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duffo

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Ah, thanks for the info. I just assumed this was something all intersections allowed. As for the Crosstown, I guess we'll just have to wait a few months to see how fast the test trains can go on the at-grade section (and pray they're not unbearably slow). I'm just going to be happy construction is finally over.
The TTC is operating it, and applying many of the streetcar operating rules to it. Expect speeds and rules similar to the St Clair and Spadina lines (i.e. not great)
 

W. K. Lis

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The TTC is operating it, and applying many of the streetcar operating rules to it. Expect speeds and rules similar to the St Clair and Spadina lines (i.e. not great)
Obeying the rules and edicts set down by the TTC's overlords, who do not want to anger their automobile gods.

Those rules and edicts could be overturned... or ignored. Like some bus drivers ignore the posted speed limits.
 

Steve X

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We should all protest in front of ML's office should the TTC fail to operate it properly till they revoke TTC's operating contract.
 

nfitz

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We should all protest in front of ML's office should the TTC fail to operate it properly till they revoke TTC's operating contract.
A "contract" that has TTC funding a good chunk of the operational cost. They'll be hard-pressed to get a better deal from anyone else!

Though really - I doubt TTC operation is the biggest issue here - especially as that would provide some transparency to the operation that Metrolinx is very poor at.
 

W. K. Lis

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We should all protest in front of ML's office should the TTC fail to operate it properly till they revoke TTC's operating contract.
How about funding the TTC operating budget properly. The TTC has been underfunded for its operation ever since Premier Mike Harris killed the provinces portion of the TTC operating budget in 1998.

From link.

The date was June 26, 1995. Mike Harris was elected the 22nd Premier of Ontario, and one of his first orders of business was to cut provincial contributions to the TTC's capital projects. The Eglinton West Line, which had broken ground only a year before, was promptly killed.

That spelled the end of major expansion projects until the arrival of the Sheppard Line in 2002, though that remains one of the most ill-conceived plans the TTC has seen come to fruition given its ridership numbers.
After funding was slashed to capital projects in 1995, subsidies to the TTC's operating budget were also killed in 1998. That's when service really took a hit. Transit expansion was certainly important, but ridership only climbed with the formation of the Megacity, and the TTC had less money to cover its day-to-day operations.

The TTC is still underfunded.

Un(Fare): The Blame Game of Underfunded Toronto Transit

From link.

According to a report released by the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC), the transit agency has lost at least $70 million in revenue in 2019 due to fare evasion. The report, which was presented by the TTC’s Audit and Risk Management Committee on February 11th, summarizes the findings of their six-week fare evasion study that began in November 2019. The fare evasion rate across the TTC is estimated to be 5.7 per cent, translating into $73.5 million in lost revenue, figures the TTC claims are understated.

A major source of fare evasion has been the misuse of child transit passes, which allow children under 12 to ride the TTC for free. The child pass produced by the Presto fare collection system looks identical to adult Presto cards and flashes the same colour when tapped at fare machines. The TTC estimates that 89 per cent of child passes used on the system appears to be used by adults, resulting in $12.4 million in lost revenue.

A report issued by Toronto’s Auditor General Beverly Romeo-Beehler also points to streetcars as the most common site of fare evasion, with over one in ten passengers evading their fare. The high rate of fare evasion can be explained by the design of new streetcars that the TTC has gradually adopted since 2014. The new streetcars isolate drivers from the passenger area and have multiple doors outside of the driver’s view.

Although transit rider advocates have pointed to flaws in the TTC’s fare system as encouraging evasion, the revenue protection strategy subsequently released by the TTC focuses on changing social norms surrounding fare evasion. In addition to targeted advertising campaigns, The TTC also plans on hiring an increasing number of fare inspectors and special constables to enforce fare payment.

Since early February, the TTC has commissioned large, wrap-around advertising campaigns on streetcars, reminding riders in bold text that “There’s no excuse to not pay your fare”. This approach has proved to be controversial, with the Amalgamated Transit Union (ATU) calling the TTC’s campaign “wrongheaded” and urging the transit commission to join workers in advocating for fair government funding as a more effective strategy to recuperate lost revenues.

The TTC’s advertisements have also struck a chord with transit rider advocacy groups such as TTCriders, who have created spoof advertisements warning of “fund evasion”. These advertisements refer to the fact that the Toronto transit agency remains chronically underfunded compared to its North American counterparts.
In 2017, more than two-thirds of the TTC’s operating budget was funded by fares, a level not seen in any other North American city. Compounding the issue, Toronto’s city subsidies make only 30 percent of the TTC’s overall budget, compared to 50 per cent in Montreal and 60 per cent in Vancouver.

