Broadview Station Second Exit Stays Closed

The second exit from Broadview Station opened briefly last summer ending the long period of reconstruction at that station.  By fall, it was closed again due to ongoing problems with water.  The announced opening date kept changing, and most recently signs declared that June 30, 2010 was the new target. 

Here is the explanation from the TTC’s Brad Ross:

We’ve encountered a very difficult problem with water ingress at Broadview Station. TTC Engineering and our consultants are continuing geotechnical investigations to determine the source and extent of the water presence.

The next step is to remove the below grade water on a temporary basis to allow the extensive repairs needed to stairwell finishes and the stairs to re-open. In the interim a permanent solution will be developed and implemented to prevent water from entering the structure in the future. There’s a tank on-site is to facilitate remedial and testing measures and removal of the below grade water.

The saga continues.

30 thoughts on “Broadview Station Second Exit Stays Closed

  1. As the second exit is fairly new (and took years to open in the first place) I hope the TTC are going after the original contractor (but doubt if they are). This seems to be another example of why many people think the TTC is not competent to run engineering projects and why these always seem to take longer than planned and cost far more than expected. It simply gives people like Rob Ford ammunition in their crusades against waste and incompetence – and this one is both and the TTC can’t blame Hydro!

    Steve: See my reply to Greg Gormick’s comment later in this thread.


  2. Yet another example of the incompetence and lack of accountability with which today’s TTC is riddled. And, since I use those streetcar platforms regularly, a large scale inconvenience to me and millions of other TTC patrons annually. Thanks a lot.

    Steve: At this point it is unclear just who’s at fault, although as someone who used the station for over three decades, I was well aware of water problems due to the ice that used to form every winter at the east end of the station, just east of the new entrance location. This ended once the leaks in the main part of the station were sealed, but construction of the new entrance seems not to have taken this into account. A further problem, no doubt, was that for budgetary reasons the work was spread over multiple years and contracts. Does this remind you of St. Clair?


  3. Regardless of who’s at fault for the problem, the TTC is at fault for putting up a sign with a definite date which it looks like they’re going to blow AGAIN!

    If they want to have any credibility they should only put up a date when they have a reasonable expectation that they will complete the work on that date. This is not a isolated incident, almost every work date that the TTC gives is inaccurate.


  4. I’ve noticed a strange escalator installation at Broadview – one must climb a few steps to reach the escalator. It’s a difficult arrangement for the elderly, children and the mobility impaired. Is this bizarre installation a result of previous water problems?

    Steve: No. This, like escalators at a few other stations, are retrofits. The stations originally had only stairs, but when escalators were added, and the stairway was directly above the tracks, there was no room to fit the machinery pit between the roof of the station at track level and the floor of the mezzanine above. Hence the extra steps. A similar arrangement exists at Christie.


  5. As a kid I had a neighbour who was a City of Toronto building inspector. To this day I remember him telling me about the building of the Danforth subway and the problem of the massive underground lake (his word) north of the Danforth. The lake kept filling the holes with water, it sounds like that lake is there and the City and TTC forgot about it.


  6. Sounds like the second exit at Broadview will become as fabled as the lower level Bay Stn. with just as many people to have used it during actual service conditions.


  7. Steve said … “No. This, like escalators at a few other stations, are retrofits. The stations originally had only stairs, but when escalators were added, and the stairway was directly above the tracks, there was no room to fit the machinery pit between the roof of the station at track level and the floor of the mezzanine above. Hence the extra steps. A similar arrangement exists at Christie.”

    I’m not sure about Broadview, but at Christie the escalators from the platform to the mezzanine must have been there on opening day because they’re on their own and not alongside the stairs (like the Keele speed ramp). Why would there have been escalators to the mezzanine but not from the mezzanine to the street? Makes no sense. Were they added while the station was under construction, or later on in the mid-70s? While Christie was a minor station in the 60s (there was no Christie bus back then … when did service on it start?), I can’t see how they could have thought that they’d get away with no escalator at Broadview.

    Steve: Remember that this is the same brains trust that thought Dufferin wouldn’t be an important bus route, and assumed they could cut off 2/3 of the King service (going from 45 to 15 cars/hour) because of the mistaken assumption that the demand was all transfer traffic at Bloor/Danforth when in fact much of it originated along the line.

