TTC overcrowding kits

Overcrowding relief kits to be given out on the TTC

The biggest problem facing Toronto transit officials right now is simply "too many people."

It's not that cut and dry, but overcrowding on TTC vehicles has become of the most frequently discussed and pressing issues around the city in recent years; whether in news articles, city reports, or among angry passengers waiting for a streetcar that isn't packed to the brim.

Morning rush hour ridership on Line 1 alone has now hit historical maximums of 28,000 to 30,000 passengers per hour southbound
from Bloor Station, according to the TTC, with sections of the busy subway line "near or exceeding capacity for a 90 minute period during the morning rush hour."

That's an hour and a half of jam-packed subway cars and platform gridlock every weekday morning.

This Thursday, the TTC board will once again discuss possible measures to help combat the problem based on a report from transit agency staff called "Managing Crowding on Line 1 Yonge-University."

But first, those board members (and everyone else in Toronto) will have an opportunity to pick up some free snacks and crossword puzzles at the entrance to King Station.

The Toronto-based grassroots advocacy group TTCriders will be handing out "Overcrowding Relief Kits" to commuters starting at 8 a.m. on Thursday morning to raise awareness about subway crowding on Line 1.

"The Yonge line is dangerously overcrowded and riders are in desperate need of relief," said TTCriders spokesperson Shelagh Pizey-Allen in a press release today. "All three levels of government must fund construction of the Relief Line as soon as possible."

The relief kits will include "a snack, a transit-themed crossword puzzle to kill time while waiting for the next subway, and step-by-step instructions to achieve overcrowding relief," according to the release.

The advocacy group wants to see construction expedited for the long-awaited (and still quite far off) downtown relief line, which is set to open in Toronto by 2031.

Lead photo by

Nick Warzin


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