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denfromoakvillemilton

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Is this confirmed? I assume they're going to install Presto machines at the new stations...
They're not for now.

I couldn't imagine sitting in those GO seats for that long. Those seats are so uncomfortable, plus if you have two taller people sitting in-front of you, there goes your leg room! As you pointed out the seats are not designed for long hauls, it's commuter rail.

When i was staying in Guelph a few years back. I took VIA rail to Toronto, the leg room and comfy seats, plus coffee service, made it worth the extra 10 to 20 bucks depending what day i took the train.
Problem is it will be hard for the Liberals to get rid of this if they get in.

Should have been bus service, gage the market first. And then trains.

Why is this not a good idea? I know a lot of people from the London area who would disagree with you.
It's too far and there's not a huge consumer base. Plus the service will be below par if they start next month.
 

ericmacm

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This is fantastic news. I honestly didn't expect a pilot train to London to be running so soon. The 4hr commute time up to Toronto is tough to chew on, but as mentioned by other posters, starting with basic service now is just a baby step. I can't imagine that Kitchener or Barrie had fantastic service to start with great travel times when they were first introduced.

I suspect that this will mostly be used for London-Kitchener commuting for now until corridor improvements are made to decrease travel time into the GTA. This will also be a massive boon to the communities of St. Marys and Stratford, who are still relatively isolated and aren't even connected to the major highways yet.

I'm mostly just excited that a major piece of SW Ontario is hooked up to the GO network now. It's been a long time coming and it'll hopefully foster a change in transit culture down here. Maybe it'll even convince the City of London (with a CMA approaching 600,000 people) to finally get it together regarding rapid transit.
 
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mdrejhon

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The real use case is Londoners with work in KW, or the universities there. KW is an expanding employment centre, even in pandemic.

In bad traffic, it already takes more than 1.5 hours, even almost 2 hours to drive during the worst part of peak hour.

The GO train would be similiar, except more pleasant, if your final mile is a quick Uber or LRT hop.

That’s where most of the ridership probably will occur on this London GO train pilot.

I hope this begins to incubate higher rail speeds over the long term, to he point where train becomes faster than driving.

Initially, there should be a grace period where unfamiliar Londoners are allowed to purchase their ride while on the train, with GO ambassadors helping them instruct them on the app. Nothing like missing the only daily train because you fumbled trying to purchase the train trip.
 
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DirectionNorth

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Not sure who is the key force behind this announcement. The PCs looking to keep SW Ontario safe for 2022? Metrolinx trying to outmaneuver VIA?
A few months ago, the feds made some announcements regarding rail service in SW Ontario (remember the one I parodied?)

They highlighted cooperation with Metrolinx, and I think that the feds are providing support for this.
 

jamincan

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It will be interesting to see what the schedule is as that would make it clearer whether Metrolinx is targeting commuters into Toronto, or people traveling on points along the line.

My gut is that this is tied some way into the endless promises for improved rail service on the corridor. An incremental approach to improving a line is certainly easier to sell politically than an ambitious and expensive HSR plan.

Will Metrolinx rename the line to the London Line, now? Lakeshore East and West being the exception, they seem to name the line after the last town/city on the line.
 
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Bureaucromancer

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Will Metrolinx rename the line to the London Line, now? Lakeshore East and West being the exception, they seem to name the line after the last town/city on the line.
If I had to guess I'd predict they will rename, but given the travel patterns involved I'd prefer sticking with the Kitchener branding.
 

Nomad_87

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It will be interesting to see what the schedule is as that would make it clearer whether Metrolinx is targeting commuters into Toronto, or people traveling on points along the line.

My gut is that this is tied some way into the endless promises for improved rail service on the corridor. An incremental approach to improving a line is certainly easier to sell politically than an ambitious and expensive HSR plan.

Will Metrolinx rename the line to the London Line, now? Lakeshore East and West being the exception, they seem to name the line after the last town/city on the line.
Considering this is just a pilot they’ll likely stick with Kitchener for now. I imagine if/when they purchase the rest of the Guelph subdivision they’ll rename it to the London Line
 

DirectionNorth

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It will be interesting to see what the schedule is as that would make it clearer whether Metrolinx is targeting commuters into Toronto, or people traveling on points along the line.

