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Ontario Line (was Relief Line South, in Design)

CityStay

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Whatever you think about the merits of light vs. heavy or tunneled/elevated/at-grade, there's been ample speculation both in the media and on this forum that the plan was rapidly thrown together. As the article puts it, scribbled on the back of a napkin. This article confirms these rumors with not just "it's obvious" but internal documents.
Previously unpublished photo of the design software used:
Screen Shot 2020-02-16 at 20.24.25.jpeg
 

syn

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"No more backroom deals." Doug Ford, August 16, 2018

https://www.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=1349341

The secret Metrolinx documents also confirmed that the province secretly hired Michael Schabas to oversee the new line and leaked details of Ford's transit plans to the Toronto Sun the day before his announcement.
Is anyone surprised? This is a common 'Ford' tactic. Disregard all money invested, work and public consultation done up until that time in favour of his own crazy scheme.

They did the same thing with their Waterfront proposal and the Eglinton LRT.

I guess this is the first time since the waterfront proposal was rejected that he has an opportunity to resurrect his monorail dreams. :p

It's really unfortunate as we could already be moving forward with the DRL plan that was well into the design phase, and planning DRL north as Phase 2.
 

WislaHD

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Honest question to you guys:

Forgetting all the problems with the Ontario Line as proposed by Metrolinx/Ontario Government, would you give the project your blessing if the project could begin construction within this government and be delivered around 2030-2032?

Regardless of the various problems with the scheme, or whether the City's Relief Line plan was superior, the Ontario Line does not seem like a white elephant, and if built it would be a well-used and much needed addition of the Toronto rapid transit network that would expand transit access, add network redundancy, and reduce commute times for many parts of our city. Do people believe that not building anything is preferable to building the Ontario Line?
 

Northern Light

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Honest question to you guys:

Forgetting all the problems with the Ontario Line as proposed by Metrolinx/Ontario Government, would you give the project your blessing if the project could begin construction within this government and be delivered around 2030-2032?

Regardless of the various problems with the scheme, or whether the City's Relief Line plan was superior, the Ontario Line does not seem like a white elephant, and if built it would be a well-used and much needed addition of the Toronto rapid transit network that would expand transit access, add network redundancy, and reduce commute times for many parts of our city. Do people believe that not building anything is preferable to building the Ontario Line?
An unfair question.

It really presupposes that the choice is 'this' or 'nothing'.

I think there are other choices available.

Given the 2 choices offered, I still think its a challenge.

As conceptually laid out, very loosely, I believe it provides inadequate capacity as a relief line for Line 1.

It also may (likely) impair GO expansion plans and VIA HFR.

All the while, running grossly over budget and sucking up all the money in the room from other projects.

If you want to guarantee me, in a utopian scenario, that this line will have the required capacity and won't impair those other things, then sure, its definitely better than nothing, all that and it comes in on budget, and it might be down right great.

Of course, I'd also like to hear about that 12oz NY Strip, w/Frites and aioli followed by an incredible ice cream sundae that are zero calories and only $10 at my neighbourhood eatery.

But then again, I've always had a soft-spot for fairy tales.
 

TheTigerMaster

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Honest question to you guys:

Forgetting all the problems with the Ontario Line as proposed by Metrolinx/Ontario Government, would you give the project your blessing if the project could begin construction within this government and be delivered around 2030-2032?

Regardless of the various problems with the scheme, or whether the City's Relief Line plan was superior, the Ontario Line does not seem like a white elephant, and if built it would be a well-used and much needed addition of the Toronto rapid transit network that would expand transit access, add network redundancy, and reduce commute times for many parts of our city. Do people believe that not building anything is preferable to building the Ontario Line?
No. The Ontario Line does not appear to achieve its primary objective of relieving Yonge Line congestion, it bottlenecks potential capacity expansions on RER and VIA HFR, a situation that'll bite us ass decade from now, and the technical feasibility of the proposal is still very much in question. Furthermore the haphazard manner in which the proposal was put together puts this project at an elevated risk for cost overruns and delays.

A bad solution is a bad solution, regardless of who proposes it. There is no reason to go with a substandard solution when it is trivial to see that there are other proposals on the table that can achieve the primary objective far more competently than the Ontario Line.

