By Chi Nguyen
The results of TTC research concerning the establishment of a universal metropass are in and students must now decide if they want to buy into the deal.
The TTC findings, to be released to the public today at 1 p.m. during a commision meeting in City Hall, have been in the hands of the RSU and other student union representatives since the beginning of January. All student unions were asked to keep the numbers to themselves until today.
The proposal is to offer the universal metropass to all undergraduate students at Ryerson for a reduced price of $59 a month, which will be included in students’ incidental fee portion of their tuition.
All students would be charged this additional fee, which adds up to roughly $500 dollars a year, whether they use the TTC or not. City Coun. Joe Mihevc says this is a win-win situation for many different groups.
“For students, it’s cheaper fares and more usage. For the city, it means less cars and a cleaner environment. And for the TTC, it’s more ridership,” Mihevc said. “Students who do not think they will use the pass now will find themselves using it more and more, and making the money back in spades,” Mihevc said.
“It’ll become their passport to experiencing the city.” The TTC needs the approval of three of eight schools for the venture to be profitable for it. Other schools taking part in the study include the University of Toronto’s three campuses, York University, George Brown College and Centennial College.
“Only the schools who agree will be included in this,” said TTC Market Research Director Michael Anders.
“We’re not forcing anybody to do anything they don’t want to do.” Nora Loreto, RSU vice-president education, said that the student union is taking a hard look at the statistics collected by the TTC to see if the deal benefits Ryerson students.
“Statistics taken from an outside source may not portray the interests of the students accurately,” she said.
Ryerson will then hold a survey before even considering going to referendum on this issue.
Governance issues and signed agreements with student groups ensure that no hasty decisions will be made on this matter, said Ryerson President Sheldon Levy.
If approved in a student referendum, a potential deal would also need approval from the university’s Board of Governors.