • Mary Burton
  • Joan Jordan
  • Margaret Hageman
  • Lynn McCormick
  • Desrianne McIlwrick
  • Craig Nicol
  • Lauri Sue Robertson
  • Thomas Richardson
  • Valdo Tammark
  • Howard Wax

Pool Members

  • Anita Dressler
  • Jessica Geboers
  • Igor Samardzic

Regrets

  • Jaspreet Dhaliwal

TTC Representatives

  • Eve Wiggins, Head of Wheel-Trans
  • Ricardo Couto, Division Manager, Streetcar
  • Mark Mis, (Acting) Manager – Service Planning

Copies

  • Andy Byford, Chief Executive Officer
  • Richard Leary, Chief Service Officer, Service Delivery
  • Chris Upfold, Deputy CEO & Chief Customer Officer
  • Kirsten Watson, Deputy Chief Service Officer, Service Delivery
  • Susan Reed Tanaka, Chief Capital Officer
  • Vince Rodo, Chief Financial & Administration Officer
  • Brad Ross, Executive Director - Corporate Communications
  • Mike Palmer, (Acting) Chief Operating Officer
  • Jacqueline Darwood, Head of Strategy & Service Planning
  • Cheryn Thoun, Head of Customer Communications
  • TTC Board Members

1. Call to Order / Attendance

The meeting was called to order at 1:05 p.m. and attendance was taken.

2. Declaration of Conflict of Interest

Nil.

3. Approval of Agenda

On a motion by Howard Wax and seconded by Joan Jordan, the agenda was approved with the following amendments:

  • Add as item #4, "Workers’ Memorial Day Moment of Silence"
  • Add as item #14, "Report from the Metrolinx Accessibility Advisory Committee Meeting" by Raymond Dell’Aera

4. Workers’ Memorial Day Moment of Silence

The international observance of April 28th as a day of mourning for workers killed, injured, or made ill by their job began here in Canada. In 1984, unions in Sudbury, Ontario, adopted the day as one to publicly acknowledge workplace injuries, illnesses, and deaths and the Canadian Labour Congress officially declared the day of remembrance. The date of April 28th was chosen to reflect the anniversary of the day Ontario passed the Workers Compensation Act in 1914.

On April 28, 1991, Canada recognized its first National Day of Mourning for Persons Killed or Injured in the Workplace - a day where flags fly at half mast, and ceremonies held across the country to recognize the lives needlessly lost, and the tremendous suffering of those left in the wake of workplace tragedy.

In the 25 years since, more than 80 other countries have also adopted the observance known widely as Workers’ Memorial Day.

A moment of silent was observed in recognition of the fallen workers.

5. Review and Approval of March 31, 2016 Minutes

On a motion by Angela Marley and seconded by Joan Jordan, the minutes of March 31, 2016 were approved.

6. Business Arising Out of Minutes/Outstanding Items

Angela Marley clarified the fare payment using the accessible fare gates. At Main Street Station, there is one accessible fare gate equipped with a Metropass reader mounted on top of the stanchion. When the PRESTO fare card system is fully operational on the TTC, this reader will be replaced with a PRESTO card reader and another PRESTO card reader will be mounted on the front of the accessible fare gate. Customers currently using PRESTO and requiring an accessible fare gate, can enter via the staffed fare line. When the TTC PRESTO fare card system installation is completed, most of the subway stations will have two accessible fare gates.
The elevator at Queens Quay Station is back in service and the TTC web site is being updated.

The Subcommittee Chairs updated the Outstanding Items in their reports.

7. Deputation

Michael McNeely is the Advocacy Instructor at the Canadian Helen Keller Centre (CHKC) which is a residential training centre for people who are deafblind. A group of people who are deafblind and their interveners accompanied him to the meeting.

On behalf of the group, he requested:

  • That the TTC help make transit more accessible thus easier for deafblind individuals to travel. This can be done by creating awareness and public education.
  • That the TTC makes a universal braille transit pass for all deafblind individuals in the GTA because it is a struggle to understand the different passes available now all around the GTA. He stated that the TTC pass should be made accessible by writing in braille to make it easier to read and identify. He stated that deafblind individuals have interveners who assist them, including ensuring their safety when travelling. He stated that most of the deafblind individuals do not know what a companion pass is and because of that, most deafblind individuals do not have a pass (Support Person Assistance Card).

