HomeDiagramsDatabaseMapsForumSkyscraper Posters
     

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Discussion Forums > Transportation

Reply

 
Thread Tools Display Modes
     
     
  #41  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 3:47 PM
destroycreate's Avatar
destroycreate destroycreate is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: May 2009
Location: Seattle, WA
Posts: 1,156
I have been hearing from a lot of people I know who have lived in Toronto that you actually need a car to live comfortably there (at least if you don't live downtown), and that the transit system isn't all that great or extensive. Not sure if that's just because they're Canadian and aren't used to US style cities, but I was really surprised to hear that given that's it's portrayed as having NYC/London style coverage on this forum.
__________________
**16 years on SSP!**
Previously known as LaJollaCA
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #42  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 3:59 PM
Nouvellecosse's Avatar
Nouvellecosse Nouvellecosse is online now
As seen on SSC ;)
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 5,217
The rail coverage is certainly not at London's or even Nyc level nor do I recall ever hearing such a thing suggested. But its overall rate of transit usage isn't far from NY on a metro area basis and that patronage rate is commonly discussed.
__________________
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man." - George Bernard Shaw
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #43  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 6:28 PM
lrt's friend lrt's friend is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,196
Quote:
Originally Posted by destroycreate View Post
I have been hearing from a lot of people I know who have lived in Toronto that you actually need a car to live comfortably there (at least if you don't live downtown), and that the transit system isn't all that great or extensive. Not sure if that's just because they're Canadian and aren't used to US style cities, but I was really surprised to hear that given that's it's portrayed as having NYC/London style coverage on this forum.
It depends on your expectations. Much of metropolitan Toronto is post-war suburbia. If you expect to make regular trips to the local big box mall to pick home renovation material or to pick up the weekly order of groceries, you are going to need a car.

However, the bus network within Metropolitan Toronto is extensive and frequent. For example, Route 53 Steeles which follows the northern boundary of Toronto operates on a 5 minute frequency during the day, more frequent at rush hour and even between 1 am and 2 am is still running on a 10 minute schedule.

Toronto has pretty extensive network of all night buses as well.

It isn't New York or London with a massive network of subways, but transit is as good as almost all other North American cities and better than most.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #44  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 7:28 PM
SkahHigh's Avatar
SkahHigh SkahHigh is online now
More transit please
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Montreal
Posts: 2,945
Toronto's network is good and getting better but it's heavily politicized towards suburban-centric development, more so than many places in NA, which shadows the investments made to improve that network.

The subway system, because of the one line going Downtown, is also way over capacity during rush hour. And while their Downtown Relief Line is barely under planning, authorities just keep adding people to the Yonge line with the York and Scarborough extensions and the Finch West LRT.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #45  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 8:06 PM
Pedestrian's Avatar
Pedestrian Pedestrian is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 2,653
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
BART is a new commuter rail system? Is it 1970 or something?

The previous poster was talking about new plans for a RER-type system in the States. There is no such plan.

Obviously there are existing U.S. rail systems that serve a commuter population, not entirely unlike RER, and BART would be one of these systems.
The original BART system was built then but it is being constantly expanded. A new segment to Warm Springs (an East Bay suburb) just opened--earlier extensions since the 1990s have been to Dublin/Pleasanton, Pittsburg and SFO--and a new line to Livermore is now being contemplated (as well as the extension through downtown San Jose which is much closer to reality).

I don't know much about the French RER system, but BART has something similar to what I quickly read. You can buy a Muni pass that allows you to ride BART only within San Francisco or a regular BART ticket for a ride out of the city or between suburbs.

Meanwhile, SMART (Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit), a 43 mile system (with extension plans) connecting norther Santa Rosa and San Rafael is built and beginning service. This is entirely a suburban system since it has no Bay crossing though the planned extension will connect to ferry service for San Francisco.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #46  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 8:27 PM
Nouvellecosse's Avatar
Nouvellecosse Nouvellecosse is online now
As seen on SSC ;)
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Nova Scotia
Posts: 5,217
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkahHigh View Post
Toronto's network is good and getting better but it's heavily politicized towards suburban-centric development, more so than many places in NA, which shadows the investments made to improve that network.

