The next round of meetings for the Sheppard East LRT and Scarborough RT Extension Environmental Assessments have been announced.
The Sheppard East LRT meetings are on June 3 (Agincourt Collegiate) and June 4 (Malvern Community Centre). They will include presentation of:
the recommended design for the Sheppard Avenue East LRT, including stop locations, the proposed grade separation of Sheppard Avenue at the Agincourt Go Line and the preferred option for making the LRT/subway connection.
The Scarborough RT Extension meetings are on June 4 (Malvern Community Centre, jointly with the Sheppard EA) and June 5 (Scarborough RT Station). They will include:
The rationale for selecting the preferred network: an SRT extension to Malvern Town Centre, and SRT alignments to be considered for detailed evaluation.
What’s the difference between an LRT and a RT?
Steve: LRT is operated with streetcar-like vehicles operating on some degree of private right-of-way. Power supply is via overhead as with streetcars. An LRT line can be operated completely in its own right-of-way but this is not a pre-requisite. LRT can run in the middle of a street, or it could be on its own corridor crossing intersecting streets at grade. Vehicle operations are manual under the control of an operator.
RT is the automated technology used in Scarborough. Power supply is via a pair of power rails similar to subways. This technology requires a completely segregated right-of-way both due to the power rails, and because the “reaction rail” between the running tracks forms part of the vehicles’ motor, and cannot have vehicle or pedestrian traffic over it. All intersections must be grade separated. Vehicle operations can be completely automatic, or as in Toronto, under an operator’s control assisted by the signal system.
The essential difference between the two modes is that LRT does not require a dedicated right-of-way over the length of any line. It can run in a tunnel, on an elevated structure on in a fenced right-of-way, but this is not a pre-requisite. This allows LRT lines to run on the surface where conditions permit, and allows lines to be extended into areas where the high cost of full grade-separation could not be justified for the demand.