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MiExpress

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  1. January 2, 2023 service changes 2 - weekday evening schedule adjustments (will continue to interline with route 17 in late evening) 17 - weekday schedule adjustments, no longer interlining with route 18 (will continue to interline with route 2 in late evening) 18 - extended east along Derry to Westwood, replacing route 42A service. Route 18 will run between Sheridan College and Westwood via McLaughlin and Derry. Frequency every 12-13 minutes during weekday rush hours. 42 - weekday service service rescheduled with 42A branch eliminated. Route 42 will run between Meadowvale Town Centre and Westwood. Weekday frequency every 12-13 minutes during weekday rush hours and midday; late evening service reduced from 12 to 14 minutes. Note: Route 42 midday frequency unchanged compared to current service levels. Combined route 18/42 rush hour frequency is same as existing 42/42A service levels however the routes will not have integrated or coordinated scheduling on the common portion of the routes along Derry. 44 - Additional service added during October will continue during the January 2023 board period. 57 - weekday rush hour frequency increased from 17 to 13 minutes 61 - weekday rush hour frequency increased from 16 to 12 minutes; weekday midday frequency increased from 21 to 17 minutes 66 - additional weekday trips from CCT at 634a, 643a, 739a, 748a, 353p, 412p and additional weekday trips from Sheridan College at 814a, 824a, 430p, 450p, 540p, 600p. Earlier/later trips on Saturdays and Sundays. See related route 99 below 99 - New route 99 'College Shuttle' with non-stop service between City Centre Terminal and Sheridan College. Two weekday SB trips from Sheridan College at 704a and 719a, two weekday NB trips from CCT at 515p and 530p. Integrated as part of vehicle blocks for new 66 trips shown above 101 - Weekday rush hour frequency reduced from 10 to 12 minutes; weekday midday frequency reduced from 14 to 18 minutes. 103 - Earlier/later trips on weekdays and Saturdays/Sundays 110 - Additional service added during October will continue during the January 2023 board period.
  2. I do agree with you in a way, but I will point out that this may be a one time-abnormality. The serials that appear out of order were because they were originally assigned for 2017-2018 buses projected to be built for the US Market through Alliance Bus Group (Vicinity US dealer at the time). The orders never materialized, buses never got built so the serials ended up getting reused for later bus orders. Now that all those serials have been mostly filled they've gone back to having the serials in sequence for recent deliveries. I'm not arguing against your concern, it's a valid one but perhaps one that given the context should wait a little bit and see if recent deliveries continue a consistent serial order/sequence.
  3. This is the signage that the short trips between City Centre and UTM have used. In past years when UTM is in session the 110 was scheduled with short turn trips that only operated between City Centre and UTM with every second bus on the route going to Clarkson allowing for 8 minutes service between City Centre and UTM at the busiest times of the day, and 15 minutes during the midday. This year MiWay didn't implement that service design and used the summer service frequency of 15-20 minutes which is why there's been so many issues with the 110. Currently there are none of these short turn trips officially scheduled, however it sounds like MiWay may be running additional trips here and there when possible to try and alleviate the overcrowding. A bus won't appear on any trackers unless it is actually in the existing schedule. So yeah, "run as directed" is a good way of putting it.
  4. I guess there was enough feedback that MiWay made a visit to UTM and as per the posters visible in this tweet, the 44 and 110 will recieve additional trips on weekdays. However no implementation date was provided on the posters so who know when the extra trips will actually materialize. The 7 'Malton-Dixie' (as it was called then) ran west on Bloor and north on Dixie as per the October 21, 1974 system map but was revised in February 1975 to run via Dundas. I't possible the stop on Dixie was located on the north side of Bloor to accommodate easy transfers between the routes 3, 5 and 7 as the 7 was the only route that connected to Malton at the time. It could have also been just based on what the demand/transfer patterns were at the time (more people transferring westbound to northbound for work in the industrial areas) and the same could hold true for some of the stop placements in all the old industrial areas where some are placed close together, and often right beside the driveways of various facilities.
