Toronto says goodbye to the last old TTC streetcars
Gone the way of other quintessentially Toronto things like Honest Ed's and TTC tokens, the last of our Canadian Light Rail Vehicle streetcars were sadly retired this weekend after more than four decades on the city's streets.
Have a good rest of the evening, #Toronto. Today we retired the last of the #CLRV streetcars after their more than 40 years of service. We hope those of you out there were able to ride or see them during their last hurrah. ^DM pic.twitter.com/hsKgtNjQY0— TTC Customer Service (@TTChelps) December 30, 2019
The classic CLRVs, designed and put into service in the 1970s, became emblematic of Toronto and its public transportation system. It's hard to find a Toronto souvenir that doesn't depict some rendition of the old streetcars alongside the C.N. Tower and other sights the city is known for around the world.
The commission retired the longer, articulated version of the vehicle in September, and ran the last of our nearly 200 CLRVs on their final routes yesterday. The last public trip was by car 4178 on the 501 Queen line.
The #Toronto #CLRV #streetcars are 40 years old + being "retired" with those newer, younger models🤣 What a metaphor for life.I have nothing but sympathy for those older streetcars.I will always prefer u to those new slags showing off like they own the joint. #40isanew30 #lol— Team Jessiree (@DeePantouf) December 30, 2019
The loss of the iconic streetcar is certainly a painful part of necessary progress, but Torontonians have enjoyed celebrating their tenure in the past few months.
A specially-painted rainbow version of the vehicle was put into service on certain main routes to pay homage to the life of the CLRV, and one was even put on permanent display at a museum in the U.S.
I’m going to really miss the old CLRV streetcars. They were falling apart at the end, but there were few better transit experiences than being in the back of one really late at night watching the world go by.— Christopher Hylarides (@hylaride) December 30, 2019
Though the new Bombardier streetcars and their associated contactless Presto system have had their fair share of issues, the vehicles are roomy, accessible, air conditioned, and admittedly far more modern and functional.
Still, the old streetcars and the memories they represent to residents both individually and collectively as a city mean they will definitely be sorely missed.
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