May 21, 2014

Since construction began May 11 at Queen St. E. and Leslie St., as well as at Queen St. E. and Victoria St., the Toronto Transit Commission has been closely monitoring service and making adjustments to help improve reliability on the 501 Queen, 502 Downtowner and 503 Kingston Road streetcar routes.

The TTC has heard from its customers and are making the following adjustments to improve overall performance.

Effective immediately until May 31:

501 Queen streetcars travelling westbound only will use the following routing:

  • West on Queen, north on Coxwell, west on Gerrard, south on Broadview, west on Queen,  south on Church, west on King, north on York, then west on Queen to regular routing. This  change will significantly improve service across the line and reduce congestion at the  intersection of King St. W. and Spadina Ave.
  • There is no change to the eastbound routing, which will continue to follow east on Queen, south on Spadina, east on King, north on Church, east on Queen, north on Broadview, east on Gerrard, south on Coxwell, then east on Queen to regular routing.
  • When the Queen St. E. and Victoria St. intersection re-opens on June 1, the 501 streetcar will continue on its normal routing along Queen St. west of Broadview Ave.

Effective Thursday, May 22 – May 31:

502/503 bus replacement:

  • The 503 Kingston Road routing is being combined with the 502 Downtowner routing, with all buses terminating westbound at Church St. and Queen St. E. to allow for a faster return trip along Queen St. E. This will improve service for customers in the Beach and Leslieville who have told us that service is unreliable and/or buses are too crowded due to long waits.
  • TTC customer service staff will be positioned at Church St. and Queen St. E. to assist customers with making transfers to 501 Queen streetcars to continue their journey into the downtown core or provide walking directions to Queen station, two blocks west.
  • When the Queen St. E. and Victoria St. intersection re-opens on June 1, the 502/503 bus replacement  service will continue west to Victoria St. where it will terminate, getting customers within one block of Queen Station.

Service has been increased on the 31 Greenwood, 83 Jones, 72 Pape and 143 Downtown/Beach Express connecting buses for customers looking for an alternate route. The intersection at Leslie St. is scheduled to re-open on June 21 and at Victoria St. on May 31.

In addition to the streetcar track and switch upgrades under way, the work at Leslie St. and Queen St. E. is also taking place to prepare for the new low-floor streetcars and connection track at the Leslie Barns, the new modern streetcar storage and maintenance facility. Work to replace an 80-year-old watermain at the intersection and beneath Leslie St. is also part of construction efforts.

The new low-floor streetcars begin service August 31 and will modernize the TTC’s streetcar fleet, with accessibility features, all-door boarding, air conditioning, and a smoother, quieter ride. The new streetcar will be on display, with an opportunity to walk through and board the car, this Saturday, May 24 at Doors Open Toronto at the TTC’s Russell Carhouse facility and Queen St. E. and Greenwood Ave. Doors open at 11 a.m. and close at 5 p.m.

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