I suppose if the decision was Ontario Line or nothing, I guess the Ontario Line would be better. But we'd be making the decision to build the OL with the understanding that a decade from now, we're likely gonna have to be digging for funding to either retrofit the line, or to build a second Relief Line. Why would any rational actor do that, absent political considerations?
 
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Rainforest

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Honest question to you guys:

Forgetting all the problems with the Ontario Line as proposed by Metrolinx/Ontario Government, would you give the project your blessing if the project could begin construction within this government and be delivered around 2030-2032?

Regardless of the various problems with the scheme, or whether the City's Relief Line plan was superior, the Ontario Line does not seem like a white elephant, and if built it would be a well-used and much needed addition of the Toronto rapid transit network that would expand transit access, add network redundancy, and reduce commute times for many parts of our city. Do people believe that not building anything is preferable to building the Ontario Line?
Good question. If I was in the position to either block OL until its problems are fixed or let it proceed, then I would be very reluctant to block it. The risk that nothing at all gets built, is too great.

The position of having no control over the situation, has the advantage of making it easy to be impartial. From that standpoint:

1) We don't even know yet if the route as proposed is constructable. Some curves involved are potentially in conflict with the existing foundations. However, I think those concerns mostly apply to the western section, between Queen&Spadina and King&Bathurst. So, let's assume that the most critical eastern section is constuctable.

2) If constructable: one major benefit of OL is that it will bring more employees in/out of DT. Even if the real capacity will peak at 25,000 pphpd, and the line will be nearly full on Day 1, that's still ~ 75,000 additional jobs in DT that can be served by public transit.

3) However, OL as designed will not be future-proof (will get overcrowded soon after opening), and its ability to de-crowd Yonge will be limited as well. A massive pile of money spent, and the core capacity problem still not solved. We will have to start planning Relief Line 2 right after OL opens.

4) Last but not least, using space in the eastern rail corridor for OL will limit the GO / RER capacity in the future.
 
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BurlOak

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Could this be Ford's gas plant or oranje scandal???
Gas plant was unique in that Liberals spent $1B to cancel their own plans. Gov't has always spent money cancelling others plans, or building/over-building far from ideal projects - but wasting huge sums of money cancelling your own plans was something rarely seen.
This is maybe similar to the UP line, but an order of magnitude larger.
 

BurlOak

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Honest question to you guys:

Forgetting all the problems with the Ontario Line as proposed by Metrolinx/Ontario Government, would you give the project your blessing if the project could begin construction within this government and be delivered around 2030-2032?

Regardless of the various problems with the scheme, or whether the City's Relief Line plan was superior, the Ontario Line does not seem like a white elephant, and if built it would be a well-used and much needed addition of the Toronto rapid transit network that would expand transit access, add network redundancy, and reduce commute times for many parts of our city. Do people believe that not building anything is preferable to building the Ontario Line?
We've seen this story before. The ideal is somewhere between the 2 options on the table.
Should we go with "Do Nothing", pick one of the binary choices, or find the optimum in-between.
(Last time we went "binary", although with the amount of time it took to make the decision - it actually had shades of "Do Nothing" mixed in (at least "do nothing" for a decade").

1581946092750.png
 

WislaHD

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An unfair question.

It really presupposes that the choice is 'this' or 'nothing'.

I think there are other choices available.
I presented the question as such because I am skeptical there would be another option that is politically palatable to the Ford government, and should there be a change in government to the Liberals, they'll likely decide to "study" the line again and push funding and shovels in the ground to the next government again.

There may well be cost escalations and construction delays with a line seemingly haphazardly put together as this one, but I do trust Metrolinx and the winning construction consortium to eventually deliver the Ontario Line sometime between 2030 and 2035 if funding and shovels in the ground are committed within the next two years under this current government.

Call me selfish, but I do want to one day actually ride on this Line that I have spent a good portion of my time on UT discussing and speculating about, and ideally while I am still working age.
 

44 North

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The secret Metrolinx documents also confirmed that the province secretly hired Michael Schabas to oversee the new line and leaked details of Ford's transit plans to the Toronto Sun the day before his announcement.
Oh boy, Metrolinx providing special leaks to the Toronto Sun. They've taken a page from the Ford playbook...next up will be the Warmington "exclusives". Before she passed wonder if Diane Ford was a Metrolinx PR consultant.
 

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