Which would you pick? I couldn't detect from your post.(I don't mean to get into a debate on which of those two options makes more sense, but I know what I'd pick.)
Personally, I think this is where private sector shines. Get some of the big property investors/developers like RioCan or DiamondCorp involved, they'd be happy to expand their portfolio at such prominent locations and it would be at public benefit.
This definitely would have been nice in the interrim. I still think the entire exercise is an oversight from Metrolinx. They could have outsourced the property procurring process to one of those aforementioned property investor/developers, sold the air rights above the station and washed their hands clean of it.Meanwhile, we are bemoaning the lack of multi-use at most of these stations. In most cases, Metrolinx would have had to buy at least one more adjacent property to have enough space at ground level to service more floors above. Alternately, as they don't have enough land in most cases, it can be argued that the design of the stations should have anticipated future incorporation into adjacent buildings, including being strong enough to support building overhead at some future time, facilitated in whichever manner; selling the developable space above could have paid for beefing up the structures.