Friday, April 25, 2014Mostly Cloudy 8°C

TTC unveils its new articulated buses on Bathurst St.

Posted by Chris Bateman / December 21, 2013

ttc articulated busRiding the bus in Toronto got a whole lot more flexible yesterday morning. The first of the Toronto Transit Commission's $143.7 million fleet of articulated buses entered service on the 7 Bathurst route around 9:30am.

The flexible vehicles, which will run less frequently than the current fleet of buses, are the "Cadillac" of surface transit, according to the TTC. In addition to higher capacity - 29 standing, 48 seated - the new buses come with padded seats and Presto card readers (though when they will actually be working remains to be seen.)

ttc articulated busThe beleaguered 29 Dufferin route is due to get the buses next, starting in January. The 36 Finch West, 63 Ossington, 6 Bay, 85 Sheppard, and 53 Steeles routes will follow in 2014.

The last fleet of artics turned out to be something of a bust (or rust.) The Icarus vehicles were quick to corrode under Toronto's harsh conditions and were removed from service in 2003 after 16 years on the road.

The TTC has ordered a total of 153 of the new vehicles from Nova Bus.


ttc articulated busttc articulated busChris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.

TTC bus photographed by Alex Titu



duff / December 21, 2013 at 02:07 pm
It's about time, when other municipalities across the GTA+H have been using these types of articulated buses for years now.

thank god they'll be updating the dufferin bus. taking that 29 during rush hour is always a smelly, sweaty, gross, step back in time.
Tara / December 21, 2013 at 02:43 pm
I'm happy the Bathurst station now posts electronic time updates for arriving buses.
The Lonely Troll / December 21, 2013 at 02:57 pm
Yay! Buses!
Dean / December 21, 2013 at 03:16 pm
The TTC needs to add these to the Airport Express route
Mr.bob / December 21, 2013 at 03:16 pm
The 1979 medley artic hit the roads of D.C they were good then shit and then hell they never spent a full year in any of 5 systems that had them
cookie / December 21, 2013 at 03:17 pm
These have been running in Budapest since 1920s.
Sup Bra / December 21, 2013 at 03:23 pm
I remember seeing these in ancient Rome before Caesar was ousted
lizzy / December 21, 2013 at 03:46 pm
Dear TTC:

Hurry up and get presto on all buses, streetcars and at every station!
The transit systems in the burbs have expanded so much they are putting the TTC to shame.
Spike replying to a comment from duff / December 21, 2013 at 03:53 pm
History is repeating itself here yet again-the TTC had these buses back in the 1980s (I used to ride on them as a kid) and things weren't any better traffic-wise that I could recall. We got rid of Transit City for this?
RealityCheck / December 21, 2013 at 04:50 pm
@Spike... sorry, but articulated buses are a much, much less costly than LRTs (both in terms of capital expenditures and operating budget) and would probably be just as fast on most routes. Dave Gunn, perhaps the most respecte TTC General Manager of the last 50 years, is also on record as saying that articulated buses would have been a more flexible and cost effective alternative than the major street car purchase done a few years ago. Maybe you don't care about cost-effectiveness... but others do.
W. K. Lis / December 21, 2013 at 05:13 pm
Get a observation on how many people will continue to use the very front door on the articulated bus to exit.
William / December 21, 2013 at 05:20 pm
Unfortunately, the TTC plans to run these buses less frequently. So passengers will wait a little longer for the vehicle, and crowding will not be improved. This is a cost-saving measure, since fewer drivers will be assigned to the routes these larger buses operate on. The Dufferin and Finch West routes need more capacity, but that does not seem to be the plan.
cathie / December 21, 2013 at 07:34 pm
I'm a regular rider on the no. 7 Bathurst route. I suppose these buses are a step in the right direction, but even during the morning rush hour, I don't find the regular buses to be overcrowded. I always get a seat at 8:00 a.m. A better improvement, is the electronic update screen thing-y they've installed in the bus shelter at the corner of Bathurst & Finch telling us how long the wait is until the next bus. Regarding Finch West, we are crammed in like sardines during the morning rush, and having a stop every 50 feet (or so it seems) doesn't help.
ll / December 21, 2013 at 09:31 pm
Finally. I was in Brussels last year and they has a whole fleet of these buses. TTC is slow, the whole province needs a better transit plan on general.
Holy Thundering Jesus / December 21, 2013 at 09:38 pm
so now instead of a bus coming every 30 min's, it's gonna be every hour to hour and a half.
Al / December 21, 2013 at 11:56 pm
Just extend the streetcar up Bathurst. The tracks are already there up to St. Clair.
Spike replying to a comment from RealityCheck / December 22, 2013 at 04:52 am
I'm sorry, RealityCheck , but no, the nifty new toys that the TTC's brought AREN'T less expensive than streetcars or LRT, and due to the costs of maintenance (even with full funding from the provincial government) will become an expensive boondoggle just like the other buses it owns-buses must be replaced every couple of years and the parts in a bus wear out quite a lot, vs. streetcars/LRT that don't have a lot of moving parts to wear out. It's no big wonder why the streetcars (PCC's & CLRV's) have lasted a long time, with many still being used in other nations; they're sturdy, well built, and can weather the elements and stress well. Buses can't, and even if, as I said above, the province fully funds the upkeep of them, they will still wear out one day and have to be replaced at a great cost, and more frequently than streetcars/LRT ever will (these streetcars have lasted for years since they were introduced in the early 1980s up to now; look how many buses have been replaced in that time.)

