Toronto’s getting an exciting upgrade on wheels! The first of 60 sleek new streetcars rolled out on November 17, 2023, on the 504 King route. This is big news for us commuters – citizens are talking a massive $568 million pooled together by the federal, provincial, and city governments.
These aren’t just any streetcars; they’re low-floor, zero-emission Flexity models, crafted with care by Alstom in their Thunder Bay and La Pocatière facilities. Why does this matter? Because each of these modern trams can carry as many people as two and a half buses! Plus, they’re totally accessible, making our rides smoother and more inclusive.
Chrystia Freeland, our Deputy Prime Minister, put it perfectly, “We are investing in Toronto, and in Toronto’s transit infrastructure. These new made-in-Canada streetcars for the TTC are yet another example of how the people of Toronto have no greater partner than our federal government.” It’s all about making our city’s transit system top-notch.
Prabmeet Sarkaria, Ontario’s transportation boss, knows the score. He says, “As the new streetcars enter service, it will be faster and easier for commuters in the city to get where they need to go, with more cars and shorter wait times.” That’s music to our ears, right?
Let’s talk numbers. The TTC’s big plan for 2023-2032 includes this cool $568 million streetcar program. What’s cooking? Toronto is getting 60 of these futuristic trams, plus a revamped Hillcrest Complex to house at least 25 of them. This isn’t just about now; it’s about prepping for the future as Toronto keeps growing.
Mayor Olivia Chow gets it. “Transit has been a priority for me since day one. Increasing the number of streetcars on our roads means shorter wait times, more capacity, and more reliable service for transit users.” She’s looking out for our daily rides.
TTC Chair Jamaal Myers is also on board. He said, “Our goal is to run a sustainable transit system that our customers can continue to rely on and be proud of. This is a big step in that direction.” It’s all about a transit system citizens can count on, every day.
In 2022 alone, TTC’s nine streetcar routes covered around 355 km and served over 26 million passengers. That’s a lot of trips! And with these new rides, commuters are set for even more efficient, eco-friendly journeys across Toronto.
So, here’s the deal: Toronto citizens are in for smoother, quicker, and more accessible trips around our city. These 60 state-of-the-art trams are not just a facelift for our streets; they’re a promise of a more connected Toronto. Let’s gear up for a ride into the future, folks!