March 18, 2008

Full and part-time students at the University of Toronto's Scarborough campus vote in a referendum tomorrow and Thursday on whether to participate in the TTC's U-Pass program.

The U-Pass program was created as a response to students from various post-secondary institutions. It offers a monthly transit pass for $60.00 per month on a semester system, and participation is mandatory by all students. The program is based on a similar framework in other cities, as is the pricing formula.

The monthly U-Pass price has been calculated so that the TTC does not generate any additional fare revenue from post-secondary students. Students will have the option of a similarly discounted VIVA pass or equivalent GO Transit value. The pass also includes free parking at all TTC parking lots.

The U-Pass will be collected as a student levy, included in student activity fees.

U-Pass background information:

Benefits of the U-Pass

  • Cost of using transit for students is significantly reduced to $60 per month
  • No more monthly line-ups to purchase passes as the U-Pass is valid for the entire semester
  • Worry-free transportation for the semester
  • More riders means increased service
  • Eligible for the Federal Transit Tax Credit
  • Positive benefits for the environment

Key Terms and Conditions of Proposed U-Pass

  • The U-Pass is a transit pass and will be mandatory for all full-time and part-time undergraduate students at UTSC
  • Participation of UTSC will be based on the results of a student referendum to be held on March 19th and 20th, 2008
  • U-Pass fees will be collected as a student levy at the rate of $60 per month ($240 per semester)
  • Students will receive a U-Pass at the beginning of each semester which will be valid for the entire 4 month term
  • Students will have choice of service provider: TTC, York Region Transit or GO Transit:
  • If TTC is selected, U-Pass provides unlimited travel on all regular TTC routes
  • If YRT is selected, U-Pass provides unlimited travel on all one-zone YRT routes
  • If GO is selected, student receives equivalent credit for the purchase of applicable GO fare media
  • The U-Pass is non-transferable (1 piece photo pass)
  • The U-Pass does not provide access at TTC automatic entrances
  • The U-Pass provides access to TTC commuter parking lots
  • The U-Pass price is "frozen" until May 2010. Future price increases are based on the percentage increase in the regular Adult Metropass
  • The U-Pass will be offered in all academic sessions

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