Wednesday, February 13, 2008

News Roundup

An interesting op/ed piece in the Toronto Star today discusses poverty and the need for more accessible transit. In essence, skyrocketing property values in the downtown core are pushing low-income families into the outer 416 and the 905, where the lack of transit forces them to buy a car which money they barely have. This brings up a few thoughts, with one more related than the other:
  • Not everyone is trying to get downtown, and we need to improve transit everywhere in the GTAH - especially in the 905.
  • Subways can carry more people than light rail systems, but since a subway has fewer stations along its route, the areas around the stations become valuable and property values rise accordingly. If we want to build subways to priority neighbourhoods instead of light rail, then we have to be careful that we don't price those neighbourhoods outside of the reach of low income families.
GO riders will get a little lovin' on Valentine's Day when the first of the new MP40 locomotives go into service. It looks like there will be one set out during the morning rush, and another set that will do the midday service (after 1:30 only) and continue into the evening rush. They will have an F59PH attached just in case, and there is no word on if they will be pulling 12 coaches or just the standard 10.

Finally, a question:

How do you feel about the Museum station renovations? Do you feel that each subway station should have a unique identity, or do you believe that consistency between stations is best. I believe that each station should have a unique identity to make it instantly clear about where you are, and to make each station a little more interesting. However, many disagree with me.

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At 2/13/2008 4:50 p.m. , Blogger leonsp said...

Unique identities are good, but I am quite skeptical about the aethetics of the proposed design. It's very busy, very clashing.

Instead of twenty different column designs, they should have gone with one good one. Just Doric. Or just Egyptian. Not all possible columns together. Sticking a lot of cool things together doesn't necessarily work.

At 2/13/2008 6:50 p.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If that's the case, Queen's Park station should be heated up to 35C so that passengers know they are where all the hot air is from.

As for poverty in outer 416, this is another reason why the TTC RGS should be implemented and sustained so that no one has unreliable bus service.

And here's some shameless advertising for my Google Earth fantasy transit map. Enjoy!

At 2/13/2008 10:54 p.m. , Blogger Adeel said...

That's a very good point about transit in the outer reaches. I travel through Rexdale everyday, where the service can be lousy if you're in the wrong area. The 96 bus is atrocious, and the 37A going to Rexdale is literally hit-or-miss.

Stations should be unique, but I don't think elaborate decorations are necessary everywhere, just at a few choice locations. I noticed that in Chicago, all stations are the same (ie no variations in tile colours).

At 2/14/2008 1:56 p.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is one of my projects, to get community groups to paint stencil art on one or two subway stations, hoping that 100 others will have the same idea and want to renovate community images to their stations, we have so much of that is other cities., Toronto has 4 million people, why can't we do it?

Ever walked around the Ontario College of Art? They have masses upon masses of art canvanses and sketch art lying around, yet it could easily be displayed in 2 or 3 subway stations, permanently and the Commissioners could throw 2% of their paycheques into buckets to pay for the board protection, the same one's that protect Toronto maps now, they use public money to buy!

At 2/14/2008 9:03 p.m. , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Excellent post and I am glad to see your picture because I constantly want to call you Andrea :)

I am not in the core all that much so a subway ride is occasional and usually on the Yonge line but I do appreciate the fact that if you are half asleep you want to know your stop with one eye open.

I think they should have their own look but not extreme enough that costs go too high.

The mechanics of it all need more money then the look. Clean counts though.

Karem Allen


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