new TTC streetcar

TTC rolls out new streetcar, Presto, and more free WiFi

The TTC rolled out two key additions this weekend in the form of a third Bombardier streetcar and the updated Presto fare payment system. The latter is currently limited to just two of the now three new streetcars, but the third vehicle is expected to be back on the rails in a few days after it too is upgraded with Presto capabilities.

At some point, we'll probably lose our excitement about the new streetcars, but for now they mark such an improvement over other surface vehicles, it's difficult not to perk up at the thought of an increase in the fleet-size. Part of that is related to Presto. The card-payment system is so much better than the outdated model in use throughout the network that it's nice to see its newest version go live.

On the flip side (there's always a flip side, isn't there?), it's also frustrating to note that a widespread rollout of Presto across the TTC is still years away. So while one can get a glimpse of the future right now on the new streetcars, it's best not to hold one's breath in anticipation of the TTC catching up to other transit providers payment systems anytime soon.

In other TTC news, the Commission announced on Friday that free WiFi is now available at Union, King, Queen and Dundas subway stations. This is more progress, to be sure, but also an area in which the TTC lags behind other major transit systems around the world.

Photo by JoshuaKG in the blogTO Flickr pool.


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