The 5 busiest TTC subway stations
The TTC subway and RT ridership figures tell a tale of extremes. The busiest station, Bloor-Yonge, is an astonishing 352 times busier than the quietest, Ellesmere, which handles just 1,140 riders a day due to its terrible location in the middle of an industrial area. Bloor-Yonge checks all the boxes: it's downtown at a major crossroads,
The comparison isn't entirely fair because Bloor-Yonge is busier than every station on the network by a long, long way. Even the second busiest station, St. George, handles just 63 percent of the riders of its neighbour two stops to the east. Interchange stations, which benefit from counting some riders twice (the ones that switch lines,) make up four of the top five for that reason.
Here are the five busiest TTC subway stations.
No surprises here. Bloor-Yonge is the busiest station on the TTC subway by an astonishing distance. Every day, about 401,000 people combined use the stations' two levels. The Line 1 Bloor platform is the busiest of the pair, seeing about 211,000 a day. The Line 2 Yonge level is slightly less busy with 190,000 daily users. To put these figures in perspective, the combined number for both platforms is more than the daily riderships of the Scarborough RT and Sheppard line put together.
Anywhere people change lines on the subway is a ridership hotspot. St. George, which handles about 253,000 people a day, can't touch Bloor-Yonge in terms of crowds, but it comes closest of any other TTC subway station. The lower Line 2 level of St. George station is slightly busier (129,000 riders) than the upper Line 1 level (124,000,) but it's a relatively even split. Excluding Bloor-Yonge, St. George is the busiest station on Line 2 and Line 1.
Though the ridership levels of the Sheppard line (Line 4) leave a lot to be desired, Sheppard-Yonge, the western terminus of the five-stop subway is the busiest. Combined with the Line 1 riders, the station moves about 124,000 people a day, on average, which is about half that of St. George. The second busiest station on Line 4 is Don Mills, which sees about 33,000 daily users.
Scarborough's Kennedy station is a hive of activity during rush hour. Here, unlike other TTC interchanges, three modes of transportation meet: there's the subway underground, a busy bus level, and the Scarborough RT platform on the roof. In total, 105,000 riders use Kennedy's subway and RT levels. The subway alone accounts for 71,000. At the other end of the line, Kipling station processes about 53,000 riders.
Before the opening of the second platform, tiny Union station processed 100,000 riders a day, close to its capacity, especially during Leafs and Raptors games. The narrow original platform, which now serves Downsview trains only, was a relic of the 1950s and early 60s when Union was the southern terminus of the Yonge line. The ridership figures are a touch higher than Finch (97,000,) which is the sixth busiest on the subway.
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.