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Guelph Wellington - Your Feedback

Your feedback is an important part of our work and we want to hear from you. We are committed to engaging with community and stakeholders in any way that is convenient for you. Comments and questions received anytime on Engage will be included in the final Environmental Project Report. Post a question here and we’ll answer your question as soon as possible. Remember you can also vote up or down on your neighbours’ questions if you see what you wanted to know below. You can reach us directly by emailing [email protected] or calling 416-202-3467 for more information at any time. Register with us and you will be kept up to date with Metrolinx working happening in your community.

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Anonymous's avatar

Once the Guelph Sub is electrified, the Kitchener Corridor will be electrified between Union Station and Bramalea, and between Georgetown and Kitchener, with a gap between Bramalea and Georgetown. Will Metrolinx be ordering dual-mode locomotives (that can operate as diesel and electric) to run on the corridor? When will they be ordered?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 28, 2020 - 09:53

The final decisions on equipment requirements for GO Expansion is part of a system wide procurement to design, build, operate and maintain the network. The winning proponent will propose and procure trains that meet the requirements to deliver future service levels on the GO Transit rail network. This could include dual-mode locomotives or a combination of diesel and electric where required. There are also technology options to use fully electric engines that can hold sufficient battery reserve to travel the non-electrified portion of the corridor.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 23, 2020 - 13:15

Electrical is the way to go.

I live on the corner of McDonnell/Arthur St in Guelph. I understand that the electrical lines will run over the tracks. Poles and line over the bridge at this corner will be UN-sightly. I hope that you try to design poles and lines through the city that are attractive.

The pictures of the poles and lines that I saw online were old style and ugly. I don't want to look at them every day for the rest of my life. You can do better.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 28, 2020 - 10:10

One of the studies underway as part of the TPAP is looking at the visual impacts of the proposed new infrastructure. In areas where visual impacts are identified mitigation measures will be further investigated during detailed design, where feasible.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 24, 2020 - 15:00

We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor. There are 28 level crossings along this portion of the corridor alone, with five of those being in the City of Guelph. As service increases, the safety of these crossings remains the top priority. At this time we do not have any confirmed closures beyond the recent closure of Dublin Street. We will continue to do our best to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connections.

Anonymous's avatar

Glasgow or Alma street when you close them. Is the plan to do this so the trains can speed up?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 24, 2020 - 13:56

We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor. There are 28 level crossings along this portion of the corridor alone, with five of those being in the City of Guelph. As service increases, the safety of these crossings remains the top priority. At this time we do not have any confirmed closures beyond the recent closure of Dublin Street. We will continue to do our best to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connections.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 24, 2020 - 23:56

From looking at the infrastructure examples, it does not seem possible to install the electrical lines on Kent Street, which is very narrow and has a railroad track running down the middle of the street. I would like to know now whether Metrolinx plans to appropriate properties on Kent Street, on one or both sides. Based on the drawings, I cannot see any other feasible way to proceed with installation, as the current track is too narrow to accommodate this expansion and electrification poles, and it will not leave room for any roadway or home access. If not, please explain how you plan to implement this new track and electrification within the current limitations (e.g. width of Kent street and current rail track). Thank you.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 13, 2020 - 17:05

Potential property impacts associated with the OCS/electrification infrastructure will be reviewed and confirmed at the detailed design stage. There may be engineering solutions available to avoid potential property impacts in areas such as Kent Street, which will be examined during detailed design. Before any work beginnings the Community Relations team would be back with notice and information sessions to discuss impacts, mitigation and timing of construction.

Anonymous's avatar

There are other such crossings in the City of Guelph located in what is commonly known as the "old" City. The closing of these streets will severely impact the sense and value of neighbourhoods. School boundaries would have to change if no pedestrian access is considered. We feel that essential in the planning stages is pedestrian access, over or under the rail lines. Preferably, underpass/overpass for vehicular traffic would be most desirable but we realize that this may not be possible for most of the old City crossings.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 28, 2020 - 09:58

Safety is central to the operation of our service and the top priority at every level crossing across the network. Metrolinx works closely with our municipal partners as we continue to grow. We will continue to do our best to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connections.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Jul 26, 2020 - 17:05

Have you chosen the EMUs/Electric locomotives that'll run on the network? If not, when can we see orders placed?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 28, 2020 - 10:39

The final decisions on equipment requirements for GO Expansion is part of a system wide procurement to design, build, operate and maintain the network. The winning proponent will propose and procure trains that meet the requirements to deliver future service levels on the GO Transit rail network.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 27, 2020 - 15:34

This is listed as vacant land. Where did Microlinx get that information? It is City of Guelph parkland. This looks like two massive structures for a small area with houses, townhouses within immediate proximity. What other sites has Metrolinx looked at?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 30, 2020 - 12:09

Metrolinx conducted a detailed Facility Site Assessment study that looked at many sites within the wider Traction Power Substation (TPS) study area presented at round one of our public meetings. The sites were evaluated by assessing key environmental, land use and socio-economic, cultural heritage, and technical factors. As part of this TPAP, we are currently conducting impact assessments in multiple disciplines for the recommended site as we narrow down the preferred location of the TPS to a space that is 50 metres by 75 metres within the preferred site. The preferred site shown on the map is the entire property being considered, and only a small portion will be used for the TPS. We will be able to provide more information on the exact location and the layout of the TPS at the next round of public meetings early next year.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 27, 2020 - 15:37

This is listed as vacant land. Where did Metrolinx get that information? It is City of Guelph parkland. This looks like two massive structures for a small area with houses, townhouses within immediate proximity. What other sites has Metrolinx looked at?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 29, 2020 - 18:58

Metrolinx conducted a detailed Facility Site Assessment study that looked at many sites within the wider Traction Power Substation (TPS) study area presented at round one of our public meetings. The sites were evaluated by assessing key environmental, land use and socio-economic, cultural heritage, and technical factors. As part of this TPAP, we are currently conducting impact assessments in multiple disciplines for the recommended site as we narrow down the preferred location of the TPS to a space that is 50 metres by 75 metres within the preferred site. The preferred site shown on the map is the entire property being considered, and only a small portion will be used for the TPS. We will be able to provide more information on the exact location and the layout of the TPS at the next round of public meetings early next year.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 27, 2020 - 20:08

It is not vacant land. It is a designated naturalized park in the city if Guelph and is also an off leash dog park.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 13, 2020 - 16:42

For the purposes of impact assessment, land with no buildings or structures on it is considered “vacant”; however, the park lands and associated trail system were identified in our assessment and are being taken into consideration as we identify impacts and propose mitigation measures. We understand the importance of identifying the proposed location as Margaret Greene Park and have updated our meeting materials. We have heard from the community and are extending the open house to August 28. 

