ACAT Meeting - June 30, 2016
Agenda is not available for this meeting.
Please check the meeting minutes for meeting details.
- 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
- Anita Dressler
- Jessica Geboers
- Igor Samardzic
- Jaspreet Dhaliwal
- Eve Wiggins, Head of Wheel-Trans
- Ricardo Couto, Division Manager, Streetcar
- Mark Mis, (Acting) Manager – Service Planning
- 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
2. Declaration of Conflict of Interest
3. Approval of Agenda
4. Remarks from ACAT Chair
Chair Mazin Aribi thanked all members, TTC, and Wheel Trans staff who participated and volunteered their time at People in Motion and the Family Day Roadeo – both of which were very successful due to their efforts.
- The Chair was invited to participate in the Leadership Exchange and Development Program (LEAD) and provide an overview of TTC Accessibility and the role of ACAT on June 7, 2016 at City Hall. The LEAD program brought leaders from several U.S. Transit authorities to hear about TTC’s experiences and approach to challenges it faces from government funding to day-to-day operations. TTC participants were Kirsten Watson, Head of Bus Transportation, and James Ross, Head of Subway Transportation. LEAD’s goal is to promote best practices and develop future senior leaders. The visit ended on June 10, 2016 with closing remarks from Mr. Andy Byford.
- 2016 Ontario Bar Association Susan Hilary Davidson Memorial Award for Excellence in Health Law - ACAT received an invitation from Shelley Birenbaum (a friend and colleague of the late former ACAT Chair, Susan Davidson) to attend the inaugural presentation of this Award to Lonny J. Rosen, C.S., who had worked with Susan on many occasions. Angela Marley, Marian McDonell, and Mazin Aribi attended the Award ceremony. The presenters spoke about Susan and how much she had loved ACAT’s work and how passionate she was about accessible transit. They showed slides of Susan in action at ACAT. The ACAT members thanked the OBA for including them in the ceremony.
5. Review and Approval of May 26, 2016 Minutes
6. Business Arising Out of Minutes/Outstanding Items
The Committee reviewed the Outstanding Items List:
- Item: Accessibility at Transit Stops – an Accessibility Tips column will appear in the 24 Hours newspaper "Connecting Toronto". The first column was published on June 10, 2016 related to the "First On, Last Off" procedure.
- Item: Tracking Reduced Fares Issues Response – The final TFE report schedule is as follows: TTC Board on September 28, Executive Committee on October 26, Board of Health on October 31, and City Council on November 8. Staff continues to look for ways to find concessions.
- Item:Accessibility Flash Cards – New card has been finalized. Details in the Communications Subcommittee Report.
- Item: Use of GO Bus Reserved Lanes by Wheel-Trans Buses – Thomas Hartley will look into this and provide an update.
8. Wheel-Trans 10 Year Strategy Update
Thomas Hartley handed out documents to be used in presentations to external stakeholders:
- W-T Transformation Program
- W-T Changes to Eligibility Process and Criteria
- W-T 10-Year Plan – for the Upcoming City-wide public meetings
Mr. Hartley also gave an update of stakeholder meetings since late May (17 in total) and the consultations scheduled for July. Public Meetings are scheduled to be held July 5, 12, 14 and 21, 2016.
Members suggested several other groups that might be consulted. The Chair asked Members to let him know immediately if they believe other organizations should be included so that he can inform Mr. Hartley.
A pilot study was held on June 20 to 23, 2016 with 25 Wheel-Trans customer volunteers, who filled out the revised application form along with an Occupational Therapist. The volunteers underwent assessments both physical and cognitive. Results will be available in July.
Members asked if arrangements had been made for a large number of W-T vehicles to be available at the end of the Public Meetings to co-ordinate rides home and to post that information on the W-T Booking site. Mr. Hartley agreed to check this out and make the arrangements.
The Chair suggested that Members read the presentations, prepare questions, and try to attend Public meetings to listen to input from other attendees; then submit observations to the Chair or Dean Milton. Feedback from Members was requested by July 25, 2016.
Mr. Hartley was asked about the progress on cross-border para-transit services. He responded that Wheel-Trans is working hard on developing an agreement with all GTA para-transit providers on transfer points, eligibility, etc. with the goal of making travel more seamless.
9. Subcommittee Reports and Updates
Wheel-Trans Operations Subcommittee (WTOS) – Lynn McCormick, Chair
The next WTOS meeting has been tentatively scheduled on July 11, 2016.
