Back to school safety for construction on LRT projects

Check out this guide to staying safe during construction on three light rail transit (LRT) projects.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year.

No, not the holidays – it’s back to school season.

As parents across the region breathe a sigh of relief, Metrolinx wants to refresh everyone on some of the work undertaken on the three LRT projects in the works now.

Specifically on what drivers and pedestrians can expect – whether they’re dropping kids off, going to school/work, or simply commuting through construction zones.

While lots of progress has been made on the LRT projects, there’s still more work to go.

Here’s what to expect:

Eglinton Crosstown LRT

As the Eglinton Crosstown project progresses, many intersections and stretches of road are seeing lanes, sidewalks and crosswalks return to normal.

Nonetheless, there are still many places still under active construction, such as Mount Pleasant Station and Eglinton Station.

When in these areas, drivers must continue to exercise extra caution and patience.  

Safety signage at the bustling intersection of Yonge and Eglinton in Toronto. (Metrolinx photo)

Outside of construction, vehicle testing is ongoing across the line.

While testing on the western half is largely underground and out of sight, commuters east of Brentcliffe Road will regularly see light rail vehicles (LRVs) travelling down the dedicated centre median of the road.

Remember to obey all traffic signals and to never approach or try to touch an LRV in testing.

Finch West LRT

Construction is in full swing on the Finch West LRT, including concrete pours and rail installation across much of the 11 km route, along with overhead electrical installation.

In these sections, lanes are reduced and traffic is slowed to allow for construction to progress safely.

When driving on Finch, keep an eye out for machinery on the move, and be sure to watch for flaggers, signs and signals that may be in different locations.

An billboard along the Finch West LRT letting people know that vehicle testing is underway. (Metrolinx photo)

In a 1.8 km stretch between Sentinel Road and York Gate Boulevard, median construction is complete and commuters can see LRVs testing daily.

As with the Eglinton Crosstown, do not attempt to approach these LRVs at any point during their testing exercises.

Hazel McCallion (Hurontario) LRT

Much of Hurontario Street is now under construction for the Hazel McCallion LRT project with utility, guideway and elevated guideway work.

Crews will soon start installing track along Hurontario Street.

It’s important to obey all traffic and pedestrian signage along the route as rolling intersection closures take place. Motorists are reminded to slow down when navigating these areas.

Image shows traffic signs.
Construction is coming along, but Metrolinx is asking people to be careful when near work sites. (Metrolinx photo)

Construction progress is exciting, but it’s not without risk.

As the school season begins again and streets become busier, Metrolinx is asking everyone to do their part.

By exercising extra caution within construction zones, everyone can go home safe at the end of each day.

Story by Alex Iantorno, Metrolinx communications senior advisor