TTC to boost service on 24 bus routes starting Sunday

The TTC says improvements to two dozen bus routes will begin operating later this week and will eventually boost overall transit service in the city to 96 percent of pre-pandemic levels.

Starting this Sunday, 24 major bus routes, primarily in Scarborough, North, York and Etobicoke, will see improved service, particularly during off-peak hours, TTC and city officials said Tuesday.

At a news conference in Scarborough, TTC Chairman Jamaal Myers said the announcements mark an “important milestone” in improving transit options, particularly for commuters in the suburbs.

“We are increasing TTC service to 96 percent of pre-pandemic levels, providing four percent more service than this time last year,” Myers said. “I am especially pleased that these service improvements will greatly benefit the residents of my beloved Scarborough by improving the frequency, capacity and reliability of service on routes affected by the closure of Line Three.”

Myers said that as of late April, weekday travel on the TTC reached 82 percent of 2019 levels, with an average of 2.52 million daily boardings. She said ridership on the city’s bus network is currently at 91 percent capacity.

At the news conference, Mayor Olivia Chow said she has heard people want more bus service.

“They want more buses, more frequent; shorter waiting times; a comfortable ride, not stuck like sardines; and a more reliable ride,” Chow said.

He added that “we are investing more than ever in TTC so that your bus arrives sooner and with more space on board.”

This years TTC Budget set aside $46.4 million to meet increases in service demand on both conventional and Wheel-Trans services. Another increase is expected in September to 97 percent of pre-pandemic service.

Last year, service across the TTC was increased from 91 percent to 95 percent of pre-pandemic levels to meet growing ridership. The TTC has said it expects ridership to reach 80 percent of pre-pandemic levels by the end of this year.

On Tuesday, TTC CEO Rick Leary said the latest service increase will add thousands of hours of service across the city at all times of the day. He said the increase will come in the form of additional buses; larger articulated buses to reduce crowding on busy routes and increased frequency to meet demand. He said the TTC is also “filling gaps” in its 10-minute network, in addition to improving the frequency of service on routes where demand has changed since the closure of Line 3.

While a bus expressway is in the works to replace the decommissioned Scarborough RT (Line 3), Leary said the busway is still not expected to be operational before 2026.

Here is the list of routes that will begin seeing improved service on May 12:

  • 19 bay

  • 25 Don Molinos

  • 36 Western Finch

  • 39 eastern finch

  • 44 Kipling South

  • 46 Martin Grove

  • 53 Steeles East

  • 57 inside

  • 60 Steeles West

  • 68 Guardian

  • 72 paper

  • 76 Real York South

  • 95 york mills

  • 104

  • 111 East Shopping Center

  • 114 Queens Quay East (new)

  • 122 Graydon Hall

  • 123 Sherway

  • 184 Ancaster Park

  • 902 Markham Road Express

  • 935 Jane Express

  • 939 Express Finch

  • 995 York Mills Express

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