With its wide variety of windows, the windows in Toronto’s subway stations are one of the most distinctive aspects of the city.
But in the past few months, there have been some big price increases for tinting windows in the subway stations.
And it’s not just the windows that are getting pricier.
Toronto’s TTC and GO transit systems are seeing big price hikes in the window treatments department.
“I’m really concerned about the cost of the glass.
I know that it is cheaper for us to make it in China, but when it comes to the price of the window, it is just not the same as it is in Canada,” said TTC Chair Karen Stintz.
“So the concern is we’re seeing a significant increase in the cost and the frequency of the increases.”
In a letter to TTC staff, TTC Chair Stintzy said it’s time to re-evaluate window tintings because “the current policies are not being followed by TTC.”
While there are several ways to achieve a high quality glass surface, the TTC has been taking the most direct approach, which is to purchase the same product as other parts of the TTC, she said.
“TTC has the lowest cost of glass in the TTC and we have the lowest glass prices,” Stintzi said.
A number of other transit agencies have also seen a significant spike in their glass prices.
The TTC has experienced a similar trend recently with the prices of its glass for the TTC subway station.
The average price for the glass for all TTC subway stations has gone up by about 15 per cent since 2014, said TTC chair Karen Stinnesz.
As a result, the number of subway stations in the Toronto area with tinting has doubled.
In the Toronto subway, the most expensive area to install window tint is the subway platform at Union Station, said Councillor Josh Matlow.
The platform has about 3,000 windows and the TTC spends about $2,000 a year for the same glass.
In response, Matlow said the TTC is making a concerted effort to increase the quality of its window tint and has a policy of purchasing the same type of glass at the same price as other TTC buildings.
“If you look at our window treatments, they are going up by 15 per the last 10 years.
We’ve been in this position for 10 years now,” Matlow told the Toronto Star.
“The TTC needs to take a real hard look at its windows and really consider the cost.”
Matlow is calling for the Toronto Transit Commission to look at ways to improve the quality and price of its windows.
The price of a standard TTC window treatment will increase by about 20 per cent next year, he said.
TTC Chair Kiki Blue said the agency has been making an effort to upgrade its windows, but the price hike has not been a one-time event.
“We have a process in place where we look at the different types of glass that we purchase, we also look at what types of windows we do have that are at the higher end of our spectrum and we try to look for a way to make sure that we’re providing quality products,” she said, adding that it’s hard to compare prices of different glass types because of the different manufacturing processes.
Toronto Transit Commissioner Brad Ross said that the TTC’s window tint policy has been consistent for the past several years, and that the price increases are just the first of many.
“What we’re also seeing with glass is a trend of increasing the cost over time, so we need to be looking at our glass in a much more sustainable way,” Ross said.
Ross said he believes the TTC can continue to make the glass as good as it was in the 1980s and 1990s.
“In the past, the glass was really, really good, but we can make it better,” Ross added.
“It’s not going to last forever, but I think we’ve got a lot of good things we’ve done.”