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Everything posted by GTAmissions1

  1. Via Transsee: 1394 on Viva Orange as of 11:20 PM on August 1st. I have seen articulated buses appear from time to time on Orange especially since the regular 40 ft buses aren't always available with the mileage accumulated.
  2. It will be interesting if Go Transit expands their services to London, Ontario considering it is pretty far. A train trip by Via-Rail between London Station and Union Station in Toronto is 2 hours and 15 minutes assuming no delays or issues. The longest Go Train route is a tie between two sections. Kitchener Go to Union Station at almost two hours one way and Union Station to Niagara Falls on the Lakeshore West line which is almost two hours too. Based on scheduled times. Especially how the Toronto to London bus route is covered by Megabus subcontracted to Badder Bus and Onex Corporation planning a similar bus route to cover the same stretch. Trying to compete for the demand of transportation.
  3. Correct. Since the original version was called Sunday Funday which the pass could only be used on Sunday which the cost is $10. This is on top of as mentioned that Go Transit bases their fares on distance which it needs to know the two fare zones in order to activate the pass. If it was simply a flat fare no matter where you went without fare zones, it would simply be activating the pass without needing to input any special instructions. Back during Sunday Funday pass, there was a survey asking what the passed was used for with three options: One way trip Return trip (trip to destination and back home on the same day) Multiple trips Right now, the weekend pass is to increase ridership on weekends after losing over 90 percent due to COVID-19. Not sure how long the weekend pass will go for since it is most likely costing money for the agency based on uptake. Seeing a few people use the pass. At the same time, I think there is a lot more to gain than lose especially with the longer distance trips.
  4. Simcoe Muskoka is planning to wind down mass immunization clinics as of August 27th and instead redirecting people to use pharmacies for those needing to get vaccinated with either a first or second dose. https://barrie.ctvnews.ca/simcoe-muskoka-health-unit-to-close-mass-immunization-clinics-1.5524826 Considering that over half of the population is fully vaccinated, there isn't as much of a need to have a large facility with staff to vaccinate on a high volume basis. Some clinics can handle a few thousand appointments a day during the peak demand. On the other hand, testing capacity still needs to be maintained at full capacity especially with the Delta variant. Especially the need to detect and isolate cases when they occur along with contact tracing for those that came in close contact within the last two weeks. To minimize the spread of COVID-19. Though I will admit that they should expand testing beyond a few select locations especially since some pharmacies are open late and some even 24 hours. Hopefully the Delta variant will slow down once it reaches the peak. The delay and vaccinate solution currently being applied only works once people get vaccinated with both doses. There are two other solutions. Race through it and coordinate & crush which is a lot more risky and challenging. Here is a link to the video regarding the three options to ending the pandemic.
  5. After over a decade of cost overruns and missed deadlines, the Bay concourse at Union Station has finally reopened as of July 27th. https://www.gotransit.com/en/stations-stops-parking/bay-concourse?fbclid=IwAR0Z3akyz4kRs_QYPgy0iZ8CTPutUuA1izMrEQ693kurOgxtvNfITV43UWY Toronto Star article Especially the years that people who were transferring from the subway to Go Train during peak periods and vice versa has been difficult having to enter through a certain pathway. Since the work was done in phases and to better accommodate passenger volumes. I remember the second platform project at the Union subway station to better accommodate and expand beyond the centre platform. Go Transit is bases their fares on distance. Using different fare zones to calculate the amount to charge based on how many fare zones between the start and end. You can put down whatever start and end point you have. It is valid system wide anywhere on the bus or train network and yes, you can travel outside the itinerary you put down. Just make sure your phone is fully charged and have access to celluar data to use the day/weekend pass and activate it 5 minutes before you board. I have seen people who activate when the bus comes and the operator lets them on since it will show day pass. Weekend day pass expires at 3 AM the next day or for the weekend, it is 3 AM Monday or 3 AM Tuesday if it falls on a long weekend. Since Go Transit has their final departures from Union Station just before 3 AM the next day along with Route 34 and 40 operating 24 hours every day. I have had the day pass glitch where the time remaining went to zero when it was still within the current service day. If that happens, just explain to the operator and show them the date it was activated and they should let you on.
  6. Saw that one. I know some transit agencies lock the foldable forward facing seats on the D40LF buses. It is the first row after the sideways seating where the accessibility space is. Not sure how MiWay Transit buses are setup since each transit agency has different specifications for how they want their seating layout to be between different models. Most likely someone flew out of their seat as a result of hard braking which led to injuries and even death. I can't find the exact post that responded to a similar situation where a transit agency was locking the forward facing seats that are foldable. Since it has been many years ago. Get ready for people trying to fold them down and being told "they don't fold down."
