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Transit Notes - February 17, 2006

Crossposted to Spacing Wire

The Toronto Transit Commission unveiled its February service changes earlier this week (details here), comprising largely of increasing trip times so as to improve the reliability of service. One item that went almost unnoticed had to do about the 509 Harbourfront streetcar.

Early morning service which normally turned back at Fleet Loop has been extended to the Exhibition. In anticipation of the route’s seasonal increase in ridership, the route’s frequency will also be increased, but the reason for the early morning route extension is “because of poor track conditions at Fleet Loop.”

The tracks along Fleet Street are overdue for replacement and the Toronto Transit Commission expects to replace this section later this year, with a private right-of-way.

TTC Commissioners will be meeting this coming Wednesday at 1 p.m. in Toronto’s City Hall. Among the items up for consideration is a status report on the planned construction of bus only lanes between Downsview station and York University (report here) and a cost assessment of improving the accessibility of Toronto’s streetcars.

The TTC’s surface track renewal program for 2006 has been announced, with $8.8 million set aside to maintain the system in a state of good repair. The projects include:

  • Gerrard Street East: Coxwell Avenue to Enderby
  • Lakeshore Boulevard West: 25th Street to 40th Street
  • Fleet Street: Bathurst Street to Strachan Avenue, including reserved Transit Lane
  • Exhibition Loop Curves
  • Fleet Loop (Special Tracks)
  • Bathurst Street at Hillcrest Yard Entrance (Special Tracks)

This will likely also include work on St. Clair Avenue, which has been delayed from 2005 thanks to court action.

Finally, the Toronto Community Foundation has announced a $1 million gift from the Budd Sugarman Foundation towards the renovation of Osgoode, St. Patrick and Museum subway stations. Mr. Sugarman was the “unofficial mayor of Yorkville” and the foundation set up in his name was dedicated to celebrate his efforts to preserve the area’s heritage buildings and architectural landmarks.

The donation brings the total amount raised by the TCF to $1.75 million, $2.75 million away from the estimated $4.5 million required to complete the renovations to Museum station.

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