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Ed T.

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Posts posted by Ed T.

  1. On 4/11/2020 at 4:04 AM, Xtrazsteve said:

    I suggest they could divide the cities into microzones and charge fares according to multiple zones.

    Let's say a zone would be mostly Northern Etobicoke bounded by 427/Steeles/Jane/Eglinton. A trip from Humber College to downtown would be 3-4 zones. If one stays within a zone, fare would reduced to $2.25 while travel between 2 to 3 zones would be around $3.25 (current fare). Further travels would result in a higher fare so Etobicoke to East Scabrorough would cost $4.25. This would address the issue with Rexdale to Malton trips resulting in 2 zones and would cost around current fare into of double fare. The size of the zones could be tweaked.

    The problem with time based fare is a rapid transit is superior to buses in terms of travel speeds. One would get a lot further in a hour if they lived beside the subway and definitely a lot further on GO train. I don't think it makes sense to use time based fares for a GTA system. Time based fare is also unfair to those utilizing bus routes experiencing congestion all the time. Something like the TTC deciding to keep adding time to the schedule for reliability makes it worst.


    Microzones don't make much sense, at least if you're close to the boundary of one, and usually go just across into the next boundary. The more boundaries there are, the more people that will be crossing them for even short trips.

    Also, dropping fares for short trips means you will be down on revenue, because the truly long distance riders, that are now paying a lot more, probably won't make up for the lower short-distance fares.

    Add to that that the places where people might take short hops are typically already too busy, such as streetcar routes. So it's not like you want to encourage more people to take rides on the King car while also paying less.

    Add to that, the fact that those poor sods who make the Etobicoke to East Scarborough ride are not people out for a pleasant joyride, they're people who have to do this, most likely because they're in a minimum-paying job. Soaking them more is not a sensible policy. (For two semesters, I took TTC from Long Branch to Seneca Newnham at Finch/404. It was under two hours in the morning--left at 6:03 because classes started at 8 AM--while getting home was usually 2.5 hours. I took the TTC because I could get a discount Metropass and could not afford to drive, either gas or parking.)

  2. On 4/11/2020 at 8:58 PM, PCC Guy said:

    Tonight seemed like a good night to update my CLRV disposition list. As always, if anyone has any information I'm missing, please let me know.


    Is this in a spreadsheet format?

    If it's a spreadsheet, you can do things like sort on date of retirement, which would also be interesting.

    I might do that one day, but not right now as I sit outside a library (distancing in my closed car) using the wifi that is still running.

  3. 9 hours ago, Bus_Medic said:

    Why? That would put an unnecessary burden on an already finite manpower pool.


    5 hours ago, AnalogPentium said:

    Just something that I was curious about since coronavirus caused retirements at an agency I can't say since that's still internal info at this point. They're not being stripped yet, just sidelined indefinitely despite being in a SOGR and having a valid MTO. Decreased riderships caused this and because the TTC's ridership has obviously decreased, it was just something that popped into my mind.


    With that said, I do understand there's only so much manpower the TTC has but at the same time, to my knowledge quite a bit is not being utilized. But yeah, I guess it does make sense for the TTC to stick to whatever plan they have for them for now.

    In fact, it makes sense to keep working, licenced buses around under these conditions. If you're dealing with a lot of missing garage staff, it's always good to have a trusty old bus to send out if a newer bus fails. Remember that maintenance and repair capability is likely down across all the garages. The ability to get spares may be impacted as well. Spending time actually decommissioning older buses that are still usable seems like a poor use of scarce resources.

    • Like 2
  4. 15 hours ago, Someguy3071 said:

    No, what he's saying is that us operators are just dumb bus drivers and that we're unable to operate a bus safely and keep track of how many passengers are on the bus. Nevermind that by keeping track of passengers in the bus were trying to keep passengers and ourselves safe. 

    Isn't that sort of like enforcing fare payment? Some operators have stated, here, that they don't really bother to enforce fares, as it can result in too much friction. I realize that overcrowding can potentially have much more serious consequences these days than someone dropping 88 cents in pennies in the farebox ever was. But enforcement would be even more fraught. With boarding at rear doors, all you would have is the speaker?

    Yes, you can bypass a stop, but that's not a perfect answer. For example, someone wants to get off at a stop, you need to stop. Or you have a safe number of people on the bus (say 12), and there are 10 people waiting at a busy stop. How do you let on only three or four?

    So I don't think he's saying that operators are dumb. He's getting you out of a responsibility of trying to enforce safe loads, which is going to be a tricky job at best.