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 27, 2020 - 22:55

Is there a more detailed map to view the areas along the rail corridor with the OCS? Will there be plan to rebuild walking trail if there is an existing along the corridor? (City of Guelph Areas)
Thank you.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 13, 2020 - 15:13

We have updated the materials to include an interactive map that you can find here: https://www.metrolinxengage.com/en/content/kitchener-tpap-interactive-map. At this time the Overhead Catenary System area and vegetation removal areas are conceptual only and will be further refined during the detailed design phase. Before any work beginnings the Community Relations team would be back with notice and information sessions to discuss impacts, mitigation and timing of construction.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 28, 2020 - 12:07

In response to several questions already submitted, Metrolinx has responded:
"We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor."

My understanding of the situation is that Metrolinx told the City of Guelph that while Dublin Street would need to be closed in order to comply with a railway safety regulation, it instead must now remain closed to support higher speeds in the corridor. Will Metrolinx respect the City of Guelph's wishes if the city requests that Glasgow, Yorkshire, Edinburgh, etc remain open and at-grade?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 30, 2020 - 10:52

The closure of Dublin Street was a result of new level crossing regulations put in place as part of the 2014 update to the Railway Safety Act requirements. Safety is the top priority as we assess level crossings across the network and will be held central to our conversations with municipalities.

Anonymous's avatar

I find this proposal for this project deeply disturbing.... The land that you indicate as "vacant" is a beautiful public park used by everyone in this community. It is a walking trail, a leash free dog park, home to many different types of wildlife and a welcome green space in a ever urbanizing town. The proposed removal of this park is an absolute travesty and would not only greatly decrease property value for all houses nearby but also decimate a thriving and beautiful natural space.

I know I am not alone in voicing concern over this proposed project and I sincerely hope you choose another location that does not destroy this beautiful green space that is loved by the surrounding community.

Jeff Wilson

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 13, 2020 - 17:23

We have heard that there are concerns about the preferred location for the traction power substation (TPS) in Guelph and we will sit down to understand whether there is a better alternative.

It is important to note the proposed TPS will not encompass the entire parcel of land identified in the materials – rather, it will be situated in one portion/area on the site. To provide context, approximately 15 per cent of the identified property parcel and approximately 2.3 per cent of the entire Margaret Greene Park would be required for the TPS site. You can find more information on the proposed TPS location on Metrolinx News

Jeff Wilson's avatar

I find this proposal for this project deeply disturbing.... The land that you indicate as "vacant" is a beautiful public park used by everyone in this community. It is a walking trail, a leash free dog park, home to many different types of wildlife and a welcome green space in a ever urbanizing town. The proposed removal of this park is an absolute travesty and would not only greatly decrease property value for all houses nearby but also decimate a thriving and beautiful natural space.

I know I am not alone in voicing concern over this proposed project and I sincerely hope you choose another location that does not destroy this beautiful green space that is loved by the surrounding community.

Jeff Wilson

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 13, 2020 - 17:24

We have heard that there are concerns about the preferred location for the traction power substation (TPS) in Guelph and we will sit down to understand whether there is a better alternative.

It is important to note the proposed TPS will not encompass the entire parcel of land identified in the materials – rather, it will be situated in one portion/area on the site. To provide context, approximately 15 per cent of the identified property parcel and approximately 2.3 per cent of the entire Margaret Greene Park would be required for the TPS site. You can find more information on the proposed TPS location on Metrolinx News

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 28, 2020 - 19:51

Similar to questions above, I have a concern about the electrical infrastructure on narrow streets in close proximity to houses, specifically Kent Street in Guelph. I have reviewed the drawings on the website. Based on the drawings the OCS poles will need to be positioned extremely close to the street. How will Metrolinx deal with this sensitive stretch of track, with a very narrow street and in close proximity to houses?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Jul 31, 2020 - 14:43

Potential property impacts associated with the OCS/electrification infrastructure will be reviewed and confirmed at the detailed design stage. There may be engineering solutions available to avoid potential property impacts in areas such as Kent Street, which will be examined during detailed design. 

Property requirements will be further reviewed and refined during detailed design. If required, Metrolinx will proceed with property acquisition as follows:

  • Based on the detailed design, confirm locations where temporary/permanent easements/property acquisition will be required; and
  • Obtain all easements/property acquisitions from public/private property owners that are required to implement the project in accordance with Metrolinx’s approved property acquisition process.

If there are property impacts identified, we will begin the conversation with any impacted property owners as early as possible and will work collaboratively with affected property owners to ensure that the process is fair and open and causes the least impact possible.

In addition, as part of the Guelph Subdivision Electrification TPAP, we are undertaking an Electromagnetic Fields (EMF) / Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) study. Based on preliminary results, no adverse EMI effects are anticipated due to the installation/operation of the electrified GO Transit system.

Anonymous's avatar

The proposed plan to remove the greenspace in Margaret Greene park would have a devastating impact on the surrounding community. The area is a very well used space, as it is an off-leash dog trail and a safe place for children to explore nature with their families. Many people drive to the entrance of this space just to have some peace and quiet, away from the structures and sounds of city life. Also, those who have homes adjacent to this space will be negatively impacted if the greenspace is removed. The City of Guelph prides itself in having so much greenspace for people to enjoy. It is a valuable asset and should not be replaced!

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 14, 2020 - 12:55

It is important to note the proposed TPS is not planned to encompass the entire parcel of land – rather, it will be situated in one portion/area on the site identified. The park lands and associated trail system have been identified in our assessment and are being taken into consideration as we identify impacts and propose mitigation measures. Metrolinx is committed to working with the City of Guelph and the community to explore design options that minimize the impacts to the park. We are still early in the TPAP process and your feedback as an important part of the process and informs our work. The conceptual design will be shared with the public as part of the next round of open houses planned for early next year.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Jul 29, 2020 - 21:12

I am very concerned with Metrolinx and the lack of communication with regards to the TPS proposed location which will take a park space with the city. Little to no information on a final design for the sight and what other infrastructure will be required to operate the TPS location

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 14, 2020 - 13:24

We are in the early stages of the assessment and planning as part of the Transit Project Assessment Process. We held the first round of public meetings in November providing an overview of the project and proposed infrastructure. This round of public meetings builds on that providing an update as we narrow down the preferred locations of the proposed new infrastructure.  We are looking for feedback every step of the way and it is an important part of the consultation process. The conceptual design will be shared with the public as part of the next round of open houses planned for early next year, with an opportunity for more feedback.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 30, 2020 - 08:12

My concerns about this proposal are all of the unknowns. There is not enough information provided in the summary reports about the potential effects the TPS will have on neighbouring properties as well as the greenspace. I would like to know what the visual, vibration, and noise impacts would be, as well as exactly what will be required surrounding this 50x75 metre space (in other words, how many trees are going to be taken down and trails removed to support this project). I'm glad to see other citizens have voiced similar concerns (page 6 of the first summary report). I expect to see a more detailed assessment soon that shows the exact impact to the area. As my property is adjacent to the greenspace, I would have expected to hear more about this project before now.

