The TTC meeting agenda for November 18 includes a report on the proposed designs for the connections at Eglinton and at Eglinton West Stations between the existing subway line and the Crosstown LRT now under construction.
Eglinton is a particularly complex station because the location is constrained by nearby buildings, the platform space is already at a premium with four existing links between the subway and mezzanine levels, and this is expected to be a busy transfer location.
Eglinton West is somewhat simpler in part because the existing station is offset from Eglinton Avenue and the link between the two stations will occur at the south end of the existing structure.
The existing Eglinton Station lies mainly to the southwest of the intersection at Yonge Street because this was originally land occupied by Eglinton Carhouse. The subway is west of Yonge from Muir Portal northward, and it only angles back toward Yonge at Eglinton (originally in anticipation of a future extension). Since it was built, the subway has been hemmed in by high rise buildings sitting above and astride the subway structure.
Originally, there was a large bus interchange area with 13 bays for the many services that fed into this subway terminal. The slab under some of the bays corroded over the years to the point where operation of buses was unsafe, and a “temporary” terminal was established in the space formerly occupied by Eglinton Garage. The City was in the process of soliciting development proposals for the old bus terminal lands, but this was put on hold with the decision to build the Crosstown LRT. Eventually, a smaller bus terminal will be provided as part of the Crosstown project, and the land above will again be up for development.
If Eglinton Station remained where it is today, there would be a platform loading problem similar to the one we see at Bloor-Yonge where all of the transfer movements are concentrated at the north end. The new design proposes to extend the platform north into an area now occupied by back-of-house functions and the southern end of the Eglinton pocket track. This layout is illustrated generally in Appendix C of the report.
For details of each level of the station, please see Appendix B in the report. There are five levels in the new Eglinton Station:
- Street level including the new bus loop
- Upper mezzanine
- Subway platform
- Lower mezzanine
- LRT platform
At street level (page 1 of the appendix), street entrances are shown in their current locations, although this design may change as redevelopment occurs on the four corners. A new main entrance is proposed on the northeast corner of the old bus station to the west of the existing Bank of Montreal building which houses the main entrance today. A new exit from the extended subway platform would lie on the west side of Yonge just south of the Silver City cinema entrance.
At the mezzanine level (now called the “upper mezzanine”, page 2) there would be extensive changes.
Within the existing station, there are three links between the mezzanine and the subway platform:
- The northernmost stairwell would be reversed and it would gain an escalator, and an elevator from the mezzanine to the subway level would be added nearby.
- The second access stair/escalator would remain as is, and these two would be the primary routes from the mezzanine to the relocated subway platform.
- A smaller link would replace the southernmost stair/escalator reflecting the fact that this would now be near the south end of the subway platform.
The southernmost stairway from the subway platform leads into the “temporary” bus loop. This would no longer be on the active part of the platform, and the bus loop would, of course, be shifted north to a new island arrangement roughly where the original bus bays stand today.
The upper mezzanine is extended east and west under Eglinton and would, in the process, consume the existing passageways now linking the main entrance to other corners. These extensions are outside of the paid area, but there are fare gates both east and west of Yonge that connect into the paid area of the LRT station and to the new bus loop.
At the subway level (page 3), the platform would extend north and would straddle the LRT structure below. Three new stair/escalator links and an elevator would run from the subway platform to the “lower mezzanine” which is oriented east-west above the LRT platform. A link to the new northwest exit from the station would connect into the north end of the extended platform.
The lower mezzanine (page 4) provides circulation space between the vertical links up to the subway station and the expanded upper mezzanine, and down to the LRT platform (page 5).
Typical routes through the station would be:
- LRT to subway: Up one level from the LRT platform to the lower mezzanine, then up another level to the subway platform.
- LRT to bus: Up one level from the LRT platform to the lower mezzanine, then up two levels (one escalator) to the west upper mezzanine, then walk south to the the bus loop and up to surface level.
- LRT to street: Up one level from the LRT platform to the lower mezzanine, then up two levels to the east or west upper mezzanine, then up one more level to the street.
This major project requires that Eglinton Station be brought up to current fire code at an estimated cost of $50m. This is a TTC cost, and this may be yet another line item fighting for money in the already crowded Capital Budget.
Eglinton West Station
This is a much simpler project than Eglinton Station because it lies in an area unconstrained by buildings and the relationship between the existing and new stations is physically simpler.
There are four levels in the new Eglinton West Station:
- Street level including the bus loop
- Upper concourse linking the new street exits
- Subway and lower concourse
- LRT platform
At street level (Appendix A, page 1), the existing escalators and stairs will link down to the south end of the subway platform level north of Eglinton Avenue West. New street entrances will be built on the
south north side of Eglinton east and west of Allen Road.
A new upper concourse (half way between street level and the existing subway platform, page 2) will link the new entrances to the new lower concourse.
At subway platform level (page 3), this platform dead ends today, but it will be extended south into new corridors on either side of the subway structure that will fan out into the east and west halves of the LRT lower concourse. From this level, passengers will go down to the LRT platform (page 4).
The typical paths through the station for access and transfer movements would be:
- LRT to subway: Up one level to the lower concourse, then walk north to the subway platform.
- LRT to bus: Up one level, walk to the subway platform, then up two levels (using the existing escalator) to the bus loop.
- LRT to street: Either to the main entrance in the bus loop, or up two levels (one escalator) from the LRT to the upper concourse, and then up one more level to one of the south side entrances.
All of these designs are subject to refinement as they are only at the 5% stage.