Light Rail Expands in Toronto

New light rail projects are taking off in the Toronto area. A new 15km line will be operational by 2013, but the city is still trying to raise funds to replace its aging streetcar stock.
May 18, 2009, 1pm PDT | Nate Berg
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"Toronto's request for two-thirds of the $1.23 billion needed to buy 204 new streetcars is still under consideration, politicians told reporters at the TTC's Harvey shops, where machinists fashion the parts to eke more life out of the deteriorating 30-year-old vehicles.

The new Sheppard route, which will run east about 15 kilometres from the Don Mills subway to Meadowvale Rd., is the third proposed light rail line to the suburbs to receive funding. But it will be the first built. Construction is expected to begin in the fall on a stretch from McCowan to Neilson Rd., for completion by 2013. The line, which will require 35 light rail vehicles (LRVs), is expected to carry 20 million riders a year by 2021. Ottawa has agreed to pay one-third of the $950 million cost, with the province picking up the remainder.

Last month, Queen's Park announced $7.2 billion for light rail lines running along Eglinton and Finch Ave. W., and to refurbish the Scarborough RT.

The Sheppard line will create thousands of construction jobs, Harper said. 'The state-of-the-art light rail cars that will eventually roll up and down the Sheppard line will be built by Canadian workers at Bombardier.'"

Thanks to Reconnecting America

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Published on Saturday, May 16, 2009 in The Toronto Star
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