The expansion of the Rack It and Rocket Program is in jeopardy.
Tomorrow night (Wednesday) the TTC is meeting to consider expanding the program to all new buses the city buys. A TTC project report, while noting that the racks have been popular with both cyclists and non-cyclists, have produced a few new TTC riders, and that they don’t slow down bus timetables, is recommending that the bike rack program not be expanded to the rest of the system, citing low usage levels.
While Adam Giambrone, who is on the TTC Committee, is advocating for the expansion of the program, it’s not expected to happen. The TTC doesn’t seem to understand that when a bike rack is installed on every new bus, more people will start using it, because they’ll know it’s an option (at present, the racks are only on certain routes, like the Bathurst and Dufferin routes) on all buses.
It’s a case of looking at the long-term benefits rather than the short-term costs. Making biking AND transit and option for EVERY trip a Torontonian makes will create more TTC riders out of cyclists (I myself used the subway to get my bike up to Downsview yesterday – photos to come).
I fear that the short-sightedness of the TTC will screw the Bike Rack project, but you can show your support by emailing those on the TTC committee (that email link will open an email addressed to them all).
Please write them and tell them why you think Bike Racks are important – not just for you but for the TTC and for the City as a whole.