Finch construction doubling students’ travel time

Aluen Navarro
News Reporter

Humber Event Planning student Vanessa Douse needs to get on a bus at 6 a.m. to ensure she’s in class on time.
It would normally take her 45 minutes to ride the TTC’s 36 Finch West bus to North campus. But construction tearing up Finch Avenue West is forcing Humber College students like Douse to be very patient as they ride the Rocket to school.

The journey now takes her two hours each way.

All along Finch, the 36 Finch West buses bound for Humber are caught in the traffic created by construction.

In short, Finch is a commuter’s nightmare.

The intersection at Keele Street is congested as construction continues for the future Finch West subway station. But there are also three resurfacing projects on Finch between Highway 27 and Dufferin Street, making the commute tough at best.

The resurfacing project launched in June on Finch between Highway 27 and Kipling Avenue has bottlenecked the major traffic corridor to Humber. Construction is expected to end in this stretch in November.
Another resurfacing project between Signet Drive near Highway 400 and Keele Street started in June. It’s trickier because of the asbestos that was used in the tar mixture during the 1970s. Completion is expected in December.
Resurfacing and sewer work is also progressing along Finch between Tangiers Road, east of Keele, to Dufferin Street.

First-year Media Studies student Yazmeen Sidib also said it used to take her 45 minutes to get to school on the bus in the morning without traffic.

But Sidib finds herself getting up earlier to be in class on time because of the construction. She’s been late a handful of times for her morning classes because of heavy traffic.

Sidib thinks it’s dangerous that people have to get out of the bus in the middle of the street because of the construction. She also has found herself jumping over cement barriers to get on the sidewalk.

If it were up to Sidib, she would have more buses running along Finch because of the slow traffic. She said those currently running are always packed.

Although the 36 Finch bus seems to be affected by the construction, some students like Guila Sigga, a first-year Nutrition Management student, have adapted and she says she’s never been late to school.

It takes Sigga 90 minutes and two buses every morning to reach Humber’s North campus. She’s up by 5 a.m. and at her bus stop by 6:30 a.m. just to be at school for 8 a.m. almost every morning.

Siggia agrees the TTC should “add more buses on the 36 Finch West line”.
But there’s not much the TTC can do about the construction; students just have to grin and bear it until the work ends in December.

People can check the ‘Rocket Man’ app on their phones for a full list of the buses that come to a stop and their times. Another alternative is looking at the TTC website before leaving home in the morning.