Canadian Cab Direct Lines

Overview

Our direct lines locations are listed below with their status. Drop by often to check on the status of the ones that you would use. If you are interested in what happened to our direct lines over the last while, check out the who, what, where, when and why below the list.

LocationAddressInside LocationStatus
Norfolk Street Medical85 Norfolk StreetNear exit door inside

Pending

Surrey Street Medical21 Surrey StreetNear exit door inside

Operational

General Hospital - Emergency115 Delhi StreetInside main entrance at back, in hallway to the right of the switchboard

Pending

General Hospital - Delhi Entrance115 Delhi StreetDelhi Entrance near Tim Hortons Kiosk

Pending

General Hospital - Main Entrance115 Delhi StreetNear Emergency Entrance inside

Pending

Homewood Health Centre150 Delhi StreetNear exit door inside

Pending

FreshCo330 Speedvale Avenue WestNear exit door inside

Pending

Food Basics Eramosa380 Eramosa RoadNear exit door inside

Operational

Zehrs Eramosa297 Eramosa RoadAt east exit door inside

Pending

Walmart - Stone Road160 Kortwright Road WestTo be announced

Pending

Metro500 Edinburgh Road SouthNear exit door inside

Pending

Domenics No Frills35 Harvard Road (Campus Estates Plaza)Near exit door inside

Pending

Dawson Medical 183 Dawson RoadNear exit door inside

Pending

Dawson Medical 289 Dawson RoadNear exit door inside

Pending

Zehrs - Westhills1045 Paisley RoadNear north exit door inside

Pending

Food Basics 222 Silvercreek Parkway NorthBehind Cashiers - Slightly to the left

Operational

Jones' No Frills191 Silvercreek Parkway North (Willow West MallNear exit door inside

Pending

Walmart - Woodlawn Road15 Woodlawn Road WestAs you leave through the first set of doors at east door, on the wall to your right.

Pending

What happened to the direct lines?

Canadian Cab’s direct lines when down primarily because we switched service providers.

Why could not the change be instant?

As with any renovation, it is hard to predict what will happen during an upgrade. The biggest issue was leapfrogging over decades of innovation to bring our service up to date.

Why upgrade?

There were three main reasons for upgrading. One was that Canadian Cab is now 74 years old and the technology used for the original direct lines was not much younger. The second was financial and the third was that our service provider was unable or unwilling to work with us to fix the issues with the old system and address reason number two.

What were the technical issues?

The technology was based on intercom circuits. When you picked up a direct line, the call was routed through a series of circuit segments until it eventually reached our office. This was all good, but over the course of decades, information on how the system was set up had become desperately fragmented. So much so, that even the provider could not definitively track down which circuit belonged to what location and vice versa. Getting a line fixed when it went down was an exercise in frustration. To the point that one of our lines was down for three years. Finally, the old system was not compatible with the communications upgrades that were planned for our office.

What were the financial issues?

Cost of operations is a huge motivator for any business owner, and we are no different. Paying two to three times what we should have been for our phone bill had to be addressed. While the savings will not be immediately beneficial to our customers, it will help us hang in longer before we will need to go for a price increase.

Every taxi at Canadian Cab is owned by an individual and we all share the cost of operating the company. Like the restaurant industry, our profit margins are exceedingly small. With the hits our industry has experienced over recent years, and the Covid-19 situation, we are in the position of not being able to afford to keep our prices the same, but nor can we afford to raise them. An interesting and difficult dilemma to be sure.

What other factors affected the delay?

The original plan was to port over our main lines, get the system up and running and then migrate the direct lines. However, our original provider cancelled all our lines at the same time, including the direct lines, which left us scrambling. After some discussion, we realized that we had no idea what impact the direct lines had on our business. This is because we have always had them, so they were just a given with no case study. With most people having cell phone these days, the question of, “Do we really need them?”, came up. The problem we had was no way to collect data on them to find out. So, we decided to leave them down for a month to find out. We sincerely apologize for any inconvenience this caused, but at least, thanks to public response we found out and set about getting them reinstated.

Why is it taking so long for the lines to be re-installed?

I mentioned earlier about leapfrogging over decades of tech. Our new provider did not have anything compatible with the original set up. They certainly tried everything they could to come up with a solution for us, but it was not forthcoming. What we needed was something that they had never tried to set up before. But, after much collaboration involving many people, and bandying a myriad of ideas back and forth, we finally found a way. All we had to do now was see if it worked!

Surrey Medical was the guinea pig. It was the first and showed us it not only worked, but that we could get on with the rest of the locations. Then, along came Covid-19. Some locations are relucted to let us in with the techs. This is understandable, but we will persevere.

Who helped bring it together?

This is my opportunity to thank and plug the people and companies that helped us come out of the 1950’s, in alphabetical order:

Canadian Cab Owners for:

While there was more than one occasion where people wanted to string me up, they resisted the urge.

My fellow Board of Directors members for backing me through the process.

To all who encouraged me.

And finally, the single individual who stepped up to the plate to take on a large part of the final process. You know who you are!

City-Com Communications of Guelph for:

Their help and patience in bringing a new phone system into our office.

The initial contact with them helped me get up to speed on new tech and what was available.

Their willingness to confer and coordinate with our new provider to bring it all together.

The consultation and willingness to answer my questions and generally help my head stop spinning.

Hall Communication of Guelph for:

Always being there to provide equipment we need.

Being a supplier of the new phones we needed for the direct lines.

MRC Communications of Kitchener for:

Working with me through these trying times to keep our main radio up and running as much as possible.

Being patient and informative.

Upgrading our radio communications.

Rogers Communications for:

The initial contact from them to show me that there were options other than the ones I was exploring.

Their help and collaboration with finding a way to bring things together.

The time they spent looking for solutions.

Their willingness to confer and coordinate with our phone provider to bring it all together.

Their availability to answer my questions and work with me toward the final outcome.

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