Metrolinx Proposes Revised Names For Crosstown Stations

Metrolinx has proposed new names for several stations in the Eglinton corridor:

  • “Keele” to “Silverthorne”
  • “Dufferin” to “Fairbank”
  • “Bathurst” to “Forest Hill”
  • “Avenue” to “Oriole”
  • “Bayview” to “Leaside”
  • “Don Mills” to “Science Centre”
  • “Ferrand” to “Aga Khan & Eglinton”

Comments will be accepted by Metrolinx until October 7, 2015.

Updated October 2, 2015 at 9:30 am

201509_NewStationNames_ECLRT

Although the consultation affects only the stations listed in red in the list above, other changes are proposed including renaming “Eglinton West” to “Allen”.

The asterisk beside “Mt. Pleasant” is actually an error, and should be beside “Eglinton” because the proposal recommends a “change” from “Eglinton-Yonge”. Of course, the station isn’t called that yet.

Updated October 2, 2015 at 12:50 am:

The comments that have already been left on Metrolinx’ site suggest that many of their proposals are not exactly popular. I cannot help think that whoever is responsible for this report has a poor sense of Toronto (maybe another consultant who does all their work on Google Maps?), nor a sense of which neighbourhood names are actually used.

I cannot help think of the mystery surrounding stations at “St. Andrew” and “St. Patrick” that memorialized old ward/parish names that almost nobody knew fifty years ago, but which are now an inherent part of the city’s mental map of itself. Taking old names for an area may provide an historic link, but confuse people who have no idea of where these places are.

Of course we already have a precedent with Steeles West Station that has been renamed “Black Creek Pioneer Village” in reference to an attraction that is quite a distance from the station, and we almost got “University City” for Finch West.

Has anyone noticed, by the way, that this is called “Keele & Finch” in the “future” map in the report, “Leslie & Eglinton” is labelled “Sunnybrook Park” on the same map, and SmartTrack is nowhere to be found.

76 thoughts on “Metrolinx Proposes Revised Names For Crosstown Stations

  1. In your list, Steve, Oriole should probably properly be “Oriole Park”. Confusing in either case because we already have Oriole GO in the Leslie / 401 area.

    Steve: I hope that you have pointed this out in feedback to Metrolinx. Obviously they are unable to read their own maps.

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  2. I’m generally against the TTC’s apparently preferred nomenclature of calling things “___ West” station, so on this front I like the proposed changes. Not only does it invite confusion, but it is absolutely not consistent with how stations were named historically. None of the original University line stations are named that way. For example no one calls Osgoode “Queen West”.

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  3. Thanks for pointing this out, Steve. It was fun to be able share my reaction… 🙂

    (Worst, IMO, is “Aga Khan & Eglinton.” If we can use “Science Centre,” and not “Science Centre & Eglinton” – because, seriously, where else is it – why can’t we leave out the “& Eglinton?” It’s not like the Aga Khan is 4 km long and also intersects Lawrence! In fact, I’m fairly certain he is less than 2m in length under normal circumstances. Oh, right, it’s the Aga Khan Museum. So why don’t we call it that? Because that would make sense?)

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  4. I’m rather surprised that Bayview would be called Leaside. Laird/Eglinton is pretty much the centre of the old town of Leaside.

    Not sure whey they wouldn’t just use Bayview & Eglinton … which seems to be fine for Leslie & Eglinton.

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  5. “The next station is Science Centre Parking Lot, Science Centre Parking Lot Station”. would be more accurate… at the moment.

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  6. The original video on Metrolinx’s website had the Laird station spelled as “Larid”. They’ve changed the video now, and have deleted some comments that pointed out their error.

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  7. Metrolinx and TTC should just accept that rapid transit stations in Toronto just don’t need to have unique names. Toronto’s streets are laid in a grid and its rapid transit lines (for the most part) follow surface streets. If station names are identified by cross streets (and they should), then this problem will continue to pop up as more and more lines get built–this is a good problem to have!

    If we start naming stations based on neighbourhood names only if there exists a station with the same cross street, in the future we’ll start asking what is the significance of the station on the Sheppard Line to bear the name “Don Mills”, but not the parallel station on the Eglinton Line? Appending cardinal directions is a non-starter, as you’re essentially delaying the problem, and by calling Don Mills & Eglinton, “Don Mills South” means it’s south of what exactly? At least on the Yonge-University line the stations with suffix “West” can be identified by the cross street containing the same suffix.

