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mdrejhon

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As for VIA HSR potentially having a conflict with UPX, I don't think that'll be much of an issue. VIA trains would be stopping at Malton (North Hub) just before the UPX spur joins the mainline. Timing could be worked out so that a VIA HSR train
I think the HSR train that operates in this section will be an Ontario/Metrolinx HSR train at first.

Ontario Metrolinx is out-spending Federal VIA on rail by more than an order of magnitude -- tens of billions over the next 10 years (on GO and LRTs)! Metrolinx owns the track that goes by Pearson, and most of the way to Kitchener. With the Ontario Liberals talk of $10 high speed commuter train fares, HSR is essentially GOTrain RER II Sequel. This may become a new Metrolinx subsidary (much like Presto and UPX). But both VIA and Metrolinx HSR trains can share the same corridor, much like in Europe that domestic TGV/international Eurostar high speed trains, share the same HSR corridor. For example, theoretically the GO Express trains (from Kitchener) may be replaced with HSR trainsets as part of a RER Phase II past the current 10-year plan, if Ontario had its way. Coincidentially, the end of service life for current Bombardier Bilevels puts many of the coaches squarely into the 2030-2040 timeframe, perfect timing for HSR introduction -- high speed GO trains as RER II. Probably not under the GO brand name, but it might as well be. Most people on France/Japan HSR trains during peak hour are daily work commuters! And existing TGV/Shinkansen high speed trains on some routes go as frequent as 5-10-15 minutes AD2W!

The whole London-Kitchener-Perason-Toronto-Oshawa-Kingston becomes a daily commute when all of that is just 1 hour from downtown Toronto. There are many thousands of TGV/Shinkansen commuters that commute 100-200km one way daily (200-400km roundtrip), and this is a primary market of filling 15-minute-frequency high speed trains chock full to capacity, and this is Metrolinx's ballgame. TGV high speed trains came first in France, long before Eurostar international high speed trains went over TGV routes. Metrolinx owns the track that VIA high speed trains would need to go over, and the biggest market for high speed trains is the ~$10 daily commuter market.

Politics do change, so VIA may actually end up coming first, but this isn't what is happening now. Ontario has put money in the high speed train pot -- including few million dollars towards a comprehensive EA for high speed trains. Separately, Ontario has allocated funding for GO RER electrification of over 100 kilometers of what will be the future high speed train route (Oshawa through Bramalea). This is fully congruent to future high speed train service. There are long-term plans to electrify all the way to Kitchener fully 100% on Ontario's dime. That results in nearly 200 kilometers of electrification of the corridor for HSR trains. As a result, ownership of the rail and electrification means that Ontario de-facto fully owns a large amount of our upcoming HSR-compatible infrastructure.

The thorny question is who will be first with HSR? The answer is currently obvious: Follow the money. And know the precedent of high speed trains is the commuter market in other countries. You strongly smell an Ontario-operated (possibly Metrolinx) high speed train is going to be involved, whether VIA also operates or not. Both commuter and long-distance high speed trains will likely exist, and the question boils down -- who operates the commuter HSR trains and who operates the long distance HSR trains?

It is bad politics for Federal to play Favourite to Ontario and generously operate high speed trains for Ontario. BC and Alberta will yell blasphemy if they don't get quid pro quo funding -- so Federal is just going to let Ontario start a commuter high speed train, and Ontario's GO spending expansion, if maintained past 10-year timeline, is big enough to result in a HSR train within 20 years. Once Ontario paves the way with starter HSR, Federal will jump in to pull more rail towards Quebec/Windsor (while funding other initiatives like Calgary-Edmonton).

Both Metrolinx and VIA probably will co-operate on HSR. It is is easy to speculate that both will definitely run highspeed trains if our tracks become high speed compatible. Further discussion can be found via searching the HSR thread.

