Scarborough subway champions want TTC's likely route changed

News Oct 26, 2016 by Mike Adler Scarborough Mirror

Two champions of the Scarborough Subway, Brad Duguid and Glenn De Baeremaeker, both say they dislike the TTC’s likely plan for a subway alignment around Scarborough Town Centre and its preferred spot for a station.

They’ve decided to fight for what they think is a better option – called the Big Bend or Big Curve – and say Toronto Mayor John Tory is with them in insisting the TTC must study the alternative plan.

“The good news is he’s got an open mind to it, he likes the concept,” Duguid, MPP for Scarborough Centre, told members of the Glen Andrews Community Association on Monday night.

In July, Toronto Council confirmed the city will build the controversial Bloor-Danforth extension from Kennedy Station along McCowan Road to the shopping centre property.

But the TTC’s current alignment, shown to nearby residents, has the tunnel swerving east of McCowan south of Ellesmere Avenue, under homes, a plaza and a woodlot before ending at a station in what is now the mall’s eastern parking lot.

The current route is a “horrible imposition on our community,” because it requires expropriation and will bring dust, noise, and vibration to neighbourhoods south of Ellesmere for at least five years, De Baeremaeker told a meeting at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church.

“I’m now working and lobbying to stop this alignment from happening,” added De Baeremaeker, who is Tory’s lead on the subway as well as a Scarborough Centre councillor.

The Big Bend alignment was created by Lorne Ross, a retired City of Scarborough planner, who said he has been trying to sell TTC staff on its merits since May.

Instead of swerving east into the neighbourhood, the route he proposes would swerve west off McCowan, under a grocery store; it then follows an eastward curve to under the existing Scarborough Centre Station on Triton Road.

That station’s bus terminal can and should be used for the new subway, Ross said. “It’s already paid for, it’s public property, and in my opinion it works very well.”

Ross, Duguid and De Baeremaeker said Hatch, the company hired to bore the subway tunnel, believes the new station can be built from inside the tunnel, a departure from the TTC’s usual cut-and-cover construction method.

Track for the present alignment dead-ends under a Progress Avenue furniture store – a move Ross called “extraordinarily bad planning.”

The Big Bend ends its track in a field the shopping centre owns along Brimley, making that the likely site to lower tunnel-boring equipment and excavate dirt.

The subway could one day be extended west to reach the Sheppard Subway through an approved corridor, Ross said.

One possible drawback is the Big Bend would add another 280 metres of tunnel to what is already a $3.2-billion project.

Duguid, who said he met Tory on Monday and discussed Ross’s proposal, said cost comparison and engineering studies should be done before council decides.

Council’s executive committee expects a report on a preferred alignment in December.

Comparisons of different routes are slowing the subway planning down, De Baeremaeker acknowledged, “but I think it’s a good thing to do to make sure we get it right.”

The councillor, reacting to a Toronto Star article suggesting council made its July decision based on a misleading TTC briefing note, told residents subway supporters are still in a political battle against a “downtown bloc” of councillors ”trying to stop and sabotage this subway every single time that they can.”

De Baeremaeker referred to the Star story as propaganda. “They throw out numbers and numbers and will say anything,” he said.

Duguid, Ontario’s economic development minister, said he’s determined to see the subway built. “This project will be cancelled over my dead body.”

Scarborough subway champions want TTC's likely route changed

Current alignment 'a horrible imposition on our community': Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker

News Oct 26, 2016 by Mike Adler Scarborough Mirror

Two champions of the Scarborough Subway, Brad Duguid and Glenn De Baeremaeker, both say they dislike the TTC’s likely plan for a subway alignment around Scarborough Town Centre and its preferred spot for a station.

They’ve decided to fight for what they think is a better option – called the Big Bend or Big Curve – and say Toronto Mayor John Tory is with them in insisting the TTC must study the alternative plan.

“The good news is he’s got an open mind to it, he likes the concept,” Duguid, MPP for Scarborough Centre, told members of the Glen Andrews Community Association on Monday night.

In July, Toronto Council confirmed the city will build the controversial Bloor-Danforth extension from Kennedy Station along McCowan Road to the shopping centre property.

But the TTC’s current alignment, shown to nearby residents, has the tunnel swerving east of McCowan south of Ellesmere Avenue, under homes, a plaza and a woodlot before ending at a station in what is now the mall’s eastern parking lot.

The current route is a “horrible imposition on our community,” because it requires expropriation and will bring dust, noise, and vibration to neighbourhoods south of Ellesmere for at least five years, De Baeremaeker told a meeting at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church.

“I’m now working and lobbying to stop this alignment from happening,” added De Baeremaeker, who is Tory’s lead on the subway as well as a Scarborough Centre councillor.

The Big Bend alignment was created by Lorne Ross, a retired City of Scarborough planner, who said he has been trying to sell TTC staff on its merits since May.

Instead of swerving east into the neighbourhood, the route he proposes would swerve west off McCowan, under a grocery store; it then follows an eastward curve to under the existing Scarborough Centre Station on Triton Road.

