The TTC’s service to Pearson is totally fine, so why doesn’t anybody know?
Over at Spacing, Daniel Rotsztain raises an interesting point: the TTC is way too modest about its service to Pearson Airport. The trip is upwards of $50 by cab (or $42 round trip by private bus). Meanwhile, for the cost of a token, anyone can ride the 192 Airport Rocket bus from Kipling station. It departs roughly every ten minutes. Including the subway ride from downtown, the whole trip takes just about an hour. The route is an express, so it makes just one stop before the airport. There are even luggage racks for passengers. (The Malton 58A also serves the airport, departing from Lawrence West station, but it’s not an express bus, and comes less frequently.)
Other cities actively promote their airport bus services. Montreal’s airport buses have special paint jobs, and the airport has a vending machine that dispenses fare cards in different denominations. Boston has a bus rapid transit line that runs between Logan Airport and the city’s downtown core—and, get this, it’s free to ride. And yet the TTC’s service, convenient and cheap as it is, labours in relative obscurity.
One thing is certain: beefing up the TTC’s bus service to Pearson and promoting it to the populace would be a whole lot cheaper and more accessible than building a luxury rail service to the airport from downtown—but with Metrolinx’s Union Pearson Express already racing to meet its 2015 completion deadline, that train has already left the station. How many riders will be willing to part with an extra $20 or so per direction to shave 20 or 30 minutes off their trips? We’ll find out.