End of time-based transfers on St. Clair bad for business: BIA

News Aug 23, 2017 by Rahul Gupta Bloor West Villager

The removal of time-based transfers from St. Clair Avenue streetcars has shop owners on the avenue confused and worried about the impacts to their business from the impending change.

The transfers will stop being issued as of early September, when the new streetcar fleet begins running on the 512 line. Since the new vehicles accept Presto, the TTC says it’s phasing out the transfers, which currently allow for unlimited trips on the 512 in either direction for two-hours. That perk, which is not available anywhere else on the TTC, makes transit an attractive option for St. Clair shoppers looking to run quick errands while paying one fare, said salon owner Elena Simonetta.   

“Why all of a sudden just take it away?” said Simonetta, who estimates half of her clientele at Salon 1065, located on St. Clair near Oakwood Avenue, relies on the TTC. “It’s short-sighted to get rid of the time-based transfers.”

Simonetta, is also chair of the Regal Heights Village BIA which covers St. Clair from Winona Drive to Westmount Avenue. The BIA launched an online petition calling for the TTC to maintain the transfers which have been in existence since 2005, shortly after the dedicated streetcar track opened on St. Clair. Currently, the petition has 175 signatures, said BIA member Tony Bolla.

Kerrie Levine, who owns the Lox and Schmear eatery located at 1030 St. Clair Ave. W. said she’s also concerned about the end of the time-based transfers, saying not having them will only make transit more expensive.

“I’m sure we have customers who are riding the streetcar and they notice (our business) and then they can quickly jump off,” said Levine. “So I think getting rid of them is not a good idea.”

Tony Cappellano, owner of Boom Breakfast and Company, a popular location for brunch, wasn’t too concerned about ending the transfers. He said the presence of the dedicated streetcar line on St. Clair has been terrible for local businesses because of years of construction. He doesn’t believe the transfers have had any kind of effect on his business. 

“My experience with (the TTC) is they did nothing for us,” said Cappelano.

Simonetta said she found out about the transfers via an email sent by the TTC advising of the deployment of the new streetcars. As part of the message, which was provided to Metroland Media Toronto, it’s also mentioned the time-based transfers will stop being issued as of Sept. 2.

“As you know, this program was originally introduced as a goodwill gesture and businesses along St. Clair to thank them for their patience during (dedicated streetcar line) construction,” the message from TTC senior community liaison Denise Jayawardene reads. 

“Due to the design of the new streetcars there is no way for the operator to issue any paper transfers to customers.”

Bolla said the BIA has requested a meeting with the TTC to discuss the changes. She hopes there still might be time to keep the program running for at least another year so customers on St. Clair can get used to the changes.

“At this point just explain it to us,” said Bolla. “They’re giving us new streetcars, but they’re taking something away.”

End of time-based transfers on St. Clair bad for business: BIA

News Aug 23, 2017 by Rahul Gupta Bloor West Villager

The removal of time-based transfers from St. Clair Avenue streetcars has shop owners on the avenue confused and worried about the impacts to their business from the impending change.

The transfers will stop being issued as of early September, when the new streetcar fleet begins running on the 512 line. Since the new vehicles accept Presto, the TTC says it’s phasing out the transfers, which currently allow for unlimited trips on the 512 in either direction for two-hours. That perk, which is not available anywhere else on the TTC, makes transit an attractive option for St. Clair shoppers looking to run quick errands while paying one fare, said salon owner Elena Simonetta.   

“Why all of a sudden just take it away?” said Simonetta, who estimates half of her clientele at Salon 1065, located on St. Clair near Oakwood Avenue, relies on the TTC. “It’s short-sighted to get rid of the time-based transfers.”

Simonetta, is also chair of the Regal Heights Village BIA which covers St. Clair from Winona Drive to Westmount Avenue. The BIA launched an online petition calling for the TTC to maintain the transfers which have been in existence since 2005, shortly after the dedicated streetcar track opened on St. Clair. Currently, the petition has 175 signatures, said BIA member Tony Bolla.

Kerrie Levine, who owns the Lox and Schmear eatery located at 1030 St. Clair Ave. W. said she’s also concerned about the end of the time-based transfers, saying not having them will only make transit more expensive.

