The federal government will contribute $500 million in funding to a series of major capacity improvements planned for Bloor-Yonge Station.
The City of Toronto already approved its share of funding for the $1.5 billion overhaul as part of its 2020 budget process but on Friday Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland joined Mayor John Tory and a handful of provincial and federal cabinet ministers for a press conference at the TTC’s Davisville Yard to highlight the federal investment, which is being made using dollars already earmarked for Toronto through the public transit stream of Ottawa’s Investing in Canada Infrastructure Program.
The Ontario government is also investing $449.2 million in the capacity improvements. The city’s share of the funding is $564 million.
For details about the scope of the planned work follow this link.
“This is the single biggest busiest subway station in the city and therefore the country, it's one of the busiest stations in North America and this investment is really going to make the lives of a lot of people who live in my riding and across this wonderful city much, much better,” Freeland, who represents University-Rosedale in the House of Commons, said. “The investments we're making today will be critical to the future of Toronto's economy and the daily lives of hundreds of thousands of Torontonians. They will help to build a transit system that is reliable for everyone, accessible for everyone and safe for everyone.”
The improvements planned for Bloor-Yonge Station include a second platform to enhance capacity for eastbound passengers, wider platforms for both northbound and southbound commuters, as well as a new exit to Bloor Street and new escalators, elevators and stairs.
Speaking with reporters during Friday’s press conference, Mayor John Tory said that he anticipates that the work will ultimately allow for a “significant” increase in capacity along both lines 1 and 2.
“It will make a difference because it will be safer, which I think has got to be our top priority but it will make a difference as well because when you have people moving on and off the trains faster you can move more trains through the station,” he said.
The city has already surpassed the 30 per cent design threshold for the capacity improvements and hopes to begin construction in 2024.
Prior to the pandemic in 2019 a total of 210,000 riders moved through Bloor-Yonge Station every day, making it the busiest station in Toronto.
The TTC expects that number to increase to 280,000 riders per day by 2029.