The TTC has been named “Outstanding Public Transportation System for 2017” by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).
It may come as a surprise, but it’s true.
The transit industry award recognizes the transformative change the TTC has undergone over the last five years, and was selected by transit system peers across North America, according to the TTC.
The last such award was won by the Toronto Transit Commission back in 1986.
“I am immensely proud of this award and accept it on behalf of the 14,000 people who work for the TTC,” said CEO Andy Byford in a release. “Culture change and how we inspire, develop and manage people is at the heart of our renaissance, led by our belief that it is through a transit system’s people and their embrace of a common goal, that sustainable improvement is achieved. We set out to deliver a transit system that makes Toronto proud. This honour reflects the hard work we’ve done for our customers and the people of Toronto.”
— Brad Ross (@bradTTC) June 26, 2017
In 2013, the TTC developed a five-year plan to put its customers first, and the plan included a new station management model, customer charter, fleet and infrastructure renewal, and how it manages its people – its most important asset.
“Getting around the city remains the number one priority for Toronto residents and that’s why it remains my number one priority as Mayor. Year over year, for the last three years, we have been investing in the TTC to improve service,” said Mayor John Tory in a statement.
In 2015, TTC Chair Josh Colle and Tory announced a $90 million investment in the TTC to restore bus routes that had previously been cut in 2011. And last year, additional funds were given to the TTC to open the subway earlier on Sundays as well as to focus on streetcar reliability, according to Tory.
This year, the City budget gave the TTC an additional $80 million which will continue the rollout of PRESTO across the system, open the York-Spadina subway extension by the end of the year, give enhanced power to Transit Enforcement Officers to help keep traffic moving, and buy 783 new buses.
“I am proud of the TTC for all it has accomplished over the last few years,” said Tory. “We will continue to make smart investments in transit in Toronto to make our transit system faster, stronger, safer and more accessible for every resident in every part of this great city.”
Over 31 billion trips have been taken on the transit system since it began almost 100 years ago. By passenger volume, the TTC is North America’s third largest transit system, after only New York and Mexico cities, according to the transit agency.