    The Broadview escalator was added after the station was open, as was the one at Christie. It was an early version of “accessibility”.


  8. “Remember that this is the same brains trust that thought Dufferin wouldn’t be an important bus route”…the lack of a bus loop at Dufferin station reminds me of the situation at Spadina station pre-Spadina extension. I always thought it odd that a heavily used route like Spadina would not get a loop but Rosedale station serving one or two lightly travelled routes (remember the old 27 bus?) got a loop. In 1950’s/60’s Toronto is it possible that white affluent riders could have been given preferential treatment over immigrant visible minority riders? Glad that never happens anymore.


  9. I think Dufferin was built without an off-street loop because no bus route was to terminate at that station — it was all thru service. As for the service cutback on the “504”, I agree, that made no sense. Were they thinking that everyone on that line was coming from north of Bloor and would change to use the subway and the wye to get downtown? It was that same line of reasoning that killed Harbord. The loss of the Harbord service was something that always bugged me, especially after they dropped the Y.


  10. Yusuf — in the 1960s, the Spadina 77 ran south from Dupont, not Bloor — that only changed when the Spadina subway opened.

    Dufferin, Lansdowne, and Spadina didn’t get off-street transfer-free facilities because their bus routes did not start/end at Bloor, no no vehicle needed to turn around there. Christie has no loop because there was no bus service on that street in the 60s. I don’t remember exactly when service on the 126 was inaugurated — maybe Steve remembers — 1978?

    The only changes that I’m aware of that were due to the influence of “affluent” riders/communities were the circular entrance and dome at Castle Frank, and the covered bridge leading into it (the bridge was originally supposed to be open, but was closed due to noise concerns).

    It’s always the downtown communities that make the most fuss. We hear about the ones now opposed to the 2nd exits at Donlands because of property acquisition, but not a peep from the 20-30 homeowners whose houses are being acquired for Steeles W. station. The suburbanites seem to suck it up and take it in stride, while the downtowners whine and whine and whine.

    Steve: The Christie bus was part of the route changes for the Spadina Subway opening in 1978.

    As for the “whiners” at Donlands, they received notices they would be expropriated with no warning at all. The folks on Steeles Avenue, at this point, have seen a proposed station layout years, possibly a decade before construction might actually begin. On Eglinton, there have been changes to proposed exit configurations to address suggestions from neighbourhoods.

    What’s the difference? Big projects require a TPA under the Environmental Assessment Act, and it’s hard to bring a fully completed subway proposal to the table for funding without people talking about the effects. For one thing, the engineering work needs to get funding. For the second exits, the EA act and regulations are silent on the subject of a second entrance, but a new station would require a TPA. It’s an oversight in the regulation creating the TPA process because a new auto drop-off would require a TPA.

    The issue is one of process and sensitivity. Something will have to be expropriated, but more acceptable alternatives may be found. Up at Steeles, the proposed station is vastly larger than should be needed.


  11. And what was the rationale for no loop at Lansdowne, where, at one time, three routes served that station?!?

    Steve: At least they had a round-the-block setup with the Keele bus loading beside an entrance. Oddly enough, I suspect that at some point a planner thought the 41 would (as it does today) eventually go to Keele Station making Lansdowne a less important transfer point.


  12. Hi Steve

    Just to clarify a few points –

    The CALEDONIA 18 bus beat the 126 to Bloor Street by almost exactly 10 years.
    March 31st,1974 the 18 CALEDONIA bus was extended south from it’s terminus at Gilbert Loop to Christie Station.

    The CHRISTIE 126 bus did not begin until April 14th, 1984 at which time the CALEDONIA buses were rerouted to Lansdowne Station.

    Steve: Ooops! That’s what I get for not digging into my archives. Thanks for straightening this out.

    I also read numerous reports that the plan was for the 41 buses to go to Keele Station. Also they assumed that since the streetcars did not need a loop at Lansdowne (any short turns looped thru the carhouse) than neither did the buses.. on-street would work fine.

    Again up until 1966, the KEELE buses did not even run down to Bloor Street. Up until the BD subway opened they either stopped at St Clair(similar to the 7 BATHURST buses) or Davenport. Even the T.C.’s , from 1947 on, never terminated at Bloor.

