Nov. 3, 2019

Dundas West vs Exhibition Place Alignment

So, after much debate on social media, proponents of the Ontario Line have convinced me that the Exhibition Place alignment of the Ontario Place Line has merit - There are many ways to skin a cat, but I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt and agree that there is more to the Ontario Line than just a spagetti line doodle on a napkin

I can tell that some of these proponents are much more involved in this project than they let on - I'm not going to name names (there are several) but, during some heated exchange on Facebook, it was quite apparent that they knew details that the general public could not possibly be aware of - Some of the key points raised were:

- The west does not need relief as much as the east - (I agree that this may be the case at the moment, but proper transit for the west is also long overdue and should be planned now in conjunction with and not in isolation from this proposed Ontario Line)
- The terminus of the Ontario Line does not have to end at Exhibition Place and could be extended to Dundas West Station in the future - (I don't buy into this argument - My position is still that the most direct route is the best route, and that this Ontario Line West/"Spagetti Line" should be studied in more detail - They should put the Ontario Line West portion (Osgoode to Exhibition Place) on hold and take time for in depth studies to ensure that it fits in with/and does not hamper future transit development)
- The Ontario Line will interconnect with GO and provide relief for Union Station - (This is the main reason I support the argument for the Ontario Line - As well as relief and servicing entirely new areas, it will provide new options and necessary redundancy)
- It will open new areas up for redevelopment; particularly at Ontario Place - (I'm not particularly fond of forever growing and increasing density (both increase our carbon footprint); but this would be the case which ever alignment was chosen - I am however very concerned and leary about what the province's intentions are for Ontario Place)
- The challenges presented by the Garrison Creek Sewers are not an issue - According to these proponents of the Ontario Line; the sewers are quite shallow, and there is plenty of space between Strachan Avenue and Exhibition Place Stadium to overcome the issue quite easily

Nobody has commented on my concern as to how they are going to bend and twist the line (and a 28' diameter tunnel), along Bathurst between Queen-Spadina and Ordinance Park - I'll just assume that they know what they're doing and have this figured out

I am not going to advocate for a Dundas West spur line off the Ontario Line at Queen-Bathurst - The problem with this spur is that it would mean interlining with the Ontario Line at Queen-Bathurst and the connection for it would have to be planned and built now (to do this at some future point would be virtually impossible and prohibitively expensive) - I don't have any faith at all that this Ontario government has the will or the foresight to do this at this time

Although I still hope this Exhibition Place leg of the Ontario Line falls through, I am going to embrace it for the moment and think about future transit with this Ontario Line in place