Visit the Eglinton Crosstown project at the Ontario Science Centre

We open up the hidden world of tunnel boring machines. 

The best time you’ll have this holiday season, may be when you’re the most bored.

From Dec. 22 to Jan 6, the Ontario Science Centre, 770 Don Mills Rd. in Toronto, will be home to an Eglinton Crosstown light rail transit (LRT) project exhibit that will turn the world of a mega-project inside out.

Ever wonder how heavy a tunnel boring machine needs to be to dig below Canada’s biggest city?

Likely not. But the answer – equal to about 30 school buses – is pretty cool.

The down-to-earth display opens up the secret world of the mighty earth diggers, including why the machines used on the Metrolinx Crosstown dig – one of the country’s largest construction projects – each had a different name. Who would call a bore machine Dennis?

“We’re excited to show the progress that is being made on the Crosstown at the Ontario Science Centre in a fun, interactive way,” says Jamie Robinson, chief communications and public affairs officer for Metrolinx.

“This exhibit provides a unique opportunity to answer questions we get about the construction or work we are doing. We chose the Ontario Science Centre to host the exhibit as it will have its own station in a short few years.”

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Visitors will learn about tunneling, as well as station construction. They can also check out a kids zone and enter for a chance to get exclusive access underground into one of the Crosstown tunnels. Guests can enter by snapping a photo at the exhibit and posting it to Twitter using the hashtag #CrosstownLRT. View the contest rules here. Winners will be drawn Friday, Jan. 18, and will be notified via direct message on Twitter.

With an expected completion date of 2021, the Eglinton Crosstown LRT will help travelers cross Toronto up to 60 per cent faster than current bus service today. It involves 25 stations, running 19 kilometres east-west across Toronto. More than 10 kilometres of that will be underground.

The Eglinton Crosstown exhibit will be located on the second floor of the Ontario Science Centre at the Carlton Cards Mezzanine. The Ontario Science Centre is open Monday – Friday from 10AM – 4PM, Saturday from 10AM – 7PM and Sunday from 10AM – 5PM. The Ontario Science Centre will be closed on December 25, 2018.

Go. You’ll really dig it.

Story by Erika D’Urbano, Metrolinx communications specialist.