The subway system, because of the one line going Downtown, is also way over capacity during rush hour. And while their Downtown Relief Line is barely under planning, authorities just keep adding people to the Yonge line with the York and Scarborough extensions and the Finch West LRT.
Although in fairness, it's mostly the Yonge (Eastern) arm that's severely overcrowded, while the Western arm, while busy, can handle additional traffic. So that part being extended to the north or fed by Finch lrt isn't really an issue.
__________________
"The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man." - George Bernard Shaw
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #47  
Old Posted Aug 10, 2017, 8:41 PM
hipster duck's Avatar
hipster duck hipster duck is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2014
Location: Car-oriented Toronto
Posts: 1,584
Quote:
Originally Posted by destroycreate View Post
I have been hearing from a lot of people I know who have lived in Toronto that you actually need a car to live comfortably there (at least if you don't live downtown), and that the transit system isn't all that great or extensive. Not sure if that's just because they're Canadian and aren't used to US style cities, but I was really surprised to hear that given that's it's portrayed as having NYC/London style coverage on this forum.
LRT's friend covered most of what I was going to say. In particular he s/he highlights the fact that a good chunk of the City of Toronto is postwar and suburban, but has a good bus service. Is this a glass half full or glass half empty situation? On one hand, it's admirable that people who live in the suburbs have excellent bus service. On the other hand, the buses, while frequent, aren't fast and aren't ideal at covering the suburban distances between destinations. The built environment is also overwhelmingly built for the car, even if up to a third of the people get around by transit. It's not much of a consolation that the bus comes every 2 minutes when you have to walk across the parking lot of a mall and past gas stations to get there.

I'd also add that another reason why Torontonians complain about their transit system is because it's good enough that you don't want the hassle of owning a car, but not quite good enough that the quality of your trip will be on the same level as going car-less in a major European city or owning a car in a Sunbelt city. Toronto kind of half-asses it for every transportation mode.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #48  
Old Posted Aug 16, 2017, 9:23 PM
Doady's Avatar
Doady Doady is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 2,936
% of Residents Commute to Work by Transit, 2010/2011

Old Toronto/York/East York/North York 39.5%
San Francisco 34.0%
Scarborough 33.1
Vancouver 30.0
Etobicoke 27.9
Seattle 18.2
Portland 12.1

It is impressive what Portland has done, but it is still catching up.

TTC per capita ridership peaked in 1988. Many systems peaked around that time also. Remember what happened in the early 90s? Similar thing that happened in the late 00s that also caused falling transit ridership everywhere.

TTC ridership per capita (linked trips) in 2013 was 185.9, compared to 2003 was 153.2. 2003 also happened to be the year the Liberal government was elected provincially and restored funding to transit operations.

It makes zero sense to attack the city and it's implementation of the 2003 Ridership Growth Plan and attack the provincial government elected in 2003 for failing to increase transit ridership when in fact ridership per capita has increased significantly since then, despite the lack of major infrastructure projects completed.

Ridership growth of 0.06% in one year is not much of a concern, especially for a city such as Toronto. It's the long term trends that are important. TTC ridership grew 4.78% in 2011 compared to 2010. King County Metro grew 2.98% in that time. So what? Just looking at one year is misleading.

Lack of ridership growth in 2017 might be explained by the current streetcar shortage. Kind of hard to increase service and increase ridership when there is no enough vehicles even for the existing service. Blame Bombardier, not the TTC.

And obviously comparing the ridership growth in a built out city like Toronto to all of Metro Vancouver or King County is obviously stupid. Vancouver CMA population increased by 16.4% from 2001 to 2011, King County population increased 11.4% from 2000 to 2010, City of Toronto population increased 5.4% from 2001 to 2011.

TTC fare increases have been in line with the rate of inflation. What system doesn't do this? My problem with TTC fares is lack of time-based transfers like the 905 systems.

