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Miscellaneous TTC Discussion & Questions

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4 hours ago, leylandvictory2 said:

I thought the blinking red lights are indication that the trains are running in manual mode.

That's one of numerous things that can trigger the blinking. All the blinking means is that one of the onboard systems is running in a degraded mode.

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1 hour ago, Archer said:

That's one of numerous things that can trigger the blinking. All the blinking means is that one of the onboard systems is running in a degraded mode.

Would manual-mode operation be indicated by the blue exterior indicator light being off?

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On ‎11‎/‎5‎/‎2019 at 8:17 AM, wowzhao said:

Ottawa had a lot of problems with the Presto machines not working when we first implemented them in 2012(?) and 13, I still run into broken ones fairly frequently but it's apparently not enough of an issue anymore that OC Transpo hasn't complained about it publicly in years. Presto in Ottawa also had things from the start like charging extra fares for premium express services (and then charging the regular fare once those express buses crossed into the regular fare zone) which is why I'm honestly confused about why it's taken so long for them to figure it out for the TTC Downtown Express buses.

Do any of you know how Presto fare collection works on the Downtown Express buses now that the extra fare is built in to one's tap? Are there special buses used on those routes with Presto devices programmed for it? Does the Presto system on the bus use GPS to determine where the bus is to know to charge premium fares? (could be risky in areas where non-premium routes run) Is the Presto system on the bus set up before it leaves the garage? Something else?

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17 hours ago, Orion 1200 said:

Do any of you know how Presto fare collection works on the Downtown Express buses now that the extra fare is built in to one's tap? Are there special buses used on those routes with Presto devices programmed for it? Does the Presto system on the bus use GPS to determine where the bus is to know to charge premium fares? (could be risky in areas where non-premium routes run) Is the Presto system on the bus set up before it leaves the garage? Something else?

It's just a guess, but perhaps it's somehow integrated with VISION, to let the Presto reader know to transmit a different "fare marker" to the Presto system, based on the bus being signed into a Downtown Express route.

I just can't see it being GPS based, because the system is still extremely unreliable, anyone looking thru their Presto logs can see their taps sometimes are a LONG way off from where they actually tapped.

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17 hours ago, Orion 1200 said:

Do any of you know how Presto fare collection works on the Downtown Express buses now that the extra fare is built in to one's tap? Are there special buses used on those routes with Presto devices programmed for it? Does the Presto system on the bus use GPS to determine where the bus is to know to charge premium fares? (could be risky in areas where non-premium routes run) Is the Presto system on the bus set up before it leaves the garage? Something else?

I was on the 905 Eglinton East from UTSC to Kennedy on New Years Day which was running on 10 minute headway mid afternoon with maybe 8-10 people on board. How that makes economic sense (which is fine by me given I was using it!) but we can’t bear the cost of running the 14x routes on a standard fare 5 days a week at peak and eliminate this premium administration/hassle eludes the hell out of me.

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19 minutes ago, MK78 said:

It's just a guess, but perhaps it's somehow integrated with VISION, to let the Presto reader know to transmit a different "fare marker" to the Presto system, based on the bus being signed into a Downtown Express route.

I just can't see it being GPS based, because the system is still extremely unreliable, anyone looking thru their Presto logs can see their taps sometimes are a LONG way off from where they actually tapped.

Presto does use feeds from VISION and the GPS for the cross-border services. If you watch the readers, they will momentarily flip to red and read "NOT IN SERVICE" as the vehicles cross Steeles Ave. and reset the machines to use the appropriate fare rules - but only on the buses that are signed in to do those appropriate routes. (For instance, a 68A crossing Steeles will not have its readers flip from TTC to YRT, but a 68B will.)

 

They wouldn't use GPS to source the Premium Express route codes, but they will pull in the sign-in codes from each driver as they sign-in to VISION. I haven't actually ridden any Premium Express buses with Presto yet, but I suspect that in the lower left-hand corner of the screen on the reader there will be a code the indicates that it is in Premium Express mode.

 

Dan

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59 minutes ago, smallspy said:

Presto does use feeds from VISION and the GPS for the cross-border services. If you watch the readers, they will momentarily flip to red and read "NOT IN SERVICE" as the vehicles cross Steeles Ave. and reset the machines to use the appropriate fare rules - but only on the buses that are signed in to do those appropriate routes. (For instance, a 68A crossing Steeles will not have its readers flip from TTC to YRT, but a 68B will.)