    Suppose it was flipped around, and the op was responsible for making sure that everyone on the bus was at a safe distance from each other. How possible would it be to do that? Would that be something that operators and the union would even agree to?

    • Like 2
  5. 20 hours ago, nfitz said:

    Looks like it, looking at 310's data from this morning - https://www.transsee.ca/triplist?a=ttc&route=310&date=2020-04-01

    306 every 20 minutes as well!

    1. I should get premium access to Transsee, but I don't have PayPal, and the last time I checked Transsee was probably mid-February.
    2. I hear the 301 service in the wee hours if I'm being a bit insomniac. Sometimes a bit of a squeal going around the loop, but much more noisy running on rough rails eastbound from the loop to Thirty Seventh St. I don't know if the bad rail is patchy, or if the noise is travelling through gaps in buildings. But I hear it through good quality closed insulated windows at a distance of at least half a kilometre.
    3. I would think that with the shutdown of bars and restaurants, as well as schools and colleges and universities, late-evening and early-morning travel on these streetcar routes (Queen, King, Carlton) would be way down. No problem keeping physical distance on these cars.
    4. But If enough operators call in sick or are self-isolating, what would the TTC do if they can't send the excess streetcars out to mitigate the storage issues?
  6. On 3/31/2020 at 8:23 PM, Wayside Observer said:

    I saw 4603 this afternoon on Lakeshore Rd. as it passed me by on the way home.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get a picture and in trying to, missed whether it was running in service or doing mileage accumulation.

    Since I wasn’t able to get a picture of the current 4603, here’s a picture of the previous 4603.   Some people may even remember the 4603 before this one too.


    Trick question? The TTC never had a 4603 prior to the A15 class.

  7. 22 hours ago, Bus_Medic said:

    Plastic curtains excluding the two seats immediately behind the driver on nova buses are being deployed en masse.

    Oddly*, that seat seems to be a favourite with riders. Even if most of the seats are empty, there's usually someone in one of those seats. Goes for both 40' and artics in my experience.

    *Well, I don't want to sit with a grey plastic wall 40 cm from my face.

  8. 15 hours ago, Xtrazsteve said:

    They don't need streetcars with the current situation. Why don't they just finish up the the pantograph upgrade on Broadview so they don't need to change to trolley poles.

    Reading Steve Munro, they have to do that. Part of the 505 route is now only suitable for pantograph, while there are other sections that are only suitable for trolley pole. Someone forgetting a changeover would result in a bad overhead day.

  9. 16 hours ago, Tramguy said:

    Doesn't matter where I live.  I have empathy for people not being able to sleep at night.    Too bad empathy lacking in your persona!

    Since I, too, have stood at the corner of Sumach and King and heard pretty much nothing as Flexities took the curves in both directions, I too am skeptical of just how much squealing there is. I assume that the "unbearable" sound that Wong-Tam describes in her letter (was "shaking the building down" also there?) is a severe exaggeration.

    This is obviously not a noise that's "unbearable" to the populance generally. Streecars squeal going around Long Branch loop; I can hear them in the middle of the night with the windows closed, and I'm some 700m as the crow flies from the loop. There are a lot of people living closer than that--some very, very close--yet they are not complaining of unbearable noise.

    The first thing learned, when dealing with the general public, is that the customer is not always right. The second is that there's a small percentage of the population cannot be satisfied no matter what. So I tell them that, sorry, I cannot help them. I may or may not have empathy for them, depending on how reasonable or unreasonable their requirements might be. Sometimes the rules are, in my opinion, not entirely reasonable or flexible. So, sorry buddy, rules say you're screwed. But there are some people whom the world can't satisfy.  So, sorry buddy, I can't provide you with a pet rainbow-coloured unicorn, and the rest of the world can't, either.

    I also find it curious that, while the occasional squealing streetcar is "unbearable", anyone living by King and Sumach are in the shadow of the Adelaide/Richmond ramps to the DVP. There is heavy traffic using it at all times of the day, and no doubt through the night. That includes truck traffic that would legitimately shake buildings. I am puzzled why the resident is so exercised by the streetcars, when the traffic noise and vibrations have to be as bad.

    (They may be suffering from "Streetcar Syndrome", which would be similar to "Wind Turbine Syndrome".)

    • Thanks 8
  10. 18 hours ago, dowlingm said:

    The Mount Dennis Metrolinx yard will have a 30MWh energy storage facility. Some back of the envelope math using the 125kW system as a guide says one of those in an e-bus yard means a full charge for 80 buses (probably 60-70 in practice)

    The batteries in an electric bus seem to be in the hundreds of kWh. With North American usage being that 1000 kWh = 1 MWh, you'd still need minimal losses taking the power from the storage batteries and charging the buses. I suspect that 50% efficiency is way optimistic. That means you may be able to charge 30 buses, perhaps.

