Toronto Asks Its 'Hidden Experts' How to Improve Transit

Laura Kane listens to the ideas of three of Toronto’s ‘hidden’ transit experts – those who have spent their careers on it's front-lines. A streetcar driver, repair worker, and a transit app developer share their pragmatic insights.

March 17, 2014, 8:00 AM PDT

By Kasper_O_Koblauch


Jorge Lobo has driven streetcars in Toronto for 25 years and observed that the lifestyles and routines of the commuters that board his streetcar daily have changed while the City itself has sometimes failed to adapt. Street parking is a case-in-point. “Workers used to leave the office at 4:30, but these days are more likely to leave at 6 or 7 p.m. So, he asked: Why is parking still allowed after 6 p.m. at some spots on King Street?”

“Lobo suggested allowing parking on main streets after 8 p.m. only...this simple change would make a big difference.”

On the high-tech front, Hussain Saleem, the developer of transit app RocketMan advocates that more data-sharing between the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC) and app developers would greatly improve and modernize the transit experience.

“'I cannot improve the service. I cannot make the streetcars go faster, or have more of them run,’ said Saleem. ‘I can just communicate that information to riders in a friendly way, and then they can manage their time in a better way.’”

Saturday, March 15, 2014 in The Toronto Star

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