April Fools II

This was my April Fools’ joke for this year. I posted it on the Transit Toronto mailing list, and I’m really pleased to say that at least one person fell for it.

From the Toronto Star (http://www.thestar.com/)

New GTA-wide Transit Colour Scheme Unveiled

Apr. 1, 2003. 09:58 AM


TORONTO: Ontario Transportation Minister Frank Klees and representatives from many of the public transit agencies operating in the GTA were on hand to welcome the unveiling of a new, GTA-wide transit colour scheme to be applied in advance of a new GTA transit authority, expected to be in place later this year.

“We’ve been talking about coordinating transit across the region for months,” said Minister Klees. “Now it’s time to act! And what better way to get the ball rolling than by imposing a new colour scheme on the buses, streetcars and subways in the Greater Toronto Area?”

Attendees clapped and whistled when the drop cloth was pulled from a TTC GM New Look bus and an ALRV streetcar, gleaming with fresh paint.

“I wanted to convey the patchwork of systems throughout this great region,” said winning artist Avril Fowler. “And I felt the best way of doing that was taking the colour schemes of every system and putting them all together. You can see the TTC’s colours there, and Pickering’s colours are there and… oh, look, there’s Mississauga!”

When asked about all of the big flowers painted throughout the colour scheme, the artist replied, “Well, when I put all of those colours together throughout the bus… well, adding flowers just seemed appropriate. After all, isn’t public transit supposed to be the environmentally friendly way to go?”

“It certainly stands out,” said Minister Klees, addressing reporters later. “And that’s a bonus. It increases the visibility of public transit throughout the region. You can definitely see these buses coming!”

Mississauga mayor Hazel McCallion took one look at the bus and commented, “Augh! I’m blind!”

Toronto mayor Mel Lastman was typically effusive. “I think it’s great! Just great! I hope that Woodstock, Ontario gets incorporated into the regional transit network soon, because just looking at this colour scheme makes me think of Woodstock!”

The reaction to the new paint scheme was generally positive. However, there were some complaints. Interim mayor of Vaughan, Michael DiBiase, had this to say: “why are the York Region Transit Authority’s colours placed beside those of the TTC? I won’t stand for it! Vaughan is the city above Toronto, so it stands to reason that our colours should be above the TTC’s!” When it was pointed out that this would put his colours on the roof, and out of sight of most passengers, the mayor’s comment was “shut up!”

Minister Klees was optimistic that the new colour scheme could be applied to all transit vehicles operating within the GTA by the end of the year, even the subways. “We’re going to pour millions into this. So don’t say that the province doesn’t have money for important transit projects!”

Maintenance workers were enthusiastic about the announcement. “I am enthusiastic,” said shop-worker G. Labahn. “Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to invest all my money in a painter’s tape factory.”

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