He raised the concern that deafblind individuals are worried about their safety in the subway stations. This is due to the fact that they may have an invisible disability, so others do not recognize their unique needs. As a result, they can have difficulty navigating the subway and communicating with others.

ACAT members informed the group that there is a letter “P” written in braille on the PRESTO cards.

Mazin Aribi thanked Michael McNeely and the group for their suggestions. He recommended they visit the TTC Customer Service Centre on the first floor, 1900 Yonge Street, at Davisville Station, to apply for Support Person Assistance cards and he encouraged them to email further suggestions/questions to ACAT at acat@ttc.ca.

8. Update - PRESTO

Allan Foster, TTC PRESTO Fare Card Team, reviewed the timelines of PRESTO fare system implementation, from the launch of PRESTO enabled low-floor streetcars to installation of PRESTO fare gates in subway stations and PRESTO readers on vehicles, with the full roll out planned for 2017.

In March 2016, the first PRESTO fare gates were installed at Main Street Station. The remaining stations, bus and Wheel-Trans PRESTO installation is scheduled to be completed by December 2016.

There are two types of PRESTO fare gates, standard and wide. The wide aisle fare gate is physically the same as an accessible fare gate, but will only be signed with an International Symbol of Access decal at station entrances that are accessible (to subway or buses). There will be two accessible gates in the majority of locations.
  
The remaining TTC Metropass readers will be converted to PRESTO card readers when legacy fare media is eliminated. The TYSSE line will open with PRESTO fare gates in 2017.

The fare gates open in the direction of customer travel and are enabled by sensors.

Customers who are eligible to have a support person will travel with two PRESTO cards to ensure the gate stays open for the support person to pass through with the customer.

One of the main aims of PRESTO is to help integrate transit across the province. With a single PRESTO card, riders will be able to travel throughout the province.

ACAT and DRS reviewed the PRESTO fare gates at Main Street Station and the card readers on buses.

9. Subcommittee Reports and Updates

Design Review Subcommittee (DRS) - Raymond Dell’Aera, Chair
 
DRS held a meeting on April 6, 2016. Staff from Plant Maintenance and Stations attended to discuss an issue that DRS previously identified, which is that people using mobility devices can have difficulty boarding buses at subway stations before other customers as they do not know where to wait for ramp deployment, or because people are in the way and tend to rush on to the bus as soon as the doors open. It had been suggested that there be a painted square where the front door of the bus will be, along with a warning for ambulatory passengers to keep clear.
Staff reported that Plant Maintenance is trying to find a new product to replace the paint currently in use on some bus platforms as the current product does not stand up well to heavy pedestrian traffic and tends to fade quickly. TTC staff will investigate and report back to the Subcommittee with some designs and alternatives.
The Project Manager for Easier Access attended to present preliminary design plans for accessibility improvements at Keele Station. Construction is scheduled to begin in 2018 and will be completed in 2020. Previous modifications have already included the installation of automatic sliding doors at the street entrance and bus terminal doors and a wide fare gate. The new design consists of the construction of two elevators, one from street level to each subway platform; replacement of the existing fare line (which will be replaced in summer 2016 with new fare gates); and replacement of signage as required. This design will provide direct access to elevators through the fare gates at street level, and a secure and safe accessible path with minimal obstructions.
DRS also reviewed two test buses with PRESTO readers installed and provided feedback directly to PRESTO staff on mounting heights and locations.
 
Wheel-Trans Operations Subcommittee (WTOS) – Lynn McCormick, Chair
 
WTOS held a meeting on April 25, 2016.  Lynn McCormick was voted WTOS Chair for the year. The issues discussed included:
 
  • Whether or not customers should be notified of vehicle type changes
  • The issue of scent-free policy and what to do in a situation where an individual had an issue with scent on a Wheel-Trans vehicle was discussed. It was suggested that drivers should be made aware of this policy and Wheel-Trans should provide another vehicle, wherever possible, when the rider is not able to ride the original vehicle. A reminder to customers was placed in the Wheel-Trans newsletter reminding them of the scent-free policy to be followed.
Service Planning Subcommittee (SPS) – Valdo Tammark, Chair
 
SPS held a meeting on April 6, 2016. Valdo Tammark was acclaimed Chair.

