TTC considering 5-cent fare hike

Commuters could be paying more to take the Toronto Transit Commission next year as it looks to offset rising costs.

Commuters could be paying more to take the Toronto Transit Commission next year as it looks to offset rising costs.

The TTC is looking to raise the price of an adult token by five cents, to $2.70, on Jan. 1 and to also increase either the cost of cash fares or of a Metropass, according to an internal report that will be reviewed by the board next week.

If the hikes are approved:

  • A single adult token would cost $2.70
  • A student or senior ticket would cost $1.85
  • A Metropass for an adults would cost $133.75

The proposals came to light as the TTC prepared, on Wednesday, to mark what is believed to be its 29-billionth rider since the service was formed in 1921.

Miriam Gaspar is one of the millions of people of who take the TTC nearly every day. The expenses add up, she says.

"I think I already pay enough to ride the subway. It's already really expensive," she said, adding that she pays almost $130 a month for a Metropass. Those rides aren't exactly problem-free, either, said.

"I'm late to work almost every day because of a holdup or delay."

540 million passengers expected in 2014

While Gaspar isn't thrilled about the prospect of having to cough up more change to ride the TTC soon, the transit commission contends its operations are expensive, too.

The TTC’s subways, buses and other vehicles will carry some 540 million passengers in 2014, according to the new internal report, up 2.3 per cent from 2013. The TTC says its year-over-year ridership is the third largest in North America, behind Mexico City and New York City.

The report predicts the TTC will spend $59.6 million more than its 2013 budget in ‘14, due to higher costs including fuel and electricity, and the increased maintenance and service demands brought on by more riders.

$131 for a Metropass if hike is approved

If approved, the first part of the proposed fare hike would increase the cost of a single adult token to $2.70 and impose a “proportional” hike on other fares; raising student and senior tickets by a nickel, to $1.85, and a regular Metropass by $2.50 to $131.

The second part would either increase cash fares — from $3 to $3.25 for adults, from $2 to $2.15 for seniors and students — or would further raise the cost of a Metropass, to $133.75 for adults. 

Currently, about 70 per cent of the TTC's revenue comes from the farebox. For two years, the subsidy offered by the $411-million operating subsidy from the city has been frozen.

The TTC is asking the city to kick in more cash - a proposal that riders are hoping will pay off.

"The government themselves, they should fork out the actual money," Joseph Yu said.

However, that proposal still needs to go through the board and council. If approved, the fare hike would be put in place next year.

With files from CBC's Aarti Pole


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