Bike Share has conducted their annual expansion, branching further north in our Ward and providing more stations in the highest use communities. In Ward 9, we have 9 new stations:
Residents have contacted our office requesting we review a loading zone on St. Helens Avenue. Following these requests, I issued a review of the street, to identify new spaces for residents to park. The result of this study was that by switching parking to the west side of the street, we could secure 23additional parking spaces.
The expansion of the Bloor West Bikeway is an important cycling route, connecting people from Runnymede Road into the heart of the city. While this project was originally scheduled for 2022, I worked with the City's cycling staff and my Councillor colleagues along the route to expedite the construction. This project is nearing completion and creates a safe, connected and separated bikeway. I want to thank the community and local businesses for their input through the extensive consultation processes to make sure local needs were taken into account.
SmartTrack/GO Stations Update
The City of Toronto, Metrolinx and the TTC are undertaking planning and design work as part of the SmartTrack and GO Regional Express Rail Transit expansion program. This project will add enhanced service at 5 stations to move and connect our community, including 3 SmartTrack stations at West Queen West/Liberty Village, Bloor GO/UP Station and St Clair West-Keele, in addition to the new GO Stations at Bloor-Lansdowne and at Caledonia & Eglinton.
Earlier this month, a series of public meeting were held to present revised station designs and an update on this important transit expansion project. I am also happy to share that at the meeting, a preliminary concept for the bridge connecting the Davenport Diamond Greenway and Earlscourt Park was also presented. You can view the complete slide deck and images from the West stations meeting by clicking here.
As a daily transit rider, I know firsthand the challenges and frustration many residents face on their commutes. That is why I have been working to improve transit here in our community. Earlier this year, I wrote to the TTC Chair about the Lansdowne Bus and the need to improve service due to the increased population and ridership experienced as a result of developments.
I am happy to share that in April 2018, more service will be added on Lansdowne in the afternoon peak period to reduce crowding and improve frequency.
With major accessibility upgrades at Lansdowne Station starting in 2019, I have been advocating for the installation of an overhead canopy on the east side of Lansdowne Ave. This will add better weather protection for the thousands of daily northbound bus riders waiting to finish their journey home.
I am pleased to let you know that the TTC has responded to our request to bundle these important projects together and has now included this overhead canopy in their project.
We also approved in the 2018 Budget funding for more bus service on Dupont and Dufferin St to address growing ridership, development and residents' crowding concerns along the route. The TTC is also buying new buses and building a bus garage to support the approved Dufferin Express Bus Service coming in 2021.
These TTC service enhancements will build on our efforts to expand our rapid transit network with 5 approved SmartTrack/GO RER Stations to service Davenport. We need to continue this momentum to invest and find ways to improve service. I look forward to sharing further updates with you!
At the latest Davenport Diamond Community Advisory Committee Meeting, Metrolinx presented their Public Realm Plan, Lighting Concept and Integrated Art Strategy as part of their work on advancing detailed design of the project.
You can find the slides from these presentations and other project details on their project website at: http://www.metrolinx.com/en/regionalplanning/rer/davenport.aspx
If you would like to share your feedback with Metrolinx on the Public Ream Plan, you can do so via e-mail to [email protected] by 5pm on July 10, 2017.
I am continuing to work with community members and other elected officials to advocate for the community requirements that we established together to ensure that our community benefits from this project. In addition to the new station at Bloor and Lansdowne, we have been making steady progress on many of the other community requirements. I look forward to sharing more information on this as it becomes available.
Metrolinx has indicated that they will be holding another public community consultation meeting this fall. Once I have more details on this meeting, I will be sure to share this with you as well.
Metrolinx is also undertaking the Transit Project Assessment Process (Environmental Assessments) for both the entire Barrie Corridor (click here) and the electrification of the GO Train network (click here) and you can click on the links under each item for more information.
As always, you can view my previous updates on the Davenport Diamond project by clicking here.
In May, City Council voted to advance planning and design work on the Relief Line and the Yonge North subway projects. As part of this work, Council approved a motion I moved at Executive Committee to direct staff to report back to Council with strategies to maximise the potential for mixed-income residential development as part of the planning and design of stations for the Relief Line and Yonge Subway Extension.
As we build out our transit network, it is critically important that we maximize the opportunities available to create new transit-integrated housing and communities for everyone in our city.. This means ensuring that we are taking advantage of the station lands and the surrounding areas and are working with our public and private partners to create inclusive communities.
For more information on advancing the Relief Line and Yonge Subway Extension Project, please click here.
At the December 8, 2016 Metrolinx Board Meeting, the preliminary concepts for the new SmartTrack and GO Regional Express Rail (RER) stations across Toronto were unveiled. The concepts include those for the approved Bloor-Lansdowne GO Train station and the West Queen West/Liberty Village SmartTrack/GO RER station.
It is important to note that these concepts are highly preliminary and that continued study and work on these stations will likely result in changes to their design. I look forward to working with you and Metrolinx throughout the design process as we work to expand transit for our community.
To view the preliminary design concept for the West Queen West/Liberty Village SmartTrack Station and the Bloor-Lansdowne GO Station, please click here.
I met with Toronto MPs at City Hall last week with Mayor Tory and TTC Chair Colle in order to discuss housing and transit issues. We had a very productive discussion including the role that the federal government can play to help us build and maintain the transit that many of us rely on and to deliver results in all areas of the housing file.
Tackling the issues that our City faces requires long-term partnerships with all levels of government and these discussions are important to ensure everyone understands the challenges and potential solutions to the problems we face. I look forward to continued discussions with my federal colleagues and look forward to the federal government's plans for their next phase of infrastructure funding.
City launches major re
Earlier this month, City Council voted to move forward on expanding our transit network. Together with the Province, the City is advancing SmartTrack which will provide Eglinton West LRT service to Pearson Airport and six new stations along existing GO lines including one in West Queen West. Our community will also receive expanded transit access through a new station at Bloor and Lansdowne on the GO Barrie Line.
As part of the Bloor-Lansdowne station plan, I gained the support of my Council colleagues to ensure that the multi-use trail that is proposed as part of the Davenport Diamond project be extended from Bloor St W to the West Toronto Railpath at Dundas St W. This section of the proposed multi-use trail will be included in the Environmental Assessment process for the station. With multi-use trail connections to the north and south, this new station has the potential to become an important transportation hub for our community.
At the southern end of Ward 18, our community will have a SmartTrack station which will alleviate some stress on the King and Queen streetcars. The West Queen West Station concept also identifies the proposed King High Line project and that additional consideration should be made to allow for pedestrians and cyclists to cross the rail corridor and provide additional access to the station.
The SmartTrack plan will include through service at Union Station so that trains from the west end will have a one-seat connection to Scarborough and points in-between including the proposed East Harbour station where there will be a large amount of development on the Unilever site in the east-end of downtown Toronto. As Toronto moves forward with these projects and others to expand our transit network, I will continue to keep you updated.