 

They wouldn't use GPS to source the Premium Express route codes, but they will pull in the sign-in codes from each driver as they sign-in to VISION. I haven't actually ridden any Premium Express buses with Presto yet, but I suspect that in the lower left-hand corner of the screen on the reader there will be a code the indicates that it is in Premium Express mode.

Thanks, I can see how GPS based could work with crossing into other agency's border. But I wonder if people who do cross on a regular basis are victims of the GPS inaccuracies. Within the city it doesn't matter if the GPS is wrong, the fare is still the same.

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3 hours ago, MK78 said:

Thanks, I can see how GPS based could work with crossing into other agency's border. But I wonder if people who do cross on a regular basis are victims of the GPS inaccuracies. Within the city it doesn't matter if the GPS is wrong, the fare is still the same.

The traditional issues with GPS inaccuracies for taps have no bearing here - the readers themselves change the rules that are applied to them. It won't matter what the GPS tells the system where you are, as the reader will tell the system whether you are in the YRT, MT or TTC fare zone and charge the appropriate fare and issue the appropriate transfer.

 

Could issues with the GPS unit itself result in problems? Sure. But I have yet to see that happen yet.

 

Dan

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19 minutes ago, smallspy said:

The traditional issues with GPS inaccuracies for taps have no bearing here - the readers themselves change the rules that are applied to them. It won't matter what the GPS tells the system where you are, as the reader will tell the system whether you are in the YRT, MT or TTC fare zone and charge the appropriate fare and issue the appropriate transfer.

 

Could issues with the GPS unit itself result in problems? Sure. But I have yet to see that happen yet.

Good to know, if I ever find myself crossing a fare zone. Thanks.

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40 minutes ago, smallspy said:

The traditional issues with GPS inaccuracies for taps have no bearing here - the readers themselves change the rules that are applied to them. It won't matter what the GPS tells the system where you are, as the reader will tell the system whether you are in the YRT, MT or TTC fare zone and charge the appropriate fare and issue the appropriate transfer.

How does it work when you tap on outside of Toronto, and get off before getting to Toronto? Particularly given so many bus rides, my Presto card shows I tapped on at the bus garage, and instead tapped on miles away.

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7 hours ago, nfitz said:

How does it work when you tap on outside of Toronto, and get off before getting to Toronto? Particularly given so many bus rides, my Presto card shows I tapped on at the bus garage, and instead tapped on miles away.

When I take TTC routes in Markham, I notice that the Presto reader indicates that it is in the YRT zone. It actually says it on the screen of the device, I think in the bottom left corner (I.e. it will say “YRT” on the Presto reader). Seemingly the Presto reader knows when it crosses Steeles and which fare to deduct/transfer when a card is tapped, as Smallspy mentioned above. I was thinking about it too the other day, and it’d make sense if it was connected with Vision and the route the vehicle was operating on. And, say, once the stop at Steeles is past, the Presto device changes its fare zone

Ive done what you outlined many times since this was enabled in August. It works exactly like I am transferring or tapping onto any other YRT vehicle. It takes a YRT fare off my Presto card and even gives me a 2 hour transfer that I can use on YRT buses. And as an aside, it also works the other way around. If I take a YRT bus first and transfer to, say, route 129A in Markham, my YRT transfer is applied when I tap my card on the TTC bus and no other fare is deducted
It’s made my life a lot easier than when I had to plan my trips north-south, as the only option that way before was along Kennedy unless I wanted to carry $4.25 in cash every time

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I have a question about subway schedules. Is today's run times the same as they where 20 years ago? 

I remember that when the H1 and H2 cars use to run on the Yonge line, the trains where faster going northbound than the TR's are now. Does it just have to do with the fact that the TR's are quieter and better insulated? But we do for a fact know that they are slower than T1's, and I'm not sure why the TTC programmed them like that.  

Faster trains should be able to allow you to carry more people per hour. 

Considering that the line is at capacity at times, why not run the trains faster to increase the capacity?

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On ‎1‎/‎4‎/‎2020 at 11:18 AM, Shaun said:

Considering that the line is at capacity at times, why not run the trains faster to increase the capacity?