My gut is that this is tied some way into the endless promises for improved rail service on the corridor. An incremental approach to improving a line is certainly easier to sell politically than an ambitious and expensive HSR plan.
Remember the federal announcements?
Will Metrolinx rename the line to the London Line, now? Lakeshore East and West being the exception, they seem to name the line after the last town/city on the line.
My gut feeling is that using London is too far out for commuter travelers in the GTA. "London Line" doesn't really tell you where it's going, unlike "Richmond Hill Line" or even "Kitchener Line."
Considering this is just a pilot they’ll likely stick with Kitchener for now. I imagine if/when they purchase the rest of the Guelph subdivision they’ll rename it to the London Line
Or the "Kitchener-London Line" or "Western Line."
 

anb

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And here i thought thinking 4 hours on the Toronto-Sarnia Via rail trip was bad…


I feel like this London extension is probably the best for Kitchener or Guelph riders, decent for Georgetown/Acton and maybe even as far as Mount Pleasant as a stretch. Brampton and Toronto is too long so it’s probably best to take Via instead or take bus services. Maybe they could do something like the weekend Niagara service where they could stop at select locations like, Bloor/Bramalea/Georgetown/Guelph/Kitchener and then St Mary’s/London. That could save at least 40-60 mins off the trip and would be more reasonable honestly.
 

mdrejhon

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It's too far and there's not a huge consumer base. Plus the service will be below par if they start next month.
Possibly -- but this route is worth starting from an incubation perspective. Facilitating future purchase of the subdivisions for future higher rail speeds. That's the big prize.

However, London-Kitchener commute via GO should actually competes okay with peak-period driving, and they should be able to still call this pilot a success even without Toronto.

It's political.
From a progressive viewpoint, the long-term prize is Ontario high speed rail, and rewarding Kitchener for their transit upgrades. Kitchener GO is becoming a transit hub.

So there's something in it for Cons and Libs. Transit expansions are inherently political but the venn diagram of London-Kitchener-Toronto GO overlaps both Cons & Libs & NDP long-term desires.

As I have long asserted, the creation of nominally-arms-length Metrolinx is a boon-in-disguise for transit politics. That's why Transit City still survived its cancellation, how Hamilton LRT survived, and that's why we're no longer burying subways already under construction (Eglinton subway construction cancellation in the 90s -- they actually filled in the tunnel they had started at the time). Cons does one thing, and Libs does another, but a route still gets upgraded. Before Metrolinx, transit projects were much more glacial -- the transit Dark Ages is quite notable for the few decades prior to Metrolinx's current ongoing expansions. It's imperfect and semi-inefficient but there's a lot less permanent-cancellations roulette like the Queen St subway over 100 years ago (1911 underground streetcar proposal), now finally being built with Ontario Line.

It's ugly, but alternatives are worse for Canada 2050 zero-carbon aspirations.

Cons did Libs an apparent tiny favour (indirectly) towards Canada 2050.

Now Libs have to spend bigger on upgrades to speed up GO between Kitchener-Union, now that line is extended to London by Cons. We'll see HFR and/or HSR from triparte fundings, eventually.
 
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EnviroTO

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GO won't be much cheaper. They already charge $19.40 to Kitchener.

it's almost like it costs money to travel hundreds of kilometres.

They would need to pay me minimum wage to go on that for four hours. It seems out of touch to do this pilot... like it is designed to fail so they can say they did something but are cancelling because "there is no demand for London to Toronto service". How did Mulroney keep a straight face announcing it will take four hours?
 
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kamira51

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GO won't be much cheaper. They already charge $19.40 to Kitchener.

And students. Much more comfortable than the bus and cheaper than VIA with more space. Who cares about the comfort of the seats when you have a safe train journey.
I remember years ago I wanted to take a train from Brampton to London using VIA, the tickets were around $200 if my memory is correct.
 

LNahid2000

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I remember years ago I wanted to take a train from Brampton to London using VIA, the tickets were around $200 if my memory is correct.
I'm seeing $42 with tax for tomorrow from Union to London. GO will likely be $10 cheaper for twice the time.

Also, ONEX Bus will get you there in 3 hours for $30.
 

nfitz

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The corridor between Kitchener and London clearly needs a lot of work if it takes 2hrs to travel. That shouldn't take more than an hour or so to cover as there are so few stops.
An hour might be optimistic without serious upgrades. But VIA used to regularly run 75 minutes. GO should be able to achieve similar.

4 hours sounds totally impractical. You can work an 8 hour day just by staying on the train.
I doubt very few are going from one end to the other, and will continue to use VIA.

In my experience, these type of milk runs, are for the stops in-between. Especially ones that VIA skips.
 

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