While TORONTO slept, the TTC was up testing its new streetcars

In the wee hours of Thursday morning, TORONTO TRANSIT COMMISSION engineers were testing the first of 204 new streetcars, scheduled to go into service in 2014.  The new cars are much longer than today’s fleet, measuring about 30 metres (approximately 90 feet) from end to end.  According to the TTC, all went well.  <PHOTOS – Toronto Transit Commission>  “Around 1:30 a.m., (my) fantasy became a reality.  At a red light at Dundas and Spadina, there it was: the gleaming, red and white test car, like a visitor from some strange and advanced cityscape, making its way south on Spadina’s dedicated tracks.  The 30-metre-long mini-train, capable of reaching speeds up to 70 km/h, moved slowly, almost cautiously, flanked on either end by two of its out-of-service ancesters, which functioned as bodyguards . . . A simple U-turn put the streetcar in our rearview mirror.  It sped off into the night, disappearing from sight, back into the future.” – an encounter with TORONTO’s new test streetcar on a late-night trial run, by Rob Duffy/The Grid