The old signal system is at capacity right now in terms of how many trains it can safely allow through checkpoints in a given time period - this is the reason the TTC is switching to a newer signal control system that's supposed to be more efficient. If you look up ATC upgrades I'm pretty sure there's a wealth of news articles now explaining exactly the limitations with the old system.

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On 1/4/2020 at 11:18 AM, Shaun said:

Considering that the line is at capacity at times, why not run the trains faster to increase the capacity?

Not to worry!  The Yonge-University-Spadina line will be going to high rate operation once it’s all T1s and rebuilt H5s. So said the TTC at one time...

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12 hours ago, wowzhao said:

The old signal system is at capacity right now in terms of how many trains it can safely allow through checkpoints in a given time period - this is the reason the TTC is switching to a newer signal control system that's supposed to be more efficient. If you look up ATC upgrades I'm pretty sure there's a wealth of news articles now explaining exactly the limitations with the old system.

Contrary to what seems logical, speed doesn't equate to more capacity. Like in fluid dynamics, if you sacrifice pressure you gain velocity. Same concept (relatively) for all transportation vessels. If you reduce capacity (pressure), you increase speed (velocity). 
 

When you run a train faster, acceleration and stopping distance increase significantly, meaning the buffer zone has to increase, almost always at a larger rate than what can run more trains. This is partially why sections of the Spadina subway that have ATC feel significantly slower now than they did before the switch. With more trains running together, all trains have to slow down. 

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So with ATC the system can tweak the system to be optimal to the maximum number of people on the line? 

I still think that turn back times at the end of the line is an issue. Trains get backed up to Lawrence going northbound in the evening rush. 

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Having read Metrolinx cutting dozens of routes which impacted route 90 LAKESHORE EAST, why didn't the TTC proposed to create a Downtown Express route between King St. and Rouge Hill GO Stn. in parallel with the Lakeshore East line between Union and Rouge Hill? They already did that with the 176 MIMICO GO three years ago to improve connections at Mimico GO Stn.

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7 hours ago, Express Network said:

Having read Metrolinx cutting dozens of routes which impacted route 90 LAKESHORE EAST, why didn't the TTC proposed to create a Downtown Express route between King St. and Rouge Hill GO Stn. in parallel with the Lakeshore East line between Union and Rouge Hill? They already did that with the 176 MIMICO GO three years ago to improve connections at Mimico GO Stn.

What in the hell are you talking about?

 

The 176 has nothing to do with any of the premium express routes. It is simply a way to get people to Mimico GO station faster and more efficiently, and nothing more.

 

And what makes you think that a premium express route from Rouge Hill GO would be a worthwhile endeavour? Do you understand the point of them, and how their economics work?

 

Dan

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On 1/6/2020 at 9:06 PM, Shaun said:

So with ATC the system can tweak the system to be optimal to the maximum number of people on the line? 

I still think that turn back times at the end of the line is an issue. Trains get backed up to Lawrence going northbound in the evening rush. 

It seems like they are trying to cram as many trains as possible on the line just so some suits can say "service is improving, look at how much capacity we added!" without considering the effects on the end terminals. Sure, you can schedule trains to run every 2 minutes, but if it takes 3 for one to turn around at the end terminal you get a line up.

 

On top of that, it's bad customer service to short turn a vehicle now. In the past, if they had bunching they would turn trains to lighten the traffic or to fill gaps, but customers get upset when their vehicle gets short turned. Most people don't realize that they will actually get to their destination faster when trains get turned. Even the scheduled St. Clair West turns in the morning get people upset. I think they should do Sheppard turns all day. You don't even need to take the train out of service there, just announce it is now going southbound and let the people not paying attention figure it out on their own. With scheduled turns you have an issue of the crew needing to use the washroom somewhere, there isn't really any place convenient down the line for that.

 

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2 hours ago, Turtle said:

It seems like they are trying to cram as many trains as possible on the line just so some suits can say "service is improving, look at how much capacity we added!" without considering the effects on the end terminals. Sure, you can schedule trains to run every 2 minutes, but if it takes 3 for one to turn around at the end terminal you get a line up.

 

On top of that, it's bad customer service to short turn a vehicle now. In the past, if they had bunching they would turn trains to lighten the traffic or to fill gaps, but customers get upset when their vehicle gets short turned. Most people don't realize that they will actually get to their destination faster when trains get turned. Even the scheduled St. Clair West turns in the morning get people upset. I think they should do Sheppard turns all day. You don't even need to take the train out of service there, just announce it is now going southbound and let the people not paying attention figure it out on their own. With scheduled turns you have an issue of the crew needing to use the washroom somewhere, there isn't really any place convenient down the line for that.

