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Thread: Downtown Subway (DRL) (Metrolinx/TTC, Proposed)

  1. #916

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    Since the inception of Metrolinx, it seems as though every city in the GTA got their fair share of transit funds to spend on whatever transit projects they wanted to prioritize. Toronto wanted Transit City, and it got funding for exactly that. Clearly subways are not at all too expensive, because York Region asked for 12km of subway (half of which is located in Toronto, purely by default), and got its wish. Had Toronto submitted a $10B subway plan instead, recent history suggests that Toronto would have gotten funding.

    With that said, I do disagree with Metrolinx's planning tactics. By coincidence, all of the short term projects proposed by Metrolinx exactly match the short term wish list that every municipality submitted, regardless of that project's merit. By coincidence, Metrolinx's board of directors consists mostly of local politicians. It's as though no one sat down to provide an independent opinion on which projects should really be prioritized, and where they should go. Any transportation engineer will tell you that Transit City is a waste of time, and that what Toronto needs is more subways.

    Edit: Upon further research, the current board of directors at Metrolinx actually consists of economists, lawyers, hotel managers, airport operators, and bankers. Oddly missing are engineers and planners (except for Paul Bedford).
    Last edited by Chuck; 2009-Jul-23 at 17:21.


  2. #917

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post

    Edit: Upon further research, the current board of directors at Metrolinx actually consists of economists, lawyers, hotel managers, airport operators, and bankers. Oddly missing are engineers and planners (except for Paul Bedford).
    Lee Parsons is a planner and an engineer (Malone, Given Parsons)

  3. Default

    Paul Bedford has said that his fantasy transit line is an Eglinton subway. I'm not sure it'll ever really be needed (whether ridership would be 80K or 300K per day depends entirely on feeder bus routes and redevelopment, both of which are not predictable along Eglinton), but there's basically no way to improve upon the existing bus service over the central stretch without going underground, and when you have a ROW like the Richview corridor right there, all signs point to subway when you're already spending many billions of dollars.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rainforest View Post
    It looks like their thoughts have changed direction. I'd be surprised if they announce funding for Don Mills or Jane LRT next time, but omit DRL subway.
    Who's "they"? Metrolinx proposed a DRL that doesn't overlap with Jane and/or Don Mills, meaning one could be built without the others, and the province announces the funding...the city's thoughts haven't changed at all, either - the DRL is pretty much being forced down their throat. It rewrote the official plan and erased the DRL from its transit planning and the combined forces of logic, necessity, and a provincial authority which both desires it and writes the cheques have still only managed to get included in a long-term plan, and this is simply because the city of Toronto said it didn't want it.

    We probably couldn't build all of the dozens of Metrolinx projects simultaneously even if we stopped funding education or health care and shifted all the money over to transit. Since the projects can't possibly all be built simultaneously, the powers that be have chances to reexamine some of them, especially the ones that may seem decent in isolation but are silly when placed next to each other after being rubber stamped by McGuinty. Hopefully, the glaring stupidity and waste of the Don Mills and Jane lines will be replaced by reason and a longer DRL, but with Metrolinx's track record so far, this is unlikely.

  4. #919
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    The thing that the TTC is refusing to recognize is the difference between a primary and a secondary transit corridor. Yonge, Bloor, Eglinton, Sheppard, etc, are all primary transit corridors. St. Clair, Jane, Finch, etc, are secondary transit corridors. I have no problem with LRT being put along secondary corridors, as they're good for more local trips, and promote intensification and "avenueization". However, primary corridors deserve higher orders of transit (ie subway). Putting an LRT along a primary corridor greatly underestimates potential demand and thus minimizes capacity (I thought we learned this lesson from the Scarborough RT), as well as expansion capability. Do it right the first time, don't spend money twice.

