If the Eglinton Crosstown doesn't need 10,000+ ppdph of capacity on day 1 I can't help but see that as a failure, it has an incredibly important existing bus route and is the only proper crosstown line in the city besides Bloor. It is mind boggling that in a city this large we would expect so little demand, that's only the same as a few successful bus routes peak capacity.
And by the way, the section East of Yonge should be busy, its going to have two of the busiest bus routes in the city (Don Mills and Lawrence East) feeding into it, if it doesn't attract people at Kennedy, maybe a slow tram line shouldn't have been the second crosstown.
With the Ontario Line on the table, the best configuration for the Crosstown would have been a fully grade separated intermediate capacity line travelling between Etobicoke and Scarborough Centre. Such a line would have facilitated travel "across the town". Eglinton Line customers could transfer at Scarborough Centre to access most of Scarborough's major bus routes.
The problem with pursuing a fully grade separated intermediate capacity line travelling between Etobicoke and Scarborough Centre back in 2010 is that the Yonge Line was already overcapacity and it absolutely could not handle the demand that would be induced by that Eglinton Line configuration. The Yonge Line crowding issues limited the Eglinton Line configurations that would have been genuinely feasible back then.
If I could go back in time, and if money were no object, I would have scrapped the Eglinton Crosstown in favour of a Downtown Relief Line terminating at Eglinton and Don Mills. Only after its completion would I have then pursued the Eglinton Crosstown terminating at Scarborough Centre. This sequencing would ensure that the Eglinton Line would not crush the Yonge Line with overcrowding.
However a compounding issue was the imminent retirement of the Scarborough RT. Would it have been possible to build the DRL to Eglinton and replace the SRT with the Eglinton Line prior to the SRT retirement? Almost certainly not. Especially with the very limited funds being provided by the McGuinty government of the day. If I remember correctly, only about $7 Billion was on the table, with no further funds anticipated to come down the pipeline. That would have been enough to build either: (A) Eglinton Crosstown to Scarborough Centre or (B) the Downtown Relief Line to Eglinton. Option A would leave the Yonge Line pepetually overcrowded with no relief plans in sight and option B would relieve the Yonge Line, with no replacement for the SRT. Both options were technically unacceptable.
So in short, yes, I find the current configuration of the Crosstown to be unfortunate. I would have preferred a genuine crosstown line, and the current configuration falls well short of that. If there's any lesson in this, I suppose its that we must design transit projects that work well in relation to the broader network, while also being a little less tight with the purse strings for critical infrastructure.