Opera houses and public transit

The Four Seasons Centre. The sharp eyed will be able to see the TTC logo by the entrance.

A few years ago I stopped being a car owner for the first time in twenty five years or so. I walk, I cycle, I use public transit and, for the rare occasions I need one, I’m a member of a carshare service. I figured out the other day that I can probably walk to 90% of the opera performances in Toronto without undue difficulty. If I don’t want to walk my main opera destination has a subway station under the building (and as a result has some ingenious engineering to isolate it acoustically from the subway line and the street outside which is the main route to three teaching hospital ERs and sometimes seems like siren central). It wasn’t much different when I lived in London; Covent Garden and the Coliseum are a hop, skip and a jump from the Tube. Likewise, as I recall, the opera houses in New York, Chicago, San Francisco and Seattle are all easily transit accessible and doesn’t Paris have a Metro station called Opéra?  So, I was taken aback when I checked out the Michigan Opera Theater schedule to find directions from umpteen freeways but no mention of how the carless might access their house.  I shouldn’t have been surprised.  I’ve worked often enough in Detroit and the associated sprawl to know what it’s like but it does seem an odd set of priorities for a city; an opera house but no transit.

6 thoughts on “Opera houses and public transit

  1. Paris does have a metro station called Opéra, but that’s for the Palais-Garnier – those actually wanting to SEE opera would be better off taking the metro to Bastille 😉

    • Except it isn’t really. There isn’t much automotive related activity in Detroit per se. It’s all in the exurbs. Ford is in Dearborne. VW is in Birmingham (AFAIR). There’s a whole bunch of stuff around Detroit but apart from some GM HQ activity next to nothing in Detroit proper. Mind you, I don’t suppose more than 1% of Michigan Opera Theater’s audience actually live in Detroit either.

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