    We should just follow NYC’s subway convention and let stations have duplicate names (the R train has two stations called 36th Street in Brooklyn and Queens on the same line!) and identify stations by the line they’re on, or follow LA Metro’s convention and use both streets’ names as the station name for disambiguation if that’s too confusing.

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  8. I agree with the feedback on the Aga Khan Station. I presume this is to avoid calling it Don Mills station or DVP Station.

    Either way Aga Khan station is a horrible name. Nobody knows who the Aga Khan is.. nor would they know the relevance of the station name. I agree it is a landmark but they may as well call it Bata Station and have Sonja Bata cut the ribbon.

    Honestly.. this is one of those stations that would be better named DVP Station or Don Mills – Eglinton station (like Sheppard Yonge is named as such) .. even Don Mills South would work but thinking ahead Don Mills – Eglinton would be a better fit.

    Nobody knows the Aga Khan Museum well enough to know where it is so I hope Metrolinx comes to its senses and does not name it Aga Khan station.

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  9. Oops! I just looked at a map and Science Centre is at Don Mills whereas Aga Khan is at the DVP. With that in mind.. this would be better called DVP station.

    As for the stop at Ionview. This is one of those stops that is there because of the distance (think Allanford and Sheppard on the 190 Rocket). It is a pointless stop as both Kennedy and Birchmount are within walking distance of this proposed stop. I hope this stop is eliminated.

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  10. If you’re on the Eglinton line, don’t you expect the station to be at Eglinton? Or will the line be called something else?

    Even on the B-D line, they don’t say Warden & St Clair.

    The New York subway manages to have 5 stations called “23rd Street” in Manhattan alone.

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  11. I don’t know what to say anymore. The names are so unpredictable. And for the comments, some suggested Dufferin North, Bathust North, Bayview South and Don Mills South. That’s a horrible idea to have south and north on the same line.

    I also have no idea why the need to add the “& Eglinton” part to all surface stops. TTC don’t name their stops Bathurst & St. Clair or Dundas & Spadina. If this continue on, we’ll have a Martin Grove & Finch, Kipling & Finch and so on. I don’t see NYC have problems naming their stations.

    Steve: I have a strong sense that whoever did this report doesn’t have much experience with this field. Oddly enough, Metrolinx does not seem to understand that every time they put out something like this, they undermine their corporate credibility.

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  12. Chicago also labels stations by cross street, so many names are re-used. A quick glance at the map shows that there are “Kedzie,” “California,” “Chicago,” “Addison” and “Cicero” stations on 3 of the lines. “Pulaski” is a station on 4. And the blue line even has 2 stations named “Western!” (It loops in and out of downtown, and crosses Western Ave. twice.)

    The more I think about it, the more useful it seems to name stations by cross street. If I’m headed to a destination that’s not _at_ a station, but requires a connecting bus, then I’m looking for Don Mills (to catch the Don Mills bus), not “Science Centre” (which in this scenario I have no interest in). It requires people to know 2 names for everything; the street/bus route they want, and the station name that is located there.

    So much easier to find Don Mills if that’s what it’s called.

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  13. “As for the stop at Ionview. This is one of those stops that is there because of the distance (think Allanford and Sheppard on the 190 Rocket). It is a pointless stop as both Kennedy and Birchmount are within walking distance of this proposed stop. I hope this stop is eliminated.”

    Richard, you must stop just reading maps.

    Birchmount to Kennedy is a huge hill, very difficult for most people to walk it. Ionview is the bottom of the hill. I’ve asked but TTC has never published the 34 riding counts. As you know the 34 is two and maybe three routes rolled into one. We all know Yonge to Laird or to Don mills but most of those people are off by VP. (TTC will not give up boardings ONLY between Don Mills and Kennedy – it’s the whole route or nothing).

    At VP going east the bus turns back into a local bus and during rush hours, EVERY single stop, even the old wartime industry stops are really well used – Pharmacy to Warden, Warden to Birchmount ALL stops well used. These people are going to suffer the fate of technology because subway or LRT they are out of luck and will have huge walks just to get to work. Most of these people start their journey at Kennedy Stn and are all gone by VP.

