Toronto neighbourhood really doesn't want Doug Ford's Ontario Line
Doug Ford's Ontario line has been the subject of much discussion since it was proposed just months ago.
The project is meant to be an expanded version of the relief line, which was proposed in 1986 and aims to address overcrowding at the Bloor-Yonge subway intersection and along the Yonge Line in general.
But although Ford has called the Ontario line the "crown jewel" of his administration's transit plan, not all Toronto residents are in agreement.
Last night, Riverside and Leslieville residents held a town hall hosted by MPP Peter Tabuns and city councillor Paula Fletcher to express their concerns about the impact the Ontario Line would have on their neighbourhood.
Standing room only to tell Doug Ford to go packing on the Ontario Line. This community already went through in detail its wants and needs for relief line. Ford’s determined to shred all of it. Thx @Peter_Tabuns @PaulaFletcherTO for organizing the #tordan fightback. pic.twitter.com/Z1WGgzVjw9— Jennifer Story (@jenniferstoryTO) September 13, 2019
"Here we are 50 years later, and the 'short-sighted' vision of 1950's planning is again being imposed on a leafy, walkable, heritage Toronto neighbourhood," said Desiree Bowes, a resident who attended the town hall.
She's referring to the Spadina Expressway, a major highway that was supposed to be built in the 1950s and would have meant major demolishment, construction, and essentially a redesign of the city.
Those who opposed the expressway banded together and formed a coalition called Stop Spadina Save Our City Coordinating Committee (SSSOCCC).
The Spadina Expressway was never completed, but Riverside/ Leslieville residents are now finding the Ontario Line debate eerily reminiscent of that time.
The Ontario Line would run from the Ontario Science Centre at Eglinton Avenue and Don Mills Road to Ontario Place, and it would run above ground right through their neighbourhood.
On top of the disruption the line would cause, Toronto residents and councillors alike agree the province should not be taking over the city's transit system.
According to The Star transit reporter Ben Spurr, residents would much prefer the original relief line to the Ontario line.
Fair to say a good portion of the crowd is skeptical of the Ontario Line plan, which would run above ground through the community. There was more support for the below-ground relief line subway.— Ben Spurr (@BenSpurr) September 12, 2019
Spurr tweeted from the town hall last night, and said "the Ontario PC government says the Ontario Line could be built faster and cheaper per km than the relief line, as it would use smaller train technology and run above ground."
The Ontario Line was nominated for federal funding in back in May, but so far the Liberal government has refused to support it.
Conservative party leader Andrew Scheer has shown more interest in supporting the line, so with the election coming up on October 21, we'll just have to wait and see.
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