Though the Ontario Municipal Board approved construction of a new Scarborough transit line in September 1977, progress crawled. By 1981, the choice was down to two systems: an LRT line using the recently introduced CLRV streetcars (an option a TTC staff report favoured), or the Intermediate Capacity Transit System (ICTS) developed by the province.
Scarborough Mayor Gus Harris thought there was “something screwy” when the TTC decided in favour of ICTS in June 1981. He suspected heavy provincial interference. Despite Harris’s reservations, Scarborough council voted 11-5 in favour of ICTS after a six-hour debate. Following a contest, the new line was dubbed the RT. Attempts to nickname it “Artie” failed to catch on.
Among those who foresaw problems with “Artie” was transit advocate Steve Munro. “A decision to proceed with the Scarborough ICTS places Toronto on a dangerous path,” he wrote in a September 1982 Globe and Mail article. “Once the network is begun, the impetus to continue will be great, even at high cost. The political will not to be proved wrong cannot be ignored.”