Toronto Fact Sheet

Frustration. Gridlock again. You are going to be late. Getting around doesn’t feel easy. In fact, it feels unnecessarily difficult. 

But what if you had choices?

What if Union Station was less hectic to get around? What if our transit and transportation system was expanded with light rail making it easier to get around faster? What if the whole system was designed to make life in Toronto easier?

The average GTHA commuter spends 82 minutes trying to get to and from work every day.  If we don’t take action now against congestion, it could grow to 109 minutes. That’s a Hollywood film! Imagine doing that five times a week.

If you think traffic is getting worse, you’re right. Toronto is growing. In fact, since 2006, the city of Toronto expanded by almost 112,000 people.  Do you notice that most cars only have one person in them? That’s a lot of added cars.

Want a solution? You aren’t alone. Over 88 percent of residents in GTHA have said that it’s important to reduce congestion, expand and increase the frequency of transit and get commuters to their destination more quickly.

Metrolinx has a plan—a world class, award-winning plan.  It’s called The Big Move, and it has already been approved not only by Toronto but every municipality in the GTHA. 

What are some of The Big Move’s new initiatives that will make your life easier? 

  • Union Station is being revitilized to improve its quality and capacity and make your experience more efficient and comfortable.
  • The Downtown Relief Line will provide relief to the Toronto transit system and provide residents with new rapid transit service into the downtown core.
  • Getting to and from destinations outside of the city will be less of a hassle with GO Transit two-way, all-day service, which will be offered on all GO rail corridors.
  • Travelling anywhere between Hamilton and Bowmanville? You’ll get where you’re going faster with the new GO Lakeshore Express Rail Service. This upgrade to existing GO services means increased speed and reliability.

It’s smart planning that looks at the GTHA as a whole. The best part? Metrolinx  has already started with several projects under construction, including:

  • Union Station is being revitalized to improve its quality and capacity and make your experience more efficient and comfortable.
  • The Union Pearson Express is on track and by 2015, will be offering 5,000 passengers a day quiet and efficient trains departing Union Station for Pearson Airport every 15 minutes. 
  • Extension of the Spadina subway line to connect downtown to Vaughan is underway and is estimated to be complete in 2016.
  • Connecting between transit services has been made easier with your PRESTO card. PRESTO will be fully implemented across the TTC by 2016.
  • The Toronto Light Rail Transit Plan is funded and underway. The Plan features a network of 52 kilometres of light rail transit lines running underground and at street level that will connect Toronto with comfort, convenience, reliability and speed. The Eglinton-Scarborough Crosstown LRT will run from Jane/Black Creek Drive to Kennedy Station, with 10 kilometres tunneled underground from Jane/Black Creek to Laird Drive. The Finch West LRT will run from the new Finch West Station on the York-Spadina Subway extension to Humber College. The Sheppard East LRT will operate from Don Mills Station to Morningside Avenue. The Scarborough RT will be rebuilt and extended to Sheppard Avenue, and connect with the Sheppard East LRT. 

Sounds good? Our economy thinks so too. We are losing $6 billion each year in productivity and 26,000 jobs to congestion. The Big Move isn’t just an investment in your quality of life; it will change the financial health of the region. With every $1 invested in transit, our economy expects a return of $1.19. That’s a 19% return on investment!