Sarah DeVries

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 14, 2020 - 13:43

We are in the early stages of the assessment and planning as part of the Transit Project Assessment Process. We continue to provide updates of our studies and impact assessment results during each stage of public consultation. This round of public meetings builds on what was provided during round one as we narrow down the preferred locations of the proposed new infrastructure.  We are looking for feedback every step of the way and it is an important part of the consultation process. The conceptual design of the TPS and associated impacts with potential mitigation measures will be shared with the public as part of the next round of open houses planned for early next year.

Anonymous's avatar

to add to the comment - expansion - why would you put such a huge, ugly and noisy thing right in the backyard of many citizens. This is a lovely green space that many people use - as a home owner I enjoy the peace and beauty here everyday, whether it is winter or summer. Please do not ruin this - there has to be other spaces that would not affect so many people. I would also so add that I only just heard about this on Tuesday and you say that you have kept us informed, but all we had was a notification that the line was going to be updated and a picture of the line that will be updated, NO explaining that this part of line would be so affected.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 17, 2020 - 17:31

We have heard and understand the importance of preserving the park space as much as possible. The proposed TPS will not encompass the entire parcel of land identified and we are working on solutions that minimize the impact of the proposed footprint of the facility. We are early in the process and your feedback is an important part of the process that informs our work. There will be more information on the conceptual design of the TPS shared with the public as part of the next round of open houses planned for early next year.

We know the importance of notification around public meetings. This virtual open house looks at all of the components of electrification between Georgetown and Kitchener. To be kept up to date with everything happening in your community please email Metrolinx.com/Guelph-Wellington and sign up for the community newsletter.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 30, 2020 - 09:15

I have added my name each time but it has come up anonymous - Sheila Thomson

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 17, 2020 - 17:41

I apologize for this inconvenience, thank you for following up and providing your name. If you have further questions for our team please contact us directly at [email protected].

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 30, 2020 - 16:13

What other sites did you evaluate? How many? Why was the Lafarge lands not selected? It is right next to your tracks, has been empty for years. and has clear access roads. Did you discuss the option of installation with them? And, yes, I already know that they have filed an application for development - so far not approved. My question is, Did you discuss this land as an option with the owners? If so, what was their response?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 20, 2020 - 15:53

We looked at multiple locations while determining the preferred location for the TPS including the land east of the Highway 6 near the corridor. We are limited by many technical constraints in the area. We are still in the early phase and planning of the TPAP for electrification of the Guelph Subdivision, whereas the development application is far along with zoning plans already in place. You can find more information on the development proposal in detail here. We will continue to look for suitable alternatives and solutions to limit our impact with the proposed new infrastructure.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 30, 2020 - 16:28

Your response to an earlier question states that you would be using only a small part of the study area. 75m x 50m is a small area? That is almost a football field. Let's just say your perception of small is not the same the the people who live in this area. Can you please provide a bullet point list of why you choose Margaret Greene park? I am looking forward to your answer as to which other sites were considered and why they were rejected.

Saundra Anderton

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 17, 2020 - 20:54

We looked at several sites within the study area presented during the first round of public meetings for the Traction Power Substation. There are many technical constraints that factored into the decision to proceed with this preferred location. A TPS generally requires a space of 50 by 75 metres, however there are options to minimize the impact and limit the footprint to different set of dimensions. We are still early in the process and this feedback will be informing our work. You can find more information on the TPS site selection on Metrolinx News.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 30, 2020 - 21:03

This is a much loved area by the residents and there are people that drive to walk in this area. Why can't you find somewhere outside of the residential area for this. There is also the LaFarge lands that are right near the Hanlon AND have electric towers right there for you.

Please don't take this away from us.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 17, 2020 - 21:28

We understand the importance of preserving the park and trails by limiting our impact within the identified area. There are many technical constraints in the study area for the TPS presented at the first round of public meetings, including a development plan for the lands east of Highway 6. You can find an update on the development proposal here.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 30, 2020 - 22:13

1)The proposed areas is NOT VACANT LAND.... It is a public park that is also a leash free dog park that is used by everyone in this community as well as others from around the city.

2) There are more suitable areas for this project that would not decimate a beautiful green space and drastically lower property values, not to mention disturbing the thriving wildlife in the park.

3) The area right by the Hanlon Parkway (Silver Creek and paisley) is suitable according to your required size, it is right next to the existing track, the area is just dirt and would not be destroying a public park and most importantly, it IS VACANT unlike Margret green park.

The community around Margaret Green park will not sit idlely by while you selfishly ruin a public park for something no one in this community asked for.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 17, 2020 - 21:58

We understand the importance and have updated the meeting materials to recognize the proposed location as part of Margaret Greene Park. The impact assessment categorizes any space with no buildings or structures on it to be considered “vacant”, which has also been removed from the materials. The park lands and associated trail system were identified in our assessment and are being taken into consideration as we continue through our studies.

Once the proposed footprint is determined more work will be done to identify impacts, including a Natural Environment study that looks at impacts to vegetation, wildlife and waterbodies. The study will also identify any proposed mitigation measures.

There are many technical constraints in the study area for the TPS, including a planned development east of Highway 6 near the rail corridor.

Nancy's avatar
Jul 31, 2020 - 06:25

I cannot, for the life of me, understand why you would choose a city park...one that is well established, well used and surrounded by residential properties....to build a traction power substation. I believe this plan will have an enormous negative impact on our community. I would hope that you would reconsider this decision and take another look at your alternative site(s)

Nancy Foster

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 17, 2020 - 22:08

We are committed to exploring design options that minimize the impact of any new infrastructure. We know the importance of maintaining the park lands, trail system and park entrance at Ferman Drive. We will continue to determine whether there is a better alternative.