That station’s bus terminal can and should be used for the new subway, Ross said. “It’s already paid for, it’s public property, and in my opinion it works very well.”

Ross, Duguid and De Baeremaeker said Hatch, the company hired to bore the subway tunnel, believes the new station can be built from inside the tunnel, a departure from the TTC’s usual cut-and-cover construction method.

Track for the present alignment dead-ends under a Progress Avenue furniture store – a move Ross called “extraordinarily bad planning.”

The Big Bend ends its track in a field the shopping centre owns along Brimley, making that the likely site to lower tunnel-boring equipment and excavate dirt.

The subway could one day be extended west to reach the Sheppard Subway through an approved corridor, Ross said.

One possible drawback is the Big Bend would add another 280 metres of tunnel to what is already a $3.2-billion project.

Duguid, who said he met Tory on Monday and discussed Ross’s proposal, said cost comparison and engineering studies should be done before council decides.

Council’s executive committee expects a report on a preferred alignment in December.

Comparisons of different routes are slowing the subway planning down, De Baeremaeker acknowledged, “but I think it’s a good thing to do to make sure we get it right.”

The councillor, reacting to a Toronto Star article suggesting council made its July decision based on a misleading TTC briefing note, told residents subway supporters are still in a political battle against a “downtown bloc” of councillors ”trying to stop and sabotage this subway every single time that they can.”

De Baeremaeker referred to the Star story as propaganda. “They throw out numbers and numbers and will say anything,” he said.

Duguid, Ontario’s economic development minister, said he’s determined to see the subway built. “This project will be cancelled over my dead body.”

Scarborough subway champions want TTC's likely route changed

Current alignment 'a horrible imposition on our community': Councillor Glenn De Baeremaeker

News Oct 26, 2016 by Mike Adler Scarborough Mirror

Two champions of the Scarborough Subway, Brad Duguid and Glenn De Baeremaeker, both say they dislike the TTC’s likely plan for a subway alignment around Scarborough Town Centre and its preferred spot for a station.

They’ve decided to fight for what they think is a better option – called the Big Bend or Big Curve – and say Toronto Mayor John Tory is with them in insisting the TTC must study the alternative plan.

“The good news is he’s got an open mind to it, he likes the concept,” Duguid, MPP for Scarborough Centre, told members of the Glen Andrews Community Association on Monday night.

In July, Toronto Council confirmed the city will build the controversial Bloor-Danforth extension from Kennedy Station along McCowan Road to the shopping centre property.

But the TTC’s current alignment, shown to nearby residents, has the tunnel swerving east of McCowan south of Ellesmere Avenue, under homes, a plaza and a woodlot before ending at a station in what is now the mall’s eastern parking lot.

The current route is a “horrible imposition on our community,” because it requires expropriation and will bring dust, noise, and vibration to neighbourhoods south of Ellesmere for at least five years, De Baeremaeker told a meeting at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church.

“I’m now working and lobbying to stop this alignment from happening,” added De Baeremaeker, who is Tory’s lead on the subway as well as a Scarborough Centre councillor.

The Big Bend alignment was created by Lorne Ross, a retired City of Scarborough planner, who said he has been trying to sell TTC staff on its merits since May.

Instead of swerving east into the neighbourhood, the route he proposes would swerve west off McCowan, under a grocery store; it then follows an eastward curve to under the existing Scarborough Centre Station on Triton Road.

That station’s bus terminal can and should be used for the new subway, Ross said. “It’s already paid for, it’s public property, and in my opinion it works very well.”

Ross, Duguid and De Baeremaeker said Hatch, the company hired to bore the subway tunnel, believes the new station can be built from inside the tunnel, a departure from the TTC’s usual cut-and-cover construction method.

Track for the present alignment dead-ends under a Progress Avenue furniture store – a move Ross called “extraordinarily bad planning.”

The Big Bend ends its track in a field the shopping centre owns along Brimley, making that the likely site to lower tunnel-boring equipment and excavate dirt.

The subway could one day be extended west to reach the Sheppard Subway through an approved corridor, Ross said.

One possible drawback is the Big Bend would add another 280 metres of tunnel to what is already a $3.2-billion project.

Duguid, who said he met Tory on Monday and discussed Ross’s proposal, said cost comparison and engineering studies should be done before council decides.

Council’s executive committee expects a report on a preferred alignment in December.

Comparisons of different routes are slowing the subway planning down, De Baeremaeker acknowledged, “but I think it’s a good thing to do to make sure we get it right.”

The councillor, reacting to a Toronto Star article suggesting council made its July decision based on a misleading TTC briefing note, told residents subway supporters are still in a political battle against a “downtown bloc” of councillors ”trying to stop and sabotage this subway every single time that they can.”

De Baeremaeker referred to the Star story as propaganda. “They throw out numbers and numbers and will say anything,” he said.

Duguid, Ontario’s economic development minister, said he’s determined to see the subway built. “This project will be cancelled over my dead body.”