TTC to make changes to 506 Carlton route to get around construction projects

The Toronto Transit Commission says it is making changes to its 506 Carlton route to get around construction projects on Carlton and College streets.

Streetcar will bypass stretches of Carlton and College this year, transit agency says

A 506C replacement bus, pictured here, is part of a new diversion plan developed by the TTC to deal with construction projects on Carlton and College streets. (CBC)

The Toronto Transit Commission says it is making changes to its 506 Carlton route to get around construction projects on Carlton and College streets.

Starting on Thursday, TTC service will completely bypass Carlton and College between Ossington Avenue and Parliament Street for the rest of the year.

Spokesperson Stuart Green said on Wednesday the TTC has developed a new diversion plan and it's about improving customer service. The changes involve adding a 506C replacement bus and changing the route of the 506 streetcar,

"We've been on diversion for a little while now to get around some construction along College and Carlton. And the diversion plan that we had in place hasn't been working to a level that our customers deserve, frankly. We've heard a number of complaints," Green said.

"This eliminates a lot of turning and it really addresses some of those concerns we were hearing about from our customers about longer than acceptable travel times."

Replacement bus added

The 506C replacement bus will run along the nearest parallel streets to Carlton and College.

It will operate between Ossington station and Castle Frank station via Ossington Avenue, Harbord Street, Hoskin Avenue, Queen's Park, University Avenue, Gerrard Street and Parliament Street.

The 506 streetcar, meanwhile, will run from Main Street station, down Parliament Street to Dundas Street East, along Dundas Street to Ossington Avenue and then back up to the regular route, Green said.

Essentially, the streetcar is being diverted to Dundas Street, he said.

In a news release this week, the TTC said neither buses nor streetcars will go to College subway station at the intersection of Yonge and College streets while the diversion plan is in place.

Instead, riders should board the 505 Dundas or 506 Carlton streetcars at Dundas and St. Patrick stations, or the 506C replacement bus at Queen's Park station.

Alternatively, customers can take north-south service operating on the 63 Ossington, 65 Parliament, 75 Sherbourne, 510 Spadina and 511 Bathurst, and Line 1 subway service, the TTC said.

Riders with accessibility needs will still have access to WheelTrans along the route.

These service changes will remain in place until the end of the year when construction is expected to be completed, the transit agency added.

"We know the diversions along the 506 route have been inconvenient and confusing for our customers," TTC CEO Rick Leary said in a news release this week.

"With this new approach, we hope that we can provide consistency, and better service for customers who use the route regularly. We will continue to monitor customer feedback and adjust service if required to provide the best experience possible."

With files from Tyler Cheese