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 31, 2020 - 08:08

I am quite concerned with Metrolinx's plans for Guelph and I find the answers that are being given on this website disengenous.

Metrolinx staff have confirmed in emails that they will not permit Dublin Street to be reopened to pedestrians and cyclists because of planned speed upgrades in the area. While the original request to close is appears to have been based on railway safety issues, the planned speed increase has become a new justification for not partially reopening it. The response on this website to my earlier question refers only to the rail safety issue and this feels dishonest to me. It raises concerns in my mind about Metrolinx's sincerity in its responses to questions and its intentions concerning the other streets.

An earlier response to a question indicated that "We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor." The Guelph councillors I have spoken to about this find this comment strange, and feel that Metrolinx has not engaged substantively on any level, and the sentiment I perceive is that Metrolinx simply issues orders that have to be complied with.

I continue to be very concerned about the future status of Glasgow, Yorkshire, Edinburgh, and Alma. Is the plan to close them or not? This is a straightforward question and people in Guelph are entitled to an answer so that they can discuss it and come up with a response. I do not find it credible that Metrolinx has not made a decision on this issue, and I find the answers given so far evasive and frustrating.

I have concerns generally about the plans for electrification. The reference to Margaret Green Park as "vacant land" is dismissive and reflects a lack of understanding of conditions on the ground. The plans for "vegetation removal" raise serious concerns about the compatibility of this project with the neighbourhoods and greenspaces through which it is supposed to pass. Hydro crews have been badly damaging the Guelph tree canopy for years, and I am concerned that the project is insufficiently insensitive to the need to protect shade trees, tree canopy, biodiversity, and the natural green corridors of the city. As climate change intensifies, our canopy is more important than ever, and the 7-metre "vegetation removal zone" seems like a poorly thought out idea incompatible with development in Guelph.

Finally, would the administrators of this website please speak with their technical staff about the fact that when people provide names, their comments are still displayed as being from "anonymous"? While I am sure this is just an oversight, one could hardly come up with a clearer metaphor for a large government bureaucracy reducing the people impacted by a project to mere complaints than by actually removing their names from public discourse. This is an easy fix - please make it today.

My name is Luke, in case I am listed as "anonymous" as I have been before.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 20, 2020 - 21:13

Safety is central to our services. There are 28 level crossings along this portion of the corridor alone - five of those being in the City of Guelph – four are north south connections within one community. We are currently assessing all of them, working with each municipality including the City of Guelph. We need to know more information before any decisions can be made.  Vegetation removal is part of the process of maintaining a safe electrification network. We understand the importance of limiting the impact of any new infrastructure on the surrounding environment. We are still in the planning and investigation phase of the TPAP; once the preferred footprint is identified there is still more work to be done. We are committed to exploring design options that minimize the footprint of the preferred location and will be conducting further studies to understand these impacts to the natural environment. There will be more opportunities for public consultation in the next phase of this project.

Thank you for identifying the concerns with the name field. We apologize for the inconvenience and thank you for sharing your name for the Environmental Project Report. 

Anonymous's avatar
Jul 31, 2020 - 18:50

I moved to Guelph in 1991 and purchased my home because it backs on the leash free dog park at Margaret Green Park. Obviously, it is with a different dog but I still walk in that park at least twice every day, rain or shine. It is a wonderful, beautiful naturalized area, not vacant land. I have watched the tress mature and the tree canopy cover the paths we walk on.
Despite my yard backing on then park, I did not receive any notice from Metrolinx about this plan. I had to learn about it from a friend that I met in the park as we walked our dogs at the same time. I have made many friendships through dog walking in the park. It is another component to the park.
I really hope there is a way this proposal can be dropped for one that is on actual vacant land.
Susan Mawhiney

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 23, 2020 - 21:38

I apologize you were not notified of the virtual open house, we do our best to keep the community informed of public meetings, information sessions and work happening in the community. If you sign up for our community newsletter you will be kept up to date of future events, work and announcements for the Guelph Wellington area. Please follow this link to sign up and stay informed: https://metrolinx.us4.list-manage.com/subscribe/post?u=e3e2dcbefa63d1ca424de38bb&id=d003ab5b57.

Thank you for your feedback it is an important part of the TPAP process and informs our work. We are committed to working with the City of Guelph to understand whether there is a better alternative and exploring design options that limit our impact to the park.

Anonymous's avatar

Trails off Imperial. It seem inconsistent with planning to date to stick a power station in. Heavily used green space thAt is a hub for social interactions especially for families with children and seniors who may otherwise be There surely must be alternate space available. Please find another option

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 23, 2020 - 21:45

We understand the importance of maintaining the park lands and associated trail system. We are committed to exploring design options that minimize the footprint of the preferred location and will be conducting further studies to understand these impacts to the natural environment including the vegetation. We are also working with the City of Guelph to understand whether there is a better alternative.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 13:57

We are still in the early stages of this project as we determine and consult on the location of the TPS. The power transfer from the Hydro One Tap location to the TPS would be determined during future phases of the project.

The specific infrastructure required for connections to Hydro One’s existing high voltage power lines will be reviewed and identified during the detailed design phase in coordination with Hydro One following the TPAP.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 1, 2020 - 11:29

Where will the hydro towers be located? Will the towers, needed to bring power to the site in the naturalized area, be located on Metrolinx property in it's right-of-way. Planning is well advanced for the transfer power station so the answer is yes or no.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 1, 2020 - 11:32

(Posting this for a friend who has been unable to do this herself)

Metrolinks plans to use Margaret Green Park at the Ferman St. entrance. The area stated is 50 x75 m. but does not include parking, vehicle roads, tree cutting and spraying near townhouses ,single families and St. Peter's School. During construction,use, elementary kids from 3 schools will pass by both park entrance, also the Imperial-Ferman entrance to a 4th .

Metrolinks studies enviro and socio- economic effects. Why pick a naturalized area, home to at least 46 bird and 13 mammal species. This is a fall migration corridor for many bird species and also large groups of monarchs that use the purple asters and milkweed. Also the Ont. endangered Little Brown Bat protected by law uses the whole park even by the Ferman Entrance. The school uses the area for science, and students and neighbors have planted native trees, plants and added bird and bat houses.

