TTC streetcars to quit Sunday stops and combine close stops on Queen

Less stop, more go.

That is one goal behind a review of Toronto streetcar stops that will remove all Sunday-only stops in June, and combine several close-together stops next spring.

Starting June 1, the 506 streetcar will quit making Sundays-only stops near the churches at Hiawatha Road, Rhodes Avenue, and Glenmore Road.

Likewise, the 502 and 503 streetcars will no longer stop outside St. John’s Church on Sundays.

Marked by bright yellow signs, the Sundays-only stops were intended to serve churchgoers.

But a review approved by the TTC board last May found most Sunday stops are too close to regular ones.

Noting that Toronto’s commuting times rank “among the worst in North America,” the review suggested re-spacing the city’s 550 mixed-traffic streetcar stops so that no two stops are less than 200 metres apart.

Besides removing Sunday stops and a few dozen regular stops deemed too close together, the same review suggested moving another 20 stops so they are next to traffic lights or pedestrian crossings. That suggestion is part of an effort to discourage jaywalking and make it easier for drivers to see when streetcars are stopping.

In the Beach, the eastbound Sunday stop at Queen and Glen Manor Drive proved an exception to the rule. It will stay on as a regular stop because it is next to a traffic light.

By the spring of 2016, the same plan calls for of the Beach’s close-together stops to be combined.

Rather than stopping at Lee Avenue and again at Waverley Road, the plan would see the 501 streetcar make one stop in between, at Bellefair Avenue.

Similarly, the plan calls for the 501 to stop at Queen and Woodfield Road, rather than making stops at both Connaught Avenue and Kent Road/Woodward Avenue.

City councillors have yet to make a final decision on whether to remove the 506 streetcar stops at Gerrard Street and Ashdale Avenue.

While the Ashdale stops are close to others, councillors are concerned because they serve students at the nearby Roden Public/Equinox Holistic Alternative School.

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“Likewise, the 502 and 503 streetcars will no longer stop outside St. John’s Church on Sundays.”

Since neither service runs on Saturdays or Sundays I don’t think it will make any difference; however the lack of the 22A stopping there might.

Another TTC service improvement for riders to walk farther. What has commuting times got to with Sunday stops? Church time is outside usual work times especially on Sundays. Red herring.

The changes in many areas were necessary for the new longer streetcars and were decided with little public consultation… the curb cuts were made last year in many spots.

The one that will be a disaster is moving the westbound stop at Woodbine from the current location (west of the intersection) to in front of the old Shell Station site on the east side – meaning all traffic and turns stop while passengers load and unload.

Expect westbound traffic to back up in the mornings even worse than now.

The current TTC stop location was put where it is for a reason, I think, as this was likely the reason it isn’t in the expected place.

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