The CBC has a good piece on the arguments around the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension that will run through the Eglinton Flats:
Tunnelling for the extension started in early April and later that month, Metrolinx invited shortlisted builders to submit proposals to design and construct the elevated section. But Brissenden’s group and the Mount Dennis Community Association are calling on the agency to change course before it’s too late. And they’re not alone: the City of Toronto asked the provincial transit agency at least twice in recent months to consider bringing the elevated section underground.
But Metrolinx says the current design is the most cost-effective option, and can bring the most number of riders onboard without the risks that come with tunneling underneath the Humber River.
Though the piece is balanced, it doesn’t mention the third possiblility: that the line could be neither buried nor destructive—and could instead run down the middle of Eglinton, as first planned.
Metrolinx must rethink its plans for elevated tracks through the Eglinton Flats, according to the Mount Dennis Community Association.
The MDCA says “a huge amount of parkland will be lost including parts of Pearen Park both temporarily and permanently.” They also say that the renderings of the tracks are inaccurate.
In their email circular, the MDCA said:
MDCA was told by Metrolinx that the elevated guideway would be similar to the picture [above], similar to the already built section at Black Creek Drive. Recent information reveals that the elevated solution requires a far wider right of way, and it will be located at the bottom of the treed slope, not at the top. Furthermore, the elevated section will be far wider due to station platforms and a third track to permit trains to turn around near Jane Street.
An online group called Stop the Trains in Our Parks (STOP) has built a website to marshal support and show the reality of the trains. They say “if it was worth the money to go underground in Etobicoke, it’s worth the money in Mt. Dennis.”
The Mount Dennis Community Association and Metrolinx will be meeting for a walk through Eglinton Flats, to discuss Metrolinx’s controversial proposal to build an elevated train through the parks.
The meeting will be Monday, May 9 at 6 p.m. and will start where Pearen Park reaches Eglinton Avenue:
The MDCA says they believe the LRT will run “entirely WITHIN Fergie Brown Park from the point we wil meet until it is almost at Jane Street.”(Emphasis theirs.) They are also concerned Metrolinx’s images make the tracks seem lower than they will be.
Putting the train through the park would be disruptive to people, but it would also destroy woodlands, the MDCA says. “We expect that most of the woodland area west of Jane… will be clear-cut to accommodate the LRT, likely with serious damage to the wetlands that separate the woods from the playing fields”.
The City of Toronto and George Brown College announced this week that they “will work collaboratively to explore a new campus project in the Mount Dennis area”.
A staff report said that there were three possible locations: the York Civic Centre, the corner of Eglinton and Photography Drive, and the area of the parking lot at 1169 Weston Road and the Mount Dennis Community Hall.
The president of George Brown said in the press release, “we see a community that is brimming with potential, and we are thrilled to be partnering with the City of Toronto to explore the amazing possibility and feasibility of a satellite campus in the area.”
The Mount Dennis Community Association will be hosting a Jane’s Walk this Saturday, May 7 at 2 pm. They
are hoping to explore the next stage of the LRT this year with a walk from the Mount Dennis station west towards Jane Street. The elevated guideway was nobody’s first choice, and the current plan in our opinion destroys too much of our parks. The walk starts at 2pm