    Buses work well because there really isn’t any traffic, even during the rush hours along the eastern part of Eglinton, the real heavy traffic on Eglinton is and has always been east of Midland heading to Kingston Rd. ALL of these stops need to be kept.

    BTW I have rode the 34 WB for years and I’m usually the odd-guy out going to Yonge as nobody wants to go to all the way to Yonge (at least until you hit Don Mills) Even with new crosstown, I would bet most people will follow BD to Yonge, way faster and more convenient.

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  14. nfitz said:

    “I’m rather surprised that Bayview would be called Leaside. Laird/Eglinton is pretty much the centre of the old town of Leaside.”

    I suspect it’s due to Leaside High School which is located just to the east of the intersection.

    What I can’t figure out is why not just use a subname which identifies the neighbourhood if Metrolinx believes that transit riders are idiots. I mean, Bayview-Leaside would be instantly recognizable as not being on the Sheppard line. Of course, it would probably mean that Davisville station would have to be renamed if you used the subname at every station on the Crosstown since you would have Mt. Pleasant-Davisville.

    Steve: Actually, Mt. Pleasant is in North Toronto, not Davisville.

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  15. David Weil said:

    Thanks for pointing this out, Steve. It was fun to be able share my reaction… 🙂

    (Worst, IMO, is “Aga Khan & Eglinton.” If we can use “Science Centre,” and not “Science Centre & Eglinton” – because, seriously, where else is it – why can’t we leave out the “& Eglinton?” It’s not like the Aga Khan is 4 km long and also intersects Lawrence! In fact, I’m fairly certain he is less than 2m in length under normal circumstances. Oh, right, it’s the Aga Khan Museum. So why don’t we call it that? Because that would make sense?)

    Joe M says:

    I was just about to post similar… Why do we need to add the …& Eglinton for some stops? I can only guess the reasoning so I wont speculate. Although the fact is the majority are in Scarborough. Steve if you have any insight to this please inform… seems a bit ridiculous to me.

    Steve: I really think that the folks at Metrolinx don’t have a good sense of how the city works, let alone the appropriateness of some of the place names they used. The inconsistencies in some of their proposals are breathtaking, but it has nothing to do with Scarborough.

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  16. William Paul said:

    Richard, you must stop just reading maps.

    In this instance I was not reading a map. I live just off of Birchmount north of St. Clair close to Eglinton and have for the past 22 years.

    I walk down this stretch of Eglinton all the time, in fact I did so on Wednesday when I headed out to the STC. I can see Ionview from the intersection of Kennedy and Eglinton and vice versa. I walked from Birchmount to Kennedy station and did not have any difficulty in the process. I was not out of breath and quite frankly the hill between York Mills and Lawrence stations is more of a feat than this was. All I was saying is that given the distance there is perhaps better stop locations. I will admit it is a walk between stations but from Ionview you can walk to Kennedy Station or Birchmount without any issues. If there was no stop at Birchmount then I would suggest Ionview.

    In reality, they will need to maintain some sort of local service such as the 85 Sheppard between Yonge and Don Mills otherwise this would not work out that well. Even the 190 and 199 have local services running parallel to the express services in order to meet local demand.

    With that in mind Will, you are right about the stops between Pharmacy and Birchmount. They are well used. With all the shops and everything there a local service is required.

    Midland to Kingston Road is bad but unfortunately not on the radar with this project.

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  17. These don’t make any sense at all. Why would the station at Yonge be called “Eglinton”? Why needlessly add “Eglinton” to the names of several surface stops? We might as well rename every station on the Yonge line with “& Yonge” appended.

    Downtown it makes (some) sense that we’ve ended up with Queen’s Park, St Patrick, Osgoode, and St Andrew since, after all, each station is only a couple blocks from its respective Yonge station.

    I shudder to think of what this might mean for DRL station names, particularly if it’s built north to Eglinton at least.

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  18. Renaming these stations is just plain stupid! Proves their people don’r ride local transit. Leave well enough alone. EVERYBODY knows where Keele, Dufferin and Bathurst are. NOBODY will confuse any place with being on Bloor Street. Maybe they will hire a consultant (I apply) to study this and issue a report.

    Steve: I suspect a consultant is responsible for this stupidity already.