  5. Looks like it was omitted from the service change posting on the website perhaps by mistake, however if you check the schedules on the MiWay site for the 46 on October 24 it shows the new schedule with 35 minutes frequency.
  6. Route 46 will have one all day bus removed (3 to 2) reducing the weekday frequency from 23 to 35 minutes all day. As for service increases: Route 2's weekday evening service between 6-9pm improves from 10 to 8 minutes Route 26's weekday rush hour frequency improves from 17 to 14 minutes; midday and evening service improves from 26 to 21 minutes. This essentially restores the pre-covid service levels on the route. Route 7's Saturday midday frequency improves from 30 to 24 minutes; Sunday all day frequency improves from 40 to 30 minutes. While budgeted service hours are still a issue resulting in some cases of "robbing peter to pay paul" hopefully with new drivers being hired this fall the staffing situation will be less of a issue. The strong rumour is there will be another redesign of the Derry service in the new year, with the a new variant being reintroduced operating between Sheridan College and Humber College. Presumably this would be accomplished by reworking the 42A design and cancelling route 18, and depending on what route it takes in the east end possible changes to routes 22 and 30.
  7. While the Hurontario corridor will not need articulated buses when the LRT opens, there will still be demand on other corridors. Suggestions to improve frequencies are nice but run into a bigger constraint in the amount of budgeted service hours which is set and approved by council each year. While Hurontario will no longer need articulated buses when the LRT opens, there will be other corridors that require them due to ridership growth. For example the 42 Derry runs at 6 minute peak frequency and 14 of 17 peak buses on the route are scheduled to be artics. Mavis is another corridor that has trended towards requiring articulated buses in both the peak and off peak. With constraints on the amount of service hours that can be added artics are another way to increase capacity with less of a impact on direct operating costs, hence why MiWay plans to expand the fleet of articulated buses from the current 77 to 101 by 2024. You're correct that the LRT opening will allow for buses to be removed from Hurontario but there will still need to be a local service operating at a reasonable frequency as there are several well used local stops. By the way, there currently aren't any additional buses being used on the Hurontario corridor to compensate for the LRT construction. In September 2019, the 19 used 21 buses in peak periods while the 103 used 11 for a total of 32 buses. For September 2022, the peak requirements are 10 buses for route 2, 9 buses for route 17/18 (interlined) and 6 buses for route 103, a total of 25 buses. Even if the 103's peak frequency was restored to the 11 minute frequency pre-covid it would require an additional 4 buses bringing the total to 29. Agreed that the LRT is being built because the demand on Hurontario warrants higher order transit (which should have been built on the corridor years ago). However the LRT is being built not only with current ridership in mind but also the city provincially mandated growth plans which call for more density on major transit corridors and major transit station areas. The increased density will bring more ridership, because even if the overall city population remains stagnant or only grows slightly, there will be a net increase in population along the LRT corridor even if there are population declines elsewhere. Pre-covid, in September 2019 there was a peak requirement of 384/500 buses resulting in a 24% spare ratio. The current requirement is approximately 315/475 buses (some buses retired without direct replacement during COVID) resulting in a 34% spare ratio. There is no shortage of physical bus assets and the spare ratio at MiWay was considerably higher than the industry standard 15-20% even pre-covid. As for the issue of adding additional growth buses, I do have to agree with ngdvd that there likely won't be a need for many additional growth buses in the next few years. The Hurontario LRT freeing up buses is one reason, but another big factor is that MiWay like many other systems coming out of COVID has experienced higher growth of off-peak ridership compared to peak service. Additional off peak service does not require fleet expansion to accomodate. One thing to consider in all this is with any significant economic event, including COVID, is that it impacts transit ridership levels and travel patterns even over the medium to long term. Travel patterns and demand have changed and it is not unlike the 2008 financial crisis where several routes lost ridership and took years to recover, or never reached the high point again. Given all this, previous observations or perceptions may no longer be valid.