Socio-economically why also build a plant, towers, in an area used by two schools many very close townhouses, houses, and apartments and several ESL groups. Students and adults without cars, use the Ferman entrance to walk to three schools, bus stops and two grocery stores. Also studies have shown an increase in leukemia in children living within 60 m. of stations and towers.
Just added - If the Ferman entrance is blocked townhouse kids, Ferman and the west neighbors can't get to the park.

This "vacant land" is used for city track and field the complete length up to Ferman Dr., cricket, soccer, baseball, free dog run,child's play are, washrooms, community fairs, picnics,and Westwood Community group.

The pandemic works in Metrolinks favor. The Tribune, city of Guelph offices are closed, and due to isolation and no notification , people, even Parks and Recreation were unaware and are also afraid of attending meetings. If citizens have no power, why vote?

Esther

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 24, 2020 - 21:36

We understand the importance of identifying the proposed location as Margaret Greene Park and have updated our meeting materials. It is important to note the proposed TPS will not encompass the entire parcel of land identified in the materials – rather, it will be situated in one portion/area on the site. Once the proposed footprint is determined additional work will be required to study impacts of the site on the natural environment, including vegetation and wildlife. The entrance from Ferman Drive and associated trail system have been identified in our assessment and are being taken into consideration as we identify impacts and propose mitigation measures. We are committed to exploring options that minimize our impacts and working with the City to identify alternatives. The online format allows all residents to participate where and when they are ready, including weekends over the six week period of the open comment period. We are also available over the phone any time at 416-202-3467.

Anonymous's avatar

In an earlier posts, Metrolinx noted that it it studied several possible sites for the traction power subsubstation. In the spirit of transparency, open community dialogue, and fairness, will Metrolinx release the list of those sites? That disclosure is essential to ensure that Metrolinx and the community are on equal footing during community consultations.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:00

Through the pre-planning phase of the Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP), we have looked at numerous sites within the identified study area presented at the public meeting in November for the Traction Power Substation (TPS). This study area included locations between the edge of Margaret Greene Park traveling east to Alma Street and south to Castlebury Park stretching north to Rhonda Road. The study area for the TPS was determined by the location of the Hydro One Tap location. The site needs to be within close proximity to the Hydro One 230kv transmission line and along a straight portion of the rail corridor (for the Hydro One Tap). The preferred location needs to be an area with approximately 4,000 square metres of space to fit the necessary electrical equipment.

There are many technical constraints that have been factored into the decision to proceed with the preferred site, including many planned developments in the area. We are committed to working with the City to explore alternatives and options that minimize our impact to the surrounding area.

Linda Busuttil's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 08:29

The proposed Margaret Green Park Metrolix transformer site is a naturalized green space, recreation space. cycling trail, Ellis Creek trail, and accessible transportation corridor that serves to connect the neighbourhood. Your choice of a convenient location for the transformer in Margaret Greene Park is unacceptable.

This site is a frequent thoroughfare for children attending St Peters Catholic School, on foot and also by bike. The Margaret Green access serves as a safe route to school and an alternative to the busy and speedy Willow Road, or the inclined Ferman Drive access.

The proposed location of the transformer in Margaret Greene Park is also a barrier to the many residents on Westwood Road who regularly access the West End Recreation Centre and commercial establishments. The planning values of the city of Guelph promote alternative modes of transportation and healthy living.

I would like to know why the preferred location is not the Lafarge site where there is immediate access to the hydro corridor and does not adversely impact the health and wellbeing of residents?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:02

Through the pre-planning phase of the Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP), we have looked at numerous sites within the identified study area presented at the public meeting in November for the Traction Power Substation (TPS). The study area for the TPS is determined by the location of the Hydro One Tap location. The site needs to be within close proximity to the Hydro One 230kv transmission line and along a straight portion of the rail corridor (for the Hydro One Tap). The preferred location needs to be an area with approximately 4,000 square metres of space to fit the necessary electrical equipment.

There are many technical constraints that have been factored into the decisions to proceed with the preferred site, including many planned developments in the area. We are committed to working with the City to explore alternatives and options that minimize our impact to the surrounding area.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 09:54

This morning, I spent an hour in Margaret Green park walking with my dog in the naturalized area and the groomed area. I realized that all the pros for using the naturalized area also work for the groomed part. It is a designated park land (as it the the naturalized area) and so if one area is vacant land so is the other. It is close to the track area and the land is flat. A bonus for using the groomed area is that it does not back on anyone's backyard and there are fewer trees to remove. According to Metrolinx's comments, the area they need would hardly disturb the ball diamonds or the soccer fields or the tennis courts or any of the other areas designated for sport. By now you are saying, is this person crazy, that is a ludicrous idea. You are correct! It is just as ludicrous to plan to disturb the naturalized area.
Susan Mawhiney

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:03

Thank you for your feedback. The study area for the Traction Power Substation (TPS) is determined by the location of the Hydro One Tap location. The site needs to be within close proximity to the Hydro One 230kv transmission line and along a straight portion of the rail corridor (for the Hydro One Tap). The preferred location needs to be an area with approximately 4,000 square metres of space to fit the necessary electrical equipment.

We will seek design solutions to minimize impacts to the park, trail and other amenities. We are committed to working on design options that would limit our impact to the park and maintain access.

Anonymous's avatar

The traction power substation study area is currently zoned as a regional park (P4). Is Metrolinx proposing to purchase the entire study area from the City of Guelph? Can both the park uses and the TPSS be accommodated in this area?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:06

We are still early in the planning process and have not yet finalized the Hydro One Tap location or TPS location within the preferred sites.

Once the TPS location at the preferred site is determined, through consultation with the public, more details regarding the location and size of both sites will be developed and shared.

We will seek design solutions to minimize impacts to the park, trail and other amenities. We are committed to working on design options that would limit our impact to the park and maintain access.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 13:51

who wants to close residential street crossings? hardly helpful to residents

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 21, 2020 - 13:23

We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor. There are 28 level crossings along this portion of the corridor alone, with five of those being in the City of Guelph. As service increases, the safety of these crossings remains the top priority. At this time we do not have any confirmed closures beyond the recent closure of Dublin Street. We will continue to do our best to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connections.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 14:05

Hands off of Margaret Green Park. It is not VACANT land, nor is it open for Metrolinx to use for any purpose.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:08

Thank you for your message. We have heard loud and clear that there are concerns about the preferred location for the Traction Power Substation (TPS) in Guelph and we will sit down with the City of Guelph to understand whether there is a better alternative.

