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Poll: How would you rate ION service so far?
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5 Stars
28.17%
20 28.17%
4 Stars
46.48%
33 46.48%
3 Stars
5.63%
4 5.63%
2 Stars
1.41%
1 1.41%
1 Star
0%
0 0%
0 Stars
1.41%
1 1.41%
I haven't ridden it yet
16.90%
12 16.90%
Total 71 vote(s) 100%
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How would you rate ION service so far?
#1
How would you rate ION service so far?
ION has been up and running for almost a week.  How would you rate it so far?  Feel free to leave thoughts and comments or reviews below too!
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#2
Overall take, a good introduction of the new service with a few teething problems.

My minor quibbles
- schedule adherence hasn't been great
- nonfunctional departure information was annoying - I've taken my "tourist" trips already, and for later trips I knew the Ion was going to be late I would have just taken a #7 bus instead
- trains have been too busy, I've only been able to get a seat for part of one trip (of six so far) - but this is a good problem to have!
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#3
I rode it on Monday afternoon from bottom to top and back again. I was very impressed with the smooth ride, the quietness and overall experience. If I was to make a negative complaint, it would be that we didn't spend more money on making the stations more enclosed and more robust.  Positive side-. Despite the issues, I am so glad we went with bombardier and bought a Canadian product. Not like Ottawa who doesn't even know when their trains will be running. Also on a positive, my two girls 10 and 8 love it and will likely be transit oriented as the grow up. Can't say enough how please I am and fortunate that we had leadership with a vision and the fortitude to see this project through to fruition past all the nay sayers.
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#4
I gave it three stars. The ride itself is great, but the trains are not hitting their schedule consistently and are heavily overloaded. It's a bit unfair to blame ION for passengers who don't move away from the doors but I've been on two trips where I've had to push past people when I get on and off because they just stay clustered at the door if they can't find a seat. This is irritating to me on busses, too - despite the open space around the doors those are the worst spots to stand if one needs to.

I'm a bit disappointed in the changes to my commute (I was extremely privileged in the previous system, it was almost door-to-door home to office) which impacts my perception of things as well but not so heavily impacted that I'll change my habits.

I am very happy that ION is here, and am extremely optimistic for a few months from now when most of the hiccups are smoothed and there are more experienced passengers, and the intersections with other routes are optimized a bit (like the way they added a stop for the 204 at Queen Station last night). But as of today, it hasn't achieved that potential (which is very understandable).
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#5
Overall pretty good. I agree about the schedule adherence — I’ve seen more bunching than there should be.

The transit priority doesn’t give as much priority as it should. I have several times observed other movements being given priority over Ion movements. At a minimum Ion should always get the next movement. Related to this, pedestrians and sometimes cars get a red in many circumstances when they could go; and in some locations no distinction is drawn between the two Ion tracks. For example, at King and Allen the “No Right Turn — Train” sign for Allen eastbound onto King southbound comes on even when there is no train on the southbound track, only the northbound track.

Also crossing arms are still coming down too early in some cases. Specifically, crossings that are after a stop get activated before the Ion even stops. With the possible exception of ones immediately after the stop which I’m willing to accept as an externally-imposed requirement due to rail-related safety paranoia, crossings after the station absolutely should not trigger until the doors are closing.

Finally, speeds in many areas are slower than they could be.

Overall, still a great service and one that within less than a year the city will be unimaginable without.
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#6
My downsides are the schedule adherence (though they had the realtime arrival info posted this morning when I bicycled past) and the underlying design flaws of the system (pedestrian movements aren't well guided by the station designs and locations).

It was smooth. It was quiet. And at 0810 there weren't many people on my stretch. I expect most problems will be sorted as they reach the top of the priority list and as the riding populace gains familiarity with the system.

And then the _true_ complaining can begin : )
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#7
I gave it four stars based on what I've seen to date. I will certainly be revising that once they start collecting fares, and further refining the service. By September I imagine things will be in a better state.
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
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#8
I haven't really followed the schedule since it comes every 10 minutes most of the time, I don't have to care. The busyness is a good sign, and while annoying, I'm not going to hold it against the service. The ride is incredibly smooth and really fantastic. I think they've managed the opening of the train pretty well, there have been a lot of on the ground staff.

