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Ontario Line (was Relief Line South, in Design)

Alex L

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i find that news release interesting as in the webinars the OL planners were definitely not aware of this as they specifically said "they dont have plans" for buildings above the king/bathurst and spdaina/queen stations

maybe because metrolinx isnt involved at all with the TOD plans?

If there is already a project in progress for a station site, I can see including those renders.

But for sites where there is not a project in progress, why is Metrolinx proposing towers? Is this a way to generate money and/or go around local planning?

They are proposing basically a long east-west wall north of the Ex, completely putting the area north of there in shade.
 

NoahB

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If there is already a project in progress for a station site, I can see including those renders.

But for sites where there is not a project in progress, why is Metrolinx proposing towers? Is this a way to generate money and/or go around local planning?

They are proposing basically a long east-west wall north of the Ex, completely putting the area north of there in shade.

Towers are cost-effective in Toronto given the cost of land. Shade isn't a new invention. Towers have been around for more than a century and shade hasn't been a big issue until some people decided that their front lawn deserves sunlight more than people deserve housing.

Building on top of stations and on construction lands helps subsidize the construction of the infrastructure. It also provides a new revenue stream for the agency/city building them.
 
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AlvinofDiaspar

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The area to the north of the Ex station is mainly commercial anyways - you have to get to East Liberty St. for any substantial existing residential areas. In terms of the scale of the developments portrayed - they don't seem to be that out of line from what we can expect in the area. It looks fine broadly speaking.

AoD
 
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nfitz

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The area to the north of the Ex station is mainly commercial anyways - you have to get to East Liberty St. for any substantial existing residential areas. In terms of the scale of the developments portrayed - they don't seem to be that out of line from what we can expect in the area. It looks fine broadly speaking.
West of Hanna sure. But there's a lot of residential right up to the near the platform east of there. And I expect there'll be more redevelopment over time.
 

svguy

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It's too bad Metrolinx isn't looking at lowering the rail corridor (like they did for the Strachan level crossing on the rail corridor to the north) between Dufferin and Strachan for Exhibition Station. To avoid disruption during construction, they could shift the corridor slightly to the north into the area set aside for the new east/west road in south Liberty Village and put the new road above it. It would be a great opportunity to integrate OP into the city.
 

Alex L

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Towers cost-effective in Toronto given the cost of land. Shade isn't a new invention. Towers have been around for more than a century and shade hasn't been a big issue until some people decided that their front lawn deserves sunlight more than people deserve housing.

Building on top of stations and on construction lands helps subsidize the construction of the infrastructure. It also provides a new revenue stream for the agency/city building them.
It is remarkable how different the St Lawrence project is compared to what Metrolinx thinks is good development. If you want to build a good mixed-use, you cannot build to maximum density and have a liveable environment. You have to have mixed-density and mixed heights. It's like Metrolinx thinks the only good development is a max development. That's not city-building, that's city-destroying.

If they can really justify the amount of commercial they want, then maybe build taller in individual towers, and break up the wall effect. And have smaller buildings also. Otherwise, it will be cold and barren and windy. There are other factors other than money that need to be considered.
 

NoahB

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It is remarkable how different the St Lawrence project is compared to what Metrolinx thinks is good development. If you want to build a good mixed-use, you cannot build to maximum density and have a liveable environment. You have to have mixed-density and mixed heights. It's like Metrolinx thinks the only good development is a max development. That's not city-building, that's city-destroying.

If they can really justify the amount of commercial they want, then maybe build taller in individual towers, and break up the wall effect. And have smaller buildings also. Otherwise, it will be cold and barren and windy. There are other factors other than money that need to be considered.
"max destiny" is an arbitrarily set number based on subjective experience...

In North America, people tend to mix-up tall towers with density when the correlation is not direct. For example, the Plateau in Montreal has over double the density of downtown Montreal and is (slightly) denser than Downtown Toronto without any buildings higher than 5 floors. But that's a whole nother discussion.

You can create a good street by including a varied, human-scale streetwall in shape and use. The streetwall does not care as much about the tower behind/above it but should be designed to mitigate wind. It needs to have street-facing medium to small shops that cater to different needs like community, shopping, and food. The street also needs to be slow enough that the car traffic does not become overbearing with smoke and noise. And finally, there should be a combination of places to sit and walk like parks, preferably under trees.

I live now at the College Park area where the Aura and other towers literally shadow my building all day except noon. But this is the most livable neighborhood I've lived in the city regardless of height. To each their own though.
 
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AlvinofDiaspar

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There's such an opportunity to rethink urban space (i.e. closing down James Street + and part of University Avenue to create more open space) as part of the Ontario Line. The allusion to building a station entrance box on Osgoode Hall... is concerning.

Though I can understand that they have very limited choices around the area for exits (esp. on the east side) and the University Avenue redo hasn't been approved, much less actualized yet.

AoD
 

turini2

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There's such an opportunity to rethink urban space (i.e. closing down James Street + and part of University Avenue to create more open space) as part of the Ontario Line. The allusion to building a station entrance box on Osgoode Hall... is concerning.
Steve's point about using University Ave for the entrance instead of Osgoode Hall is a great one - could help to kick start the University Park project
 

AlvinofDiaspar

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Steve's point about using University Ave for the entrance instead of Osgoode Hall is a great one - could help to kick start the University Park project

Though there is a problem with that as well - since the University Park project foresee shifting all the traffic lanes to the west. I don't think Metrolinx can build an entrance with that in mind and not use up any of the existing northbound lanes on University - their ability to do that really depends on the city having made the decision. Also a well designed station at the proposed spot should still be broadly speaking OK if they are careful with the design.

AoD
 

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