Three Ontario Line Stations to Host Transit-Oriented Communities

Last week, Metrolinx released its early-stage plans for stations on the western end of the future Ontario Line, a new rapid-transit line through Toronto extending between Exhibition Place and the intersection of Don Mills Road and Eglinton Avenue East.

Aerial photo showing three sites for transit-oriented communities near Exhibition StationAerial photo showing three sites for transit-oriented communities near Exhibition Station. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

Later in the week, Infrastructure Ontario (IO) announced it had submitted proposals to the City of Toronto for transit-oriented communities near each of those three western stations.

Aerial rendering of the proposed Dufferin site near Exhibition StationDraft aerial view of the proposed Dufferin site near Exhibition Station. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

According to the Government of Ontario,

“Transit-oriented communities (TOC) are part of the government’s plan to build new, sustainable transit. TOC will enhance [rapid-transit projects] by placing more housing and jobs near or at transit stations [on] the routes of the province’s four priority subway projects. This will increase transit ridership and reduce traffic congestion.

“The TOC approach provides real opportunities to build vibrant, higher density, mixed-use communities that are connected to transit stations.

“By working with third-parties to integrate transit and community development, TOC will make commuting easier and faster—bringing more jobs and more housing closer to transit. TOCs will also reduce traffic congestion, reduce emissions and build integrated, accessible communities that will benefit future and current residents.”

Rendering of proposed Dufferin site near Exhibition StationDraft concept of the public space at theproposed Dufferin St. site at Exhibition Station. Image, Metrolinx

IO is proposing three properties near Exhibition Station for Ontario to develop as transit-oriented communities:

  • 153 Dufferin Street and the west end of the station site;
  • 7 Fraser Avenue, just north of the site; and
  • properties on Atlantic Avenue, beside the north entrance/exit for the station.

Rendering of proposed Jefferson Avenue site near Exhibition StationDraft concept of the proposed Jefferson Avenue site near Exhibition Station. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

In a news release, IO explains, “The proposal would transform Exhibition Station into a connected transit hub with new housing, office, and retail space that would support approximately 2,300 jobs. Transit riders will be able to connect to GO Transit, TTC services, and the future Ontario Line subway, making it more convenient to get to this popular destination for sporting events, concerts, and other attractions, as well as the growing Liberty Village community.”

Rendering of proposed King-Bathurst Station siteDraft concept of proposed King-Bathurst Station site. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

IO claims that the future growth potential for the King-Bathurst area depends on a transit station that will serve the surrounding neighbourhood and connect to TTC streetcars and rapid-transit service along the Ontario Line. It states, “The proposed station site will add more housing and office space to the area, while retaining heritage buildings and structures and the character of this vibrant neighbourhood.”

Rendering of proposed King-Bathurst Station siteDraft concept of proposed King-Bathurst Station site. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

Two sites—both heritage buildings—would support station infrastructure and a TOC at the intersection of King Street West and Bathurst Street:

  • 663 King Street West on the southeast corner of the intersection; and
  • 668 King Street West on the northeast corner.

Rendering of proposed Queen-Spadina Station siteDraft concept of proposed Queen-Spadina Station site. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

The proposed Queen-Spadina Station site will add more housing and retail space for businesses. IO has designated two sites for TOC at this intersection:

  • 165 Spadina Avenue on the northeast corner – a heritage structure; and
  • 443 Queen Street West on the southwest corner.

Rendering of proposed Queen-Spadina Station siteDraft concept of proposed Queen-Spadina Station site. Image, Infrastructure Ontario

After City of Toronto staff have finished reviewing the early proposals for these properties, IO and the City will host public meetings to consult with members of the public about their plans. The meetings likely take place this Winter.

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