  5. #920

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    Quote Originally Posted by Chuck View Post
    With that said, I do disagree with Metrolinx's planning tactics. By coincidence, all of the short term projects proposed by Metrolinx exactly match the short term wish list that every municipality submitted, regardless of that project's merit. By coincidence, Metrolinx's board of directors consists mostly of local politicians. It's as though no one sat down to provide an independent opinion on which projects should really be prioritized, and where they should go. Any transportation engineer will tell you that Transit City is a waste of time, and that what Toronto needs is more subways.
    This is what really irks me about Metrolinx's RTP. A whole year after all the regions scrambled for transit funding, Metrolinx releases it's plan, which does not argue with any of the corridors that had been chosen at all, nor with the method of transportation. I'm not sure if it's laziness on their part, but it's definitely not the way to create a comprehensive regional transit plan!

    Quote Originally Posted by scarberiankhatru
    Paul Bedford has said that his fantasy transit line is an Eglinton subway. I'm not sure it'll ever really be needed (whether ridership would be 80K or 300K per day depends entirely on feeder bus routes and redevelopment, both of which are not predictable along Eglinton), but there's basically no way to improve upon the existing bus service over the central stretch without going underground, and when you have a ROW like the Richview corridor right there, all signs point to subway when you're already spending many billions of dollars.
    Really? I didn't know that. But it is true that underground is the only way to go through the central stretch, and the Richview corridor is just asking to be used, and putting transit through that corridor has got to be the most logical thing imaginable!

    Actually, I wonder if Eglinton could be built in it's full subway-ified glory on the original LRT budget if they just got rid of the portion east of Don Mills. Using the Richview corridor can't really be that much more expensive than ripping up the road and putting LRT tracks in the middle, on top of the other complications that will end up coming out of LRT.

  6. #921
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    Markham
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    Quote Originally Posted by scarberiankhatru View Post
    Paul Bedford has said that his fantasy transit line is an Eglinton subway.
    He's actually indicated that his priorities on the Metrolinx board include pushing for the DRL to be moved up to the 15 year plan. He's also pushing for the Union-Pearson link to be part of the electrified GO system.

  7. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by MisterF View Post
    He's actually indicated that his priorities on the Metrolinx board include pushing for the DRL to be moved up to the 15 year plan. He's also pushing for the Union-Pearson link to be part of the electrified GO system.
    Well, I wouldn't expect his priority on Metrolinx to be pushing fantasy ideas that predate Metrolinx, MoveOntario, and Transfer City. Bedford's a wee bit more sensible than that. I'm not even sure what he thinks about the proposed tunnelled LRT on Eglinton, I just know that a subway under the full length of Eglinton (Kingston to the airport, if memory serves me correctly) was the apple of his fantasy map's eye as of several years ago. All fantasy maps have been rewritten since 2007, though.

    I'm glad that he thinks the DRL and a revamped GO network are more important than an Eglinton subway, because they are.

  8. #923
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    Quote Originally Posted by scarberiankhatru View Post
    I'm glad that he thinks the DRL and a revamped GO network are more important than an Eglinton subway, because they are.
    I agree. One of the major purposes of the Eglinton Subway is to dump midtown East-West passengers onto the Yonge and Spadina subways (but let's face it, mainly the Yonge subway, it's always going to be the more used of the two). Which then in turn only further overwhelms Bloor-Yonge and St. George.

    With the DRL built properly (ie up to at least Eglinton on both sides), it will increase the options for East-West to Downtown travel, spreading out the load (both on Eglinton-Yonge, Eglinton West stations, as well as Bloor-Yonge and St. George). Without the passenger distribution generated by the DRL, the whole thing falls apart. In short, a system oriented around dumping passengers onto the YUS and BD subways won't work.

  9. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by gweed123 View Post
    The thing that the TTC is refusing to recognize is the difference between a primary and a secondary transit corridor. Yonge, Bloor, Eglinton, Sheppard, etc, are all primary transit corridors. St. Clair, Jane, Finch, etc, are secondary transit corridors. I have no problem with LRT being put along secondary corridors, as they're good for more local trips, and promote intensification and "avenueization". However, primary corridors deserve higher orders of transit (ie subway). Putting an LRT along a primary corridor greatly underestimates potential demand and thus minimizes capacity (I thought we learned this lesson from the Scarborough RT), as well as expansion capability. Do it right the first time, don't spend money twice.
    Unfortunately, no, Toronto has certainly NOT learned its lesson. In terms of the SRT, it'll be replaced by either Mk II or LRT (neither of which are subway, which it SHOULD be). Furthermore, there's the disaster on Sheppard East, where they want to put LRT RIGHT NOW to eliminate the possibility of the Sheppard Subway being completed.

