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Preliminary construction for new Eglinton Crosstown line to begin this summer - InsideToronto

June 9, 2011
Rahul Gupta
Inside Toronto

Preliminary construction for the new Eglinton Crosstown line in the community of Mount Dennis will begin this summer, a spokesperson for the TTC said this week.

David Nagler confirmed Tuesday evening to an audience of community members gathered at the Mount Dennis Legion hall that work on the long-awaited LRT line, will begin in the area within the next couple of months.

The planned $8.2-billion line is expected to run along Eglinton from Jane Street or Black Creek Drive to Scarborough city centre. Nineteen kilometres of the track will be housed below the street, necessitating the construction of a tunnel.

The first stage of construction will see a portion of Keelesdale Park transformed into a staging area to house materials as well as provide the location for immense tunnel shafts 16 metres underneath from which tunnel boring machines will launch eastward below Eglinton Avenue.

To compensate for traffic disruptions due to the construction, Nagler said a new bridge will be constructed to provide for an alternate entrance into the park along Black Creek Drive.

Having a new entrance to the park should minimize traffic disruptions as well as ensure construction vehicles are separated from the community, said Nagler, head community relations coordinator for the TTC.

Nagler's announcement was part of a community update on transit for the residents of Mount Dennis that featured representatives from regional transit body Metrolinx as well as a panel consisting of transit advocate Steve Munro, reporter Tess Kalinowski and the Toronto Environmental Alliance's Jamie Kirpatrick.

But, for those expecting more information about the crosstown line - as well as on developments regarding the planned "mobility hub" in Mount Dennis expected to serve both the new TTC line and GO rail link to the airport and redevelopment of the former Kodak lands - came away frustrated little news was available.

"It seems like we need a communicator to communicate with a communicator," said one attendee during the presentation. "I have my doubts."

Mark Ciavarro from Metrolinx said residents could expect a more definitive update by the end of the year.

Munro, who has campaigned for public transit since the early 1970s said he had hoped for more information before the autumn provincial election but praised the decision of the TTC to install an information office in the area in the summer.

"Transit often gets a black eye, but I'm glad to see a commitment to community relations," said Munro.

Nagler said the TTC had learned its lessons from what went wrong with the recent construction of a dedicated lane for transit along St. Clair West and would ensure that the community is properly consulted about transit in the future.

He also announced a future meeting on June 30 at the York Civic Centre to be hosted by TTC chair Karen Stinz will provide a further update on the crosstown line.

For more information about the Eglinton Crosstown line, please visit www.crosstown.ttc.ca.

As originally published here: http://www.insidetoronto.com/news/local/article/1023956--preliminary-construction-for-new-eglinton-crosstown-line-to-begin-this-summer

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