The debate over whether fare evaders or the lack of government funding is to blame for the TTC’s meagre revenues is further complicated by a 10 cent fare hike coming into effect on March 1st, 2020. The TTC has consistently employed fare hikes as their main strategy to alleviate overstretched capacities and this is the ninth increase that riders have faced since 2009.

Many have shifted the blame for the unpopular fare increase on fare evaders, with Deputy Mayor Denzil Minnan-Wong stating, “For those people that are following the rulers and paying their fares, they’re paying 10 cents more a fare because of all the cheaters.” Others have argued that fare evaders make the TTC harder to run because of lost revenue, and are responsible for the TTC’s subpar service.

By contrast, Toronto transit advocacy groups believe that the TTC’s underfunding is a systemic issue that has unfairly been attributed to riders with low-income and from racialized communities. As stated by TTCriders spokesperson Vincent Puhhaka, “The transit system is constantly starved for funding and the blame is often put on those who evade transit fares. We think the real evaders are the politicians who for years have starved the system.”

Transit advocacy groups also believe that the fare increase will push more people to fare evasion, as TTC monthly transit passes are already the most costly in Canada.

Concerns have also been raised about the proposed increase in the presence of fare inspectors and special constables on the TTC. In July 2019, Toronto Ombudsperson Susan Opler concluded that the TTC did not adequately investigate misconduct allegations against fare inspector officers that detained a black man on a streetcar platform.

Advocacy groups also worry the TTC’s campaign against individual fare evaders has the potential to marginalize racialized groups and will divert the TTC’s resources away from the larger campaign for fair government funding.

Changes may be on the horizon as Toronto Mayor John Tory recently pitched a substantial property tax increase to fund transit and housing projects. The tax hike would be an important source of transit funds for the city in the wake of budget cuts from the provincial government. With projected ridership for the TTC expected to increase by 7.2 million from 2019, the imperative for the transit agency to find effective and sustainable revenue sources will only become more apparent.
 

crs1026

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It has a poor operations standard BECAUSE it is underfunded.

The point, as @allengeorge suggests, is not whether there is money on hand or not.

TTC has developed a culture of "lower our service standards to fit a lowball budget" based on the assumption - played out regularly - that a proper service will not be given the necessary funding. So everything suffers regardless of whether money is an issue or not.

It's not that TTC staff don't care about service standards.... it's just that they know, from bitter experience, that money won't be forthcoming for that standard.

- Paul
 

asher__jo

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The point, as @allengeorge suggests, is not whether there is money on hand or not.

TTC has developed a culture of "lower our service standards to fit a lowball budget" based on the assumption - played out regularly - that a proper service will not be given the necessary funding. So everything suffers regardless of whether money is an issue or not.

It's not that TTC staff don't care about service standards.... it's just that they know, from bitter experience, that money won't be forthcoming for that standard.

- Paul
Exactly. How Toronto is the only major city in Canada that doesn't receive dedicated funding from the provincial level of government or it's own funding mechanisms is honestly outrageous.
 

rbt

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They've done several experiments deploying additional management/oversight to a line, and service (particularly bunching, on-time departures, etc.) noticeably improves every time. It's not a cheap solution but it's one of the few experiments that's been reliably successful.

You might argue automated electronic oversight can do the same thing but when you look closer you find they already have that; every driver already regularly gets information telling them whether they ahead or behind schedule.
 

W. K. Lis

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Better yet, left turn arrows after, if there is a light rail vehicle approaching. Left turn arrows before, if there is NO light rail vehicle approaching. Like they do in Europe. Even better, left turn arrows after, only if there is at least one vehicle in the left turn lane and turn to a yellow left turn arrow as the motor vehicle enters the intersection. Otherwise, remain with a red left turn arrow.

Why does Toronto not use RED or YELLOW LEFT TURN ARROWS? Toronto and Ontario is so far behind other jurisdictions.

Not allowed in Ontario...
 

Jonny5

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We had dedicated provincial government funding for transit and a provincial government removed it on a whim. Why would we want that scenario to come back, where every provincial budget brings the possibility of cuts ordered by MPP's from outside of Toronto and a change in provincial government could mean slash and burn? I think the current funding arrangement is more stable, and those who change it are more accountable to people in Toronto.

Provincial funding is a zero sum game. The City will yank out the equivalent amount of funding, if not immediately, over time it will happen.

Federal funding would be the above but ten times worse.

Maybe I am too cynical? But I can't see it playing out any other way.
 

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