    Steve: Yes. Townsley Loop, which recently lost its streetcar track, was the south end of the Keele bus until the Harbord car was cut back to St. Clarens Loop at Landsowne and Davenport. That site reverted to a park when the streetcars came off in 1966.

    I’ve also read that Dufferin Street was never considered to be a major artery in the 50’s.

    For most of the mid to late 50’s Dufferin was torn in stages up north of Eglinton for sewer installations etc. It was certainly ‘behind’ compared to other arteries.

    Steve: Part of the problem, I suspect, was how heavy the Dovercourt car had been serving the industrial lands at King and Shaw, later served by the Ossington TB (which got its own off-street loop). This diverted attention from the potential of Dufferin Street. As a more general observation, it is clear that a lot of the planning that went into the BD was rather retrograde seeing the city and transit network as they were, not as what they would become.

    The original 29 (started July 1,1954) just ran from Wilson to Eglinton and was very well used. The short-lived 73 SOUTH DUFFERIN (Sept 5,1961 – inaugurated against TTC wishes by the representatives of Ward 6 and City Council) ran from St Clair to Queen and was virtually empty. In order to make the route more viable, the 29 & 73 were merged in March of 1962 to make one of the longest routes at the time running from Exhibition to Wilson. Service north of Wilson didn’t start until April 1965. Over the years various short turns i.e. BLOOR-EXHIBITION and BRIAR HILL-BLOOR all used on-street looping at Dufferin and Bloor without any problems.


  13. M. Briganti wrote: [i]It’s always the downtown communities that make the most fuss. We hear about the ones now opposed to the 2nd exits at Donlands because of property acquisition, but not a peep from the 20-30 homeowners whose houses are being acquired for Steeles W. station. The suburbanites seem to suck it up and take it in stride, while the downtowners whine and whine and whine.[/i]

    If you’re going to make an argument like that, the least you can do check your facts.

    There are no houses anywhere close to the site of the Steeles West Station. The nearest residences – and they’re apartments, not houses – are almost a kilometer to the west of the station.

    Besides, where were you during the plans for the SRT extension? Or were you too far away to hear the uproar?

    Toronto, Ont.


  14. The old Ride Guides on James Bow’s site show the 18 Caledonia running into Christie Station in 1976 and I’m pretty sure it was there for a couple of years before that (though it’s not on the 1973 map). It’s still there on the 1978 one but by 1985 it had been moved to Lansdowne and replaced by the 126 Christie which I think came into service in 1984.


  15. Sorry, I was thinking Steeles Stn. on the proposed Yonge extension, not Spadina.

    The residents on Strathmore seem to be opposed to the idea of a 2nd exit entirely. I explained to one of them how a few passengers had to actually run through the tunnel during the Greenwood Y fire (from Donlands to Pape) to escape because the smoke was too thick to even see the stairs at Donlands, and his response was that the tunnel was an effective 2nd exit. Then, I mentioned the Christie fire that blocked its only stairway, but since nobody died in that incident he didn’t seem too concerned. Then he gets into a rant about how 2nd exits are moot since the subway is a potential death trap anyway (because of overcrowing combined with the possibility of a breakdown and fire in the middle of a tunnel) … that fire between Union and St. Andrew in 1963 comes to mind, but I didn’t mention it because the train was evacuated and there were no deaths. I just don’t think the residents there are being open-minded. They seem to think that because nobody has died in the subway as a result of fire over the last 50 years that the 2nd exits are not needed.

    Steve: The people I have talked with are trying to make a better second exit, not cancel the project, although I suspect there are alternative views in the community. There will be an exit — but the question is where.


  16. Re: Dufferin service.

    Yes, until 1966, service south of Davenport was pretty much handled by HARBORD cars on Dovercourt to Bloor, so I could see how pre-1966 travel patterns would hardly be affected by through Dufferin service. But, the TTC knew that after 1966, service would be removed from Dovercourt, so who knows what they were thinking. From day 1 of B-D service, the crowds at Dufferin Stn. to board the busses almost spilled onto the street.

    A little bit of trivia: The off-street loop used by Dufferin buses west of Dufferin on the south side of Wilson can still be seen.