    So no, the lesson has not been learned.

  10. #925

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    I'd encourage everyone to follow the advice that Karl Junkin recently gave the DRL Facebook Group and to contact Metrolinx via the following methods...

    Hi everyone,

    Recently in the National Post, Toronto City Councillor Michael Thompson was promoting the Downtown Relief Line and pairing it with the Georgetown GO project currently in an EA headed by Metrolinx. This will give Toronto lots more rapid transit for less money.

    IMPORTANT NOTE: THERE ARE ONLY SEVEN (7) DAYS LEFT TO SEND COMMENTS TO METROLINX! We urgently need you to act on this message! Thank you in advance for reading through this!

    I would encourage us all to mobilize to support what has been put forward by the Councillor. I have uploaded the map that the Councillor sent to Metrolinx of a conceptual network so that we can all visualize what is being promoted. The opportunities, I believe, are amazing.

    The Georgetown GO corridor has the potential to be like a west end Downtown Relief Line, but this requires electrification. Following electrification, additional stops become possible, as do near-subway frequencies. These are engineering realities. Metrolinx is supposed to implement fare-integration in the future as well, so it shouldn't be as expensive as today for GO riders within Toronto. We need to stand up and stop believing that GO is exclusively for suburbia. GO is a regional service that includes several vast swaths of Toronto, not just Union Station.

    The community in Liberty Village around Strachan Avenue got their wish regarding the proposed grade separation with 270 comments. This is a $100 million cost to the project, and they got it with enough public pressure. We are seeking a $450 million cost plus vehicles added to the project through electrification, although this cost can be recouped through operational savings, health care savings, increased land values, and higher ridership resulting from said higher land values. The cost can probably be recouped in less than 10 years after entering service.

    There are two ways to speak up.

    The first is through e-mail, and info regarding this can be found on the Clean Train Coalition website here:
    http://cleantrain.ca/goelectric.php
    E-mail is not public, even though it is submitted to a public agency, which has drawbacks. Clean Train Coalition is trying to increase accountability, please work with them by following the guide in the link.

    The second option, a public forum, which in theory is better, is below.

    Please bear with me, and all of us that want to see a great transit system in Toronto, in putting in the effort jump through the hoops that seem designed to discourage public participation (as that makes it easier to get their project approved if the public doesn't say anything). Your effort will open the door to an opportunity for transforming what is currently a terrible project into one that is FANTASTIC! Electrification makes all the difference, and we're the last developed country on earth that hasn't recognized this. The North-Eastern U.S. and California get it, as does Chicago, why don't we? Even Montreal gets it!!

    Please go to the Clean Train Coalition website for details on commenting on Metrolinx' consultation site (it's a bit of a pain, trust me, please read the walk-through).
    LINK TO CLEAN TRAIN COALTION WALK-THROUGH: http://cleantrain.ca/webportal.php

    Here is the link to the consultation site for Metrolinx' Georgetown South Service Expansion site.

    http://metrolinx-consult.limehouse.c...use_series_two

    Please register if you are not yet registered.

    Click on the "read and comment on this document" link near the bottom.

    Note the "sections" column on the left, and follow the Clean Train Coalition walk-through. Electrification is near the bottom of the "sections" column.

    IMPORTANT: COMMENTS MUST BE SUBMITTED IN THE RIGHT SECTION!

    Words of wisdom are to keep it to the point. Submit supporting arguments for why it should be electric, but don't get into spin-off benefits and other tangents. Rumour has it that comments that stray off topic get moved to a topic you probably don't want it to get moved to. We must be focused and crank up the pressure. Just insist on electrification of both the Georgetown and Union-Pearson services (don't forget the Union-Pearson service needs to be electrified, too!).

    If you want to express support for Metrolinx to add additional stations to the line as per the image I uploaded, these can be expressed one by one on the appropriate panels in the "sections" column on the left. (These panels are corridor plan and profile display panels 10, 12, 20, and 22).

    If we all speak up, we can make great transit in Toronto happen!