  8. It's a valid concern and I have observed much of the same. Last week around 7:20pm I observed a route 44 at UTM with a full standing load...and it wasn't scheduled to depart for another ten minutes. Taking your first comment on artics, the fleet currently has 77 articulated buses and currently approximately 55 are used during peak periods. Even though that leaves about 22 left over, artics generally are less reliable, require more maintenance and can have more extended downtime than a standard 40 foot bus. However there are 16 new articulated buses being delivered by the end of the year replacing standard 40 foot buses, and that might be the best opportunity in the near term to increase capacity on the 44 and 110. Service on both routes 44 and 110 is worse than prior to the pandemic. In fall 2019 the 44 ran at 14 minute frequency during peak and 17 minutes during the midday, while the 110 between UTM and City Centre ran every 8 minutes during peak and 16 minutes during midday. Forward to fall 2022 and the 44 runs at 21 minutes frequency all day, while the 110 runs at 17-20 minute frequency all day. While those service levels worked okay when there was a combination of virtual and in person learning now that full in person learning has returned the routes can't keep up with the demand. Service levels are based on available service hours - in simple terms, 1 bus on the road for a hour = 1 service hour - which are approved annually by city council as part of the city budget, these hours are a fixed amount in the budget and MiWay cannot just add whatever amount of service hours they want. Since the start of the pandemic in 2020 the amount of available service hours has been frozen at 2019 levels which means that the only way to add service to routes is to cut service elsewhere. Routes like Derry, Mavis, McLaughlin, Kennedy, Tomken have had added service which has been achieved by cutting service on other routes. In order to add more service to the 44 or 110 there would have to be service cut elsewhere and there isn't much more places where service can be cut back further especially on weekdays. Also contributing to the inability to add service is a shortage of drivers due to lags in hiring during the pandemic, can't schedule service that won't have any drivers to drive the buses. So what to do? It's a very valid problem despite the constraints. Writing to MiWay's service development department as well as the local city councillor would be a good start making it clear the buses are completely full and more service hours (budget issue, city council) and capacity (artics) is required. Hopefully at the least MiWay can figure out a way to get artics back on the 110 until more service hours can be approved in the budget and drivers hired. UTM students collectively pay millions of dollars in U-Pass fees to the city so it's reasonable to expect better than what's currently offered and I would hope any feedback is taken very seriously, at the very least there should be a way to put artics on the 110 beginning in January with the additional 16 artic buses that will be in the fleet by then.
  9. Niagara has posted a tender for refreshment and refurbishment of Nova LFS buses. WEGO branded units 5301-5305 (40' LFX) will receive a "refreshment" consisting of exterior body work, new livery decals, interior flooring and seating replacement, and minor mechanical work. WEGO branded units 5201-5211 (60' LFX) will receive the same "refreshment" as 5301-5305, but in addition have the articulation joint overhauled. Niagara Falls 1396-1397 (40' LFS) will receive a full refurbishment consisting of the same "refreshment" items as 5301-5305 but in addition receive major mechanical work such as engine and transmission replacement, axle/suspension work, alternator replacement, and other tasks. The full scope of work for each subfleet can be found at https://niagarafalls.ca/pdf/tenders/2200/appendix-f-price-form.pdf Tender closes on October 20 and there is a clause stating that the bidder must be within 150km driving distance from the NFT garage, that the buses must be driven and any bidders farther than this will not be considered. https://niagarafalls.ca/pdf/tenders/2200/rfp22-2022-refresh-refurbishment-of-transit-buses-nova-40-60-.pdf
  10. Provided that the subfleets have similar specifications, usage profile and maintenance there may not be a high variance of operational costs between manufacturers especially when evaluating costs over the long term lifecycle. As an example, averaging over the last 5-6 years the 2010-2012 diesel Orions and 2011-2013 diesel Xcelsiors have maintenance costs that are within a very close range to each other that all factors considered the performance of the fleets is pretty much identical. Operational costs can be impacted by agency specification of buses, usage profile, and maintenance choices. Even a goal of "streamlining" the fleet wouldn't necessarily reduce operational costs. Even if there is standardization of the model there can be design changes through the years, whether it be agency changing specifications or manufacturer changing designs by choice or