Don Mills LRT

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The Don Mills LRT was a proposed light rail line in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. It was part of the Transit City proposal announced March 16, 2007, to be operated by the Toronto Transit Commission. It was expected to cost approximately $675 million, with construction to begin in 2012, and an expected opening in 2016. It would've been the fifth of the seven Transit City lines to be complete after the Sheppard East LRT, Etobicoke-Finch West LRT, Waterfront West LRT, and Eglinton Crosstown LRT lines.

Mayor Rob Ford cancelled the line after taking office in December 2010.[1] However, this decision was never taken to City Council for approval. The line's status remains uncertain.

Route layout[edit]

The Don Mills LRT line would run for 17.6 km, estimated to account for 21.2 million trips in 2021.

Bloor-Danforth to Overlea Boulevard[edit]

The section south of Overlea Boulevard has been debated for a few reasons. There are two main options with subsets of choices for the route to start at Bloor-Danforth. The line must either cross over the Don Valley via the Millwood Bridge (which will need structural work before it can support such a line), or ascend from the valley via Millwood Road, Redway Road, and the Bayview Avenue extension. If the line crosses the valley, it faces significant obstacles. None of the north-south thoroughfares in East York are wide enough for an LRT right of way. Thus, the three options are to tunnel under Broadview Avenue or Pape Avenue from Danforth and the subway. With these routes, stops would be located underneath major crossroads. If the line ascends from the valley, there are two problems. First, Redway Road does not extend all the way to Bayview Avenue yet, and would need to be extended, likely as a streetcar-only route. Also, the connection to Bloor is troublesome because of the vertical distance. The LRT would need to negotiate the ramps connecting the Don Valley Parkway to Bloor Street in order to ascend to a reasonable height for a connection to the Bloor-Danforth subway. These options would provide an express service from Bloor Street to Overlea Boulevard. The line then heads east on Overlea Boulevard through a dense tract of East York. Overlea has a wide median, easily allowing for a tramline or LRT.


Overlea Boulevard to Steeles Avenue[edit]

A significant portion of the line will run in a median on Don Mills Road, from Overlea Boulevard to Steeles Avenue at the northern tip of Toronto. Stops will be located every 660 m, or three stops every 2 km (distance between arteries in Toronto.) As Don Mills is mostly a very wide road, this portion is fairly straightforward.

Potential extensions[edit]

These segments are not actually part of Transit City. They may be constructed at the same time the rest of the line is built or later.

Bloor/Danforth to Downtown[edit]

It has long been proposed as a subway line, the Downtown Relief Line, and is a likely extension of the Don Mills tramline or LRT. This segment would be built as a subway, however, without level crossings, to allow for more frequent operation of units.

Steeles Avenue to Highway 7[edit]

The Don Mills LRT had long been conceived to continue north into York Region from the currently proposed terminus at Steeles Avenue. This extension takes the Don Mills LRT from the Toronto/York Region border north to Highway 7 in Markham/Richmond Hill via Don Mills Road and, from John Street northward, Leslie Street. It is highly likely that the LRT would then be extended further north to Major Mackenzie Drive, such that it would meet a potential BRT/LRT corridor along Major Mackenzie Drive, as Metrolinx has identified one to be needed within its 25-year plan.

Proposed stops/stations[edit]

The TTC has not indicated stop spacing on the Don Mills line yet. This list does not include potential extensions of the Don Mills LRT. The distances between these stops varies, but they are likely candidates, from south to north:

Bayview option[edit]

East York options (via Pape Avenue or Broadview Avenue)[edit]

On Overlea Boulevard[edit]

  • Millwood Road
  • Thorncliffe Park Drive West
  • Thorncliffe Park Drive East
  • Don Mills Road

On Don Mills Road[edit]

Proposed Transit City LRT lines[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]