  17. I can sympathize with Broadview Station patrons. GO Brampton has just had another postponement for its opening date. I believe that it is now 15 month late. GO has gotten smarter and no longer is putting the proposed month of the opening in the announcement, just the season. “Brampton Station South Platform Will Open in the Summer of 2010.” They will only have to update this notice 4 times a year instead of monthly. I personally would have left out the season.


  18. Maybe BP could drill a well near the water source at Broadview…

    Steve: No! No! We would flood the subway and have to run Swan Submarines.


  19. Ha! And those British-built Swan Submarines would weigh substantially more than originally thought, would need more water to operate, and would take forever to surface.

    Steve: And of course they would be red.


  20. Hey, Steve! watch what you’re knocking! I happen to LOVE swan submarines! in fact I am not only an advocate for running swan subs in the subway but I also happen to be a paid lobbyist for the swan submarine lobby. And you want to know what else? When we’re done with all politicians in Ottawa, Queen’s Park, and City Hall. There will be NO SUCH THING as a swan submarine opponent to be found anywhere in in any level of Canadian politics! All who read this consider yourselves warned. Swan Submarines ARE the wave of the future. So come on over to our side and our cause. It’s not too late. Please try to overlook the fact that I happen to represent the swan sub manufacturers.


  21. All I can say is this seems to be a recurring thing along Danforth and Bloor. I mean look at Yonge Station on the Bloor Line, the water damage got so bad that mould was growing on the walls.

    Other stations like Chester have been seriously infiltrated by water (there is a spot on one of the platforms that has water leaking through the ceiling so bad, the lights in that spot needed to be taken out and the platform in that spot is always pooling).

    Most stations along the Bloor-Danforth line (especially east of Yonge) fill up like bathtubs even during dry spells. Parts of ceilings have been taken out and drainage troughs have been put in place to stem the flow in some cases and even those are not working.

    Why is it that the TTC ignores the rather obvious problem?

    I mean its problems like that that make the stations look run down and decay. I mean look at Yonge the water was so bad the station walls were getting mouldy as I said and the station started to decay to the point where work HAD to be done because it was become an eyesore.

    Steve: Bloor-Yonge actually has two separate problems. At the west end of the station, there is an underground stream, and it is responsible for water coming in at the new exit beside Starbucks. Further east, the mouldy wall was a side effect of the clearance of buildings on the southeast corner of Yonge and Bloor that previously caught the rainfall. Once they were demolished, the leak roughly at the junction between the Yonge and Bloor station structures started.


  22. This whole thread shows a big flaw in the “build subways everywhere, forget LRT” argument. Tunnels are expensive to dig, and they can be very expensive to maintain in the long run. It’s a lot easier and cheaper to run LRT on the surface than a subway line.

    A subway will always require major infrastructure; LRT can run in the median or along the roadside with minimal infrastructure beyond the tracks and overhead. I don’t think an LRT bridge would be under repair endlessly, as it seems the east-of-Keele slab is.


  23. Hi Steve

    Slight correction – I really should look these things up myself, and not rely on my (fading) memory !

    The CALEDONIA 18 bus was extended down to Christie Station on August 15th, 1973, NOT Mar 31st, 74 as I had mentioned. (source: Toronto Star advert)



  24. Red swans! Sounds like the name of a pub. “I’ll meet you at The Red Swan!”

    Of course, six of those swans will be white and made of aluminum.


  25. Red swans aside, we do tend to forget how wet the land is in Toronto. A vast swath of the city was swamp land, a malaria was not uncommon in the early 19th Century. Also, the “big hill” that most north-south thoroughfares from have to scale is the shoreline of prehistoric Lake Iriquois. The majority of underground rivers, streams, etc. that we find south of this incline are glacial remnants of this lake; in short, most of the B-D line could be considered at one time under water…we’re back to swans again, aren’t we?…


  26. The sign saying it will be back in service on 30/June has been removed, sometime between last night and tonight, and not replaced. No signs of any changes other than this.


  27. Steve said: There’s a tank on-site is to facilitate remedial and testing measures and removal of the below grade water.

    Yes, there is a large white tank sitting at the top of the stairs but it is not connected to anything so it is certainly not being used to actively collect water. Actually, I suspect it is the prototype or early stages of a decoy of some sort for attracting swans and sooner or later (probably later) the TTC will add its appendages and feathers. On the other hand they could think it IS a already a completed swan decoy on the basis that “a swan created by a committee is a tank”?


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