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Ontario Construction News staff writer
The Ontario government and the City of Toronto have signed a revised “Ontario-Toronto Agreement in Principle,” endorsing the SmartTrack stations program, and moving one step closer to construction. The new plan includes five stations along existing GO rail corridors.
Metrolinx is now starting the procurement process for the Finch-Kennedy, St. Clair-Old Weston, King-Liberty and Bloor-Lansdowne SmartTrack stations. Each station will be managed as an individual procurement and contract, and requests for proposals are expected to be released this August and awarded in Fall 2021.
“In the past, our transit maps have not kept pace with the growth in the Greater Toronto Area — that’s why this agreement with the City of Toronto and our federal partners is a key step that will offer more route options and reduce travel times,” said Stan Cho, associate kinister of transportation.
“When these five stations open, it will be good news for everyone: workers will spend less time communing; parents will be home quicker to their families; Jays fans will make it to the Rogers Centre easier.”
The new SmartTrack stations will be built as Ontario undertakes the largest transit expansion in Canadian history, including the delivery of Ontario’s four priority subway projects, GO Rail Expansion and new LRT service along Eglinton Avenue and Finch West. These transformative infrastructure projects are providing greater choice of reliable and convenient route options to shorten commutes and increase quality of life for local and visiting transit riders.
“The SmartTrack Stations program will transform existing rail infrastructure in our city from a regional commuter service into an urban rapid transit network that will greatly benefit our residents and give them more transit options,” said Mayor John Tory. “By working with the other levels of government we can ensure that we are moving quickly to expand our transit system, relieve congestion, increase transit accessibility and create new economic and employment opportunities for residents.”
Once GO Rail Expansion is implemented, the SmartTrack Stations Program will benefit transit riders by offering two-way, all-day service with faster and quieter trains arriving every 15 minutes.
The SmartTrack Stations Program leverages about 40-kilometres of existing GO rail corridors running through the city, with connections to four existing or planned subway lines and Light Rail Transit services, as well as nine local transit services from feeder bus and streetcar routes.
The stations will provide easy access to more than 52 major regional destinations located within 800 metres of transit stations, including major shopping centres, community facilities and educational institutions.
“Infrastructure Ontario is pleased to be a part of building the new transit infrastructure in the City of Toronto to help bring much-needed relief to commuters and families in the region. The development of the East Harbour transit-oriented community is an exciting opportunity to deliver a complete vibrant mixed-use community with a diverse and sustainable range of spaces and services, and we look forward to the path ahead,” said Michael Lindsay President and CEO of Infrastructure Ontario.