    I honestly don't understand the usage case for a backup generator beyond one to keep the lights on in the garage. How many buses did the TTC send out during the second day of the big blackout in 2003? Until the fleet is overwhelmingly electric, send out the diesel buses. Hopefully the diesel pumps still work at the garages, and at the distribution centres.

  11. 9 hours ago, Xtrazsteve said:

    There is zero ways for a regular rider to know when it expires (unlike YRT) because they refuse to implement time remaining on the presto screens. You can't even choose to pay for a new fare if the transfer is still valid. As long as the card is tapped at boarding as required, I'm pretty sure the court would side with the rider even if they write them a ticket. 

    Huh? If you don't have a watch, surely you have a phone or some other way of telling the time? Check what time it is when you first tap on. You have an hour and fifty nine minutes left. (ETA: Vision vehicles are always telling you the time.)

    Granted that it would be nice to see both the time remaining, and your card's balance, when you tap on. I wind up checking my transfer history at reloading stations (because my cards are unregistered).

    9 hours ago, Someguy3071 said:

    What is so hard to understand? If you tap within the 2 hour period it won't charge you another fare. If your 2 hours are up while you're on a bus or streetcar it doesn't mean anything other then you'll be charged another fare if you transfer. If you're not transferring you won't be kicked off or anything, so just finish your trip.  

    Stop making up stuff. You will not be ticketed for using a transfer within the 2 hour window even if you transfer expires after you board. 

    Exactly. I have managed, often enough, to tap on a minute or two before the two hours expire, and I've also lost the gamble and tapped on a minute after the time expired (darn slow streetcars!). Of course if I tap on with only seconds to spare, I want to ensure that the remainder of my trip won't require transferring. That means taking the subway and its fare-paid area transfers. Even the possibility of a short turn is also to be avoided. B)

  12. 28 minutes ago, Someguy3071 said:

    You know, back generators in case hydro goes down. 

    It seems to me that a generator big enough to handle recharging even a few electric buses would be a major piece of equipment.

    A quick search doesn't show what charging stations the TTC is using. Looking at Proterra's charging stations, I would think even the 125kW station would be inadequate, which would make the 500kW station a reasonable choice. And more than one, depending on how many buses you want to recharge in a reasonable period of time.

    That makes me think that a 1000kW generator is the bare minimum to recharge even a small (5-10) electric bus fleet. That doesn't look cheap or maintenance free.

    So it seems to me that either you can't recharge enough electric buses to really make it worthwhile, or you have install massive backup generating capacity to recharge a fleet if the power is down for a significant while. If that's the plan, well, that's interesting.




    4 hours ago, dowlingm said:

    I would really like to see a west to north curve from LSW onto Canpa/Obico (which would entail some expropriation) especially if it meant Canadian could also be turned and save a bunch of time on backups from Newmarket onto York. But who pays...

    In GO's Big List of Projects, there's an unspecified "Track Upgrade by Long Branch GO". The actual icon is in the area of the Canpa Sub.

    So there is some hope!

    • Like 2
  14. 13 hours ago, Shaun said:

    And what is the idea behind terminating the service at the EX? Are they going to build living space for 10k people or something? 

    Those of us in South Etobicoke see the possibility of linking in the West Waterfront LRT to the Ontario Line terminus at the Ex. That seems more useful a connection that going all the way to Uniion station.

  15. 4 hours ago, BusDude said:

    Are you referring to when there is an emergency closure on the TTC subway and they say you can use part of the GO trains?  If thats what your referring too, then if you read FULLY the alerts/messages you MUST tap your presto on the TTC then you can board a GO train and you DON'T tap on the GO......    if a fare inspector checks fares he/she will see you tapped on at a legit TTC station and your fine. 

    Okay, hopefully there will be a notification somewhere we can read it. (Not everyone has a smartphone with updates.)

    Now I wonder how far I could go on GO. Say I get to Kipling, and the subway is down. My destination is Main St. I get on the GO train at Kipling. Could I transfer at Union for a train bound for Danforth?

  16. 19 hours ago, smallspy said:

    There is no time factor with changing the run number, as they are digital displays. And it takes very little time to set the run number correctly.

    The run boxes on the XE 40s don't at all look digital to me. They look like old-fashioned mylar (or whatever), illuminated by white LEDs. Zero pixellation. I would be more certain if I didn't generally see them out the window from work, or out the windshield of my car as I drive by.

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