  7. All day Go Train service coming to Hamilton's West Harbour going directly to Union effective August 7th. https://blog.metrolinx.com/2021/07/26/all-day-go-train-service-coming-to-hamilton-this-summer/?fbclid=IwAR3V8i3F1pl3wJ3ygSgmKx9j4fIV2LFJ8ZC_rbDYZzMEzKTRGz7BweFlHb8 Hours of operation for the extension to Hamilton on hourly frequency: Weekday from West Harbour to Union: 5:13 AM until 10:13 PM Weekday from Union to West Harbour: 6:45 AM until 11:45 PM Weekends from West Harbour to Union: 8:13 AM until 11:13 PM Weekends from Union to West Harbour: 8:45 AM until 12:45 AM Testing and training will be done between July 31st to August 6th. Train will stop, but doors will NOT open. Other service changes on the train line effective August 7th for weekend service. Weekday service change will take effect August 9th. Most of the bus trips that replaced train service have now been phased out except for the one 68D trip on weekday mornings and weekend departures for 68D which will continue to run. Lakeshore West: Hamilton Go Centre departures reinstated with 6:45 AM and 7:45 AM to Union. 3:30 PM and 4 PM from Union to Hamilton Go Centre. 15 minute rush hour and mid-day service resuming August 9th between Union and Oakville Go Stations. 5:18 AM until late afternoon going eastbound from Oakville 7:15 AM until late afternoon westbound from Union. Lakeshore East: 15 minute frequency restored between Union and Oshawa Go Station 5:10 AM until late afternoon westbound from Oshawa Go Station 6:10 AM until late afternoon eastbound from Union Kitchener: Select weekday departures restored 8:39 PM departure from Kitchener Go Station arriving at 10:28 PM to Union Station (eastbound) 8:40 PM departure from Mount Pleasant Go arriving at 9:28 PM to Union Station (eastbound) 7:34 PM and 8:34 PM from Union to Mount Pleasant Go arriving at 8:23 PM and 9:23 PM (westbound) 9:34 PM departure from Union to Kitchener arriving at 11:28 PM (westbound) Stouffville: Select weekday departures and weekend all day train service restored 5:28 AM Lincolnville Go departure towards Union (southbound) Four trips: 7:35 PM, 8:35 PM, 9:35 PM and 10:35 PM from Mount Joy towards Union (southbound) 6:14 PM trip to Lincolnville Go Station from Union will instead be adjusted to end at Mount Joy (northbound) Three departures: 7:14 PM, 8:14 PM and 9:14 PM from Union Station to Mount Joy (northbound) Two departures: 10:14 PM and 11:14 PM from Union Station to Lincolnville Go Station (northbound) Weekend train service between Union and Mount Joy on hourly schedule with select departures extended to Lincolnville Go Station Barrie: Select weekday departures and weekend all day train service restored on August 14th 9:57 AM from Aurora to Union will instead start at Bradford departing at 9:36 AM (southbound) 7:57 PM and 8:57 PM departure from Aurora Go Station towards Union (southbound) 9:08 PM departure from Allandale Waterfront Go Station to Union (southbound) 6:53 PM, 7:53 PM and 8:53 PM departure from Union to Aurora Go (northbound) 9:53 PM departure from Union towards Allandale (northbound) 10:53 PM departure from Union towards Bradford (northbound) Weekend train service to resume hourly service to resume between Aurora and Union with select trips extended to Allandale Waterfront Reason why expanded weekend service is a week later on the Barrie line is due to work being done which trains will be replaced by bus service on August 7th and 8th. 68D is still operating which gets a fair bit of demand for those that want to avoid all the other stops and take the direct route. Running every 3 hours being reasonable when trains were not operating. The biggest challenge is once reaching the DVP and Gardiner (depending on which route is taken) is when the traffic congestion gets really heavy. Taking a bit more time depending on traffic conditions.
  8. Regarding the Ontario Photo ID card, someone asked on Facebook to Service Ontario regarding why a driver's license is required to renew online. It is to authenticate the residency requirement which is 153 days in any 12 month period along with Ontario being the primary residence. I mean an Ontario Photo ID card can also take the place of the driver's license to verify residency requirement for those that cannot drive or make it to an in-person location to renew. Noting that photo validity is 10 years in-line with passport photos once a passport application is processed successfully. 5 year option still exists for those that travel frequently and fill up the pages quickly.
  9. When they figure out how to print transfers that work on the turnstiles. Especially with the downtown U section on Line 1 except for Wellesley which don't have fare paid zones. Having to show transfer for the ticket collector to verify before letting the passenger through. Off-hand I know Ottawa's OC Transpo has the QR reader code for the regular transfers and one day passes that can be scanned at the turnstiles. Vancouver on the other hand, if you pay with cash on-board a bus route and transferring to SkyTrain, the passenger would have to purchase a new ticket at the station that will work on the turnstiles. Paying twice in that case. Cash payment will be around long-term, but most likely the cost of retrofitting to accommodate a small volume isn't worthwhile. Especially with Presto cards and tickets being the major push marketing the benefits such as two-hour transfers. Something that isn't provided with cash fares which is still a one-way continuous transfer.
