People are upset that Toronto's new LRT is going to damage a local park
On Saturday, a protest formed near the Eglinton Flats and Fergy Brown Park, an area where Metrolinx plans to run the transit line above.
The Mount Dennis community has spoken loud and clear. Build the Eglinton Crosstown LRT tracks underground from Mount Dennis to Scarlet stations. Money is not the issue. Preserve the Humber and Eglinton Flats #YSW #onpoli #Topoli #yorksouthweston pic.twitter.com/wSg6YVjjLh— Faisal Hassan (@FaisalAHassan) May 10, 2022
The protest was led by the ENAGB Indigenous Youth Agency, with support from other allies, including community group Stop the Trains in Our Parks (STOP), the Mount Dennis Community Association (MDCA), and the Mount Dennis eco-Neighbourhood Initiative (MDeNI).
"Metrolinx wants to put what amounts to a 1.5 km 'Gardiner Expressway' for LRT trains through the heart of York South-Weston's parkland as part of the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension (ECWE)," STOP's website reads.
"We support the ECWE but want this section buried underground."
The extension of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT will run 9.2 kilometres from the future Mount Dennis LRT station to Renforth Drive and will operate mainly underground.
However, Metrolinx plans to rise the line above ground near the Eglinton Flats on an elevated "ribbon-like" track.
"The train expressway would run through Eglinton Flats (including Fergy Brown Park) which is some of the most valuable parkland in the city," STOP's website explains.
this is such a bizarre complaint considering a near identical rail bridge exists at old mill station and is in no way "ruining" the beautiful park below it— BookchinsBimbo (@BookchinsB) January 9, 2023
In a letter to the province dated Nov. 30. 2022, the Eshkiniigjik Naandwechigegamig, Aabiish Gaa Binjibaaying (ENAGB) Indigenous Youth Agency raised several concerns regarding the ECWE.
"ENAGB has acquired land north of this proposed overpass which will interrupt so many of our traditional activities that we will be hosting for our future generations," the letter said.
"Indigenous peoples have a natural law that we must continue, which is our role as land stewards of our mother the earth."
Metrolinx said running the line under the Humber River would be more complex, more time-consuming and and more disruptive for the community in comparison to an elevated option.
"Tunnelling the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension under the Humber River would require excavations for the underground stations at Scarlett-Eglinton and Jane-Eglinton to be up to 30 metres deep, which is as deep as a nine-storey building is tall," Metrolinx said in a statement.
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