TTC farebox cost recovery ratio is very high but that is not necessarily an indicator of lack of funding or service. For example, if riders are doing shorter trips, then a bus can pick up many more passengers along its route without getting full. If people get on the bus and never get off, then the bus gets full much faster, and therefore gets less fare revenue. Cost recovery ratio is as much an indicator of built form and efficiency as it is of how overcrowded the buses are.

Furthermore, the TTC is huge system. Even with such a high cost recovery ratio, the municipal operating contribution per capita is still huge. TTC cost recovery ratio is around 75%, but subsidy is around $500M annually from a population 2.6M. Compare that to MiWay in Mississauga with cost recovery of 50% but subsidy of only $60M from a population of 700k. So even though the subsidy ratio of TTC is only half that of MiWay, the City of Toronto actually spends two times more per resident to subsidize transit operations than the City of Mississauga does. I don't think you can just look at cost recovery ratio and then say one system is underfunded compared to another.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #49  
Old Posted Aug 16, 2017, 10:54 PM
Doady's Avatar
Doady Doady is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 2,936
Another way to look at the TTC's growth since 2003:

King County Metro had 123 million boardings in 2013, while TTC boardings increased by 129 million from 2003 to 2013 (706 million boardings vs. 835 million). So essentially the TTC added a King County Metro to its system in a 10 year span.

Perhaps something to think about when comparing the Seattle's transit growth to that of Toronto.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #50  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2017, 5:38 AM
mhays mhays is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 16,022
It's a stark difference but not that stark. Metro operates local buses in the central county of 2,100,000 people. Sound Transit is the regional agency. Other counties also run local buses plus some regional routes.
__________________
When did people starting thinking "alot" was a word?
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #51  
Old Posted Aug 17, 2017, 1:56 PM
lrt's friend lrt's friend is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 6,196
Quote:
Originally Posted by hipster duck View Post
LRT's friend covered most of what I was going to say. In particular he s/he highlights the fact that a good chunk of the City of Toronto is postwar and suburban, but has a good bus service. Is this a glass half full or glass half empty situation? On one hand, it's admirable that people who live in the suburbs have excellent bus service. On the other hand, the buses, while frequent, aren't fast and aren't ideal at covering the suburban distances between destinations. The built environment is also overwhelmingly built for the car, even if up to a third of the people get around by transit. It's not much of a consolation that the bus comes every 2 minutes when you have to walk across the parking lot of a mall and past gas stations to get there.

I'd also add that another reason why Torontonians complain about their transit system is because it's good enough that you don't want the hassle of owning a car, but not quite good enough that the quality of your trip will be on the same level as going car-less in a major European city or owning a car in a Sunbelt city. Toronto kind of half-asses it for every transportation mode.
Everybody complains about transit service relative to their own experience is their own city as opposed to comparing city to city. Every city's transit system needs improvement. In the case of Toronto, major transit improvements came to a standstill especially during Mike Harris's Commonsense Revolution period of the 90s. It has taken that long to get planning and implementation back up and going. Every project that will make a difference is very complicated and very expensive. However, some projects are underway with YUS subway extension, the Eglinton Crosstown and GO RER currently at various points of construction. GO RER will likely have the least impact in the short-term within the City of Toronto boundaries as it is currently designed to serve mostly Toronto suburbs. In the longer-term when electrification is completed, more Toronto stations are opened and there is proper fare integration, it has the potential of moving Toronto residents into the city centre faster for those who reside outside the areas presently served by subways.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #52  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2017, 2:10 AM
Doady's Avatar
Doady Doady is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 2,936
I think the biggest problem of the TTC is lack of integration, both service and fares, with neighbouring systems. To cross the Toronto border is difficult and expensive. I think it is not a coincidence Toronto's most problematic neighbourhoods are located along the border. These neighbhourhoods are isolated because TTC is isolated, and that isolation is largely its own fault.

The article makes a big deal about the TTC high fare recovery ratio. I think that has nothing to do with TTC providing poor service or the base fare price being too high. I think that high fare recovery ratio is partly because of lack of fare integration with neighbouring systems, and the TTC's complete lack of service outside of Toronto's boundaries, other than to the airport.

