Metrolinx spreading the roots of GO Expansion as spring compensation tree planting continues across the region

Lake Simcoe Region Conservation Authority (LSRCA) is helping Metrolinx plant trees as compensation for transforming rail corridors to support future expanded GO service. Find out how many trees have gone in the ground, so far.

Expanding GO service is something that benefits the entire region.

As part of that expansion, trees and vegetation are being removed along GO tracks in various parts throughout the Greater Toronto and Hamilton area.

That’s why Metrolinx is working hard with local conservation authorities to plant thousands of trees and shrubs to compensate for these removals.

Recently Metrolinx News looked at a few Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) planting sites where planting is ongoing to compensate for the trees that will be cleared to make room for faster and cleaner trains that will come with GO Expansion.

Because Metrolinx strives to plant compensation trees in every municipality where trees must be removed, the resulting partnerships with conservation authorities span right across the region. 

Now Metrolinx News travels to the other side of the GTA for a glimpse of a few active planting sites where LSRCA is helping Metrolinx lay down the foundations for GO Expansion, while making the region a greener place in the process. 

Lori McLean, an LSRCA restoration specialists planting at Rogers Reservoir in the town of East Gwillimbury. (Metrolinx photo)

Compensation planting sites include Aurora, East Gwillimbury, West Gwillimbury, Barrie, Newmarket, and King City.

A collection of saplings are starting to grow after being planted in the Aurora Community Arboretum. (Metrolinx photo)

This spring LSRCA is planting a total of 4,741 trees and 1,415 shrubs on Metrolinx’s behalf across their jurisdiction. The native species planted include Bur Oak, Silver Maple, White Pine, White Spruce, White Cedar, are more.

Paul Cottenden, a Forest Technician with LSRCA hand planting seedlings at Scanlon Creek Conservation Area in Bradford West Gwillimbury. (Metrolinx photo)

This work builds on the planting of more than 22,100 native trees and shrubs Metrolinx funded and coordinated in 2020 through various partnerships with conservation authorities.  

Stay tuned for more updates as compensation initiatives continue across the region this spring and summer in preparation for the largest transit expansion in Canadian history

For more information on Metrolinx’s vegetation compensation program, please visit  

Story by Robert Pasiak, Metrolinx communications senior advisor