sheppard subway west extension

Toronto is considering a subway extension on Sheppard west of Yonge

There are a multitude of unfunded transit projects in Toronto just waiting to receive the necessary resources in order to be built, and one of them is a subway extension along Sheppard Avenue.

With proper funding, the Sheppard Subway West Extension would span 4.3 km between Sheppard Station and Sheppard West Station. 

The plan for the proposed subway extension is detailed in a new Metrolinx report, which outlines a framework to help prioritize unfunded Frequent Rapid Transit Network (FRTN) projects. 

"The Sheppard Subway West Extension will provide higher order transit in Toronto from the Sheppard Station to Sheppard West Station," the report states. 

"The line will provide a connection between the two branches of TTC's Line 1 in the north part of the City, improving connectivity to North York Centre."

The report notes that this connection would allow for more routes between north parts of the city and downtown, and that the line is also on the TTC's Express Bus Network and Ten Minute Network — both of which are heavily used (more than 30,000 riders per weekday) and will benefit from features to improve their reliability.

The report also ranks the possible extension in two categories based on several factors. Each factor is given a score out of five as well as a total score out of five in each category.

The extension ranks fairly high in both categories — with a score of five in the Contribution to Network Optimization category and four for Readiness for Implementation.

And while the Sheppard Subway West Extension received a score of four or higher for almost every factor within both categories, it received 0.5 for Status of Funding and Planning. 

Overall, the report ranks the Sheppard Subway West Extension as a medium priority project.

This project would also help accomplish the goals of both the Downsview Area Secondary Plan and the North York Centre Secondary Plan.

The first has the goal of encouraging "a mix of land uses that provides for transit supportive scales of development around subway stations," while the latter has the objective of working towards reducing reliance on automobiles. 

According to Metrolinx, this project would help accomplish both of these objectives. 

"By connecting some of the City's largest office nodes and employment areas to subway service, this project will help to achieve the Toronto Official Plan objectives of serving high concentrations of jobs with rapid transit stations and investing in improved levels of service to Employment Areas," the report notes.

"This corridor is identified as a Higher Order Transit Corridor in Toronto's Official Plan. This line will also improve access to Downsview Park, helping to meet Toronto Official Plan objectives of improving public access to green spaces."

Lead photo by

Terry Alexander


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