Like if you are at 14th Ave in Markham and you want to travel down the road to Finch Ave in Scarborough, you have to pay two different full fares, $7 total, even though it is only a 5km trip. You won't see this Vancouver or other cities. It's just a reflection of the disdainful attitude that the City of Toronto has those living in the suburbs, both within and outside its borders.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mhays View Post
It's a stark difference but not that stark. Metro operates local buses in the central county of 2,100,000 people. Sound Transit is the regional agency. Other counties also run local buses plus some regional routes.
Well TTC is no different. TTC operates local buses just for City of Toronto, which had 2.6 million people in 2011, and it's complemented by regional agency GO Transit and many other local agencies in the suburbs. I was just comparing ridership growth anyways, in response to the article.

King County is very large, and even more suburban than City of Toronto, including some of the outermost eastern suburbs of Seattle, so it would not be fair compare the ridership of its system directly to the TTC. If TTC numbers were combined with York Region Transit, which serves Toronto's most northern suburbs, that comparison would be more fair (YRT serves 1.0 million people and gets around 30 million boardings annually).
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #53  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2017, 7:59 PM
ssiguy ssiguy is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: White Rock BC
Posts: 5,222
Vancouver has done an excellent job of growing it's transit system over the last 35 years and now has the largest Metro system in the country even though it was the last major city in Canada to get any rapid transit. It has a very good fare integration system and the transit system is treated regionally while Toronto and it's suburbs continue to think like transit fiefdoms.

That said, this is not an apples to apples comparison. The Translink numbers include the West Coast commuter rail of just 10,000 riders a day while the TTC figures do not include the 280,000 a day that take GO commuter buses and rail. Also Vancouver has finally introduced fare gates at the SkyTrain stations where fare evasion may have always shown the numbers lower than they really were. Conversely Toronto just introduced POP on it's new streetcar routes that have the new streetcars themselves so fare evasion is naturally going up.

As for Seattle, it's ridership numbers are still quite low for it's size with Calgary having {until very recently due to it's oil based economy tanking} had the same ridership. LA has be doing VERY poorly in the last few years as ridership has plunged. They have been opening many new LRT lines but those lines have simply been taking bus users over to LRT users. Certainly better and quicker service but overall ridership has plunged due to constant large declines in bus ridership.

Last edited by ssiguy; Aug 21, 2017 at 5:10 PM.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #54  
Old Posted Aug 18, 2017, 10:00 PM
maru2501's Avatar
maru2501 maru2501 is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: chicago
Posts: 811
The Toronto system doesn't seem very extensive, for one thing
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #55  
Old Posted Aug 19, 2017, 12:10 AM
Pedestrian's Avatar
Pedestrian Pedestrian is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Dec 2016
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 2,653
I rode SF Muni today for the first time in a few weeks. It reminded me of the original Star Wars bar scene. I'll continue to support transit for those who need it and as a backup, but I'll probably ride it less and less myself as I get older and less prepared to cope with the grit.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #56  
Old Posted Aug 19, 2017, 5:03 AM
Innsertnamehere's Avatar
Innsertnamehere Innsertnamehere is online now
Insertoronto
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Toronto
Posts: 5,165
GO RER is a defined program. They know the lines that get electrified, and what the service levels will be come 2024 when the program wraps up. Don't know why people are claiming otherwise.

Right now most of the hard infrastructure is going out to tender other than actual electrification. Extra tracks, new stations, grade separations, etc. Electrification of the network will be issued as one gigantic RFP in a year or two from my understanding.

Toronto's network isn't that extensive, no. But what it makes up for is the vast amount of destinations it serves. The Yonge line is the second busiest on the continent. The system length isn't that great, but the population served is far greater than normal as there is ridiculous amounts of density surrounding the stations, where they exist.


