No TTC stations meet cleanliness standard

A TTC study assessing the cleanliness of all its subway stations has found that none of them meet the transit agency's own standards.

A TTC study assessing the cleanliness of all its subway stations has found that none of them meet the transit agency's own standards.

The TTC's cleanliness audit, conducted in May, evaluated stations on a scale of one to five.

Level one is defined as "unkempt neglect," while five has been labelled "orderly spotlessness."

The TTC aimed for a level four, in which floors are clean, payphones free of graffiti and washrooms clean and stocked. But none of the 69 subway stations met that standard — although 66 of them achieved level three cleanliness, described as "casual inattentiveness."

It would take at least 60 additional full-time staff to meet cleanliness requirements, said TTC chair Adam Giambrone.

But the transit agency has no money to hire them, he said, so improvements in cleanliness may not come for a while.

"It is not possible under the current resources to achieve all of the cleaning, all of the painting, all of the things that people expect from their stations," said Giambrone.

Some improvement since 2008

The audit reports an improvement in cleanliness over the last two years.

In 2008, 34 stations were classed as level two cleanliness, or "moderate dinginess." As of May this year, only four stations fell into that category, the TTC said.

But the TTC still has a long way to go, as stations are not cleaned frequently enough, said Giambrone.

For instance, subway walls are cleaned once a year, but Giambrone said they need it every six months. 

"That's one example of how you need to almost double the resources to take what is a year and turn it into six months," he said.

Thirty temporary cleaners will be added in August to undertake a six-month cleaning blitz, said Giambrone.

The TTC board will meet Wednesday to discuss the audit's finding.

In addition to the audit, TTC vice-chair Joe Mihevc is also inviting riders to conduct their own audit of the system's cleanliness. He is asking riders to go to their regular station on July 17 at 11 a.m., fill out the questionnaire and then send it to his team at the audit website.