Metrolinx adding evening and weekend GO train service on Lakeshore lines – Later evening service on UP Express also coming

The changes also include service to the Toronto Zoo later this spring and schedule adjustments on GO and UP. There’s also upcoming suspension of some train trips for critical construction projects, so let’s run through the details.

As riders return to GO Transit and UP Express, Metrolinx is bringing back service in phases, starting by resuming and adjusting some service starting Apr. 2.

The changes will offer more flexibility for customers going to events, work, and for reconnecting with family and friends.

The news includes the announcement of seasonal service to the Toronto Zoo on weekends and holidays, starting May 21, on GO Bus Route 96.

Here are the highlights of the service changes, with schedules available on the GO Transit website.

Lakeshore East and West Lines

  • 30-minute service or better, all day long – including on evenings and weekends on the Lakeshore West and Lakeshore East Lines
  • This is an increase from the hourly service that was in place on evenings and weekends
A GO train parked in a train yard
Trains running every half hour on the Lakeshore Lines means transit is an even better option to get to work or events. (Metrolinx image)

UP Express

  • For UP Express customers, starting Apr. 2, two additional trips in each direction at the end of the operating day will offer more late evening service. The last eastbound trip of the day now will depart Pearson Airport at 11:27 p.m. The last westbound trip of the day will depart Union Station at 11p.m.
  • Trains will continue to depart every half hour, with 25-minute travel time between Union Station and Pearson Airport
  • With these changes, eastbound UP Express schedules will also be adjusted following the completion of track work near Pearson and to accommodate upcoming track work at Union Station. Starting April 2, all trips from Pearson Airport will depart 13 minutes earlier.
  • Customers should check UP website before travelling to ensure they have the latest schedule information
UP Express train at Pearson Airport
UP Express trains will continue to depart every half hour, with 25-minute travel time between Union Station and Pearson Airport. (Metrolinx photo)

Seasonal service to the Toronto Zoo returns this year

  • Starting later this spring, on May 21, seasonal weekend service to the Toronto Zoo returns on GO Bus Route 96
  • On weekends and holidays from Victoria Day weekend to Labour Day weekend, most GO bus Route 96 trips will include a stop at the Toronto Zoo
  • Route 96Z will serve Oshawa GO, Whitby GO, Ajax GO, the Toronto Zoo, Scarborough Centre Bus Terminal, Yonge Street at Sheppard Ave., and Finch Bus Terminal
  • Starting April 2, some weekend trip times on Route 96 will depart up to 5 minutes earlier and 20 minutes later to prepare for the addition of the Toronto Zoo stop in May
A bus moves along a side road.
Taking the GO bus to the Toronto Zoo is great for families as kids under 12 ride for free (Metrolinx photo)

Other adjustments and rail trip suspensions

  • On the Barrie Line, starting Apr. 4, the last weekday northbound and southbound trips will be replaced by buses to accommodate GO Expansion construction
  • GO Train customers on the Richmond Hill and Milton Lines will experience minor schedule adjustments to better reflect travel times
  • For GO Bus customers, some bus trips will be replaced with trains and some schedules are being adjusted to connect with the returning train service, so customers accustomed to taking the bus should check schedules before they head out
  • A reminder that following a legislative change, new GO Buses added to our fleet have seatbelts. Please buckle up when seatbelts are available – it’s the law

While train service is increasing on the Lakeshore West Line, there is construction happening on Sunday April 3 and Sunday April 10 which means GO buses will replace most trains on those two days. Trains will be replaced by buses so crews can carry out important work for the Hurontario LRT near Port Credit GO – this work can only be done when trains aren’t running. Stay tuned for more information on this construction work in the coming days.

Beyond adding service, teams continue to monitor ridership on each bus and train closely to identify which train trips need extra coaches and which routes need more buses. That work to lengthen certain trips has started and will continue. Want to learn more? Just click here. And stay tuned for details about additional summer service soon, with more service details to follow for the fall.

A healthy reminder – masks continue to be mandatory on GO Transit and UP Express vehicles and inside stations. Ensure your mask properly covers your nose and chin.

And before customers set off on a journey aboard GO Transit, check the schedule here.

Story by Kate Manicom, Metrolinx communications senior advisor