And - before we distract ourselves with too many good brainstormed new ideas that all need funding - can we please get on with plain vanilla 2WAD GO service to Brampton, as was supposed to have happened all along???? Just call it STRERGO and everyone will feel they get the credit.
We are impatient, yes -- but on the positive side -- whatever we fund towards AD2W is a BIG step towards Pearson Rail Hub. The electrification of RER to Bramalea, brings catenary that's already automatically compatible with high speed trainsets, SmartTrack and/or GO RER, since the same infrastructure brings more trains at higher frequencies to whatever station we deem to be the main Pearson interchange station. Then that station is slowly expanded to Pearson Rail Hub.

So rewording the question, which station should become the Pearson RER station to interchange with the existing UPX for now? That station might end up becoming the future Pearson Rail Hub, on an incremental basis.
 
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georgevicbell

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Any transport hub in Canada needs to start with looking at the pedestrian experience. The first step will be covered and heated stations in the area. The second will be providing safe routes to these stations. My feeling is that a PATH lite should be built. With simple underground connections to stations with people mover type escalators. The goal initially should be to link up hotels, large offices and businesses to neighbourhood bus stops. Followed by an eventual upgrade to LRT. GTAA could speed this process by removing access for hotel shuttles and creating a GTAA transport system (contracted to Ttc, metrolinx or miway) with high frequency service to all the hotels.

In areas where underground or heated stations are not possible there needs to be an examination of lowering speeds, improving the streetscape (trees!) and expanded seating/sidewalks.

All the bus stations and the main airport should have expanded biking facilities and where possible roads should get bike lanes to allow for the last mile commute (with perhaps a bike share system).
 

gweed123

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I honestly think the Ontario HSR service will just be contracted out to VIA. It just makes so much more sense to have intercity rail handled at the Federal level as opposed to the Provincial level, even if the Provincial level was the one who built the infrastructure. There may be some 'payback scheme' worked out so the Province gets a guaranteed return on their investment, but I think it will be a VIA branded train.

As for which station should become the Pearson RER interchange, I think it should be Malton. It has the easiest connection to Pearson, as it can run along Airport Rd, and it's the shortest connection. Woodbine is quite a trek, and for anybody heading westbound from the North Hub would be a pretty big backtrack. I think Woodbine should have a local RER stop though.

For RER interchanging with UPX, I don't think that's really needed close to Pearson. If it's 1 transfer either way, it'd just be easier to take local transit to the North or South Hub and transfer to the LINK than it would be to transfer to the UPX. UPX should only stop at T1, Mt. Dennis, Bloor, and Union. Whatever RER services are there can connect, but I don't think RER-UPX should be a prime transfer consideration. UPX should exist largely independently of the North/South Hub configuration.
 

wopchop

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For RER interchanging with UPX, I don't think that's really needed close to Pearson. If it's 1 transfer either way, it'd just be easier to take local transit to the North or South Hub and transfer to the LINK than it would be to transfer to the UPX. UPX should only stop at T1, Mt. Dennis, Bloor, and Union. Whatever RER services are there can connect, but I don't think RER-UPX should be a prime transfer consideration. UPX should exist largely independently of the North/South Hub configuration.
And this is exactly why Woodbine doesn't make sense. Malton and Renforth (and possibly other sites closer to Pearson) have the benefit of multiple easy location connections to GO Transit buses, MiWay, TTC, and Brampton Transit. Woodbine doesn't, other than TTC, and even that becomes out of the way unless you built the station at Highway 27. And adding connections would just add more out of the way distance to GO Bus, MiWay , & Brampton routes.
 
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mdrejhon

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I honestly think the Ontario HSR service will just be contracted out to VIA. It just makes so much more sense to have intercity rail handled at the Federal level as opposed to the Provincial level, even if the Provincial level was the one who built the infrastructure. There may be some 'payback scheme' worked out so the Province gets a guaranteed return on their investment, but I think it will be a VIA branded train.
Consider the commuter versus intercity market.

The fly in the ointment is the commuter market. Both the intercity and commuter market exists. With high speed trains, the 1-hour commuter now becomes London-Kitchener-Pearson-Toronto-Oshawa-Kingston. In France and Japan, cities like London&Toronto becomes bedroom communities for each other. Commuters from cities as far as London doesn't bring baggage to Toronto anymore -- just a laptop bag or briefcase. There are occasional suitcases, but nothing much more dense than what you see on a typical GOtrain.