It was noted that, at the March ACAT General Meeting, members suggested that there should be accessible north/south connections between Line 2 and the new 514 Cherry streetcar route. Strategy and Service Planning staff was unable to attend the April meeting but will be able to provide an update at the May meeting.

SPS was informed of the plans for this year’s People in Motion show May 27 and 28, 2016. TTC and ACAT have the same spaces as last year, essentially directly in front of the main entrance.

The newest Nova Bus will be displayed and an experienced customer-focused Bus Operator will be available to answer customer questions. Trip planning via laptop/internet will be available to customers again this year. A large TV will be looping informational videos on topics such as priority seating, low-floor streetcars, PRESTO, and more.

The City’s Disability Access and Inclusion Advisory Committee requested conventional transit service to the medical facilities on Kilgour Road. The medical facilities are CNIB, Rumsey Rehab, and Lyndhurst Centre. There were many reasons why it was not feasible to reroute the Bayview bus; Kilgour is a dead end street with nowhere to turn around. Glenvale Blvd, a parallel street to Kilgour, has speed bumps so it cannot be used as part of a loop. There is a community bus that goes between Sunnybrook and Rumsey Rehab; members felt this should be advertised more.

The next SPS meeting will be held on May 18, 2016.

Communications Subcommittee (CS) – Marian McDonell, Chair

CS held a meeting on April 7, 2016. At this meeting, the February minutes were approved and the following items were discussed.

Travel Assistance Card (TAC) update

Mostafa Omran, TTC Customer Development, advised that further development of the Travel Assistance Card was placed on hold until the revised Wheel-Trans eligibility criteria are rolled out. The initial rationale for the development of the Travel Assistance Card was to support those TTC customers who were not previously eligible for WT but who needed assistance to have a successful travel experience.

Members discussed in detail the challenges many people face when using the TTC conventional services but stressed the importance of encouraging all persons with disabilities to use the conventional system as much as possible. Mostafa Omran stated that the TTC is continuously working towards being more inclusive and accessible. As soon as the new eligibility criteria are developed, Omran will arrange for WT personnel to bring it to CS. This item has been added to the outstanding items list. 

Streetcar/Bus Accessibility Features Video Update

Alicia Fowlie advised that the video campaign “First On Last Off” will be posted on the TTC website and will be used for internal and external purposes. She played the video that explained different aspects of bus accessibility to customers and the internal video for the training of TTC Operators. The videos along with the script were reviewed in-depth.

Flash Cards

The Flash Card was distributed and was created and has been available since the People in Motion Show last year. CS members had concerns about the card in its present state. CS requested that the next version be brought to CS for their input before it is produced. Deborah Brown will review the card, make some changes, and bring to the next CS meeting. The issue will be discussed further at the next meeting.

New Business

  • Deborah Brown asked for input for articles/items that could be included in the next WT Newsletter. The draft version was reviewed by appropriate WT staff, ACAT Chair, and CS Chair via email as it needed to go to the printers ASAP.
  • People in Motion Show – the Service Planning Subcommittee are planning it with TTC staff.
  • Raymond Dell’Aera raised the subject of the gap issues, particularly at Eglinton Station. This information will be added to the Station Information web page. This item will be added to the next CS meeting Agenda for further discussion.
  • Writing and Style Guide 2016 was handed out and CS members were asked to review and send feedback to Deborah Brown no later than April 15, 2016.

The next CS meeting will be held on June 9, 2016.

10. Report on TTC Board Meeting and Accessibility Matters

This TTC Board Meeting was held on April 27, 2016, Louise Bark and Mazin Aribi were in attendance. The meeting was live streamed as well. The Board received the ACAT February Meeting minutes.