I'd rather have Transit City and the routes that were planned to run LRT's on them than these buses, long as they are. And Al's right in saying that the streetcar can be extended up Bathurst all the way to the end of the line (in fact, they could probably run an LRT line all the way instead of another bus.)
Water into beer / December 22, 2013 at 07:53 am
Screw streetcars. They're slow, cause pollution due to interrupted traffic flow and the new, heavier trains will cause untold damage to the infrastructure of buildings on their routes. But hey,they are quaint and look good in U.S. movies.
Simon Tarses replying to a comment from Water into beer / December 22, 2013 at 01:26 pm
'Screw streetcars. They're slow, cause pollution due to interrupted traffic flow...'

How do they do that? Cars cause that by idling in traffic, and also traffic jams by there being too many of them.

'the new, heavier trains will cause untold damage to the infrastructure of buildings on their routes.'

Really? Provide evidence of this.
tkc / December 22, 2013 at 02:53 pm
Ottawa has had these for a decade...
Nuno / December 22, 2013 at 04:40 pm
They better not choose their affirmitive action hired operators for this bus. They are terrible driving the regular buses/streetcars Nevermind these ones.
rob ford / December 22, 2013 at 05:24 pm
Public transit sucks! I mean, what kind of losers use transit anyways? Super, super, Califragic Expee Ally Doshuss sorry to anyone offended by my aggressively stupid behaviour!
Abe / December 22, 2013 at 05:35 pm
Look at those thrilled riders!
Boongi / December 22, 2013 at 08:34 pm
Well.. Israel and many other European countries have these since the 70's...
it's about time... TTC sucks period!

Paying unreasonable price for a monthly pass & getting shit service in return!
I have been using the TTC services (trying to be "green" as possible) for the last 5 years, and every year their service gets worse and worse. till 3 days ago when I waited in the freezing cold for the king street car for 30 freakin minutes!!! so I came to realization that their service "doesn't cut it", and that I cannot rely on it anymore..

...the next day I went and bought a car..
Garneau / December 22, 2013 at 10:20 pm
If the service decreases then who cares? It's a win for drivers, because there are less buses on the road, but for transit riders this is just a cost saving measure by the TTC and makes transit less convenient.

I'm worried this is going to be the same with the new street-cars (which look fantastic and much more comfortable). If the service decreases, and they don't do anything about synchronizing the traffic lights with the trains (as they do in Edmonton and Calgary) then what's the benefit to riders?
Spike replying to a comment from Boongi / December 23, 2013 at 04:14 am
Oh poor baby, you had to wait for 30 minutes for a streetcar, possibly forgetting that the streetcar might be delayed or been caught in a traffic jam, or anything else that might cause it to be late. My heart bleeds for you (not.)

Hope that you enjoy paying all of that money to keep it...
gucco the clown / December 23, 2013 at 08:34 am
Are the buses as articulate as Rob Ford?
konrad / December 23, 2013 at 09:18 am
WOW! reading these comments i wonder just how stupid people are. Yeah LRT will cause infrastructure damage! HAHAHAAHAHHAAHAHAHAHA Has your stupid ass ever been on a modern LRT? The reality is they weigh less, and are so well balanced and suspended they outrun TRAFFIC as well as not even making noise as they run over track joints.

Seriously, wake the fuck up.
realityCheck / December 23, 2013 at 06:20 pm
@Spike... you are entitled to your opinions... But that's what they are opinions. Sorry if I prefer if I happen to think that someone such as Dave Gunn is a little more credible than you on this issue... And regarding maintenance cost, seems to me that you have completely left out associated surface track repairs (especially at intersections) which are not inconsiderable. The cost of maintaining the vehicle is not the only cost involved in maintenance. Bottom line is that many jurisdictions make effective use of articulated buses. Also, countries are increasing looking at buses (and high passenger capacity buses such as articulated versions) as a more cost-effective (and less capital-intensive) alternative to either subways or LRTs(or streetcars). You may not like them but the facts do not support claims that LRTs are more cost-effective. I don't disagree with you that some of the TTC bus purchases of the past decade have been a disaster. But the disaster was not that they were buses... but rather they were supposed to be some eco-friendly version that never really worked properly in Toronto's climate.
Al Hunter (@rastalam) replying to a comment from W. K. Lis / December 24, 2013 at 10:07 am
In the winter the back doors often open onto a giant mound of uncleared ice & snow. For the old and slow, the front doors are the safest.
Mr.bob / December 27, 2013 at 08:57 pm
Be Ottawa, they have Orion v, Vi, and Vii, about 3 models of new flyers including artics, and van hools and novas, about 350 total. plus the ottawa version fits 108 people and 30 transitways and buses running to gatineau and the.
Mr.bob / December 27, 2013 at 09:02 pm
Transit city would eliminate 36 , 35, 32, 34, and 85 2 to recieve the bendy
Mike / January 8, 2014 at 03:30 am
The reason the burbs have all this equipment before the ttc is because they are a lot smaller than the ttc and the fact that they don't have the expense and the amount of passengers ripping off the system so please think before you speak or write

Add a Comment

Other Cities: Montreal