York Region Transit route 24/224 'Victoria Park'
24D Victoria Park and 224 Victoria Park North were bus routes operated by Toronto Transit Commission under contract to York Region Transit in Markham, ON.
224B Woodbine Ave was a bus route operated by York Region Transit in place of route 24D/224 on weekends and holidays.
Routes 24D, 224, and 224B combine served Woodbine Avenue between Steeles Avenue East and Major Mackenzie Drive.
These routes had 5 branches:
- 24D Victoria Park: Victoria Park Station - Major Mackenzie (Weekday off-peak periods only)
- 224C Victoria Park North: Don Mills Station - 14th Avenue (Weekday rush hours only)
- 224D Victoria Park North: Don Mills Station - Elgin Mills (Weekday rush hours only)
- 224B Woodbine Avenue: Steeles Avenue - Stoney Hill Boulevard (Weekends & Holidays)
These routes served the Cathedraltown community. It also served the industrial areas along Woodbine Avenue, Seneca College Markham Campus, Valleywood Business Park, and the Honda Canada plant.
Routes 24D, 224B, and 224D connected to Viva Pink and Viva Purple at Woodbine/Highway 7. Routes 24D and 224D also connected to Viva Pink and Viva Purple at Allstate Pkwy/Highway 7. Routes 224C and 224D connected to Viva Green at Don Mills Station.
Northbound service on routes 24D and 224D operated via Frontenac Drive before noon and via Woodbine Avenue after noon. Southbound service on routes 24D and 224D operated via Woodbine Avenue before noon and Allstate Parkway after noon. Route 224B operated both directions on Woodbine Avenue
Service was contracted out to the Toronto Transit Commission by Markham Transit. This involved TTC operating the buses and collecting the fares, but Markham Transit paying for any losses in running the service. A TTC fare was required for passengers travelling south of Steeles Avenue East, but only a Markham fare was required if the entire trip was north of Steeles Avenue. When Markham Transit was acquired by York Region Transit, the contract was picked up as well, with similar conditions.
Service was first operated as 2 branches to route 24: 24C (to 14th Avenue along the same route as the current 224C) and 24E (to Valleywood, looping similar to 24D/224D in the area). Both these routes were rush-hour only. Before 1998, 24E was changed to 24D to limit the "E" branch to express branches.
In 2002, major changes happened to the routes north of Steeles Avenue. The Sheppard Subway opened and the TTC experimented with a direct connection for northern routes to the new Don Mills Station for 24C, 24D, 67B and even as far away as 68B, operating on Warden. All 24C and 24D service was replaced by 224C and 224D respectively, the later receiving off-peak service and an extension to Major Mackenzie. Service along route 224D was replaced by route 224B on weekends, operated by YRT north of Steeles Ave. only. This experiment was not successful, however, and within a year service on route 268 was completely cut (replaced again by route 68B), and off-peak service on route 224D was replaced by route 24D. Peak service remained on 224C and 224D however.
In 2006, rush hour service was extended north of Major Mackenzie Drive to loop in the new Cathederaltown community. This extension was only for routes 224B and 224D, and the new destination was labeled "To Major Mackenzie and Hazelton". In the same year, York Region Transit destination signs listed the route as "15 Woodbine". This was quickly changed back to 224B. As of today, the Cathedraltown community has the irony of having rush hour and weekend service, but no midday service.
Service on route 224D was extended north to Elgin Mills Road and the Honda Canada plant on May 10, 2010.
Routes 24D, 224B, 224C, and 224D were declared fully accessible in December 2012.
Route 224B was modified on June 30, 2013 to serve Woodbine Avenue in both directions, with service west of Woodbine Avenue between Lanark Road and Hooper Drive discontinued. Route 224C saw service west of Woodbine Avenue eliminated in 2015.
Service was transferred from TTC to YRT operation and was renumbered route 24 on June 19, 2016, providing daily service between the Honda Canada Plant and Don Mills Station. However, a large portion of routing served by route 224C was discontinued as well.
Route 24D was a 40ft route from Birchmount Division, and used Orion VII , Orion VII NG .
Routes 224C and 224D were 40ft routes from Eglinton Division, and used Orion VII .
Route 224B was primarily a 40ft route, and used New Flyer D40LF/D40LFR , New Flyer XD40 , and Nova Bus LFS .