Thanks to the pandemic lockdown, I have not been out and about to photograph construction projects in my usual style. For readers who do not normally browse the Urban Toronto site, there are two threads with photo coverage of the work at King-Queen-Queensway-Roncesvalles.
Some of the early works are illustrated in this post started by “Drum118”. Visible in some shots here is the fact that on the approaches to the intersection, the TTC only had to remove the top (of three) layers in the trackbed to expose the existing steel ties and the attachment points for Pandrol clips to hold the new rails. This is the benefit of a previous round of construction to new standards. At the intersection, they went deeper.
A fine collection of photos of the intersection itself was posted by “Kotsy” showing the progression as the new intersection took shape. This includes the realignment of the curves in the southwest quadrant that will permit a new intersection geometry eliminating the slip lane for eastbound traffic from The Queensway to King that is dangerous to pedestrians. Yet to come is the new farside eastbound loading zone as a Roncesvalles-style bump out sidewalk, and the revised southbound sidewalk configuration.
Drawings of the planned new layouts for this area are in my April 2020 article. Here is the one for the intersection itself. The “as built” version, based on Kotsy’s photos, appears to be slightly different from this drawing probably due to fine tuning in the design since this 2019 version.
This is only the first stage of a complex project that will extend west through the leads to Roncesvalles carhouse, Sunnyside Loop and The Queensway west to the existing right-of-way at Parkside Drive.
The April 2020 article also includes photos from the last reconstruction in 2000.
Harold McMann sent me a set of photos taken at various times during the intersection’s reconstruction. Here is a selection of these. Items of note:
- In the first view west on Queen, note the exposed mounts for Pandrol clips. This is the top of middle layer of the track structure, and the mounts are part of the steel ties embedded in the concrete.
- For the central part of the intersection, the excavation is deeper for the installation of a new foundation slab. The “new” style of track construction began sooner on tangent track such a that east of the intersection than for intersections. The old intersection dates to 2000.
- The May 19 view looking SW across the intersection shows a pre-assembled panel of track sitting on a trailer waiting to be lifted into position.
- The May 23 view looking S on Roncesvalles shows how the southbound track has been realigned further west as part of the lane and stop reconfiguration. The new intersection at the north gate of Roncesvalles Carhouse will align with this.
- In the views looking east to Queen and King, the island that forms the existing slip lane (currently used by traffic between King Street and The Queensway) will be removed in a future phase and the sidewalk will be extended to normalize the geometry of the intersection for pedestrians as shown in the drawing above.
Many thanks to Harold for providing these!
If in 1950’s, if the Queen Street (streetcar) subway was extended westward under or beside Queen Street West, The Queensway right-of-way could have been used as a further extension. Instead, something called the Bloor-Danforth (today Line 2) got shifted ahead of it. We would have had discussions about extending it to Sherway Gardens, or even into the villages of Dixie or Cooksville.
Steve: Actually west of downtown the “subway” was going to be in open cut much like the Yonge line north of Rosedale. A lot of what we now think of as “Queen West” would have been destroyed to make way for it.
Streetcars (505?, 506?) continue to enter and exit the Roncesvalles yard to go into and out of service. However, they replaced the 504 streetcars on Roncesvalles with buses.
Why use buses instead of streetcars, if they both would be looping inside the Roncesvalles yard?
Steve: This is probably a side effect of the fact that 504 service west of Dufferin was replaced earlier in the year, and this simply splits the shuttle in two. I suspect that they will rejoin at some point before the streetcars return, but have not yet seen a detailed staging plan. Also, when access to the carhouse switches to the south gate and the north entrance is rebuilt, a streetcar shuttle north to Dundas West will be impossible.
Thanks so much for sharing a link to my photo collection, Steve!
Steve: You’re welcome. They are great shots!
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