Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Please click on each question below to read the corresponding answer
The Eglinton West LRT Project is important because it will close the gap in our existing transit network, continuing LRT services beyond Mt. Dennis and providing a connection to Pearson International Airport, provide added transportation accessibility and give people the choice on how they move around the City. This means more travel connections for local and area residents, better access to area businesses and jobs, and shorter transit commutes.
The LRT will help:
- Serve population and employment growth
- Provide sustainable transportation choices that meet the needs of continued growth
- Meet our city-building objectives:
- Shape our evolving neighbourhoods
- Create connected spaces and invest in social and physical services and infrastructure, which are fundamental to the city’s quality of life
- Develop an attractive and safe city that evokes pride, passion and a sense of belonging
Once completed a transit rider will be able to travel to:
- Mount Dennis in the east, where they could continue to midtown Toronto on the Eglinton Crosstown (Line 5), or transfer to the SmartTrack Station to access downtown and eastern parts of Toronto.
- To the Mississauga Corporate Centre at Renforth Station (Commerce Boulevard) in the west, where they could continue to the Mississauga City Centre on the recently completed Mississauga Transitway.
- The future Regional Transit Centre (RTC) – at Pearson International Airport.
Transit riders will also be able to make quick connections to several busy north-south express and local bus routes.
Light Rail Transit (LRT) provides reliable, quiet, energy efficient, and accessible public transit that meets the demand projections for the corridor.
Fully grade-separated rapid transit (subway or elevated rail) comes with substantially higher cost (from two to three times as costly as a surface LRT) and greater short and long term impacts on the community.
Full grade separation was last considered for the corridor in the 2016 Initial Business Case (IBC). The IBC concluded that a fully grade-separated option:
- Has negative community impacts;
- Has significantly higher costs than at-grade option; and
- Does not meet local access objectives, requiring continuation of the existing local bus services.
In 2016, the Enhanced Eglinton West Rapid Transit IBC concluded that targeted grade separation options at select locations may provide benefits. As a result, in 2017, six grade separation locations were reviewed at Jane Street, Scarlett Avenue, Royal York Road, Islington Avenue, Kipling Avenue, and Martin Grove Road. Key inputs to this study included travel-time benefits, cost estimates of new infrastructure, and community benefits. Find out more about key inputs.
Results of the study concluded that targeted grade separations at these locations did not show significant benefits in comparison to costs and so were not recommended for further consideration.
As directed by Council in late 2017, additional work is currently underway to identify any other potential grade separated/tunneled options for further analysis.
In December 2017, Council approved ten stop locations for the Eglinton West LRT Toronto Segment at Jane, Scarlett, Mulham, Royal York, Islington, Wincott/Bemersyde, Kipling, Widdicombe Hill/Lloyd Manor, Martin Grove, and Renforth Station (Commerce Boulevard).The stops between Renforth Station (Commerce Boulevard) and the airport have not yet been finalized.
Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) requires unfavourable transfer locations, and offers nominal ridership attraction. Key considerations were how Eglinton West transit would connect to the Mississauga BRT and whether the transfer between LRT and BRT should occur at Renforth Gateway in the west, or at Jane/Mt. Dennis in the east.
In contrast Light Rapid Transit (LRT) offers premium service with a significantly better passenger experience, the ability to attract economic growth, more reliable and higher capacity ridership than BRT, and more favourable transfer locations.
- Left – LRT serves key destinations, Renforth and the Airport
- Right – Many customers would have to transfer at Mt. Dennis to reach destinations
There is enough space to implement the LRT that was approved in 2010. Any changes to the design, including potential grade separations or additional turning lanes for traffic, may mean that additional land needs to be acquired.
The LRT that was approved in 2010 would run along the centre of Eglinton Avenue, at the surface. Two lanes of traffic – the same as exist today – would be maintained in each direction. Details like the configuration of turning lanes have not yet been determined. LRT offers a premium passenger experience with improved comfort, reliability and attractive design. LRT vehicles will offer a much higher capacity than buses, will operate more quickly due to less frequent stopping and have a dedicated right-of-way with signal priority at intersections. LRT platforms will:
- Be accessible to mobility devices at every stop
- Be illuminated at night Include ticket vending machines
LRT will have minimal impact on traffic, since it would travel on its own right-of-way and will not reduce the number of traffic lanes. Impacts are expected to be restricted to the time it would take for cars and trucks to turn left.
Left-turn operations are still being reviewed for the at-grade LRT option but would most likely operate much as they do today. That would mean that at an intersection with a traffic signal, there would be a dedicated left-turn signal (permissive left) that would control left-turn movements as well as a separate traffic signal to allow for LRT vehicles to travel through the intersection.
Overall, left-turn signals and signal timing would be optimized to allow for the best movement of automobiles as well as transit vehicles along the corridor.
LRT produces about the same or less noise as general suburban traffic, about 60 dBa and produces near-zero emissions meaning low impact on air quality and making it the right choice for the environment.
The funds for preliminary design and engineering for the Toronto portion of this Project were approved by Toronto City Council in November 2016. City Council has also agreed in principle to fund the capital construction costs for the Toronto portion of this Project, subject to several conditions including confirmation of funding for the airport connection from other parties. (Please see the Summary Terms Sheet Page 5, Section 3 for more details and Report EX19.1 from the Transit Network Plan Update and Financial Strategy)
Under the Public Transit Infrastructure Fund (PTIF) – Phase 1, the Government of Canada is investing up to $20.4 million for planning and design work on SmartTrack. The City of Toronto is matching this funding contribution.
As service at Pearson International Airport grows – by 2040, 110 million passengers are expected to be transported each year – the Eglinton West LRT will provide much-needed access for employees and travellers alike.
The Stakeholder Advisory Group (SAG) is a formalized that was developed at the outset of the Project as a way to provide the Project Team with advice and input from key stakeholder groups and organizations. The SAG is comprised of approximately 50 organizations within the study area, local area residents groups and groups related to transit and transportation in Toronto. View the SAG members.
In December 2017, Council directed City staff, in consultation with local councillors, to form a group of local stakeholders to gather additional community input and engage nearby residents and businesses on the LRT’s technical planning, design work, and evaluation process. This group includes 14 community members and has met over the spring/early summer 2018 to discuss various aspects of project planning in detail. Their input has been included in current work to identify and evaluate other grade separated/tunnelled LRT options.
Learn more about the CWG.