Calgary’s Free Fare Zone will now be called the TD Free Fare Zone.
The five-year deal was announced Friday morning at the Power Reception Hall at historic city hall.
Calgary’s Free Fare Zone is the stretch of the downtown LRT line that goes along 7 Avenue. It’s currently free to ride the Red and Blue lines from 3 Street SE to 11 Street SW. If you travel outside that area, you must purchase a ticket.
In March 2021, the City of Calgary decided to test the waters on finding a naming rights partner.
“We’re pleased to strike this partnership to create the TD Free Fare Zone,” said Mayor Jyoti Gondek.
“Calgary is leading Canada as this is the first time a transit agency has worked with a sponsor to rename a section of its network. We are finding innovative revenue sources to support our operational costs while we look to expand transit service and improve reliability.”
The deal will bring in new, non-fare revenue for Calgary Transit. Other sources of non-fare revenue include reserved parking fees and advertising revenues, the city said. Terms of the five-year deal were not disclosed.
And although the mayor said that the dollar figure paid by TD for the advertising rights could not be revealed, she called it a deal that was very precious to the city.
Mayor Gondek said that during the budget consultations, Calgarians that rely on transit asked for service to be a top priority for the city, and for rates to be frozen.
“Today’s announcement is a big step forward for downtown and it is a big step forward for our city, as well as everyone who uses transit,” she said.
“This sponsorship agreement will provide TD a prominent footprint in the Downtown Core, while bringing in additional non-fare revenue for Calgary Transit.”
Robert Ghazal, Senior Vice President, Branch Banking, Prairie Region, said that the mayor’s message at a Calgary Economic Development meeting earlier in the month about transit resonated with him, and with TD.
“Clearly, from our perspective, we believe in the City of Calgary, and we believe that this investment is going to hopefully accelerate—or at least contribute to—the momentum that’s being added that we’ve seen so far that, we wholeheartedly agree with, in converting office space into residential space, contributing to the arts in the City, as well as the proposed redevelopment of Steven Avenue.”
“Our key corporate citizenship platform is called a ready commitment, and one of the key tenants within the ready commitment is about connecting communities.”
The TD Bank option came through the Request for Information in 2021.
Calgary Transit riders will notice TD’s branding on the platforms starting in the new year.