Select press given a chance to see the progress at the underground light rail transit station that will soon be a vital mobility hub for a busy part of the city.
Steps away from Toronto’s Ontario Science Centre, where visitors explore interactive experiences, the media had the chance to discover a whole new world underground.
Beneath the intersection of Don Mills and Eglinton Avenue East, are two long light rail transit (LRT) portals – each 400 metres long – that will guide trains in-and-out of what will soon be Science Centre Station.
It’s one of the 25 stops on the 19-kilometre route of Line 5 – or simply, the Eglinton Crosstown.
Media were given the chance today to see the significant progress of the station. Work began in 2016 and excavation for the station concourse, platform, and entrances are now all complete.
According to Nick Britten, the Superintendent from Crosslinx Transit Solution, in charge of the construction of Science Centre Station, the biggest challenge for him and his crew has been dealing with construction – Don Mills and Eglinton is one of the busiest intersections in the city.
“The traffic has been switched over from one side of the road to the other eight times due to shoring and excavation,” Britten said.
Despite the traffic woes, there has been lots of progress thanks to a unique construction technique. The Science Centre Station is being constructed using the cut-and-cover method. That means the excavation was started, and then covered with wooden decking, allowing vehicles to travel above on the decking while excavation and construction continues underneath.
“The cut and cover method allows for work to happen in multiple areas – to have an opening from the top, makes it easier to feed material in and out,” said Britten.
The main entrance will be adjacent to the Ontario Science Centre and will have access from both the north and south sides of the building.
Once complete, the station will include an off-street bus terminal with seven bus bays for TTC buses with on-street bus connections.
A pedestrian tunnel will allow future transit riders to seamlessly connect from the bus terminal to the Science Centre Station without having to step outside. Track installation for the LRV starts in December.
“When I see the pictures of where we were at this time last year and where we are now, it’s leaps and bounds,” said Britten, who adds the construction for Science Centre Station is on schedule.
The Eglinton Crosstown is expected to be completed by September 2021
Want to get a better idea of what the station will look like once complete? Check out this virtual tour:
Want to learn more about Science Centre Station? Click here.
Story by Nitish Bissonauth, Metrolinx Bilingual Spokesperson, Media Relations and Issues Specialist.