TTC Ridership Down 60% as Torontonians Embrace Social Distancing

TTC ridership
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Ridership across the TTC’s streetcars, subways, and buses dropped dramatically as Torontonians avoid close-quarters of public transit in a bid to halt the spread of coronavirus.

Despite the TTC still providing hundreds of thousands of trips every day, total ridership is down as much as a whopping 60% from 10.4 million rides to just 4.5 million rides, according to the transit agency’s spokesperson, Stuart Green.

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Green added that these preliminary numbers don’t factor in recent changes around the city’s store and workplace closures, which were put in place last week after Ontario declared a state of emergency.

“As of March 17, weekly ridership down ~50-60% from 10.4M rides ($24M) to 4.5 million rides ($10M) not including recent changes around store/workplace closures,” said Green.

This comes as TTC introduced a number of operational changes in light of the pandemic, which included adjusted on-boarding for vehicles on the transit system.

Now, if you travel on a TTC bus you will be able to board at both the front and back doors to allow for further social distancing. Here’s how it will work:

  • If you are paying with cash, TTC ticket, token or have a paper transfer, you should board at the front door.
  • Anyone who requires the ramp kneeling feature or is travelling with someone as a support person should board and exit the bus through the front door.
  • All PRESTO card and PRESTO Ticket customers should enter the bus through the rear doors and tap their card or ticket on the reader beside the door when they board.
  • All customers who do not require the ramp or kneeling feature should exit the bus through the back doors.

The transit system says it will also no longer be checking for proof of payment and instead enforcement officers will be educating individuals on correct payment methods.

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