  10. Decided to grab some Uncle Tetsu cheesecake. Especially with how precise their measurements are along with the quality of ingredients. I always buy one when I have an opportunity.
  11. UP Express means Union Pearson Express. The marketing is how it can get you between Union (downtown) and Pearson International Airport in 25 minutes. Only stopping at Bloor (Dundas West) and Weston (Weston and Lawrence) before heading to the airport. The pricing is more expensive at $12.35 for the three stop journey or $9.25 with a Presto card if riding under the adult/student fare class. TTC has their own shop. Link here: https://www.ttcshop.ca Metrolinx oversees Go Transit, Presto and Union Pearson Express along with regional planning. Local transit agencies are managed by the respective region/municipality.
  12. York University Go Station to close permanently to make room for adding additional tracks. The writing was on the wall for many years noting that service to York University Go Station was reduced once Downsview Go Station opened providing a connection to the subway (Line 1 Yonge-University). Walk to York University from the Go Train station being around 20 minutes or taking the shuttle bus. https://blog.metrolinx.com/2021/07/19/york-university-go-station-closes-to-make-way-for-barrie-line-expansion/?fbclid=IwAR20xx_LR4nEA3q506apD9OLyhWVBDlOelS-9gdAU1s03vyTYou5DmlAHEA
  13. The schedule has been posted for Route 6 Midland to Orillia. From both Midland Georgian College campus and Lakehead campus in Orillia: Departures are hourly from 6 AM to 6 PM on weekdays only with two buses. Route 6 will ONLY connect with Route 3 at Lakehead University which the frequency has been adjusted to compensate connecting between the two routes. Route changes effective August 3rd for Route 3: Route 3 Barrie to Orillia will operate every two hours instead of every 100 minutes (1 hour and 40 minutes). Here is the new first and last departures with a departure every two hours in-between trips. Lakehead University first departure: 6 AM until 6 PM being the final departure. Georgian College Barrie campus first departure: 7 AM until 5 PM (final departure). Not going to lie, two hours is a lot more easier to plan than every 50/100 minutes. Once regular service is restored, it will be hourly which is a lot easier to plan. I know 50 minutes is 10 minutes less, but it is hard to predict if coming from local transit that operates every half-hour and coming at a fixed time.
  14. Just received my replacement credit card in the mail since my current one was close to expiring, so the issuer sent me a new card before the month of expiry. Difference from the previous time is that I activated it online with the special code attached when I logged onto my online account. This is along with verifying other information and how the process is protected by two-step verification. Something that should be mandatory with online services that handle sensitive info. Some issuers are providing an option to activate online than deal with the automated phone system. I once had an issue where I couldn't activate a credit card online and ended up going through the automated system. I don't think there are many issuers that still have human representatives activating them manually considering the push to reduce costs for the organization. Once the new card is activated, just put the old one through the shredder. I just renewed my photo ID card online since my photo was within the 10 year validity period. Especially since the only other option is to carry a passport, but that is only required if travelling internationally and contains sensitive info. I mean more regions have created a photo ID card option for those that can't drive. Have to provide proof of address or age and a health card isn't going to suffice. I haven't had an issue provincially showing my photo ID card.
  15. I remember when I first visited Vancouver I could either use Vancouver City Centre on the Canada Line or Granville on the Expo Line. Depending on the destination. Taking Granville is very shallow taking a few escalators down. Taking a few minutes from the street entrance on Seymour Street until reaching the platform. Reading that it has also undergone similar work to replace the escalators taking the same amount of time to install the upgrades to the station. An explainer video has been posted by Translink:
  16. Considering they had 16 months to figure out something. Especially with the controversy regarding the World Health Organization saying "vaccines shouldn't be mixed with the two doses." Before they backtracked on their wording with some regions mixing two different vaccines because of the limited supply with some products. They say there is an end to the pandemic. You would think there would be an end game plan, but instead they somehow must have either forgotten or deferred it. Especially some businesses are short-staffed too with some employees putting in their resignation notice. Some regions outlaw providing "proof of vaccination" because of privacy concerns sharing private health data. I mean who wants to carry two pieces of paper to prove they received both doses or having to retrieve it electronically every single time. If a regular of the business, most would just give up checking the same person every single day.
  17. The amount of incidents on-board aircraft and airports have increased this year. Especially how people are outraged about how flight attendants and other passengers assisted in duct taping a passenger who had a mental breakdown and tried to open a door. Of course when 30,000 feet up in the air, you can't do much other than hope that passengers step in and assist in controlling the trouble passenger until proper authorities step-in and handle the situation. FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) taking a zero tolerance policy and issuing fines to those that cause trouble.
