Toronto transit has never been this cute! In the current world, with most of us stuck inside, our need to find positives out of the negatives is more important than ever. For those who rely on GTA transit to get to work, shopping, or whatever limited social options are available, the past few months have been pretty tough. But one TTC diorama created by a self-professed "transit enthusiast" has put a positive spin on things.
Before the world was turned upside down, Reiner Guinasao worked as a contract employee for the TTC, handing out maps and answering questions.
"The public knows us as the 'bearer of bad news' or 'no subway service people'," Guinasao told Narcity.
However, with the COVID-19 pandemic hitting the TTC hard, Guinasao decided to stay off work after a kidney transplant surgery last year.
With time on his hands, he began working on the diorama. The finished set includes realistic TTC subway trains, streetcars, buses, as well as GO Transit trains.
He explained it originally consisted of just two subway cars and a GO Train but felt it was "lacking something."
He began to add other models and even figurines from a train set, incorporating the human element to the diorama. After all his efforts, he decided to share the final product on his Twitter account.
Hope all is well! Been missing public transit sooo much so I made a miniature diorama starring @TTChelps and… https://t.co/9pXuwu0Exz— Reiner Guinasao (@Reiner Guinasao)1588900507.0
He decided to tag a few TTC-related accounts, as he always does with his projects.
But he admits he wasn't prepared for the reaction, as his original tweet now has over 250 likes and around 50 retweets.
Not just that, though, but his work has since been shared all over the internet.
@reinerguinasao @TTChelps @GOtransit @TTCsue @ttcdesign @TTCsly @bradrossTO @TTCStuart Pretty incredible. We miss y… https://t.co/vQIpayrJ7Y— Anne Marie Aikins (@Anne Marie Aikins)1588901246.0
@reinerguinasao Awesome work, Reiner! All the best ^DM— TTC Customer Service (@TTC Customer Service)1588901047.0
"It's always great to see a like or comment from them every time. This time it was a bit different. Never would've thought that this tweet would go viral," he said.
The diorama earned Reiner praise, with many noting his attention to detail.
He even got a shoutout from the TTC Customer Service account and Metrolinx spokesperson Anne Marie Aikins.
The TTC has always had an impact on Guinasao's life, as he grew up near Sherbourne Station.
"I was the kid who always wanted to sit in the front and pretend to drive the train," he told Narcity.
It all stemmed from one day, while waiting for the subway with his aunt at Victoria Park Station, when he discovered his godfather was actually driving the train.
His godfather called out over the PA system and invited him to come up to the cab.
"Everybody started clapping as I walked towards the front of the train. I was able to take a look at the controls and press the horn button a few times. Since then, it has always been my dream to be a subway operator for the TTC," he said.
While we all might have had some choice words for the TTC in the past, efforts like Guinasao's can't help but put a smile on our face.
Just don't forget to mind the (very small) gap!