Morning Brew: TTC to spend $700M on streetcar works, Adam Vaughan says new vehicles are too big, rumblings over Ford's Kachkar call, and Ryerson U says sorry
The TTC says it will cost $700 million to upgrade its surface stops for the accessible features of its new streetcars. The new vehicles deploy ramps when stopped to help wheelchair users board and require extra platform height. Some of the cash is also being spent on changes to the overhead wiring and the installation of on-street ticket machines.
Meanwhile, Adam Vaughan says the new high-capacity vehicles are too big for downtown routes like Queen, King, College, and Bathurst and he'd like the TTC to hang on to its old vehicles. Does that make any sense at all?
Rob Ford is continuing to draw criticism over comments he made to a Newstalk 1010 show about the Richard Kachkar trial. The mayor told listeners he couldn't understand why the court was discussing Kachkar's mental state. "One of our finest got killed. Left behind a wife and a little son. And we're trying to find an excuse why this guy stole ... a snow plow and killed a police officer," he said. The jury has already been instructed to avoid the media and is now in deliberations.
The Ryerson engineering students in the spotlight over a controversial hazing ritual have apologized. A YouTube video showed prospective frosh week leaders being made to crawl in their underwear through a slushy puddle. The event was apparently voluntary but staff at the university felt it left a bad impression of the university.
Two giant pandas mailed to the Toronto Zoo from China arrived in the country safely under the gaze of hundreds of TV cameras and press yesterday. PM Stephen Harper officially signed the FedEx delivery document for the pair, named Er Shun and Da Mao, as the animals were taken in to quarantine. The pair will go on public display Saturday, May 18.
Two of the TTC's top transit enforcement staff have left their jobs, according to the Toronto Star. Fergie Reynolds and staff sergeant Al Findlay left in the wake of the news eight enforcement staff were being prosecuted for issuing fake tickets, though the pair were not involved in that crime.
Chris Bateman is a staff writer at blogTO. Follow him on Twitter at @chrisbateman.
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