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  19. William Paul said:

    Buses work well because there really isn’t any traffic, even during the rush hours along the eastern part of Eglinton, the real heavy traffic on Eglinton is and has always been east of Midland heading to Kingston Rd. ALL of these stops need to be kept.

    Too bad Metrolinx doesn’t understands this fact. Only residents’ opposition saved their local stops. There is one question: do we go for local or regional transit? Do we save a few riders’ convenience by extending a thousand people’s travel time? I’m more convinced that the stops are saved cause the LRVs will have to stop for any red lights anyways.

    Metrolinx/TTC have yet reveal how much service will operate at each time period. We know rush hour will get subway headways but what happens at the surface portion at Sunday midnight? Will we have 5-8 minute headways? Although this seems like a simple question. If TTC pays to operate frequent service, there will be frequent service. Since this line is to be maintained by the private sector. Frequent service means increased maintenance cost. Who will pay for this? Will this be allowed? They have to keep the line in good shape for a specified amount of years written in the contract. Heavy operations will increase equipment deterioration. Metrolinx should had figure out this already since they awarded the contract.

    Steve: The whole business of the province taking over responsibility for lines within Toronto, much less the P3 arrangement, is born of an ideology where pesky details such as you raised will be dealt with “later”.

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  20. Thanks – I left my comments. I found their reasoning to be inconsistent. In any case I learned some neighbourhood names that I hadn’t known before today.

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  21. If they were consistent about calling it the Eglinton Line from the onset rather than giving it the feel-good name of Eglinton CROSSTOWN Line I’m sure they could drop the “& Eglinton” half of the station name.

    The Aga Khan Museum is still relatively new and will take some time for it to become established in the mental map of Toronto. It would be a far better name than the placeholder of Ferrand.

    The same could be said of the neighbourhood-based names. It would give them some greater exposure and over time people would come to associate the name with the cross-street. Put the cross-street in subtitles like they do along the University Line. If the Bloor-Danforth line were going through this same process when it was built would commenters say I have no idea where Runnymede or Chester are?

    I remember travelling to Buenos Aires where they probably had a rule about not duplicating station names (even at transfer stations!). Where a duplicate station name came up they either used the next street over (in a city built on a 100-metre block grid easy enough to accommodate the station envelope), or named it after a landmark or even historical figures (which surprises me that we haven’t gotten to that point yet). Even as a tourist I came to associate the name with the major cross-street even if it wasn’t explicitly stated.

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  22. “I walk down this stretch of Eglinton all the time, in fact I did so on Wednesday when I headed out to the STC. I can see Ionview from the intersection of Kennedy and Eglinton and vice versa. I walked from Birchmount to Kennedy station and did not have any difficulty in the process”

    Yeah, but Richard, how old are you? In your twenties? That’s a huge walk for seniors, young mothers with strollers, groceries, bad legs you name it. Your cannot just look at that you are young and fit and can walk it in three minutes. Same with your analogy of walking from Lawrence up or down Hogg’s Hollow to York Mills. Try being 45, 55 or 65, and see where that gets you. We (they) need to keep in mind aging population. I think I read the other day that for the first time, there were more seniors than babies!

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  23. The practice on University Avenue, wherein stations have a name with local significance, such as St Andrew, and a sub name in brackets below it, as in ‘OSGOODE (Queen)’, is well worth consideration.

    Station naming should be a fundamental planning step to engage the local communities all along the long line. Organize community groups, at least one per station locale, to explore local history, get schools involved, seniors, conduct ballots, and come up with home grown meaningful names. Given the huge dollars to build these things, the naming (process) is well worth a few more. Kids for a generation will remember the process, ‘I live in MONUMENT’.

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  24. For all those criticizing the name of the Aga Khan station, did any of you stop to think they might have approached Metrolinx for naming rights to that station? Same with the neighbourhood names – maybe local BIAs approached them looking for the same consideration, hence the neighbourhood names.

    Metrolinx has a lot to answer for, but, for this one, if they’re approached by someone/anyone looking to name a station, why wouldn’t they consider it? It’s better to put it out to see what reaction is.

    As for the remainder of the names, get rid of the & Eglinton on the surface stops, and stick with street names – people can figure it out on their own.

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  25. Before we get all over arms about whether a name is appropriate, Metrolinx did have naming decision tree that they use to find names for stations. Whether the logic behind the tree is sound is of course subjective.

