The City’s highly anticipated West Toronto Railpath extension is finally closer to becoming a reality.
The project has been in the works for years, with the first phase of construction—running from Cariboo Avenue (just north of Dupont) to the Dundas Street West Overpass along the rail corridor — being completed in 2008. Once the next phase is finished, the multi-use trail will extend south from Dundas Street West at Sterling Road to Abell Street at Sudbury Street.
At a public consultation event this week, the finalized design of the project, which is being carried out jointly by the City of Toronto and Metrolinx, was revealed, giving residents the chance to get a better vision of how the estimated $23 million Railpath extension will look when it’s completed.
When completed, the City website says the project will include four pedestrian-cycle bridges, running over the Barrie rail corridor south of Dundas Street West (with provision for future connection to Sorauren Park), Lansdowne Avenue, Brock Street, and Queen Street West.
Various ‘community connection points’ are also proposed, giving the public even more access to the trail, in addition to access to new parks, some of which are currently under construction along the trail, including Ernest Park and Pessoa Park.
Other trail amenities are also proposed including signage, lighting, seating, waste and recycling receptacles, bike parking options, landscape architecture, and plantings.
Recently released renderings show various connection points along the trail could look like. At the Dundas Street West connection, a rendering shows greenery, a two-lane pedestrian/cyclist path, and bleacher-style seating.
A rendering for the Queen Street West connection shows added lighting, benches, and various access points to the trail.
In June 2012, City Council adopted the multi-year Bikeway Trails Implementation Plan and new trail connection priorities. These priorities included a recommendation for an environmental assessment study to develop a preferred route to extend the West Toronto Railpath south from Dundas Street West to Strachan Avenue.
According to the City, construction for the next phase of the project is slated to begin in 2021/2022.
by Toronto Storeys