“I’m sure we have customers who are riding the streetcar and they notice (our business) and then they can quickly jump off,” said Levine. “So I think getting rid of them is not a good idea.”

Tony Cappellano, owner of Boom Breakfast and Company, a popular location for brunch, wasn’t too concerned about ending the transfers. He said the presence of the dedicated streetcar line on St. Clair has been terrible for local businesses because of years of construction. He doesn’t believe the transfers have had any kind of effect on his business. 

“My experience with (the TTC) is they did nothing for us,” said Cappelano.

Simonetta said she found out about the transfers via an email sent by the TTC advising of the deployment of the new streetcars. As part of the message, which was provided to Metroland Media Toronto, it’s also mentioned the time-based transfers will stop being issued as of Sept. 2.

“As you know, this program was originally introduced as a goodwill gesture and businesses along St. Clair to thank them for their patience during (dedicated streetcar line) construction,” the message from TTC senior community liaison Denise Jayawardene reads. 

“Due to the design of the new streetcars there is no way for the operator to issue any paper transfers to customers.”

Bolla said the BIA has requested a meeting with the TTC to discuss the changes. She hopes there still might be time to keep the program running for at least another year so customers on St. Clair can get used to the changes.

“At this point just explain it to us,” said Bolla. “They’re giving us new streetcars, but they’re taking something away.”

End of time-based transfers on St. Clair bad for business: BIA

News Aug 23, 2017 by Rahul Gupta Bloor West Villager

The removal of time-based transfers from St. Clair Avenue streetcars has shop owners on the avenue confused and worried about the impacts to their business from the impending change.

The transfers will stop being issued as of early September, when the new streetcar fleet begins running on the 512 line. Since the new vehicles accept Presto, the TTC says it’s phasing out the transfers, which currently allow for unlimited trips on the 512 in either direction for two-hours. That perk, which is not available anywhere else on the TTC, makes transit an attractive option for St. Clair shoppers looking to run quick errands while paying one fare, said salon owner Elena Simonetta.   

“Why all of a sudden just take it away?” said Simonetta, who estimates half of her clientele at Salon 1065, located on St. Clair near Oakwood Avenue, relies on the TTC. “It’s short-sighted to get rid of the time-based transfers.”

Simonetta, is also chair of the Regal Heights Village BIA which covers St. Clair from Winona Drive to Westmount Avenue. The BIA launched an online petition calling for the TTC to maintain the transfers which have been in existence since 2005, shortly after the dedicated streetcar track opened on St. Clair. Currently, the petition has 175 signatures, said BIA member Tony Bolla.

Kerrie Levine, who owns the Lox and Schmear eatery located at 1030 St. Clair Ave. W. said she’s also concerned about the end of the time-based transfers, saying not having them will only make transit more expensive.

“I’m sure we have customers who are riding the streetcar and they notice (our business) and then they can quickly jump off,” said Levine. “So I think getting rid of them is not a good idea.”

Tony Cappellano, owner of Boom Breakfast and Company, a popular location for brunch, wasn’t too concerned about ending the transfers. He said the presence of the dedicated streetcar line on St. Clair has been terrible for local businesses because of years of construction. He doesn’t believe the transfers have had any kind of effect on his business. 

“My experience with (the TTC) is they did nothing for us,” said Cappelano.

Simonetta said she found out about the transfers via an email sent by the TTC advising of the deployment of the new streetcars. As part of the message, which was provided to Metroland Media Toronto, it’s also mentioned the time-based transfers will stop being issued as of Sept. 2.

“As you know, this program was originally introduced as a goodwill gesture and businesses along St. Clair to thank them for their patience during (dedicated streetcar line) construction,” the message from TTC senior community liaison Denise Jayawardene reads. 

“Due to the design of the new streetcars there is no way for the operator to issue any paper transfers to customers.”

Bolla said the BIA has requested a meeting with the TTC to discuss the changes. She hopes there still might be time to keep the program running for at least another year so customers on St. Clair can get used to the changes.

“At this point just explain it to us,” said Bolla. “They’re giving us new streetcars, but they’re taking something away.”