In France, most TGV trains have no overhead baggage bins. It is optimized as an efficient high speed commuter train. (Intercity is Eurostar's job there). Commuter high speed trains have different layouts than intercity high speed trains. In Japan/France, for HSR, London and Kingston is no longer intercity to Toronto.

Over there, in France, they have more TGV trains arriving at multiple different major train stations than our single Toronto Union receives GO trains today!
They operate 14,000 train trips of TGV per day throughout france.
Our GO RER plans only expands from 1,500 to only 6,000 train trips per week in 10 years.
Some TGV train routes have a subway-style 3-minute headway at peak.
TGV is France's GO train.

In Japan & France, this is what happens:
Windsor & Ottawa = intercity
London & Kingston = suburbs of GTHA

Maybe VIA will come first, after all. But that doesn't mean game over for Ontario -- If we only want to operate one high speed train every two hours -- sure -- let's have only VIA operate them -- but if Ontario is spending money on GO RER, it is pretty much eventually going to have to work with somebody's high speed commuter trains, efficiently optimized for the central segment of the Windsor-Quebec corridor -- aka the London-Kingston subsegment that becomes a daily commute to Toronto. That segment will have incredible demand for frequent high speed commuter service that will begin to displace corridor capacity for GO trains, so it is more likely that as older electric-locomotive-driven 12-car bilevels wear out (when coaches are up for replacement in 2030s-2040s), they are likely to seriously look at replacing those specific trainsets with bullet trains if Ontario, by then, has already funded electricifation for a large enough subsegment of their commuter corridor, then it's just a small lineitem in current infrastructure spending rate.

If Ontario keeps barrelling at this pace on dramatically-increased rail spending, Ontario is not going to wait for Federal. The high speed train would provide massive population booms for Ontario, which will greatly increase taxpayer revenue over the coming decades. Then again, plans do get changed and cancelled. However, so far, we've seen remarkable Metrolinx consistency in the last while even if deadlines are bumped late (that's why I double Ontario's 10 year HSR goal into 20+ years for HSR).

If it's not a Metrolinx train after all, it'll be a commuter train brand (possibly Ontario-Federal partnership, if stars align) with a a distinct brand name than the intercity high speed trains. One that operates more frequently in the core segment with more seating and less baggage space. Historically, baggage space has been wasted at peak period on core segments of high speed train routes, when commuters just bring a tiny briefcase, and that's why they build high speed trains without much baggage space now, and adds more seating, just like modern TGV trains.

One-size-fits-all high speed trains isn't feasible in the Windsor-Quebec corridor due to the massive population gradients, since more trains will likely operate in the more densely-populated core segment. And since the first segment of high speed route will probably be built near Toronto. And invariably, that's a HSR line short enough to be a commuter line. And invariably, that economically warrants a commuter-optimized high speed trainset first. And it so happens, the trackage is currently a commuter track. Now you see where I am getting at, logically & precedently speaking.

The Pearson stop will bring some baggage, and we definitely need some space, as a compromise (there is space for baggage on a TGV -- just no overhead baggage racks and less space than on an Eurostar). However, any London-Kitchener-Pearson-Toronto train will ultimately be very heavily dominated by commuters, so a balance is needed.

We're not even talking about true-intercity distances (that's not London, that's not Kingston -- baggage compartments will be mostly empty for people coming from those cities). Once true inter-city becomes involved (Windsor, Ottawa) a different HSR trainset that has more room for baggage and fewer seats. Just like Eurostar (with overhead baggage room) and TGV (with only underseat room) running on the same track through France.

