Heated, spacious transit shelters installed

You may not care for them so much this summer—if you’re even taking transit these days — but you may appreciate the new Access Hubs when the weather turns cold.

The Toronto Transit Commission has been installing the new large, heated transit shelters in neighbourhoods across the city, including in Thorncliffe Park, Parkwoods and Upper Beaches.

Sixteen of what the TTC calls Access Hubs have been created, ostensibly to provide people using mobility devices a comfortable, protected place to wait while transferring between Wheel-Trans and other TTC vehicles.

All riders, though, can benefit from the spacious new shelters while awaiting their connections.

Story continues after ad

The hubs are designed to be dry and well-lit, to provide room for multiple mobility devices, as well as seating, and to have automatic doors.

A special feature is a device that can be directed to heat the space.

WAVE FOR WARMTH: This shelter can be heated at user’s command.

Where to install the Access Hubs was determined after a series of public consultations, the TTC said

“The locations were chosen based on demographics, location and Wheel-Trans use in relation to customer need and landmarks/places of interest,” TTC communications specialist Stuart Green wrote in an email today.

They’ve been installed mainly at intersections outside of downtown serving muliple bus routes.

So far, nine intersections have one or two hubs that already installed and in-service:

  • Victoria Park and Ellesmere
  • Victoria Park Avenue (Bingham Loop)
  • Don Mills and Freshmeadow
  • Jane and Eglinton
  • Neilson and Ellesmere
  • Kipling and Dixon
  • Neilson and Ellesmere
  • Humber College Loop
  • Meadowvale Loop

Another three sites have hubs installed but are awaiting inspections and permits before they can start operating:

  • Overlea and Thorncliffe
  • Yonge and Steeles
  • Long Branch Loop

More Access Hubs to come?

The cost of the Access Hubs installation is $7.4 million, Green said.

It is covered 50-50 by the city and the federal government as part of the $20-million Wheel-Trans Transformation program backed by the Public Transit Infrastructure Fund.

This may not be the end of the TTC’s upgrades to shelters, however.

Similar enhancements, such as heating, to busy stops is part of a five-year-plan the TTC is advancing through to 2024, Green said.