2017 Top Ten Favourite Moments with Metrolinx Transit Staff

The Link

Singing CSA

*photo courtesy Metro News*

Most transit customers just want their ride to be peaceful (don’t dare answer that phone in the Quiet Zone!), uneventful and on time. However, disruptions can happen and we know a few entertaining words from our multi-talented drivers and customer service staff can go a long way to reducing blood pressures.

For 10 years, Barrie GO customers have had the pleasure of being serenaded by singing Customer Service Ambassador (CSA) Gord, often during the holidays, bringing a smile to many. Customers love it when they suddenly hear a child’s voice announcing the next station — CSAs will often allow children to take over the microphone. And one CSA allowed a smitten, and I must say confident guy, ask his girlfriend to marry him over the air waves.

We had our share of other quotable moments in 2017.

Here are our top 10 favourites:

  1. On May 4

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Mayor Naheed Nenshi re-elected in Calgary! #yycvote

Wonderful to see Mayor Naheed Nenshi re-elected in Calgary. Great news for the Green Line LRT and the Southwest BRT. Some interesting parallels in the Calgary election and transit scene and in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

Hope to be able to meet Nenshi one day. Also, big congrats to my friend Chris Cowperthwaite and all his amazing campaign efforts. From what I observed from here, it was a grassroots driven, digitally-savvy, and most importantly a fun and friendly campaign to be part of. That’s how it’s done.

Image may contain: 1 person, crowd and indoor
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Big crowd! Photo credit: Chris Cowperthwaite

Next New Streetcar to Join the Fleet

Bryan Martyniuk lives in Thunder Bay and sent along pictures of 4446 from today. 4446 will be the next new streetcar to join the TTC’s fleet. It’s a little too far for me to get up to Thunder Bay to see the new streetcars or GO Transit coaches roll off the line so it’s great to have Bryan be there.

4446, a Flexity Freedom, and GO 4020, a bilevel coach. The GO coach is in primer paint and will head to North Bay for the final paint job. Photo credit Bryan Martyniuk.

Photo credit Bryan Martyniuk.

Pantographs Up On Harbourfront

Check out this post by Steve Munro on the TTC testing out the pantograph on their new streetcars. What’s the big deal Chris?

1) It’s looks cool;

2) It’ll improve reliability – the pole tends to pop off at intersections and during turns; and

3) What about the historic look of the pole? No problem – visit Halton County Radial Railway. It’s a museum. They have ice cream. It’s fun.

Steve Munro

On Tuesday, September 12, 2017, the TTC began operation of its new Flexity streetcars with pantograph power collection on the 509 Harbourfront route. This is a short, comparatively isolated route running entirely with Flexitys where problems, if any, can be ironed out on a small piece of the network. Any off route moves including carhouse trips are done with trolley poles, and the normal changeover point between modes is at Exhibition Loop.

Here is a small set of photos of the route.

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New Portion of the Martin Goodman Trail Open #biketo

I was cycling at Strachan and Lake Shore Boulevard West and noticed that the new portions of the Martin Goodman Trail have opened.

West of Strachan

East of Strachan

This new portion of the Trail is a great addition and provides a smoother and safer path than the old route as shown below.

The old route pictured above was sometimes used by cars and had a very abrupt right-angle turn a little off in the distance.

This new portion of the Martin Goodman Trail will also provide an easier way to get to the new park at Ontario Place.

Update: Here’s a map of the western side of the new trail:

On the east, it’s pretty good but I think a small extension would help avoid the conflict with Remembrance Dr.: