2017-01-29 Sun


Christopher Greaves Home_IMG_20170120_104415057.jpg

This article warmed the cockles of my heart.

How well I remember Vegemite from my school days and my working days.

In the back of my mind is a trip back to Perth and those parts of Western Australia where I lived for over twenty years.

I will eat an Australian Steak-and-Kidney pie every day, and I will mail back to Toronto cartons of tins of Lemon Saline and Orange Saline, and freight back a carton of Vegemite.

The Toronto Transit Commission and Streetcars NOT

So we were discussing pedestrian deaths, especially streetcar passengers and the cars that blow by the streetcar when the streetcar doors are open. Makes the drivers madder’n’hell.

Upsets some of the passengers too.

Living as I do close to a streetcar line, I pointed out that the whole annoyance of passengers crossing lanes of traffic to reach the streetcars (that run down the centre of the street) could be avoided if the streetcars were routed to run alongside the kerb, out of the way of cars.

“Brilliant!” we both agreed.

Now some two weeks later I am wondering why we have streetcars. Sure, a streetcar can carry more passengers than can a bus, the bendy-streetcars more so, and the new 5-car units – if Bombardier ever works out how to assemble them – even more so.

But then, streetcars and overhead wires and track require a second set of maintenance crew, separate driver training, and as is well known, a broken-down and immobile streetcar can really mess up your day if you are within a hundred metres of traffic-flow.

No matter who you are.

My current thoughts: Cancel the Bombardier deal and double the number of buses. Double the fleet size. Lots of buses. Handy for major events. Handy for unanticipated subway shutdowns. Reduced maintenance and service costs. Fewer pedestrian deaths and injuries.