Due population gradients along our Corridor, our corridor just isn't optimized for a one-size-fits-all highspeed train, and we need a less-frequent intercity HSR train multiplexed with a high-frequency commuter HSR train. They may or may not be the same trainset (i.e. a trainset with more room for baggage) but there will be service frequency differences (more frequent for the commuter HSR) and letting VIA do this, ends up just making Federal look like they're playing favourites. Really doesn't sound realistic at all. VIA's not going to operate the London-Kitchener bedroom commuties for Toronto, other provinces are going to cry foul of Ontario favoritism. Far easier for Federal to throw a few bones to all provinces, and let them operate the various routes.

Also, current Ontario train spending is so massive that HSR eventually becomes just a lineitem within 25-years if the current spending rate continues.

So you see, two different HSR trains (Ontario operated and Federal operated) is politically far easier. This is why Eurostar and TGV exists in Europe, running over the same track through France.

I admit this somewhat borderline gets offtopic of the "Pearson Hub", albiet the hub includes a proposed high speed train component. I reply here, since people coming to this thread, aren't always aware that many high speed trains have become chiefly commuter trains.
 
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DonValleyRainbow

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I am in the camp that Malton needs to be the new hub. However, I don't see the need for extending the LINK train. Rather, I think it would be prudent to update The Big Move, and instead have the Finch West and Eglinton Crosstown LRT's terminating Malton rather than Pearson itself. That would allow:
  • HSR and GO service to stop at Malton, giving a direct link for West GTA/Golden Horseshoe commuters to access the airport area.
  • Finch West LRT to stop at Woodbine.
  • Eglinton LRT to stop at Reforth Gateway, Terminal 1, Terminal 3 (and perhaps Orlando Drive?).
  • Highway 427 rapid transit to connect at Pearson.
I've been working on a map that illustrates all this at home, I'll try to remember to post later tonight.
 

AnarchoSocialist

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A real rail station at Pearson is inevitable in the next 20 years. And by that I mean something along the lines of Schiphol were a tunnel heads under and creates a direct, super short connection with the rest of the terminal. Any other half baked idea where it's kind of close but not really just isn't worth doing.

But, there is a lot that needs to play out before it really makes economic sense and before a real understanding how it will best integrate into all the rail services in the region. There is a lot of expansion that will take place in the next 10 years which will reshape rail in Toronto and probably the same level the 10 years after that. Combined with the scale of a proper rail station at Pearson and the associated lines leading in and out if it, it's not a project that will happen quickly. What the reality of rail network and service level in the GTA and surrounding areas will be in 20 years is really hard to say right now. It's only once RER is in operation and people start using that we will see how it impacts travel and how people really use it. Same with some sort of HSR. Those and regional travel patterns really need to be better understood to get a Pearson station right.

And that's ok. It needs to be done right when the time comes. And The UP link is a perfect medium term solution for getting people to and from downtown at least.
 

gweed123

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Yes mdrejhon, the debate over who will run the HSR service is a debate for another thread, haha. Suffice to say the North Hub would include some kind of HSR component.

I am in the camp that Malton needs to be the new hub. However, I don't see the need for extending the LINK train. Rather, I think it would be prudent to update The Big Move, and instead have the Finch West and Eglinton Crosstown LRT's terminating Malton rather than Pearson itself. That would allow:
  • HSR and GO service to stop at Malton, giving a direct link for West GTA/Golden Horseshoe commuters to access the airport area.
  • Finch West LRT to stop at Woodbine.
  • Eglinton LRT to stop at Reforth Gateway, Terminal 1, Terminal 3 (and perhaps Orlando Drive?).
  • Highway 427 rapid transit to connect at Pearson.
I've been working on a map that illustrates all this at home, I'll try to remember to post later tonight.

I'm curious how people would get from Malton and Renforth Gateway to Pearson, without the LINK train? You mention that you'd like to see all of those services stop short of Pearson (which is totally fine), but make no mention of how people will get from those services to Pearson.
 

mdrejhon

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I'm curious how people would get from Malton and Renforth Gateway to Pearson, without the LINK train? You mention that you'd like to see all of those services stop short of Pearson (which is totally fine), but make no mention of how people will get from those services to Pearson.
The new upgraded LINK could be rerouted as a labyrinthe shape that starts at one RER station, makes multiple stops through Pearson, and stops at a different RER station. The two RER stations that becomes new LINK terminuses would be subject to debate. (Airport Corporate? Malton? Woodbine?). One or both could be new Pearson Hubs. New spurs will need to be built, and the existing UPX spur may or may not be reused.

