Mayor Jim Watson’s office put together a folder of information for the Sun when we sat down with him and other city officials recently to discuss LRT.
Included in the package, curiously, was a history of the Toronto subway. The Toronto Transit Commission has a web page on milestones with all the significant dates.
The Yonge subway line in Toronto, between Union and Eglington stations, opened in 1954. About a decade later the University Ave. extension opened, and a decade after that the subway was extended to York Mills. The first increment of the Bloor-Danforth line opened in 1966 and east-west extensions went on for the next 14 years.
Watson’s message by providing the Toronto information is, as he’s said, “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” With all this talk recently of extending LRT west past Tunney’s Pasture and east into Orléans, Watson has been trying to keep focus on the task at hand, building 12.5 km of rail across the core.
It’s a sobering thought that young workers who live outside the greenbelt might never ride LRT to work downtown in their careers. Depending on municipal affordability and funding from other governments, the Tunney’s Pasture-Blair line could be the LRT line for years and years.