Metrolinx Board Meeting – Apr 2018

Metrolinx continues to demonstrate our commitment to safety and improving the customer experience. On Thursday, April 26th, the Metrolinx Board of Directors held a strategy meeting. President & CEO Phil Verster began by recognizing employees, construction partners and even one of our customers who helped ensure the public’s safety.


Heroic acts

On April 2nd, while on his regular trip from Pickering to Ryerson University, 20-year-old GO train passenger Aeron Soosaipillai took heroic efforts to prevent a man from attempting suicide. See the video and read more.

Earlier this month, an 80-year-old man suffered a heart event and collapsed on the UP Express. Our Guest Services Representatives Maria Pinto and Lemontin Sardrood immediately notified the GO Transit Control Centre and began lifesaving CPR efforts using a defibrillator. Four Transit Safety Officers – Michael Skals, Michael Olsen, Michael Song and Fatih Kilic arrived quickly and began CPR compressions. The collective efforts of the staff revived the man’s breathing and pulse. EMS/Fire Services were next on the scene and took the victim into their care. We have since learned that the man is recovering.

On August 1, 2017, Matthew Azevedo potentially saved the life of a small boy at one of the pedestrian crossings near our Eglinton Crosstown Fairbank Station construction site. He noticed a boy running straight for the crosswalk into the path of an oncoming car. Although the young boy and his family had the walk signal, a vehicle traveling northbound on Dufferin Street was going to continue through the red light. Mr. Azevedo acted quickly to get the boy’s attention and stop him from entering the road – avoiding what could have been a tragic incident.

At the Crosstown’s Forest Hill Station site, Fulvio Morales also helped to prevent a young boy from a vehicle accident. On March 23, 2018, Mr. Morales reacted quickly to stop a boy about to step into traffic, and then directed him to the sidewalk and designated crosswalk.

In the evening on Sunday April 15, 2018, Chris Knowles, Manager of Track Infrastructure, received a call that a large tree had fallen on CN tracks due to the extreme winter weather. Working through the night, Chris endeavoured to secure a team for its safe removal. Concerned that the downed tree could prevent us from running Richmond Hill GO train service on Monday morning, Chris went to the site at 3am with his own chainsaw, chains and various hand tools to support the removal of the large tree. Working together with our rail corridor maintenance contractor, the team safely removed the very large tree, which was completely blocking the track needed for service. Diligent in his work, Chris then walked through approximately one mile of ice and snow to ensure the rest of the service track was clear of any hazards that could impact our ability to run Monday morning rush hour service.


Metrolinx in the marketplace

Devon Khusial, Manger, Marketing Research & Jamie Robinson, Director, Communications and Community Relations, Rapid Transit presented the results of our annual market research study that looks at how residents of the GTHA perceive our projects and services. This helps us develop key performance indicators that are then used to guide future strategies.

Overall, familiarity with our mandate has increased and support for our long term regional plan and for fare integration remain strong.

See the full presentation.


Public engagement

Jamie Robinson, Kelly Hagan – Director, GO Expansion Communications and Community Relations, and Rajesh Khetarpal – Director, Stakeholder Relations, provided an update to the Board on how we engage with GTHA residents via community consultation and engagement throughout our projects’ planning, design, construction and operation phases. The team outlined our community engagement project cycle, and the tools and tactics we use for engagement.

See the full presentation.


PRESTO mobile

Annalise Czerny – Executive Vice President, PRESTO (Acting) and Thom Hounsell – Manager, Product Management, PRESTO detailed a PRESTO mobile concept, and how it will make it easier for customers to get around, including being able to manage and load PRESTO cards, tap your phone to pay and plan trips and receive offers. Stay tuned for more on this.

See the full presentation.


Fare Integration

Leslie Woo, Chief Planning and Development Officer provided an update on our fare integration work and how we are working with municipal transit agencies to address regional fare policy harmonization and develop an approach to improve consistency.

See the full update.