Metrolinx shares an update on the elevated section of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension

Teams are one step closer to building the elevated part of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension and the results of a recently released survey on this important part of the project are in. We’ve got all the details.

With tunnelling now underway on the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension at Renforth Drive, attention is turning again to the elevated section of the line.  

Once built, the route will extend the Eglinton Crosstown light rail transit (LRT) project another 9.2 kilometres farther west along Eglinton Avenue West to Mississauga.

The route is mostly underground, tunnelled between Renforth Drive to just west of Scarlett Road, where it will emerge and transition to the elevated section.

The elevated section will be about 1.5 kilometres in length, running along the north side of Eglinton Avenue West before heading back underground east of Jane Street.

Preliminary design rendering of the elevated section of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension.
Preliminary design rendering of the elevated section of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension. (Metrolinx image)

Request for Proposals

The search for the team to deliver the elevated section started late last year. Last week, Metrolinx invited the shortlisted bidders to submit formal proposals to design and build it.

The work under this contract will be focussed on the structure, including piers and foundations and connections to the portals on either side of the guideway.

The design and construction of the stations along the elevated section, at Scarlett-Eglinton and at Jane-Eglinton, will be delivered under a different contract.

Eight teams submitted their qualifications and three were shortlisted to submit a proposal. The three teams are:

Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc.

  • Applicant Lead: Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc.
  • Design Team Members: Entuitive, CONSOR and TYPSA Inc.
  • Construction Prime Team Members: Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc.

EllisDon Civil Ltd.

  • Applicant Lead: EllisDon Civil Ltd
  • Design Team Members: Aecom Canada Ltd
  • Construction Prime Team Members: EllisDon Civil Ltd

Westlink Partners

  • Applicant Lead: Dragados Canada Inc. and Amico Infrastructures Inc
  • Design Team Members: Hatch Ltd
  • Construction Prime Team Members: Dragados Canada Inc. and Amico Infrastructures Inc.

“We’re excited to reach another important milestone for the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension and thrilled to invite these experienced teams to prepare proposals to deliver these critical pieces of the project,” said Joshua Engel-Yan, Metrolinx program sponsor for the project.

“Every milestone we reach gets us closer to bringing higher-quality rapid transit to transit riders in Mississauga and Etobicoke, and to people across the region.”

Survey results

In March, Metrolinx released an online survey asking respondents to share their thoughts about potential design options for the elevated section and the public spaces below it.

The survey was open from Mar. 2 to Mar. 31, and more than 700 people from the community provided their feedback.

Preliminary design rendering from the survey showing the ECWE elevated section
Preliminary design rendering from the survey. Survey respondents were asked to provide feedback on the lighting strategy, among other aspects of the elevated section. (Metrolinx image)

The survey asked participants to rank the importance of the design principles, and to share their thoughts on how to enhance the area around the portals and underneath the elevated section, as well as the guardrails and lighting.

The responses showed a strong preference for protecting parkland and recreational spaces and protecting and adding vegetation and trees in the area under the elevated section to allow better integration to the surrounding park space.

This green theme percolated through many of the questions in the survey.

Looking at the portals, the majority of respondents preferred that the areas on either end of the elevated section be enhanced with vegetation. There was also a high level of support for patterned glass around the portals, which would provide an opportunity to view the trains.

Similarly, for the area beneath the elevated section, the most rated the options for planting trees, low-growth and pollinator habitats, Indigenous plantings or community gardens as most appealing, with opportunities for open space, public seating and other creative features also ranked highly.

Responses to the guardrail strategy were mostly positive, specifically the colour and height of the guardrail, which allows passengers to take in the view. There were some concerns about how the material will age over time and whether a more neutral colour would better blend into the surrounding areas.

The lighting strategy was similarly supported, and comments focused on the need to balance pedestrian and cyclist safety with avoiding light pollution in the area. Some comments also suggested having lighting that could change colour, like the CN Tower.

This valuable feedback will be used by the project team as they prepare detailed designs.

What’s Next

On April 27, Metrolinx will host a virtual open house to share more information about the elevated stations and walk through the survey results in greater detail. Visit Metrolinx Engage to register.

For more information about the project, visit the project website or follow on the project on Twitter @EglintonWestEXT

**Editor’s Note – story was updated to include the design team from the Aecon Infrastructure Management Inc. team.

Story by Kimberly Murphy, Metrolinx communications senior advisor, subways