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  26. I think stations with the “&” symbol are more tram like surface stops in order to separate them from more rapid light rail stations.

    As for Science Centre, I’d go with Don Mills South. If we ever get rapid transit along Don Mills (HA!), Don Mills and Lawrence can be Don Mills Centre, and the current Don Mills station can be renamed to Fairview Mall.

    Finally Allen is just odd. I saw a drawing which showed it with a totally separate entrance from Eglinton West. Why not just keep the original design from the Eglinton West subway where you simply go down another level to access it? Likely would have reduced construction costs significantly. Anyways, Eglinton-Allen would be a much better name.

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  27. I totally get the need to rename the stations where the street name is already taken. The one I don’t get though, is Avenue. There is no existing Avenue station, so why do we need to rename it? It’s not like they’re abandoning street names for all the stations.

    I really hope they stick with the X-Y nomenclature for interchange stations (with the exception of Kennedy). Eglinton-Yonge and Eglinton-Allen work fine, I don’t see a need to break that pattern.

    The “& Eglinton” makes sense to me in that they seem to be trying to find a way to indicate surface stops vs stations. I don’t know that this is a great way to do that, but I can see what they’re trying to do. While they could use a visual indicator on maps, much like the TTC does for stations that require transfers for connections to surface routes, if they didn’t append “& Eglinton” they would have to find a different way to differentiate Victoria Park and Warden, and probably some stops on future LRT lines, like Jane & Finch. This process is messy, and I don’t think there’s a perfect way to do it.

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  28. “I think stations with the “&” symbol are more tram like surface stops in order to separate them from more rapid light rail stations.”

    That’s an interesting point. What is the standard for regular TTC bus and streetcar stops? Here in Waterloo, most of our bus stops are named like “University at King”, which is a stop on University Ave. where it meets King St. The automatic stop announcement therefore in effect gives the intersection. We do have some “landmark” names, such as “Uptown Waterloo”.

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  29. Steve, this is I think off-topic but I hope you will forgive the question. The first segments of embedded track for the Waterloo LRT system have begun to have concrete poured, and photos have been released, for example.

    I’m wondering about the durability of this construction. As you can see, it appears they are simply pouring concrete over a metal tie structure with a metal reinforcing grid; the rails are encased in a rubber boot structure. So it is a single concrete pour on top of fill. Isn’t this the sort of construction that led to poor durability of streetcar track? Does it make a difference that none of this will be shared traffic, so the only non-LRV traffic should be the occasional emergency vehicle (except for intersections, of course)?

    Steve: There were various problems with the streetcar track. First was the absence of continuous welded rail, but that does not appear to be the situation with ION. Also, the absence of mechanical isolation between the rail and the concrete caused spalling and eventually cracking of the concrete. That is fixed with the rubber boot. I’m a bit surprised that they’re doing a continuous pour without a separate layer for the rails, but they are probably expecting lower maintenance requirements than for streetcar track. All the same, that layer of re-bar is going to be a pain in the butt whenever they have to dig this up. I suspect that this won’t be required, except at stations, for many years.

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  30. I imagine giving any comments to Metrolinx is a futile exercise. I remember 3 or more years ago people begged Metrolinx to study a South side alignment through Leslie. Finally, they announced that a TBM launch site was not even possible on the “scenic” hillside, and they had to tunnel all the way to Don Mills. Then they announced they would revert back to the TBM portal at “scenic” and there was no time to study a South side alignment. Basically, they have already made up their minds and Comments are just a dog and pony show.

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  31. wklis | October 4, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    “If they can name a station “Allen”, they can name the Ferrand stop “Don Valley Parkway” or “DVP”.”

    Nobody wants to get off at an expressway. At least at Allen there is a subway and a bus line to transfer to.

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  32. “Nobody wants to get off at an expressway. At least at Allen there is a subway and a bus line to transfer to.”

    Good point Robert and also why I was suggesting guys like Richard + Jelo actually ride a line once in a while. Quite shocking to me but WB Eg East 34 buses stop quite a bit and let people off at the DVP stop in the middle of nowhere where the off-ramps meet Eglinton. I don’t know where they go? Hard to cross to Foresters area and it is fenced, miles of fences around Aga, nothing else towards Don Mills, other way it’s Ferrand, but, they do line up to get off here AND ON, both directions. Not tons, but enough to be noticeable. It’s possible they find it faster to walk forever to get to Aga area rather than go to Don Mills but who knows … It just shows you people get off/on and go just about everywhere in every direction.