For the purposes of impact assessment, land with no buildings or structures on it is considered “vacant”; however, the park lands and associated trail system were identified in our assessment and are being taken into consideration as we identify impacts and propose mitigation measures.

We will seek design solutions to minimize impacts to the park. We are committed to working with the City of Guelph to explore alternatives and options that minimize our impact to the surrounding area.

Anonymous's avatar

Closure of roads and the installation of a commercial train facility will greatly impact Guelph. It may become to be known as only a train, truck and industrial town not a university urban community. Other businesses will be attracted such as dangerous materials, etc for the convenience of train activity. Guelph will no longer be a safe and healthy place to live. Traffic will become so impacted that residents will no longer do business with city retailers. Driving to commercial areas nearby in Cambridge will benefit from spending dollars due their convenient driving experience. After generations of such madness, the community will die and become an industrial landfill site.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:08

Thank you for your comment. Metrolinx works closely with the municipalities, elected officials, Indigenous communities, landowners, developers and other subject matter experts when proposing where to locate required new infrastructure for our work.  

At this time we do not have any confirmed closures beyond the recent closure of Dublin Street. We will continue to work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities best, to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor. There are 28 level crossings along this portion of the corridor alone, with five of those being in the City of Guelph. As service increases, the safety of these crossings remains the top priority. We will continue to do our best to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connections.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 15:09

Why are you choosing a space that is directly behind a residential space? Have you not considered how this effects the value of homes? Also have you don’t considered the effects this has place on the dog walkers which this is one of the only free leash zones in Guelph? Also have you not considered about the little kids in the neighborhood that uses this area for walks and play? Have you not considered about anyone else but yourselves? There is plenty of space I Guelph that does not have so many negative effects on the community. I urge you to consider those spaces instead

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:09

Through the pre-planning phase of the Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP) we have looked at numerous sites within the identified study area presented at the public meeting in November for the Traction Power Substation (TPS). This study area included locations between the edge of Margaret Greene Park traveling east to Alma Street and south to Castlebury Park stretching north to Rhonda Road. The study area for the TPS is determined by the location of the Hydro One Tap location. The site needs to be within close proximity to the Hydro One 230kv transmission line and along a straight portion of the rail corridor (for the Hydro One Tap).

There are many technical constraints that have been factored into the decisions to proceed with the preferred site, including many planned developments in the area. We are committed to working with the City to explore alternatives and options that minimize our impact.

We work closely with municipalities, elected officials, Indigenous communities, landowners, developers and other subject matter experts when proposing where to locate required new infrastructure for our work. We have heard and know the importance of maintaining the path system through this area and access to the park from Ferman Drive. We are committed to working on design options that would limit our impact to the park and maintain access.

In general, there is evidence to show that when homes are located close to transit, the close proximity can have a positive impact on property value. In addition, the close proximity to a transit station can also have a positive impact on property value.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 2, 2020 - 15:11

I am not in favour of Metrolinx having the power to shut down railway crossings/intersections to cars or pedestrians our in community with or without consulatation. I would like the Dublin Street crossing to be re-opened. I hope that the City takes these opinions seriously.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:10

The level crossing at Dublin Street was closed permanently in July this year at Metrolinx’s recommendation, as it did not meet Transport Canada standards for safety. More information can be found here: https://guelph.ca/2020/06/dublin-street-rail-crossing-closure-and-kent-and-northumberalnd-street-changes/

No other closures are confirmed at this time. Metrolinx and the City of Guelph are currently reviewing existing conditions of the five additional rail crossings in Guelph, and completing transportation studies of the area.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:10

Thank you for your comment. If you have questions or specific comments related to the TPAP, please email the Community Relations team, [email protected].

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 16:33

I think it is ludicrous to consider closing all the crossings other than at Edinburgh road. Traffic along there can be bad enough, without increasing the traffic on the smaller roadways. And what about pedestrians and bicyclists? It is unreasonable to expect them to do extensive detours. While electric sounds great, these closures are unacceptable.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:11

The level crossing at Dublin Street was closed permanently in July this year at Metrolinx’s recommendation, as it did not meet Transport Canada standards for safety. More information can be found here: https://guelph.ca/2020/06/dublin-street-rail-crossing-closure-and-kent-and-northumberalnd-street-changes/  

No other closures are confirmed at this time. Metrolinx and the City of Guelph are currently reviewing existing conditions of the five additional rail crossings in Guelph, and completing transportation studies of the area.

Anonymous's avatar

The decision to close Dublin Street and possibly other level crossings in Guelph has not been discussed with its residents, nor the Traction Power Substation being proposed for construction on public parkland. These changes will fundamentally alter the nature of our city. Where is the Mayor and Council in these discussions? Does Metrolinx have sole determination over the future of our city? Why the total silence from City Hall in the face of these profound changes to our city? The citizens of Guelph deserve answers.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:12

At Metrolinx’s recommendation, the level crossing at Dublin Street was closed permanently in July of this year as it did not meet Transport Canada standards for safety. More information can be found here: https://guelph.ca/2020/06/dublin-street-rail-crossing-closure-and-kent-and-northumberalnd-street-changes/

No other closures are confirmed at this time. Metrolinx and the City of Guelph are currently reviewing existing conditions of the five additional rail crossings in Guelph, and completing transportation studies of the area.

It is important to note the proposed TPS is not planned to encompass the entire parcel of land – rather, it will be situated in one portion/area on the site. The conceptual design will be shared with the public as part of the next round of open houses planned for early next year.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 16:57

As a cyclist in Guelph, residential streets such as Glasgow, Yorkshire, and Alma are necessary to navigate the city safely. Edinburgh is narrow and already very busy. Pedestrians also need the residential streets. How can we expect people to walk and bike through the city if only Gordon and Edinburgh are available? Also, the added stress on the E-W streets that cars trying to get around these proposed closures would be dangerous.
The tracks run through a city. If the rail companies wish they didn’t have to put up with level crossings, they should pay to make safe underpasses or bridges.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:13

The closure of Dublin Street was specific to the steep grade and challenging sightlines that made the crossing unsafe. There are 28 level crossings between Georgetown and Kitchener, with five of those being in the City of Guelph alone. At this time we do not have any additional confirmed closures.

We continue to work closely with the City and other municipalities while we assess the existing conditions of the remaining level crossings on the corridor. The safety of these crossings remains our top priority. We will continue to do our best to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connections. We will continue to engage and work with the community wherever possible as we bring two-way all-day service to the Kitchener corridor.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 17:21

How did Metrolinx come to chose the Margaret Green Park space? This space is by no means vacant. It is a beautiful, mature, well used natural green space in Guelph. Home to wildlife. People come from all around to use the trail. At any given time, you cannot walk the trail without passing other groups of people using the space. It is one of the only leash free dog parks in town. We are all aware of climate change and how important it is to protect the green space we have. Protect this green space.

