News   Apr 09, 2020
 2K     5 
News   Apr 09, 2020
 450     0 
News   Apr 09, 2020
 843     2 

Rail Deck Park (?, ?, ?)

W. K. Lis

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Dec 24, 2007
Messages
16,351
Reaction score
5,180
Location
Toronto, ON, CAN, Terra, Sol, Milky Way
The Rail Deck Park is located between Bathurst Street on the west, to Blue Jays Way on the east. That leaves the tracks east of Blue Jays West to be covered over by a new or expanded convention centre.

Maybe, in time, they'll even cover the tracks west of Bathurst Street That way, a Front Street streetcar could run from Liberty Village to Cherry Street. Maybe even east beyond Cherry Street to connect with Kingston Road via Eastern Avenue, passing through the Unilever redevelopment district.

Then there will be a battle on whether or not to keep the 502 DOWTOWNER or 503 KINGSTON ROAD names, or use 502 FRONT?
 
Last edited:

TrickyRicky

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 23, 2007
Messages
2,408
Reaction score
499
A fantastic, if potentially unfeasible, concept. Too bad about the architecture framing the park though. Some greenery and colourful structures should help but you can only do so much here I think.
 

Miscreant

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Oct 9, 2011
Messages
3,602
Reaction score
1,772
Location
Where it's urban. And dense.
A visualization of how Rail Deck Park might look like:

View attachment 82667
posted by Brian Gilham on twitter
It almost looks too good to be true. I'll be ecstatic if this comes to fruition. I'm sure the City Place dwellers there are also loving the huge boost to their property values.
 

mdrejhon

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Oct 25, 2014
Messages
4,001
Reaction score
2,708
Location
Hamilton
My biggest concern is how this may affect the future USRC speedups (30/45kph approaches in the future) that was supposedly necessary to raise throughput to 49 trains per hour. The pillars needed for this park will absolutely require strong coordination with Metrolinx over this. Prefer mostly pillarless options with massive trusses, to keep future flexibility. Otherwise, you will be essentially locking-in the USRC layout.

If this can be coordinated with Metrolinx simultaneous with electrificafion with a 100% dual-mode locomotive and EMU fleet and switching to electric-only operations under the park, this could tie in really well. Applies to VIA too, give. HFR desires, with only extremely limited diesel loco ops (e.g. Canadian). Circa 2030, unless accelerated for Expo 2025?

Still need to solve the flying pig epidemic first.
 

rbt

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 25, 2007
Messages
6,330
Reaction score
1,826
The pillars needed for this park will absolutely require strong coordination with Metrolinx over this.
Metrolinx's new station is in this area and platforms, assuming 12-car train compatible, take up about 240m of the ~700m length of the park. If you assume the station is centered near Spadina, there will be quite wide gaps in the tracks leading into and out of the station.

Pillars aren't going to be a problem and nearly 1/3rd of the park is on the station roof itself.

I expect the park will be built at the exact same pace as the station is constructed; which means over several decades because they only intend to build Barrie Line stop at the moment. The big win here is for people who want the Front Street widening as that will almost certainly be the first thing completed.
 
Last edited:

DonValleyRainbow

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Mar 5, 2014
Messages
2,861
Reaction score
1,891
Location
Kay Gardner Beltline Trail
My biggest concern is how this may affect the future USRC speedups (30/45kph approaches in the future) that was supposedly necessary to raise throughput to 49 trains per hour. The pillars needed for this park will absolutely require strong coordination with Metrolinx over this. Prefer mostly pillarless options with massive trusses, to keep future flexibility. Otherwise, you will be essentially locking-in the USRC layout.

If this can be coordinated with Metrolinx simultaneous with electrificafion with a 100% dual-mode locomotive and EMU fleet and switching to electric-only operations under the park, this could tie in really well. Applies to VIA too, give. HFR desires, with only extremely limited diesel loco ops (e.g. Canadian). Circa 2030, unless accelerated for Expo 2025?

Still need to solve the flying pig epidemic first.
Good point on VIA HFR/HSR. That will need some key consideration. Another point: CN still uses the passing tracks to the south of Union.

One thing this park will have going for it thought is that it must only support people, soil and vegetation, artwork, and any other park amenities on top. This should reduce the need for pillars and increase the feasibility of supporting it with wider trusses.
 

Woodbridge_Heights

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Feb 14, 2008
Messages
2,785
Reaction score
579
A park like this has only been suggested in these parts for the better part of the last decade. Glad our civic leaders have caught on/up.
 

AlvinofDiaspar

Moderator
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
27,287
Reaction score
15,123
Location
Toronto
Good point on VIA HFR/HSR. That will need some key consideration. Another point: CN still uses the passing tracks to the south of Union.

