TTC riders who rely on the 501 Queen streetcar to get around had to deal with slowdowns on the line for several months this year due to a route diversion. And just when things are starting to get back to normal, riders are being dealt with another blow.
Starting Jan. 8 and for the rest of 2017, streetcars will be turning back at Roncesvalles Avenue, so that track and bridge work can be done on The Queensway, Lake Shore Boulevard and at Humber Loop. Streetcars will be bypassing Humber Loop as well.
This means that anyone travelling between the Long Branch loop and Roncesvalles will need to rely on shuttle buses.
Some of the work being done includes fixing the Queensway Bridge over the Humber River, replacing and repairing TTC track and overhead wires, and renovating Humber Loop to include new tracks, accessible streetcar platforms, rebuilding of the tunnel walkway, and replacing the roof at the service building.
“The new streetcars will eventually be able to use the 501 Queen route once the platforms are in place,” Mike DeToma, Senior Communications Advisor for the TTC, said.
Streetcars will run from the Neville Park Loop into the downtown core and end at Roncesvalles Avenue. Replacement buses will run from the Long Branch loop to Roncesvalles as follows:
- 501L/301L Queen buses will run between Dufferin Street (Dufferin Gate Loop) and Long Branch Loop, via Queen Street, The Queensway, Windermere Avenue, and Lake Shore Boulevard. The buses will run 24 hours a day and connect with the streetcars.
- 501M Queen will run clockwise linking The Queensway with Lake Shore Boulevard, Marine Parade Drive, and Park Lawn Road. It will run from around 5:20 a.m. to 1:35 a.m.
Riders can transfer between buses and streetcars between Dufferin Street and Roncesvalles Avenue.
TTC spokesperson Stuart Green said replacement buses will stop at regular stops along the route. However, stops located at a platform will be moved to the curb.
He said the 501M will service Marine Parade and stops between Park Lawn and Windermere that the 501L will miss due to the the diversion. Along the lake front, from Park Lawn to Windermere, buses will stop at Lake Shore and Park Lawn, 2155 Lake Shore and 2111 Lake Shore.
The schedule for the replacement buses is not yet available on the TTC website.
Riders can also take the 80A Queensway bus on The Queensway and Parkside Drive to Keele Station, as well as the 66B Prince Edward bus on Lake Shore Boulevard and Marine Parade to Old Mill Station. The 66A bus will still stop at the Humber Loop.
In May and until early December, streetcars were diverted on Queen Street West between Bathurst Street and Spadina Avenue due to watermain work on Queen.