Also, how will this not negatively impact the neighbourhood?

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 31, 2020 - 14:14

Through the pre-planning phase of the Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP) we have looked at numerous sites within the identified study area presented at the public meeting in November for the Traction Power Substation (TPS). This study area included locations between the edge of Margaret Greene Park traveling east to Alma Street and south to Castlebury Park stretching north to Rhonda Road.

There are many technical constraints that have been factored into the decisions to proceed with the preferred site, including many planned developments in the area. We are committed to working with the City to explore alternatives and options that minimize our impact to the surrounding area.

We work closely with the municipalities, elected officials, Indigenous communities, landowners, developers and other subject matter experts when proposing where to locate required new infrastructure for our work. We have heard and know the importance of maintaining the path system through this area and access to the park. We are committed to working on design options that would limit our impact to the park and maintain access.

A suite of impact assessments are being undertaken to evaluate impacts and recommend mitigation measures to reduce these impacts on the neighbourhood, as follows

  • Land Use/Socio Economic – existing and planned land uses
  • Visual Aesthetic – views of the project infrastructure, with a focus on highly sensitive views from areas such as residential and parks
  • Natural Environment – environmentally sensitive areas
  • Noise and Vibration – noise and vibration nuisance effects from construction and operations of the project
  • Air Quality – nuisance effects from construction of the project (e.g., dust)

The impact assessment studies have not been fully completed yet, since the studies require the preferred location of the Traction Power Facilities to be determined. The results of these studies will be shared at the next round of public meetings in early 2021.

Anonymous's avatar

While I u sweats d the need to increase infrastructure to support trains, doing this transparently is critical. What I’m reading about the use of Margaret A Green park is very concerning

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 17:48

Margaret Greene park is a staple of our community and we will not allow it to be torn down for an electric substation.

Anonymous's avatar

This will greatly divide the community. Students who attend Paisley Rd public school will be blocked from walking to school. Parks will be blocked from children, the businesses will suffer, and those who access the food bank will have a more difficult time. This is ridiculous and I very much hope that you will not divide our Junction community.

Anonymous's avatar

In your proposal which included the Campbell study area 712600014, you identified this area as vacant.
This is not the case, as it is one of the only green areas we have in the West End of Guelph. Along with that, this is the only off-leash dog park area available to us.

Guelph already does not have enough park land and green areas. Your decision to clear this area is rather concerning, especially with the comments from Hydro One advising the location does not provide adequate power.

As a lifelong resident in the area, I urge you to reconsider the location for the power station.

Anonymous's avatar

This is a big deal and a terrible idea.
I am most concerned about how this will impact pedestrian travel - most notably all of the families who live south of the tracks at Alma and walk their kids to school (Paisley Rd Public School, and St. Joseph's Catholic school), and will now either have to walk opposite direction to the busy Edinburgh Rd first, or decide to drive instead because it's quicker/easier (and at that point, who could blame them). It would also significantly change the walking route for anyone north of the tracks to go to Double B, Fixed Gear, and the Pitt and have any sense of community with that neighbourhood.
Walkability is SO important for a healthy, thriving, and accessible neighbourhood....I firmly oppose the plan to close these tracks to traffic - both vehicles and pedestrians.

Anonymous's avatar

As a family that relies on GO transit 5 days per week (outside of the current pandemic) to commute to work in downtown Toronto, I can say with 100% certainty that there is no improvement to GO transit service that would convince me and my neighbours that closing traffic at the Alma St rail crossing is acceptable. While I recognize the importance of service upgrades, Metrolinx has to do better than interfering with communities and neighbourhoods that it knows little about. We have lived in our current home for 6 years. It is south of the rail crossing. Our 6 year old daughter attends Paisley Road Public School as will our son next fall. Our daily trip to school requires crossing these tracks. Our neighbours to BOTH sides make the same trip each day as do countless other families. This is a vital crossing in our community. It is also a hub of recent community expansion with businesses that have community values at their core. Not to mention the families I see passing by my home with their groceries from the foodbank, which sits just north of the Alma St. train crossing.

There are many other comments posted here that share the concerns of various communities across Guelph who will be negatively impacted by the proposed changes by Metrolinx. This process of service improvement needs meaningful community engagement and input.

My name is Logan Kennedy in case I am listed as anonymous as others have noted.

Anonymous's avatar

I would like to know if Yorkshire st in Guelph is being considered to be closed like Dublin st.

Anonymous's avatar

An alternative site should be looked at as there are few remaining green spaces in the west end community.

Anonymous's avatar

This is not acceptable! We live in the Junction area. Alma Street is a main artery for kids to get to 2 schools on Paisley Rd. If this railroad crossing is blocked to pedestrians and cars children and vehicles will have to walk over to Edinburgh Road, which is very busy all ready with traffic, and back down to Paisley to get to school. We walk over the tracks on Alma St to get to Howitt Park on a weekly bases. This is a strong NO to allowing this to happen in several tightknit communities in the DT Guelph area.

Dianne's avatar

This whole project is devastating to me. Is this a Provincial initiative imposed upon the City of Guelph? What say do residents really have in this matter?

Plans are being made to place electric trains with associated and severe consequences in our lovely City and especially Ward 4.

Road closures, possible expropriation of property, health risks and dangers of electric currents to residents, vegetation removal, parkland removal in a high density area where there is not much parkland to begin with, and at the back door to a school?

There are so many concerns. Please don’t consider this as a positive undertaking for our City. It’s not.

Dianne's avatar

This whole project is devastating to me. Is this a Provincial initiative imposed upon the City of Guelph? What say do residents really have in this matter?

Plans are being made to place electric trains with associated and severe consequences in our lovely City and especially Ward 4.

Road closures, possible expropriation of property, health risks and dangers of electric currents to residents, vegetation removal, parkland removal in a high density area where there is not much parkland to begin with, and at the back door to a school?

