streetcar service changes 2021

These are the Toronto streetcar routes that will be affected by construction in 2021

Prepare for some changes to your commute in 2021 if you happen to take the streetcar on the daily, because a number of TTC routes will be affected by infrastructure upgrades and construction next year.

The TTC announced the list of service changes Thursday, warning that the next year will be a busy one for construction and infrastructure projects — which isn't necessarily a bad thing considering most people are staying away from public transit as much as possible thanks to the pandemic.

"Starting in early 2021, streetcar service will be adjusted to prepare for a busy construction season across the city," reads a news release from the TTC. 

"These projects will continue the modernization of the TTC's streetcar network by replacing track and overhead systems while coordinating with other City initiatives such as rehabilitating water infrastructure, improving pedestrian safety, and enhancing streetscapes."

First and foremost, the TTC will be replacing streetcar track, overhead, watermain and sewers at the complex intersection of King Street, Queen Street, The Queensway, and Roncesvalles Avenue early in 2021. 

Buses will therefore replace 501 Queen streetcars between Long Branch Loop and Jarvis Street starting in January, and they'll also replace 504 King streetcars between Dundas West Station and Shaw Street.

"The project will extend the dedicated streetcar right-of-way, enhance streetcar stops and improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists," says the TTC.

In coordination with the King-Queen-Queensway-Roncesvalles project, the TTC will also be replacing track from downtown and through Queen Street West, though this will be done in separate stages to minimize distruption, according to the transit agency. 

Wherever track work is taking place at any given time, replacement buses will offer detours around Queen Street.

The TTC is also encouraging customers to take the 504 King streetcar east of Dufferin, and overhead upgrades will also take place on the rest of the Queen Street corridor and on Queen Street East toward the Beaches — requiring bus replacement service in the fall of 2021.

Also starting in January, streetcar service will fortunately return between High Park Loop and Broadview Avenue, though buses will continue to operate between Parliament Street and Main Street Station as overhead upgrades are completed in the east end. 

"Customers will need to transfer between buses and streetcars at Parliament Street and Gerrard Street East," says the TTC. 

"In early spring 2021, the bus and streetcar terminal at Main Street Station will be closed for pavement rehabilitation for approximately one month. 506 Carlton replacement buses will be extend to Victoria Park Station via Danforth Avenue."

Later in the year, in May, the city will begin watermain replacement work on Broadview Avenue north of Gerrard Street East, effectively halting 504 King and 505 Dundas streetcar service on this stretch. 

Instead, the TTC says shuttle buses will run between Broadview Station and King Street and Parliament Street, and all 504 King streetcars will turn back at the Distillery Loop and 505 Dundas streetcars will turn back at Broadview Avenue.

Several construction projects are also set to begin in the fall of 2021, with track replacement and streetcar platform expansions expected for Dundas West Station in order to reduce delays when entering the station. 

"During construction, streetcars and buses will not serve the bus and streetcar loop," says the transit agency. "Details on service changes and alternate stop locations will be made available later in 2021."

And finally, also in the fall of 2021, the TTC will replace track at the intersection of Lake Shore Boulevard West and Kipling Avenue and the Kipling Loop, possibly resulting in detours during the intersection work.

So while the city's official advice is for everyone to stay home right now and only leave for essential reasons, it's still not a bad idea to take note of whether your regular streetcar route will be impacted by construction in 2021.

Lead photo by

A Great Capture

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