Centennial College Student Association Inc

A day in the life of a Scarborough transit commuter

Centennial College Student Association president Ravneet Kaur says students are frustrated over transit issues

Opinion- Feb 22, 2018- by Ravneet Kaur- Toronto.com

The average day in the life of a Scarborough transit user is getting longer, it seems. The majority of the students at Centennial College commute by TTC and they endure long wait times and bitter cold to get to class, to their home or to their part-time work. Is this progress?

The untimely bus routes cause so many challenges for the students, staff and other commuters, which can lead to undue anxiety. In speaking with fellow travellers, some students have missed their tests and classes because of bus delays. The service makes it even harder for those who travel with strollers and young children.

The 102A and 134C bus routes serving Centennial’s Progress Campus are overloaded during peak hours and the current number of buses is comparatively low. There were times when I had to wait 40 minutes to get into a bus that was already overcrowded, or even walk the 3.3 kilometres to get to campus.

These are some of the significant issues familiar to all of Scarborough’s residents who rely on transit. Anyone who has witnessed the massive crowds spilling onto the roadway at Scarborough Town Centre knows that there are serious problems with the TTC service in this part of the city.

As an advocate on behalf of our students and other community members, I have been raising these issues to underscore just how difficult it has become to commute using Toronto’s creaking transit system. Nowhere are the problems more acute than in Scarborough, which is served by just two subway stations after Victoria Park Ave. It’s too big of a community to be dependent on spotty and unreliable bus service.

Students are very frustrated and this not only leads to stress and anxiety, but also impacts their mental health, studies and personal life. Scarborough is home to so many students and we want to ensure they receive great service — along with everyone living in this community.

As the president of the Centennial College Student Association Inc., one of my major goals is to bring forward these concerns. With the support of the student association, the college and other community members I will continue to advocate for change.

Already, we have been successful in creating three additional Wheel-Trans stops at Progress Campus, and Centennial is conducting a user survey to better understand the transportation needs of students and staff. I’m looking forward to some positive results coming this year.

Ravneet Kaur is president of the Centennial College Student Association.