This is theoretical of course, but let's assume it happens at UPX-end-of-service life (25 year?) and we reroute whatever airport express (UPX II or HSR) to the new Pearson Hub.

Let's also consider that the UPX may run for some time on its existing routing, even while the Pearson Hub is being built and capturing more services (Beginning with GO RER). First we see a GO RER station. Then it becomes Pearson Hub. Then 10-20 years later, LINK takes over the UPX spur or a new spur. UPX instead stops at Pearson Hub. Then later, HSR replaces UPX (HSR = UPX II). This is a potential classic 'incremental' approach.
 
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jcam

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I'm going to say make a Woodbine transfer point, because why duplicate infrastructure that already exists in the UPX spur? It would take some T1 station re-building, but I would continue the UPX spur to loop around the east side of the airport to go down to Renforth gateway.

As someone pointed out, make the stops on the 'Pearson Line': Woodbine, Terminals, Silver Dart, Renforth Gateway.

Extend the existing LINK train (and technology), so that it has perhaps 2 or 3 stops at the built-out T1, one of which overlaps Pearson line. Then the stops on LINK: Viscount, T3, T2 (in their capital plan to connect T1 and T3 for $700M, T2?), T1 Interchange (& Domesitc), T1 US, T1 International. Full build-out is pg. 6-17 here as of the last plans.

Renforth Gateway - Pearson Line, MiWay, Eglinton Line, maybe a future Etobicoke LRT down Renforth to Sherway.
Pearson Gateway (@Woodbine) - 427 Transitway (GO, ZUM, etc. from 407), Finch LRT (comes down 27), GO RER, HSR.
 

Woodbridge_Heights

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To me any HSR Plan screams for a tunnel and underground station, this would also allow for service to the airport from communities to the West and North West of the airport. A multi modal terminal can then be incorporated into the ground level transit curb, routes served could be Eglinton Crosstown LRT, Finch West LRT, 427 GO, 407 GO, YRT Viva/Brampton Zum, Mississauga transit - Airport rd, ttc - Lawrence, airport express.
 

mdrejhon

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To me any HSR Plan screams for a tunnel and underground station, this would also allow for service to the airport from communities to the West and North West of the airport. A multi modal terminal can then be incorporated into the ground level transit curb, routes served could be Eglinton Crosstown LRT, Finch West LRT, 427 GO, 407 GO, YRT Viva/Brampton Zum, Mississauga transit - Airport rd, ttc - Lawrence, airport express.
That would be a dream in a way. If it's a straight line. We'd love that, but where is the money coming from? Easier to build two surface Pearson Hubs (one on the north and one on the south) and connect the two hubs with a modified higher-speed LINK train that runs every 2-3 minutes.

Looking at Google Maps -- any theoretical underground HSR station may slow the HSR train down because any cheaper HSR tunnel would have to curve south (away from the Georgetown Corridor) to go under Pearson. Unless you're thinking of a straight line -- as a HSR subway megaproject going underground to Pearson most of the way from Union as a 19 kilometer HSR subway. That's a deliciously short straight line between Toronto downtown and Pearson (down to near 5 minute ride on a high speed train!).

Delicious theoretical idea. Only 19 kilometers from downtown to Pearson, as the bird flies!

19-Kilometer-High-Speed-Train-Subway.png


But can we afford a 19 kilometer high speed train subway, for a 5-to-10 minute Pearson ride?

That sort of stuff costs about a billion dollar per kilometer. The sticker shock sets in now. How about a $20+ billion dollar megaproject, costing 40 times as much as UPX? Can Ontario stomach that within our lifetimes? Plus add about $5 billon more to reconnect it to the existing surface corridor northwest of Pearson, so we can bring London and Kitchener into the fun -- now we're a $25+ billion dollar ultraproject. Though Kitchener suddenly becomes a mere 20 minutes ride from Toronto, with this HSR subway (instead of 30 minutes in the original HSR plans).

