Toronto City Council approves five-stop SmartTrack stations plan
Toronto City Hall is seen in this undated photo.
Published Tuesday, February 2, 2021 9:25PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, February 3, 2021 10:17AM EST
Toronto City Council has formally approved a scaled-back version of Mayor John Tory's SmartTrack stations plan.
The five stop plan will cost an estimated $1.463 billion and is expected to be completed by 2026.
While Tory's initial SmartTrack plan imagined 22 new rapid stops along the existing Go Transit corridors, the plan has evolved significantly due to other changes in the GO network and new subway projects being built in the city.
The updated plans include stops at St. Clair-Old Weston, Finch-Kennedy, King-Liberty, Bloor-Lansdowne and East Harbour.
In a joint statement, Tory and Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney said that when signed, the amended "Ontario-Toronto Agreement in Principle" will mark a full endorsement of the plan by the city and the province.
"Today's Council vote and the intent to sign this revised agreement form the foundation for our continued partnership and represents an important step towards getting this plan into action, putting shovels in the ground and building these priority stations as soon as possible for the people of Toronto,” the statement read.
It went on to say that the new Ontario Line and the Scarborough subway extension will provide better service for residents than two SmartTrack stations that were cut from the plan — Gerrard-Carlaw and Lawrence-Kennedy.
“The revised scope also includes the addition of the Bloor-Lansdowne Station. These changes and the overall SmartTrack Stations Program build on capacity and convenience for commuters as Toronto's transit needs continue to evolve,” the statement said.
It added that GTA commuters will finally get “the transit they deserve – an integrated, modern and efficient network that expands across the region."
While the plan passed at council, some critics have said SmartTrack shifts some of the station costs onto the city where those costs would likely have been covered by the province as part of GO improvements.