  18. Megabus is rolling out a new route between Toronto Union Station and London Flying J Travel Centre on 3700 Highbury South effective July 15th. Operated by a contractor called Badder Bus. From Toronto Union Station: 10:45 AM arriving at London at 1:50 PM and 4:30 PM arriving in London at 7:35 PM. From London Flying J Travel Centre: 6:30 AM arriving in Toronto at 9:35 AM and 12:05 PM arriving at 3:10 PM in Toronto. Regarding the terminus for London, the closest transit route is Route 30 White Oaks Mall-Cheesecake Factory Road which only operates during the peak periods at a frequency of around 30 to 40 minutes. Plus the nearest stop is Commerce Road and Global Drive which is also a bit of a walk from where Megabus drops off/pick-up.
  19. Porter Airlines plans on adding new destinations and operating out of Pearson International Airport to serve farther destinations with new planes. Expected in mid-2022 pending delivery of new airplanes along with training employees on how to operate and prepare for the long-haul flights. I wouldn't mind trying out Porter Airlines noting only Air Canada and Westjet are the two major competitors that cover the major routes. https://www.flyporter.com/en-ca/about-porter/porter-and-embraer
  20. That is correct. Especially with Bay Lower being used for filming different kinds of films in the past.
  21. Apple just rolled out a new version of gift card that will work everything Apple. Instead of iTunes/App Store gift cards and the retail gift card which were previously separate and confused customers who would think one would work with the other. The trade-off is that any promotions or discounts are most likely discontinued. Still to be confirmed since the iTunes/App Store gift cards go on discount/reward points regularly from time to time depending on the retailer. At least it is handy for those that want to buy a refurbished product and don't have a credit card for the transaction because the inventory moves very quickly. For customers that have already have a balance on their Apple account or gift cards not redeemed, they are still valid and will be honoured at face value. A very positive moment for me being able to load my account with gift cards rather than use a credit card.
  22. Just got my second dose today which is Moderna. First dose is Pfizer which the batch is allocated to the 12 to 17 age group depending on how many bookings they get. I could try tomorrow and get a Pfizer shot, but I would rather get it done since I would rather not risk a no-show appointment and not gamble on a walk-in. Since they only have so much supply on-hand to accommodate. In other news, Pfizer is already working on a booster shot to address the COVID-19 variants. Working on submitting the data before mass distribution to ensure effectiveness against the new threat. https://globalnews.ca/news/8014256/pfizer-booster-covid-delta-variant/
  23. Go Transit is offering a weekend pass for one day, two day and the long weekends and holiday (one day). Link here: https://blog.metrolinx.com/2021/07/06/metrolinx-announces-weekend-pass-to-get-riders-moving-and-exploring-again-as-ontario-begins-to-leave-pandemic-behind/ A way to help regain ridership especially with a reduction of around 90 percent during the peak of COVID-19 along with stay at home orders. Especially how expensive Go Transit can be getting around. $7.50/day for the weekend pass covering two days. Only available by e-ticket right now. I remember when I used to take Go Transit on the Sunday Funday pass first introduced being only $10, it was pretty handy not having to calculate the fare between two different destinations. Just have to show to the transit operator on the bus or show on the phone if asked for proof of payment.
  24. Porter Airlines resumes flights on September 8th with a phased approach staggering different flight dates for select destinations. Link to the list here: http://eporter.flyporter.com/relaunch/index.html Hopefully they will keep this date firm instead of changing it the last few times.
  25. Power went out at 5 AM this morning (July 5th) due to a thunderstorm. Pretty much having to cannibalize battery power from a battery pack and now having to use the hotspot on my phone to access internet via charging cable. This is due to time of use meters exploding. Yes you heard that right, it pretty much exploded which mine blew off from the box. Hydro crew came to replace the damaged equipment along with checking the circuit breakers to ensure no damage. At the time of writing as of 11 PM, power has still not been restored being the remaining few who are stuck. It was best not to leave the house before the crew came in to do the repair work especially if missing the crew, it can take more time to make arrangements for one to be sent to assist and repair. Being critical infrastructure. My data usage will probably be very high, but I do have an unlimited data plan which once I exceed the allotted bucket of data, I can still use it but at a slower speed as a trade-off. Probably good reinforcement for a 72 hour preparedness plan. Even though I know others along the street are probably staying with family or booking a hotel room for the night. For me, have to stick with what I have and handle it the best I can. EDIT: Power restored as of 9:30 AM this morning (July 6th). After submitting a ticket phoning into the utility. Especially since being without hydro for over 24 hours was the most challenging aspect. You would think they hydro company would restore it before dark sets in rather than wait until the next morning.
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