March 21, 2019 7:47 am
Updated: March 21, 2019 9:48 am

Transit advocates protest TTC upload ahead of executive committee meeting

(Aug. 15, 2018): Ontario Premier Doug Ford said Wednesday it would be "nothing but a benefit for the city of Toronto" for the province to take over transit in the city.

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Toronto transit advocates held a protest in front of city hall on the proposed TTC subway system upload to the province prior to an executive committee meeting where the issue will be discussed on Thursday morning.

A group led by the TTCriders, including provincial and municipal politicians, called on the mayor and councillors to launch an information campaign and public consultations about the province’s subway takeover plan.

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A city report said further discussions on the TTC upload will cost the municipality $2 million, which will go towards hiring additional staff and secure “third-party advice” for the plan.

Ontario Minister of Transportation Jeff Yurek said last month the upload of the subway will get transit lines built faster.

READ MORE: TTC upload moves forward as city and province sign terms of reference

“Under our upload plan, the province would assume ownership of and responsibility for subway infrastructure, including the building of new lines, while the responsibility for day-to-day operations, including labour relations, would remain with the city,” Yurek said in a statement.

The province and City of Toronto signed a terms of reference document last month which narrowed down options for debate.

The Ontario government’s plan to take over Toronto’s subway system also means the province would be responsible for deciding on new stations or routes.

READ MORE: ‘Day of action’ calls on province to halt upload of TTC subway

However, the TTC would retain the day-to-day operations of the subway, buses, and street cars, while the city would keep fare box revenue.

“We continue to work with the city in good faith. The Terms of Reference, signed by both governments, commits the province and the city to assess options that move past the status quo,” Yurek said.

Toronto’s public transit workers took part in a Day of Action last month by wearing “Don’t Steal Our Subway” T-shirts on the job to protest the potential upload.

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