    Thank you everyone for your support!
    Karl Junkin
    I've just done it myself and it only took 20 minutes. Please consider doing the same!

  11. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Darkstar416 View Post
    I'd encourage everyone to follow the advice that Karl Junkin recently gave the DRL Facebook Group and to contact Metrolinx via the following methods...



    I've just done it myself and it only took 20 minutes. Please consider doing the same!
    I really don't support using the rail alignment for the west end of the DRL. Not only because it gives the NIMBY's of Weston what they wanted all along (a subway and not an ARL), I'm sure that would be the final blow in the ARL plans. But also because the corridor itself does not have the density of people to support so much transit in one area. GO and a subway would be duplicitus and GO would likely simply continue serving suburban riders rather than improving it's service in Toronto. If GO can provide adequate service to a handfull of stations along the Georgetown corridor than the subway could be routed elsewhere.

  12. #927
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    Ottawa (formerly Downtown Toronto)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodbridge_Heights View Post
    I really don't support using the rail alignment for the west end of the DRL. Not only because it gives the NIMBY's of Weston what they wanted all along (a subway and not an ARL), I'm sure that would be the final blow in the ARL plans. But also because the corridor itself does not have the density of people to support so much transit in one area. GO and a subway would be duplicitus and GO would likely simply continue serving suburban riders rather than improving it's service in Toronto. If GO can provide adequate service to a handfull of stations along the Georgetown corridor than the subway could be routed elsewhere.
    I disagree. There are large majorities of the Weston corridor that are un-used or under-used industrial sites. While I agree that this corridor CURRENTLY could not support a subway, the brownfield development possible along this corridor definetly could. I mean, look at what is happening in liberty village. That type of development is possible the whole way along the corridor, or in selected nodes/locations around the stations. This line represents an opportunity for the city to boast pretty much every type of development buzz phrase imaginable (brownfield, infill, TOD, mixed-use, mixed-densities, mixed-incomes). It's the city's PR dream in terms of sustainable development.

    Also, this is probably the cheapest method of subway construction you're ever going to get (ie one that doesn't go underground, except for near Union). In fact, I'd put it at a comparable cost to LRT (when you factor in the reconstruction of the roadway, relocation of sewers, etc), however I could be wrong with that.

  13. #928
    Join Date
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    ^and...done.

    Good thing for that registration walk through. What a mess that website is.

  14. #929

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    Quote Originally Posted by Woodbridge_Heights View Post
    I really don't support using the rail alignment for the west end of the DRL. Not only because it gives the NIMBY's of Weston what they wanted all along (a subway and not an ARL), I'm sure that would be the final blow in the ARL plans. But also because the corridor itself does not have the density of people to support so much transit in one area. GO and a subway would be duplicitus and GO would likely simply continue serving suburban riders rather than improving it's service in Toronto. If GO can provide adequate service to a handfull of stations along the Georgetown corridor than the subway could be routed elsewhere.
    I agree with you there. But what I would like to see is Regional Rail service on the Georgetown Line. With a stop in Liberty Village and/or at Queen and Dufferin and Regional Rail frequencies, it could do the job of a western DRL without actually being a subway. That way, the DRL could follow another route that isn't already occupied by a Rail corridor, like up Roncesvalles, and we would still be making good use out of the Georgetown corridor.

  15. #930

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    Quote Originally Posted by hkric88 View Post
    That's because LRT is apparently 'EuroStyle' and anything Euro-anything is hands down SUPERIOR IN EVERY CONCEIVABLE WAY to anything that is not seen to be 'EuroStyle'. Of course, who were the first people to have subways? Irrelevent apparently. Because, now all thse EURO countries are building LRT, of course, no one at TTC is looking at their subway maps. That doesn't matter, LRT is EuroStyle

    EuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroS tyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleE uroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroSt yleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEu roStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroSty leEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyleEuroStyle
    Speaking of Europe, Athens, Greece will add to their Metro (it's the Orange line on the map). The 19.6 KM, 20 station line is estimated to cost 2 billion Euros.



    Obviously we have to send Miller and Giambrone over there ASAP to set them straight!!

    (sorry for the huge map, I don't know how to re-size it)

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