regulations. MiWay received a large amount of New Flyer buses between 2003-2009, but there are enough differences between the orders that require different stocks of parts and maintenance requirements. Some were manufacturer design changes either by choice or regulation, others were changes to specifications by MiWay. The first order of Novas ended up being an order of 80 buses which is a sizeable enough subfleet, not a small subfleet of oddball buses that has nothing in common with the rest of the fleet. The price variance between Nova and New Flyer for that order was just under $1 million. Looking back at the tender documents for MiWay bus orders including the one that led to the Novas, training for maintenance staff is to be included in the overall bid price. Operators did receive training and it was around 2 hours if i recall. Some did it outside work hours being paid overtime as a result, others were booked off during work hours for training. Even operating under the assumption all 1100 operators received 2 hours of OT pay for the training based on 2018 pay rates, the cost of training operators on Novas was no higher than $120,000 far less than the price variance in the tender. Because they submitted the lowest bid while meeting all the terms and conditions set out in the tender document. Prior to 2016 Mississauga bus tenders were also evaluated based on a scoring system with price accounting for 40-50% of the total score but the scoring was similar between manufacturers and it always ended up coming down to price. From a legal perspective, if a procurement process is conducted and a bid submitted from a qualified bidder meets all the terms and conditions set out in the tender while providing the lowest price from a legal perspective there is a obligation to accept that bid. To do anything else jeopardizes the integrity of the entire process.
  11. The MiWay 2010 Orion VII NGs were purchased long before the TTC 8100s entered service. The answer to the question is simple, the procurement process was conducted as usual in 2009 for the 2010 buses and Orion scored the best in evaluation score and cost. This is also the same reason why no Orions were purchased between 2003 and 2009, every procurement during that period for 40' buses resulted in New Flyer having the lowest cost and best evaluation score. In 2016 the procurement method for buses changed to no longer include an evaluated score, focusing strictly on compliance with the written specifications and lowest overall cost. Every Mississauga Transit/MiWay bus order, even dating back to the 1970s was a result of a procurement process resulting in the order being awarded based on cost and/or bid evaluation score, or a extension of a contract that was initially awarded on those factors. This was even true during the large streak of Orion purchases in the 1980s and 1990s, every single time orders went out to bid Orion had the lowest cost. The only exception were the 1997 and 2001 D60LFs, which were sole sourced because there were no competing products available at the time. The 2001 Orions were lemons, but there are false equivalences drawn between the experience and the bus purchases following them; and it's not like MiWay hasn't had issues with products and/or support from the other manufacturers at times.
  12. The budgeted service life for MiWay buses is 15 years for 40’ and 12 years for 60’ buses, which has been in effect since 2013. What this means is the city will budget funding to replace buses based on this cycle. There are currently no plans to replace the 2010 Orions until at least 2025. The 2003-2007 buses were supposed to be replaced based on the 15 year lifecycle however it was delayed to pursue federal funding for bus replacement which took a lot longer than expected to approve; and in the case of the 03s, a desire to replace the ElDorados sooner.
  13. MIWay (or Mississauga Transit if that's your preference) has consistently operated at a higher spare ratio than what is considered the norm in the industry. This was true even pre-COVID; in September 2019 there was a peak requirement of 384/500 buses resulting in a 24% spare ratio. The current requirement is approximately 315/475 buses (some buses retired without direct replacement during COVID) resulting in a 34% spare ratio. Staffing availability and parts supply issues are probably having a impact in addition to extended downtime due to structural work on order buses (40% of the fleet is 12+ years old); also relevant during the heat wave a few weeks back was a rash of buses out of service for repairs to the A/C systems.
  14. As of right now yes, it just had a semi-annual inspection a few weeks ago. Depending on what work is needed as a result not uncommon for a bus to be out of service a couple weeks waiting on parts stock, shop space, manpower etc. especially in COVID times. If a bus needs structural work or major engine/transmission work it could result in it being out of service for up to 2-3 months. Given all this, a bus being out of service a month in the case of 0302 isn't a indicator that it is retired.
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