Communications Subcommittee (CS) – Marian McDonell, Chair
A CS meeting was held on June 9, 2016. The items discussed were:
- Flash Card - the new version of the card was shown to CS. One side of the card has the blue International Symbol of Access with a ramp under the wheelchair with the message “Please lower ramp”. The other side has a tilting bus with the message “Please kneel”. They will be available in two sizes. After lengthy discussion, CS recommended that the revised card should read: “Please kneel the bus” on one side and “Please lower the ramp” on the other.
- Platform Gap, Eglinton Station - the station description pages will be updated online to inform customers about the modifications made at the south end of the subway platform to allow easier boarding for customers using mobility devices.
- W-T Transfer Points - Currently, there is confusion at some transfer points at subway stations. Angela Marley advised that W-T is working on this and is currently in the process of consolidating addresses.
- Streetcar Video –There are not enough low-floor streetcars in service to be able to put one out of service for a day of video shooting. The video will have to wait until more low-floor streetcars are available. The bus video is complete and available on the TTC website in the Accessibility Section. The CS Chair will be sent a link to the video, for distribution to all members.
- ACAT Brochure – the error made on the most recent brochure will be corrected. Brochures will be ready for the 2016 Public Forum on Accessible Transit in September, or earlier if needed. The W-T booklet provided at the People in Motion Show contained some content that was questioned. CS Chair emailed details to Deborah Brown.
- CS reiterated that all marketing material related to accessibility should be passed on to them for review before being put into production. Deborah Brown will send an electronic version of the next W-T Newsletter to the CS members for review and comments.
- The W-T 10-Year Strategy will be printed in black on a white background (instead of grey) to provide higher contrast, making it easier to read.
- Accessibility Tips in “Connecting Toronto” – Corporate Communications committed to Deborah Brown that an Accessibility Tips column will be included in the 24 Hours newspaper. CS Chair asked members to send their suggestions for tips to her as soon as possible for forwarding to Deborah Brown. It was suggested that Accessibility Tips be added to the CS ongoing Agenda to ensure current issues are addressed. It was also recommended the title be “Accessible Tips for TTC Customers”, so it includes all customers.
- Audible Route Announcements – Debbie Gillespie, Raymond Dell’Aera, and Mazin Aribi attended a meeting to address reports that the volume is too loud. A test was held at Bayview and Eglinton and they found that the volume is inconsistent due to ambient noise. The group also questioned the time interval between the end of one announcement and the beginning of the next – and suggested that it be extended by 5 seconds. Al Howard, Manager of TTC Bus Maintenance, agreed to experiment and test some suggestions and will report back to the complainant. When this moves from pilot to full implementation, announcements will be made via Connecting Toronto and featured on the TTC web site.
Design Review Subcommittee (DRS) - Raymond Dell’Aera, Chair
DRS held a meeting on June 1, 2016.
Staff presented the Easier Access Phase III Preliminary Design Review for Bay Station. The design includes the construction of an elevator from concourse to platform level. The elevator to street level will be part of the Cumberland Terrace development on the east side of Bay Street. The existing ramp at concourse level to Cumberland Terrace will be improved and automatic doors added. The project is currently at 30% of the design stage, with construction scheduled for completion in Fall 2020. The PRESTO fare system is being installed this summer.
Construction staff also attended to discuss the report on the feasibility of accelerating the Easier Access program from its planned completion date of 2025, in response to a request by the TTC Board. The report, which was originally presented to DRS in its May meeting, elicited many questions and concerns from the Subcommittee, prompting staff to make revisions as well as return to DRS for further discussion. Steve Stewart presented his updated draft report which he indicated included responses to the questions raised by ACAT members. His conclusion remained the same – it will not be possible to accelerate the program. He explained that modifications had been made to the design schedule and that the budget has been approved; he showed a chart showing when all stations are in the design and construction stages and emphasized that his department is prepared to do all it can to ensure that the project is completed on time. The report is planned to go to the July Board Meeting.
The discussion then moved to the format of the draft report where more comments and observations were made, helping to refine things further while emphasizing the areas that are most challenging to the schedule. Steve Stewart thanked the Subcommittee for its input, and stated that he would revise the report further based on the additional feedback from the meeting.
Service Planning Subcommittee (SPS) – Valdo Tammark, Chair
No SPS meetings were held in June.