Year in review 2003

January 24: The TTC rolls out its first stainless-steel, low-floor, clean-diesel Orion VII bus at Toronto City Hall. It’s the first of 220 buses expected to arrive through 2004.

February 10-14: Toronto Police Service’s Operations Transit Watch tickets more than 3,500 motorists for transit-traffic offences.

March 19: The TTC introduces the Ridership Growth Strategy to Commissioners. The Strategy outlines the TTC’s funding priorities to grow ridership over the next decade.

March 19: Commissioners choose Councillor Howard Moscoe as TTC Chair to fill the vacancy left by Councillor Betty Disero, who resigned her Council seat.

April 4: Federal Transport Minister David Collenette meets with TTC Chair Howard Moscoe and CGM Rick Ducharme to discuss hybrid bus technology and the TTC’s application for $1.3 billion in infrastructure funding for the system.

April 28: The TTC does its part to boost the city after the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) crisis by airing messages from popular Toronto celebrities on the subway’s public address system.

May 27: National Transportation Week awards honour to the TTC’s World Youth Day service and the TTC’s Brian Longson and Perry Howse for a new subway track fastener design.

June 8: 32nd Annual Bus Roadeo Grand Champions: Bill White – Bus; Jim Tanti/Kevin Strutt – Maintenance Team; Aldo Pugliese – Maintenance Driver; and Dennis Adams – Special Group.

June 18: Fairmont Royal York Hotel employees are the first to receive the TTC’s new Volume Incentive Pass (VIP). The Green Program provides organizations with a discounted Metropass.

June 25: TTC Officials and Roadeo Grand Champ Bill White present Mike Myers with his own TTC Operator’s uniform after learning about his “love” for the TTC.

June 26: Husband and wife train crew, Brad and Deborah Ireland, are named the 10th annual winners of the Transit Community Watch Program, and are congratulated by Toronto Police Chief Julian Fantino.

July 17: The TTC officially introduced a fully restored Peter Witt car #2766 to the streets of Toronto. The skilled workforce at Harvey Shop refurbished the vintage vehicle.

July 30: CGM Rick Ducharme declares that TTC employees rock! Service to and from the Rolling Stones SARS concert, which attracted over 400,000 people to Downsview Park, ran like clockwork.

August 14-17: Subway and streetcar service is knocked out for several days as a result of a massive power outage affecting as many as 50 million people across the Eastern Seaboard of North America. The TTC bus fleet keeps the city on the move.

September 18: Operator Rick Cyncora wins the 10th Annual Wheel-Trans Roadeo.

September: After 93 years at the corner of Lansdowne and Paton, the empty Lansdowne Division/Garage is demolished.

October 9: The Toronto Police Service presents Transit Special Constables with awards of achievement for a major crackdown on vandalism on the system. Surveillance and investigations lead to more than 70 charged.

October 29: The TTC, Toronto Police and Crime Stoppers partnership is launched with a system-wide reward notice for the return of nine-year-old abduction victim, Dong-Yue (Cecilia) Zhang.

October 31: The TTC helps launch the Toronto Royal Canadian Legion’s annual poppy campaign at Davisville Station. A dozen current and retired TTC war veterans attend the event.

November 10: Parkdale-High Park Councillor and TTC Commissioner David Miller is elected Mayor of Toronto.

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