Metrolinx construction is preparing the line for frequent two-way, all-day service. Let’s bring you up to speed on what’s different along the line and where it’s all leading.
If you live anywhere along the Stouffville rail corridor, you may have seen various Metrolinx construction notices and sites and wondered what was happening.
Work is underway to develop the Stouffville line into a rapid transit network that will take you not just to and from downtown Toronto but will connect you with surrounding communities – part of what Metrolinx has dubbed the ‘network effect’.
GO Expansion means the Stouffville line will ultimately offer frequent, electrified train service in both directions, with trains every 15 minutes or better, as well as access to transit connections.
Check out some recent changes along the Stouffville line:
Work on adding a second track to the rail corridor between Kennedy and Unionville GO Stations is advancing through a number of projects. Along the corridor, infrastructure is being upgraded to allow for a second track. Most recently, two culverts and bridges over them have been constructed on the West Highland Creek (north of Lawrence Avenue, which will allow for double tracking the line at this location). You can see in the image above that the culvert and bridge are designed to carry trains above the West Highland Creek without disturbing the water flow. The temporary access shown in the picture will be removed, the creek will be re-established, and the adjacent lands will be naturalized. If you’re in the area, you may also have noticed that more than 1,250 metres of noise wall have been installed. These walls are one of the ways Metrolinx is mitigating sound from the corridor in surrounding areas.
At Kennedy GO Station, teams have completed the installation of 60 tons of structural steel which will form the entrance to the GO building. There will be four entrances at Kennedy GO Station, and all will be accessible. The Stouffville GO service is just one of the options available at the emerging Kennedy transit hub. Customers will be able to get to Kennedy Station in several ways, including the Eglinton Crosstown line, which will operate as the TTC’s Line 5 Eglinton and will offer accessible service at every station and stop, from Kennedy to Mount Dennis.
There is lots of important work going on that customers may never see.
Less Salt and More Grip
The image above, from Unionville Station, shows the system that melts snow and ice at the platform level to maintain safe walking conditions. This also reduces the need for salt or other corrosive materials on the platforms during winter months. Salt can also damage the rails over time, so less salt on the platform means less salt makes its way to the rail corridor, which is another positive. Once the system is installed, crews will pour concrete to form the platform. The system is being installed at the east and west platform and both are expected to be complete by the end of this year.
Further up the line at Milliken, crews are doing some important work that will help behind the scenes.
As the station is built, Metrolinx is installing all of the services that are required today and into the future.
The rail corridor raceway provides the capacity to expand operations in the future. The conduits (piping) shown in the above photo are left empty and available for additional utilities to be installed in the future. After the concrete pour, crews will install the site-specific utilities, backfill the area and then build the new platform on top.
Something you will see is all the work that has been completed at Agincourt GO Station.
The new building (above) is nearing completion. Crews are installing aluminum composite material panels on the exterior of the building, completing window and door installations and working on interior furnishings, lighting and signage. The old station building was demolished because it conflicted with construction of the new west side train platform. In case you missed it, see the video of the old Agincourt GO building coming down here.
Construction at the new Lincolnville GO Station is well underway. The track has been resurfaced (shown above) to ensure riders can suitably access the train from the proposed platform. The machine pictured is called a regulator and it distributes the ballast (the small rocks under the tracks) evenly to provide more stability and prevent settlement under rails and switches. Track structure has been renewed with new ballast material, along with new concrete ties.
Also at Lincolnville GO, construction has started on the mini-platform, and work is happening on the site’s services (storm water and sanitary systems). You can read more about the improved Lincolnville GO Station here.
As Metrolinx continues to expand service on the Stouffville line, GO Transit becomes better, faster and easier. This means more frequent service in the middle of day, and on evenings and weekends.
By Rosie Hales and Teresa Ko, Metrolinx senior communications advisors