One thing this park will have going for it thought is that it must only support people, soil and vegetation, artwork, and any other park amenities on top. This should reduce the need for pillars and increase the feasibility of supporting it with wider trusses.
Be careful what you wish for re: pillars - wider spacing can translate from being able to use a simple beam to deep, expensive trusses. To give an idea of what could be possible - look at the 45 Bay Skygarden proposal section:

upload_2016-8-4_10-12-37.png


From Architectural Drawings, Feb 2016 on the 45 Bay Project Site: http://www1.toronto.ca/City Of Toronto/City Planning/Community Planning/Files/pdf/4/45 Bay Feb 2016 - 1 - drawings.pdf

AoD
 

Attachments

W. K. Lis

Superstar
Member Bio
Joined
Dec 24, 2007
Messages
16,351
Reaction score
5,180
Location
Toronto, ON, CAN, Terra, Sol, Milky Way
One problem is that the trees in such a park will take decades before they get big enough or mature enough to cast worthwhile shade.



Hopefully, the city will have a nursery or farm growing the tree saplings now, to be transplanted when ready.



Would like to see a variety of edible fruit trees planted, like apples, cherries, or peaches. Not just trees for show.

 

AlvinofDiaspar

Moderator
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
27,287
Reaction score
15,123
Location
Toronto
One problem is that the trees in such a park will take decades before they get big enough or mature enough to cast worthwhile shade.
Not necessarily - given the experiences at the waterfront. The question might be whether the deck can handle trees that grows to a significant size.

AoD
 

jje1000

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
May 19, 2007
Messages
4,565
Reaction score
1,950
IMO a "Nice to have" project", but not a "Must-have" (like Under Gardiner). Toss this into the pile of projects that have been announced but have no full funding.

It's really a distraction away from the fact that we have far more pressing infrastructure needs, and that our city programs are facing funding cuts that are starting to impact service.
 

salsa

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Sep 27, 2013
Messages
8,458
Reaction score
8,184
Location
North York
Another pie-in-the-sky napkin dream from our one-time civic leader. Sure to join other great Tory big-idea concepts like a viable transit system, a workable inter-urban rail system, a robust anti-poverty strategy and a campaign promise to increase the city's tree canopy by 10 million trees.
It's not necessarily Tory's idea since Jennifer Keesmaat, Joe Cressy and Adam Vaughan were also heavily involved. But yeah, this is just another unfunded initiative that John Tory will take credit for without actually committing money toward it.
 

mdrejhon

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Oct 25, 2014
Messages
4,001
Reaction score
2,708
Location
Hamilton
Be careful what you wish for re: pillars - wider spacing can translate from being able to use a simple beam to deep, expensive trusses. To give an idea of what could be possible - look at the 45 Bay Skygarden proposal section:
Wider spacing will be much safer in accidents with derailed trains.

With the potential of 30/45mph operations through crowded rail switches/crossovers necessary for nearly doubling train throughput through Union peak. Pillars could force a permanently lower speed limit, and permanently lower throughput through USRC -- hurting RER dramatically.

All those pillars, all those crossovers, and improved USRC rail approach speed? A derailed train would be much more fatal if a pillar is taken out and a collapse occurs. Will Transport Canada approve of higher-speed approaches in a decked-over railyard-like environment?

So the deep expensive trusses may necessarily be worth it.

You aren't supporting a roadway full of vehicles, you don't need salting operations within the park, and you can just have enough dirt for grass for most of the park -- with deeper wells only for areas with trees.

But it has to be properly planned and designed. If this happens at all, it's not going to happen unless done concurrently with electrification & USRC speedup. This could bump things out to ~2030(ish) or an expo2025/developer-funding-accelerated ~2025 as the absolute best-case scenario, if that.

This is great stuff, but this needs to be stupendously carefully planned-out.

Even so, this may need to be 25-year Master Plan stuff (2040s, etc).

Now, let's talk about solving the flying pig epidemic first.
 
Last edited:

P23

Active Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jul 7, 2013
Messages
751
Reaction score
278
I'm curious about the vacant lot south of Wellington that borders on the tracks across from Stanley Park, is it slated for development? This is pure fantasy on my part, but expropriating at least a part of it and connecting it to this rail yard park, Garrison Common, Under Gardiner, West Railpath and Stanley Park(s) would be a dream project.
 

AlvinofDiaspar

Moderator
Member Bio
Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
27,287
Reaction score
15,123
Location
Toronto
Wider spacing will be much safer in accidents with derailed trains.

With the potential of 30/45mph operations through crowded rail switches, this could force a permanently lower speed limit, and permanently lower throughput through USRC -- hurting RER dramatically.

All those pillars, all those crossovers, and improved USRC rail approach speed? A derailed train would be much more fatal if a pillar is taken out and a collapse occurs. Will Transport Canada approve of higher-speed approaches in a decked-over railyard-like environment?

The deep expensive trusses may necessarily be worth it. You aren't supporting a roadway full of vehicles, you don't need salting operations within the park, and you can just have enough dirt for grass for most of the park -- with deeper wells only for areas with trees.

But it has to be properly planned and designed. If this happens at all, it's not going to happen unless done concurrently with electrification & USRC speedup. This could bump things out to ~2030(ish) or an expo2025/developer-funding-accelerated ~2025 as the absolute best-case scenario, if that.

This is great stuff, but this needs to be stupendously carefully planned-out.

Even so, this may need to be 25-year Master Plan stuff (2040s, etc).

Now, let's talk about solving the flying pig epidemic first.
If the 45 Bay proposal went through, I don't see why this particular section will require a fundamentally different approach. At this point the important thing is have the intent on the books first.

AoD
 

Top