January 30, 2018 Update - I have obtained a copy of Metrolinx's conceptual design and layout which outlines the existing and new corridor, pathway and parkland. Please click here (large PDF) to download it.
Metrolinx recently hosted a community meeting to share their plans to add a fourth track on the Kitchener GO Rail Corridor, which forms the western border of Ward 18. As part of the meeting, they also outlined impacts and proposed improvements to the West Toronto Railpath and Bloor GO Station.
In order to accommodate the fourth track, there are sections of the Railpath that Metrolinx is proposing to narrow, with the most significant section from just north of where the Henderson Brewery and Drake Commissary is to Ernest Avenue. The pavement width of the trail would remain the same but would have to be shifted in places, resulting in some areas with less green space. Please click here (large PDF) for a copy of their presentation from the meeting.
As Metrolinx was developing their plans, the City worked together with Metrolinx to ensure that they significantly reduced the amount of land needed.
The Railpath is a cherished asset in our community and disruption from construction will never be easy but there are also some positive aspects of the plan. Some of these include:
- A land swap so that the City can acquire the necessary land to extend the Railpath southwards;
- Green Walls that our community has been advocating for years;
- An underground connection via an elevator and stairs to Bloor GO Station and Dundas West TTC Station from Randolph Ave;
- A new park and other features.
Throughout this process I will be vigilant and work with the Friends of the West Toronto Railpath and stakeholders to ensure that the impacts are as minimal as possible and that there is a long-term benefit for the West Toronto Railpath and our community as a whole.