That's over a thousand dollar per Canadian taxpayer. Then again, 25% of Canada lives within 2 hours driving distance of here, so we'd all just have to pitch in $4K to make this happen. I'm in, at 40 montly payments of $100, zero downpayment. Okay. But most of my friends would not be.

If we can't afford to do during this lifetime, you are suggesting we do the curve approach, and that becomes a colossal waste. HSR trains have to slow down too much due to the curves away from the otherwise the very-straight GO rail corridor west of Pearson. I'd kind of rather have HSR trains stay at 250kph+ for longer periods before slowing down at Pearson Hub (at either Malton or Woodbine Racetrack) then hop onto a fast-moving upgraded LINK train that connects to the main straight-arrow HSR corridor. And an upgraded LINK would bring me straight to any concourse.

The Shinkansen N700 can accelerate 0 to 270kph in 3 minutes, and would make it to Pearson in not much more than approximately 6 to 7 minutes or so, including acceleration and braking, if offered a straight line like this.

You'd still have to hop onto the LINK train anyway when arriving at the underground HSR station, since it would probably be far away from both T1 and T3. Ironically, you might spend more time using LINK than the HSR subway. So why not just extend LINK and make LINK faster, make it reach the existing upgraded GO corridor that passes north of Pearson? Much cheaper and simpler, and high speed trains don't have to slow down as much.

It would most certainly be a fun idea for very late this century -- unless funding is massively increased sooner -- as a future incremental improvement to our 2030s high speed train of "straightening out our curves" to acheve sub-hour London HSR and sub-30-min Kitchener. Though it is fun to imagine reaching Pearson in a mere 5 minutes.
 

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TOareaFan

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As I (and others) have been saying for years....Malton on the north....Renforth on the south and extend/upgrade the link.

Malton exists....Woodbine doesn't. Malton has, you know, a decent sized convention centre/facility right at its door step. Malton is readily accessible by BT, MiWay and TTC.

Woodbine serves no purpose other than if somehow all the redevelopment plans (which in my life time have been aplenty) ever came true.....but that land is not publicly owned and building a station there to hopefully one day see development there (and, I might add, that redevolpment has to be radical in that it has to bring the current use either down completely or totally turned around so that its front door is by the tracks not its back door, separated by over 1km and all their training facilities and barns).

The Renforth facility is planned/talked about.....Malton exists.....all you need is a bit of vision to bring them together somehow.
 

jcam

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As I (and others) have been saying for years....Malton on the north....Renforth on the south and extend/upgrade the link.

Malton exists....Woodbine doesn't. Malton has, you know, a decent sized convention centre/facility right at its door step. Malton is readily accessible by BT, MiWay and TTC.

Woodbine serves no purpose other than if somehow all the redevelopment plans (which in my life time have been aplenty) ever came true.....but that land is not publicly owned and building a station there to hopefully one day see development there (and, I might add, that redevolpment has to be radical in that it has to bring the current use either down completely or totally turned around so that its front door is by the tracks not its back door, separated by over 1km and all their training facilities and barns).

You're missing the spur. Woodbine would need station & platforms, while Malton would need a whole new spur to get to the terminals. So you'd be building a new spur and mothballing a perfectly good one. Cost advantage - Woodbine
Finch West LRT connection - Woodbine
dedicated BRT ramps from 427 (and from proposed 407 & 427 transitways) - Woodbine

If you're worried about public vs. private land...you trade planning approvals for land sale at Woodbine.

Woodbine is better from a connectivity standpoint and existing infrastructure into the airport. Development on the rest of the lands might not be imminent, but you've got more opportunity for an entertainment/convention hub there than you would building out the International Centre.
 

Adjei

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I don't think he's saying the whole thing has to be a tunnel. Just the station at Pearson has to be underground and hence you would need to tunnel a section of it.
 

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