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transit

Upgrades, closures, and construction Davenport councillor promises ‘bendy’ buses on their way to Dufferin route w rahul gupta Financial district intersection

A makeover of the financial district’s most prominent intersection is nearly complete. New banners and street pole wraps are up at King and Bay streets, part of an extensive streetscape renovation commenced in early summer. The renovation includes new street signs, black metal garbage receptacles to replace the less durable plastic “turtle” bins and a thorough power wash of the intersection’s sidewalk. The improvements are scheduled for completion by the end of August. track replacement work wStreetcar

The intersection of King Street West and Spadina Avenue remains shut for another week as streetcar track replacement work continues. The intersection was closed Tuesday, Aug. 6 for two weeks. On Aug. 20, one lane in either direction on King and two lanes south on Spadina will

planned for June but delayed by a job action by tile workers contracted by the TTC. To learn more about the Pape station renovations visit www.pape.ttc.ca.

TO in TRANSIT re-open as construction crews work to complete track and road work. While the closure continues both the 504 King and 508 Lakeshore streetcar lines as well as replacement buses for the 510 Spadina route will divert around the intersection. The work is scheduled for completion by Aug. 31.

subway supports removed wCancelled

Last week, construction crews began relocating overhead power lines along Eglinton Ave. W. to pave the way for the removal of support piles belonging to a long cancelled subway project. While the first stage of tunnel construction for the Eglinton Crosstown light rail transit (LRT) project proceeds below Eglinton toward Allen Rd., Metrolinx must remove the support piles located east of the Allen – vestiges of the old Eglinton subway halted in 1995 – so as not to interfere with future tunnelling. The relocation work is expected to last several weeks. For more information visit www.thecrosstown.ca

station closure set to start wPape

The TTC is set to shutter Pape Station to complete extensive renovation work. The station has been under construction since 2009. It will close for 12 days as of Aug 19 to speed up the remaining projects, which include installing an elevator, tiling and ceiling work and finishing the redesigned station bus bay and new enclosed passenger waiting area. The shutdown was initially

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Rahul Gupta is The Villager’s transit reporter. Follow him on Twitter@TOinTRANSIT

RAHUL GUPTA rgupta@insidetoronto.com

Will overcrowded Dufferin Street get oversized articulated buses before other major TTC routes in the city? Ana Bailao thinks so. The Davenport city councillor is confident the articulated vehicles, affectionately known as “bendys” because of a pivoting middle joint, will soon debut along 29 Dufferin. Posting on her website, Bailao wrote she was “assured” by TTC CEO Andy Byford, following a late June ridealong where the TTC CEO saw first-hand the problem of bus bunching at Dufferin station. “...CEO Byford and I witnessed four buses arrive at Dufferin Station, at once, and I was subsequently assured that our area would be among the first to receive the new bendy buses once the rest of the fleet arrives in Toronto,” wrote Bailao in the post dated Thurs. Aug. 8

Bailao was unavailable for comment, but special assistant Nicholas Gallant backed up her claim, saying that Byford had unofficially given his endorsement. “The CEO assured her on that ride we’d be getting the bendy buses,” Gallant said on Monday. Byford did not respond to an interview request. But TTC spokesperson Brad Ross said while Dufferin is under consideration a decision has yet to be made. “I don’t believe Andy would have given that assurance as we’ve made no decisions yet,” said Ross, the TTC’s head of communications. “Certainly 29 Dufferin is on the list of routes we will be looking at but no decisions have yet been made...” At the TTC’s March board meeting Dufferin was part of a list of 12 high-capacity routes under consideration to receive the vehicles. Of those, about half are expected to be chosen.

Dufferin averaged 39,700 weekday riders in 2012 according to the TTC which puts it behind the 36 Finch West and 39 Finch East service as well as the 35 Jane route, which are also on the list. The TTC expects to save $9-million annually with the eventual deployment of the articulated buses on the chosen routes. Ross expected a decision on the matter to come in October. At the March meeting, the TTC board voted to approve the purchase of 126 additional articulated buses from manufacturer NovaBus, raising the total fleet order to 153. The initial rollout is scheduled for early next year with the remainder of the vehicles to be delivered by the end of 2014. A previous fleet of TTC articulated buses was retired back in 2000.

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For more information on the new fleet of ‘bendy buses’, visit www.ttc.ca

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