Metrolinx asks for huge path, sidewalk, road closures; Mayor gets mad

City Council will consider whether Metrolinx should be allowed to close a huge amount of the paths and roads around Eglinton Avenue this week. And it sounds like Mayor Tory might not be rushing approval if Metrolinx doesn’t start playing ball with City Hall.

There are two issues: fair wages and putting the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension through the Eglinton Flats in Mount Dennis. City Council would like to know why the line can’t go underground, or beside the road instead of inside the park. It seems like Metrolinx hasn’t been forthcoming with the answers.

According to the Star, Tory blasted Metrolinx:

Tory told his executive committee Wednesday he strongly supports transit expansion, but if Metrolinx officials don’t like being “left with a degree of uncertainty,” as deadlines loom to sign construction contracts, they should “speed up the work” answering questions and concerns from residents and city council…. Metrolinx is “certainly not up to, and accustomed to, the standards we set for public consultation in anything we do, whether it’s transit or not,” the mayor said.

Metrolinx is asking council to close a huge number of routes, including:

  • The multi-use trail on Eglinton between Jane and Glenvalley
  • The multi-use trail on Eglinton between Weston Road and the tracks
  • The westbound curb lane on Eglinton Avenue West east of Jane Street and Weston Road
  • The westbound curb lane on Eglinton Avenue West, between Weston Road and the tracks
  • The north sidewalk on Eglinton Avenue West, between Weston Road and the tracks
  • The north sidewalk on Eglinton Avenue West west of Pearen Street and the park

All of the “temporary” closures will be for eight years.

The Mount Dennis Community Association pointed out another important issue in a letter to the Executive Committee: the proposed closures will interfere with access to the brand-new Mount Dennis Station. They say “there has been a total failure in community consultation about plans for pedestrian access to the station’s main entrance” and that pedestrians, cyclists, and transit riders will be affected.

Metrolinx is also facing “adamant and unreserved opposition” from the International Union of Operating Engineers for their refusal to follow Toronto’s Fair Wage Policy.

Nunziata calls for Metrolinx to bury the Eglinton Crosstown extension

Frances Nunziata asked City Council this week to “request Metrolinx undertake an assessment of running the elevated segment of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension underground and to identify any options that may exist to accommodate this change.”

Her motion says

The elevated segment of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension will result in significant impacts to the local environment including parklands and trees along Eglinton Avenue West. The loss of parklands, including the treasured Eglinton Flats and forests, outlined by Metrolinx at recent community consultation sessions, is a significant concern to residents and visitors from across the City.

Metrolinx is planning to build an elevated track through the Eglinton Flats parkland to extend the LRT out to Renforth. Only the section in the Eglinton Flats will be elevated. Metrolinx has said in the past that burying the line through the valley would be difficult and expensive.

Nunziata’s motion passed.

Upcoming events

Metrolinx will be hosting an open house to discuss their plans for the “elevated stations” at Scarlett and Jane this Wednesday, April 27, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m..

I confess, I didn’t know the Jane Station will be elevated, but Metrolinx says:

An elevated station structure would be wider than the guideway to accommodate the needed passenger space and would also have a larger at-grade footprint to function as station entrances.

Metrolinx will also share the results of their survey about the elevated section of track that will cut through the parks at Eglinton Flats.


The city will be hosting a community meeting for the “Picture Mount Dennis Planning Framework Study” on Thursday, April 28, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m..

The study will shape the development of Mount Dennis for years to come. It is

a comprehensive vision for the future based on the input of current residents, businesses, local services and non-profit organizations and Indigenous partners. It seeks to protect what the community values about their neighborhood in Mount Dennis today, establish the parameters for new growth to fit into this context and capitalize on new investment to benefit the current and future population

Other park concerns

Metrolinx’s September 28 meeting about the Eglinton West LRT raised several concerns. Regular readers will know that Metrolinx is planning a raised train through and above Fergy Brown Park. They are also planning a new, longer access road and “extraction shaft and portal” through what appears to be a stand of trees on park land.

Image from Metrolinx

My interpretation. Obvs, I’m not a cartographer.
From Metrolinx