The TTC has reached some major milestones this week with the first public street test of the new streetcars, and now the Spadina Subway Extension in York region has hit a major goal with the completion of a large section of new tunnel. The aptly named "Moley", a TBM or Tunnel Boring Machine, began its most recent drive in September heading south from the future site of Downsview Park Station (labelled Sheppard West Station in the image below) towards the existing Downsview Station, and has just completed its most recent drive and reached its extraction shaft at W.R. Allen Road near Sheppard Avenue West. Now that the 1.2 kilometre push is complete, Moley will be extracted from its current location which will take approximately 6 weeks.

Construction Map, Subway Extension, TorontoConstruction Map For Subway Extension, Image courtesy of the TTC

Once Moley is entirely removed from the extraction shaft the hole will be converted into an access point for lowering track and equipment into the tunnels. Probably the most significant part of this milestone is that it marks the completion of all of the southern tunnels that lie inside Toronto's municipal boundaries. Below we have a couple photos from one of the new stations under construction.

Looking southwest across Keele Street at station box for Finch West Station undeLooking southwest across Keele Street at station box for Finch West Station under construction, image by Nigel Terpstra 2012.12.

Looking north along Keele Street at station box for Finch West Station under conLooking north along Keele Street at station box for Finch West Station under construction, image by Nigel Terpstra 2012.12.28

The subway extension, which when completed will add 6 new stations in 8.6 kilometres of tunnel, will be the first part of Toronto's Transit system to operate beyond the City's borders, marking a beginning for a truly regional system. In addition to kickstarting a nascent suburban-urban centre in Vaughan, the extension is expected to save 30 million car trips a year to and from the city. Construction is not expected to wrap up untill 2016 but we will keep you updated as the tunnels extend and new stations rise.

Spadina Subway Extension, image alterred from TTC originalSpadina Subway Extension, image alterred from TTC original