Think of Toronto as a sort of super transit friendly inner city with utter suburbia around it. The inner burbs have a sort of bridging bus service to let the two systems mix, but the outer burbs have low transit modal shares and auto dependency similar to most american cities. As southern Ontario and the outer burbs are auto dependent, many people retain car ownership, even if day to day use isn't as common. Our downtown household has one car, used for commuting by one of us, trips out of the city, and to get groceries. One of us bikes to work. Everything else is transit / walking.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #57  
Old Posted Aug 21, 2017, 3:01 AM
ssiguy ssiguy is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: White Rock BC
Posts: 5,222
By 2025 the RER will be over 200km and have all day, two way service and have 6,000 trips per week. The system will only expand from there.

The thing that has made this possible is that GO has been buying huge amount of track over the last 15 years and now owns 80% of the rail of the GO commuter system and will own 100% of RER track. If the Don Mills and potential Midtown lines are developed the system will be well in excess of 300km.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #58  
Old Posted Aug 21, 2017, 2:14 PM
Crawford Crawford is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Location: Brooklyn, NYC/Polanco, DF
Posts: 14,225
In 1Q 2017 GO Transit carried around 200k weekday passengers, which appears to be record ridership, but by global standards is nothing. Even Chicago's diesel-dominated, mostly limited service system carried 50% more passengers.

In Europe, individual commuter lines carry many times more passengers than GO Transit's entire system. So not really an apt comparison.

Toronto deserves credit for maximizing its infrastructure. It has a small subway and commuter rail system, and both systems do very well for North American standards, given capacity. But it's really only impressive in that context. Ridership is unimpressive unless comparing to the U.S., and infrastructure is pretty weak even compared to the U.S. There are a half dozen U.S. cities with better commuter rail.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #59  
Old Posted Aug 21, 2017, 4:22 PM
SkahHigh's Avatar
SkahHigh SkahHigh is online now
More transit please
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: Montreal
Posts: 2,945
Quote:
Originally Posted by Crawford View Post
In 1Q 2017 GO Transit carried around 200k weekday passengers, which appears to be record ridership, but by global standards is nothing. Even Chicago's diesel-dominated, mostly limited service system carried 50% more passengers.

In Europe, individual commuter lines carry many times more passengers than GO Transit's entire system. So not really an apt comparison.

Toronto deserves credit for maximizing its infrastructure. It has a small subway and commuter rail system, and both systems do very well for North American standards, given capacity. But it's really only impressive in that context. Ridership is unimpressive unless comparing to the U.S., and infrastructure is pretty weak even compared to the U.S. There are a half dozen U.S. cities with better commuter rail.
Name me those half-dozen cities please. Apart from NY and Chicago, there is none with better commuter rail ridership. Toronto also has the 3rd busiest subway system if you compare to it's north american counterparts (again, comparing to Europe is pointless).

The TTC also has 1.5 times the ridership of the CTA.

I don't get why you constantly put down or compare uselessly to Europe when we are mostly talking about north american systems, in which Toronto is a leader in terms of ridership and overall service. I mean, I don't get the "yeah Toronto is not bad but compared to Berlin or London transit is poor"... yeah ok. There are tons of reasons that can explain that.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #60  
Old Posted Aug 21, 2017, 5:02 PM
ssiguy ssiguy is online now
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: White Rock BC
Posts: 5,222
He is right though, by world standards the ridership level is not much to write home about.

In fairness thou, the expansion has only recently started and service level is still only one-quarter of what it ill be in just 7 years to say nothing of more urban/inner city statons and electrification. Very importantly the changes and increase are in off-peak, weekend service, and bi-direction so it will make the service viable as a true rapid transit system and not just a rush hour one heading downtown and back. Right now there is no fare integration so it can be a costly trip but that too will soon end with either fare integration and Presto which will probably be based n fare by distance which will include RER.

Last edited by ssiguy; Aug 21, 2017 at 5:13 PM.
Reply With Quote
     
     
This discussion thread continues

Use the page links to the lower-right to go to the next page for additional posts
 
 
Reply

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Discussion Forums > Transportation
Forum Jump


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 7:20 PM.

     

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.