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Canadian Urbanism Uncovered

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  1. I have heard this proposed by some people (but not TTC) for Spadina. Collect no fares and issue no transfers. Put up fare barriers at Union and Spadina stations so that the streetcar loading areas are no longer within the fare-paid zone.

    The idea is that there are a lot of heavy boarding areas along the route that slow down service, and most riders on Spadina transfer to or from at least one other route (I wonder if this is true) — so even though the 510 is “free”, you still collect the fares on one end of the trip, but it reduces boarding time (allows boarding at all doors, for one thing) and speeds up service. Maybe it means you can provide the same frequency with one or two fewer streetcars, because it takes them less time to cycle through the route. That seems to be the argument that is being made in Bloomberg’s campaign plank for free crosstown buses in Manhattan.