If I lived in Pickering, Ajax or even Streetsville to the west, I’d have easy access to Go service to downtown Toronto. Not a 2 hour commute, or Draconian bus/train schedules that would rule my life.
For some reason, folks in charge of such things think there wouldn’t be enough riders to support enhanced public transit from north of Steeles to the downtown core. Pardon? Has no one looked at the DVP or the 404 during rush hour in the past 5 years? Hasn’t anyone noticed the quadrupling of traffic? In 2002, at 7:30 am it took 60 minutes to get from Aurora to downtown Toronto. Today, it takes 2 hours if there’s no accidents.
At the time, city and TTC officials were also reluctant to extend this line north of the Steeles Avenue boundary between Toronto and York Region, concerned that ridership estimates in the sprawling suburbs did not justify the cost of a subway.
The intense housing developments along Yonge Street, in the northern Richmond Hill area are an easy indicator as to the potential population base that would easily take advantage of improved public transit. I live within earshot of the traintracks, within 5 km of a station, but I’d rather walk downtown in stiletto heels than try and contort my schedule into the ridiculousness that passes for a train schedule to get up north. The guillotine drops at 5pm, and if you miss the last train, you are stuck on a bus. In rush hour. Up the 404. No thanks. I’d rather be tied to the tracks.