 

It makes me wonder why they never built the Yonge and Sheppard lines’ interchange to through-running specs (wider turn radii), even if it means bypassing Sheppard Yonge Station. There are still 50K people that use the corridor daily (compared to the 150K on the North York Portion. Mind all: if there was one-seat access to downtown, I guarantee far more people would use the Sheppard subway). it would mean all Sheppard buses could be rerouted to Bayview (or perhaps Willowdale) station, increasing usable land at Sheppard and Yonge, while reducing left turn traffic at Sheppard and Yonge, and improving frequencies along the Yonge portion of the line without the risks of bunching.

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2 hours ago, Streety McCarface said:

It makes me wonder why they never built the Yonge and Sheppard lines’ interchange to through-running specs (wider turn radii), even if it means bypassing Sheppard Yonge Station. There are still 50K people that use the corridor daily (compared to the 150K on the North York Portion. Mind all: if there was one-seat access to downtown, I guarantee far more people would use the Sheppard subway). it would mean all Sheppard buses could be rerouted to Bayview (or perhaps Willowdale) station, increasing usable land at Sheppard and Yonge, while reducing left turn traffic at Sheppard and Yonge, and improving frequencies along the Yonge portion of the line without the risks of bunching.

First of all there is no Willowdale Station.

Secondly, are you talking about rerouting Sheppard West buses to Bayview?  What makes you think people on the 84 want to go past Yonge?  

Finally, if half the trains will run from Yonge Line to Sheppard, how does that help the situation at Finch?  

I think this is a pretty useless idea and anyone who is thinking of taking the subway vs driving will not be deterred by a transfer at Sheppard.  

4 hours ago, Turtle said:

I think they should do Sheppard turns all day. 

Please keep stupid ideas like that to yourself.  Anyone suggesting something like this obviously doesn't ride the Yonge line at rush hour.

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1 hour ago, Mike said:

First of all there is no Willowdale Station.

Secondly, are you talking about rerouting Sheppard West buses to Bayview?  What makes you think people on the 84 want to go past Yonge?  

Finally, if half the trains will run from Yonge Line to Sheppard, how does that help the situation at Finch?  

I think this is a pretty useless idea and anyone who is thinking of taking the subway vs driving will not be deterred by a transfer at Sheppard.  

Please keep stupid ideas like that to yourself.  Anyone suggesting something like this obviously doesn't ride the Yonge line at rush hour.

Willowdale station was one of the proposed stations in the original design of the Sheppard subway. It was cut due to costs, but the station box is still there.
 

I ride the Yonge line at Rush hour, and statistically, of the 200K people that get off in North York, 80K people get off at Sheppard Yonge station. Of those, 50K take the Sheppard subway, at least 10K take the buses, and the rest go around north York. If you’re running a third of the trains down Sheppard. You free up space on the Yonge line north of finch. 
 

To the bus issue: The majority of people on the 84 want to head downtown. If line 4 was built to act as an extension of the Yonge subway, no one would really care if they got on the subway at Yonge or 2 minutes later at Willowdale/Bayview.
 

It helps the train situation at finch because fewer trains have to turn back there. Say, instead of the ~2 minute frequencies finch sees today, they see 2.5 minute frequencies, with Yonge trains heading to don mills seeing 4 or 5 minute frequencies. The NYC section would see 24 trains per hour, the Sheppard section would see between 12 and 15 trains per hour. Combined (the Yonge line south of Sheppard), the Yonge line would see between 36 and 40 trains per hour, within ATC range, but with fewer trains heading to finch.

I have friends that genuinely hate the transfer at Sheppard. It’s not as bad as any of the other transfers, but like with all transit, any transfer is a deterrent. 
 

Finally, this was a hypothetical scenario assuming the Sheppard subway was built as a branch of the Yonge line instead of a stub. This is not practical given the existing design parameters. It’s not a “stupid idea” because it was never meant to be a suggestion, rather, a case study for future transit planning. If you don’t like how I’ve considered things, I am more than happy to have a constructive debate. however, being rude on a public forum doesn’t make you right, it just makes you a dick.

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