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  33. Robert Wightman writes:

    Nobody wants to get off at an expressway. At least at Allen there is a subway and a bus line to transfer to.

    Unless you carpool. Granted most of the carpoolers from Markham would likely stick to Fairview, at least until … smart track. I could see some carpoolers from Durham take advantage. A GO bus route from the station into Scarborough and Durham might be handy too.

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  34. I like the major naming convention of transfer points being double named (Yonge-Bloor, Sheppard-Yonge). Everything else should be straightforward for wayfinding. A name that differs from the cross-street means one extra thing for passengers to remember. The double name of major transfers brings them to your attention.

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  35. giancarlo | October 5, 2015 at 8:57 am

    Robert Wightman writes:

    ‘Nobody wants to get off at an expressway. At least at Allen there is a subway and a bus line to transfer to.’

    “Unless you carpool. Granted most of the carpoolers from Markham would likely stick to Fairview, at least until … smart track. I could see some carpoolers from Durham take advantage. A GO bus route from the station into Scarborough and Durham might be handy too.”

    Exactly where would you put the car pool lot, in the cloverleaves (cloverleafs?)? I don’t think GO would want to run a bus in Toronto that would compete with their new LRT and RER lines.

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  36. Sunny Ng wrote:

    Metrolinx and TTC should just accept that rapid transit stations in Toronto just don’t need to have unique names. Toronto’s streets are laid in a grid and its rapid transit lines (for the most part) follow surface streets. If station names are identified by cross streets (and they should), then this problem will continue to pop up as more and more lines get built–this is a good problem to have!

    I suspect that Metrolinx and the TTC believe people in Toronto have a lower intellect than people of other places. It absolutely astounds me that in the USA, where asking for directions is way more difficult than asking for money, that people can handle same-named stations on parallel lines. Not only can this be found in NYC, but Cleveland has duplicates (Warrensville, Lee, and Southington). Of course, both of those cities have lines that converge, and the TTC has a history of not wanting to have stations with trains that branch to different destinations to cause confusion with commuters.

    Steven wrote:

    I also have no idea why the need to add the “& Eglinton” part to all surface stops.

    While some have pointed out that it is the Crosstown line, I do find this redundant since the Bloor-Danforth line has stations that are not at an intersection with either Bloor nor Danforth.

    This reminds me of the annoying part of YRT’s stop announcements on their non-VIVA routes. Just about every stop is named with either the cross-street name or the stop number when between streets, followed by “at THIS”, where “THIS” is the name of the street you are on. Hearing “Next stop, Major Mackenzie Drive AT Bayview”, followed by “Next stop, Palmer AT Bayview”, followed by “Next stop, Weldrick AT Bayview”, and so on can drive one nuts. I feel sorry for the drivers that must endure this as it must be more annoying than the piped-in music at my workplace that repeats about every 4-5 hours. While it is understandable that some routes turn onto different roads, and others are on roads that change names along the way, there is a simple solution to this. I found in San Antonio, the stop announcement system announces the street name change, thus eliminating the need to keep repeating the name of the street one is on.

    Naming stops/stations with the name of the street the line is on will mean that stop announcements will start to sound like this broken record.

    robertwightman wrote:

    wklis wrote:

    If they can name a station “Allen”, they can name the Ferrand stop “Don Valley Parkway” or “DVP”.

    Nobody wants to get off at an expressway. At least at Allen there is a subway and a bus line to transfer to.

    Tell that to the folks working on the TYSSE project, in particular the “Highway 407” station!

    Of course, plans exist to build a busway along the 407, but as they say, “with plans and $1.59, you can buy a Hershey bar!”

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  37. Robert Wightman writes:

    Exactly where would you put the car pool lot, in the cloverleaves (cloverleafs?)?

    Sure, there’s room in the parclo in the SW quadrant and room behind the Sony building.

    I don’t think GO would want to run a bus in Toronto that would compete with their new LRT and RER lines.

    Those lines are years away. I think the existing Oshawa-401 bus could make convenient trips to the new line. Might be quicker to Yonge on the new line than the slog on the 401.

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