When the minutes were presented, the following additional points were highlighted:

  • Members of ACAT DRS Subcommittee reviewed the new Accessible PRESTO fare gates at Main Street subway station. ACAT members identified barriers with regard to:
    • The height of the Metropass readers. They are higher than any other Metropass card reader on the TTC system.
    • The height of the PRESTO card readers.
    • A request was made to fix the issue before more are installed.
  • Now that the TTC Board is getting funds from the Federal Government, how much of it will be designated to the Easier Access improvement projects, such as elevators?
  • A joint meeting was held on April 19, 2016 between ACAT DRS Subcommittee and Metrolinx to discuss the proposed accessible station design on the Eglinton Crosstown LRT.
  • The date of the next ACAT meeting, April 28, from 1:00 to 3:30 p.m. at 1900 Yonge St. was announced. Board members were invited to attend.
  • A compliment was extended regarding getting the elevator back in service at Queens Quay Station.

11. Report on Customer Liaison Panel (CLP) – Angela Marley, ACAT Representative

A CLP meeting was held on April 13, 2016. CLP members gave feedback on the use of the PRESTO fare gates system pilot installation at the Main Street Station. Alan Foster and Bob Hughes of the TTC Farecard Team received the information and responded to members’ questions and gave feedback for all customers from individual users to family users.

CLP also raised the need for extensive customer education as TTC moves from Legacy to the PRESTO fare card system.

12. Report on Transit Fare Equity (TFE) Committee – Margaret Hageman, ACAT Representative

Margaret Hageman advised that there is nothing conclusive and that the TFE Committee is still discussing strategy and advising the City on issues with regard to individuals with disability and accessibility issues. Updates were given on the current state of the questionnaires.

13. Report on Accessibility Advisory Panel for Transportation Services – Valdo Tammark

Nil.

14. Report on Metrolinx Accessibility Advisory Committee – Raymond Dell’Aera, ACAT Representative

On April 19, 2016, DRS members and ACAT Representatives to the Metrolinx Accessibility Advisory Committee, Raymond Dell’Aera and Marian McDonell, attended the joint meeting to discuss the accessible station design of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT system. Also in attendance were several Metrolinx staff, as well as TTC staff, and other consultants for the project.

The meeting went through the “Accessibility Requirements for Stations and Stops: Eglinton Crosstown LRT Project” presentation which followed the customer journey from outside at street level to the typical station entrance, past where the elevators and escalators are located which lead to a concourse level which contains a fare payment area, and the elevators/ escalators which lead further down to the platform level. All materials reviewed represented "typical" station designs, but there will be some variations that exist especially at stations that interchange with other lines.

Many accessible features incorporated in the design were highlighted during the presentation, which prompted questions and comments from committee members. Some of the topics covered include: passenger flows, elevators, benches and seating, lighting and visual contrast, tactile surfaces including wayfinding paths, fare gate and PRESTO reader locations, surface colours and finishes, acoustic design, Passenger Assistance Intercoms (PAIs), washrooms, Designated Waiting Areas (DWAs), and stair systems. It was stated by Metrolinx staff that consistency for these features across stations was a primary goal, the importance of which was echoed by many in attendance.

In addition to the typical "core" stations, the presentation examined the surface stops on Eglinton Avenue, situated at cross-streets between Laird and Kennedy. These stops will be located in the middle of Eglinton, and will be configured either with side platforms (one for each direction) or one wider centre platform. In both cases, the platforms will be accessed via a ramp facing perpendicular to the intersection crosswalk (like the streetcar platforms on Spadina Avenue). There was much discussion for this section as well, especially regarding customer safety and wayfinding in an environment containing vehicular traffic.

Overall, it was a long but productive meeting that elicited much in the way of feedback. The design was said to be at "30% draft status", which is encouraging for the prospect of improving the design where feasible.

Draft minutes will be circulated to ACAT members, at which time comments can be provided to Metrolinx.

Metrolinx will follow up with how engagement on this project will continue and updates regarding the feedback provided at this meeting.

15. Review of Correspondence 

Nil.

16. Other / New Business   

17. Next Meeting

The next meeting of ACAT will be held on Thursday, May 26, 2016, from 1.00 to 3.30 p.m. at 1900 Yonge Street, 7th Floor Boardroom.

18. Adjournment

The meeting was adjourned at 3:50 p.m.


Recording Secretary
Isabel Adiole
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