Updated October 20, 2021: A table has been added as a postscript showing the numbers underlying the charts in the article that consolidate GO and Ontario Line traffic.
Back in May 2021, I wrote about the total number of trains that Metrolinx plans to operate in the corridor between East Harbour and Gerrard Stations. See A Very Busy Go Corridor.
Metrolinx has released a Noise & Vibration Study showing, among other things, a revised table of service levels for the routes that will operate in this corridor. See LSE-JC N&V Operations Report issued as Appendix C to the Ontario Line Lakeshore East Joint Corridor Early Works Report. The detailed breakdown of services by motive power type, express and local, and track assignments begins on page 60 of the Operations Report.
The new numbers differ from those published previously:
- There is an increase primarily in the number of GO express trains.
- The new report includes Ontario Line maximum service levels for 2060 and beyond.
During a recent online consultation for the East Segment of the Ontario Line, Metrolinx claimed that the count of trains cited by the community is too high (at about 1,500 per day) and that the number is around 900.
Quite bluntly, Metrolinx staff should read their own reports. Too often they give misinformed answers to communities to blunt criticism while being out of touch with their own proposals. Whether this is deliberate misrepresentation or simple incompetence is a debate for another day.
The tables in the Operations Report show very clearly the projected counts of GO, Ontario Line and other trains. (Note that there is no provision for the addition of a proposed High Frequency Rail service on top of this.) The numbers in the spreadsheet below are copied from the Operations Report. The only change is the addition of totals.
The grand total of trains on the expanded GO corridor will be 691 of which 581 will operate between 7am and 11pm, and 110 will operate between 11pm and 7am. (See LSE OnCorr Tracks, East Harbour to Danforth – Combined Table, p62.)
The number of Ontario Line trains begins at 912 per day in 2030 (per the Preliminary Design Business Case), ramps up to 984 by 2040 (again from the PDBC) and to 1130 by 2060 (Operations Report).
Here are updated charts showing the breakdown of existing and future services. Note that “existing” is based on information in the PDBC and corresponds to a pre-pandemic service level.
The value used for the Ontario Line in these charts is the full 2060 value. Opening day values would be about 200 trains/day fewer as noted above.
The existing service is made up of GO Lakeshore East and Stouffville trains, plus a small number of VIA and Freight trains. In the chart below, all current Lakeshore trains are shown as “local” although there is actually a mix of local and express operation. The distinction only becomes significant with the addition of express and local tracks, and electrification of most of the GO service.
Future service will be a mix of six and twelve car GO trains, with diesel motive power used only for about half of the LSE service that is planned to operate beyond the end of electrified territory to Bowmanville. The Stouffville corridor will be almost completely an electric operation, primarily with six car trains. By far the majority of trains in the corridor will be on the Ontario Line, although these will be shorter (100m maximum) and electric.
The chart below shows the breakdown of trains by service. The GO Express service will be diesel with the exception of a few express electric trips. Almost all other service will be electric. Note that although the diesels will run on the inner “express” tracks of the expanded corridor, current plans call for all trains to stop at East Harbour.
A comparison of the volume of diesel and electric trains is shown below. There will be a small increase in the number of diesel trains, but a large increase in electric GO and Ontario Line trains. It is self-evident that any studies of noise, vibration and pollution caused by the diesel trains depends heavily on GO actually becoming an electrified service, but the date for this conversion is notably absent from the construction schedule presented for the corridor.
Finally, the expected buildup of Ontario Line service is shown in the table below.
In my next article, I will review the September 23 Ontario Line East Segment meeting.
Here is a table showing the numbers used to produce the charts above.