I'm not going to hold station design and pedestrian access issues, nor excessive and unnecessary speed restrictions against the service.

I give ION 5 stars.
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#9
I think a key thing they'll have to work on is how to deal with disruptions to service. For example, right now it sounds like there is some sort of delay at UW station. How quickly are they able to ramp up a substitute bus service? Are they able to run service on the rest of the line by short-turning at an earlier station? This is a key part of the network and they can't afford to have people wait while they troubleshoot problems.
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#10
I'm not going to be using it with much regularity, and don't live in KW anymore so take this as the view of... I guess a tourist with some local familiarity.

The line is great, the service speed could improve and the staff really annoyed me. I rode on Saturday and was repeatedly stopped from boarding by staff declaring trains full the moment they ran out of seating. Similarly, despite a lack of lines later in the day someone had decided that passengers weren't to be permitted to wait on any of the busier platforms, demanding single file lines outside stations instead.

Opening weekend problems I suspect, but seriously? The experience was of being on some sort of tourist attraction. Kind of nervous that this is symptomatic of management not really seeing Ion as being any kind of essential service.
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#11
(06-26-2019, 01:27 PM)jamincan Wrote: I think a key thing they'll have to work on is how to deal with disruptions to service. For example, right now it sounds like there is some sort of delay at UW station. How quickly are they able to ramp up a substitute bus service? Are they able to run service on the rest of the line by short-turning at an earlier station? This is a key part of the network and they can't afford to have people wait while they troubleshoot problems.

I was stuck at Northfield headed to Conestoga.  They kicked us all off of the train because the switches at Conestoga weren't working well and they couldn't turn the trains around.  I think service was stopped for about 20 minutes.  People mostly took it in stride except for the man who was yelling about his taxes and how useless the system is.
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#12
In my opinion, the true test will be next tuesday when it is no longer free

As of right now, it cuts my commute significantly (I get home 20 mins earlier can can leave for work 20 mins later) and I no longer have a transfer, but trains are overcrowded even outside of rush hour.

Door operation is inconsistant. Some are set to auto, some are manual. Just pick one already.

As said, people block the door while there is space in the middle modules.

Delays have been minor for me (2-3 mins)

I just can't give an honest impression on how it will work for me until mid next week.
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#13
Bureaucromancer Wrote:I'm not going to be using it with much regularity, and don't live in KW anymore so take this as the view of... I guess a tourist with some local familiarity.

The line is great, the service speed could improve and the staff really annoyed me.  I rode on Saturday and was repeatedly stopped from boarding by staff declaring trains full the moment they ran out of seating.  Similarly, despite a lack of lines later in the day someone had decided that passengers weren't to be permitted to wait on any of the busier platforms, demanding single file lines outside stations instead.

Opening weekend problems I suspect, but seriously?  The experience was of being on some sort of tourist attraction. Kind of nervous that this is symptomatic of management not really seeing Ion as being any kind of essential service.

To be blunt, that IS what the service was on Saturday - a demonstration that was not providing actual service, thus rider control measures went in.
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
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#14
3/5 so far, as I have only used it a few times when in the city. It's annoyingly slow in certain areas - turning corners at what feels like a walking pace. Also, the EasyGO fare card seems to be having issues with online payments, too. Twice now, debit payments have been broken (I know you can just go to a machine if you need, but a lot of people will not want to go do that).

Otherwise, it's so far so good. You can't really complain about much besides the trams being a bit full, but that's obviously just from having a promotional free week. Once you have to pay, I suspect ridership to taper off a bit, although overall transit use will probably increase as people can now get somewhere with a decent tram network in addition to buses. I do hope they can increase the speed in time. And also keep the vehicles clean...sometimes the buses are full of trash, like empty coffee cups rolling around and random crumbs on the seats.
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#15
(06-26-2019, 02:48 PM)bgb_ca Wrote: Door operation is inconsistant. Some are set to auto, some are manual. Just pick one already.

It’s actually a question of which button the operator presses — “enable” or “open”.
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