There are so many concerns. Please don’t consider this as a positive undertaking for our City. It’s not.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 2, 2020 - 22:30

Not only will it destroy key neighbourhoods in our downtown core, wrecking our unique culture, this rail system will continue to expand the megapolis of Toronto. This will take away the very things that make Guelph great -- the fact it is slow-paced, quaint and not Toronto. We need to put our values into things that are actually sustainable for our community before we try to unite with cities that still have to get their act together. We need a different plan.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 00:33

Metrolinx' proposed plans to close track crossings at Glasgow, Yorkshire, and especially Alma St. (leaving Edinburgh Rd. as the sole way to travel N-S) are unacceptable. As someone whose job duties involve a lot of driving within the city bounds, I find myself stuck at the Edinburgh/Paisley intersection as a result of the shunting operations sometimes several times a day, with the N-S traffic severely backed up. It is incredibly frustrating as it is. This is BEFORE closing off the remaining track crossings on this side of the city. I can only imagine the nightmarish results on traffic post-closures. I understand upgrades would be needed in order to accommodate the improved service, but Metrolinx CAN and needs to do better by means of overpasses/underpasses in order to not further disturb Guelph life. The citizens of this area of the city need to live their lives and be able to use alternate modes of transportation (walking, cycling, driving) in their own neighbourhood, not just board high-speed trains to elsewhere.
As far as the "vacant" plot of land better known as Margaret Greene Park is concerned, I share the sentiments expressed in all the previous comments. I hope you get the hint that the citizens of Guelph will not just roll over and accept the massacring of a beautiful city park. I would be very interested to know what other sites were considered as alternatives for the TPS.

Anonymous's avatar

Environmentally it would be disastrous. So much wildlife depends upon it. We need all the wild land we have. We're losing so much to habitat loss! Where do they go? Can you please locate your structure elsewhere where it will have less of a negative environmental impact??

Susan Watson's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 06:59

Why was there no Municipal Class Environmental Assessment or Transit Assessment for the Dublin Street closure?

Susan Watson's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 07:02

Analysis done by Ward 4 resident Matt Saunders showed that Guelph is already 25% - 40% short of the parkland our Official Plan says we are supposed to have. https://www.guelphtoday.com/local-news/city-denies-candidates-claim-of-h...

The pandemic has shown us how critical parkland is for human well-being on many levels. Guelph parkland should not be sacrificed to this project. There are vacant sites available along the tracks.

Susan Watson's avatar

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Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 08:43

Perhaps the decision makers at Metrolinxs could instead consider destroying a park that their children use every day? Rather than one my children use every day. Or presumably the privileged don't need to worry about their green space?? You are proposing to destroy a beautiful walking trail that the neighborhood uses daily. We have walked on this trail almost every single day during the pandemic and regularly meet our neighbors there. This a a valuable piece of green space and it's shocking that you are calling it otherwise. It's also quite disgusting the absolute lack of communication that has happened about this build. You may want to rethink both your commitment to the environment and your "community engagement" strategies

Anonymous's avatar

The closure of the level crossings to vehicular and pedestrian traffic in downtown Guelph will significantly affect the residents in this area. Have any studies been done to measure the impact of these closures and, if so, what were the conclusions derived from the studies?

Anonymous's avatar

Based on the feedback below, the editorial in Guelph Today, and other social media posts, it is clear that the community is engaged in providing feedback. How will this feedback be utilized in the decision making process? Specifically, how and where will it be catalogued or otherwise distributed? Who will it be shared with?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 11:28

There’s something odd about Metrolinx proceeding with its plan to build the traction power substation (TPS) in a Guelph natutalized area. Electricity is essential for the TPS. No electricity; no TPS.

Yet, without assurance from Hydro One for a supply of electricity, Metrolinx is going ahead. It’s poor and unprofessional planning to proceed without a guarantee for electricity which is essential.

Metrolinx may be confident to go ahead because it has already discussed the issue with Hydro One and has received assurance that power will be delivered to the site. Metrolinx and Hydro One are Crown corporation that, when push comes to shove, they can do whatever they want.

It would be interesting to know what communications have taken place between Metrolinx and Hydro One to give Metrolinx the confidence that it will have the electricity which is vital to the project. No electricity; no project.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 12:58

While I understand that the actual size of the TPS will be 50m x 75m, and the entire 7 acre parcel of Margaret Greene Park marked off will not be required for it, why did the Facility Site Assessment conclude that the park is preferable to a site like the vacant land at the corner of Elmira Rd. and Tovell Drive? It's located proximate to the rail line, has the added benefit of easy road access for maintenance vehicles, and would be disrupting a largely empty field rather than an area with mature trees and current walking trails.

Anonymous's avatar

Margaret Greene Park Guelph Ontario is a Regional Park and as such comes under Parks Canada Agency.

Part of the Parks Canada Agency’s Commitment is to ‘protect as a first priority the natural and cultural heritage of our special places and ensure that they remain healthy and whole.’

Parks Canada Agency’s mandate is: "On behalf of the people of Canada, we protect and present nationally significant examples of Canada's natural and cultural heritage, and foster public understanding, appreciation and enjoyment in ways that ensure the ecological and commemorative integrity of these places for present and future generations."

I should add that several schools in the area use this naturalized space.

We would appreciate it if you found another place for the TPAP. Thank you.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 19:36

You mention several times that Metrolinx ‘work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions of level crossings on the corridor.’ However, residents of Guelph were not consulted regarding the closure of Dublin street. Does Metrolinx have a responsibility to see that a community is properly consulted and engaged in this kind of significant and permanent decision making?

Also, what’s the actual problem with the level crossings that necessitates permanent closure at a site such as Dublin street? Have similar permanent closures occurred in other communities. If so, can you provide examples?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 21:00

I will keep my comments brief, as they echo the sentiments of many others posted already.

I am an old city resident, and I am deeply concerned about street closures in our neighbourhood. As someone who has chosen to live in a downtown core for its accessibility, I will be directly negatively impacted by any further closures, especially at Glasgow or Edinburgh. Dublin St. was closed abruptly for public safety - why would other crossings be different? Closures will put pressure on local traffic patterns; last year Dublin St. was used as a detour route when there was construction on Gordon St. Now this option no longer exists. When there is construction on Gordon again, there will be increased pressure on Glasgow, Alma, and Edinburgh to accommodate. If these streets are closed, then where will traffic be redirected? Furthermore, the proposed infrastructure will detract from the aesthetic that Guelph old city is known for.

Additionally, Margaret Greene Park is not an acceptable location for the TPS. The damage caused by the construction of the substation will take years to fix, if at all it will be fixable. We cannot afford to lose more green space, especially a forested area that is habitat for various flora and fauna, as well as a locale for social gathering, exercise, and dog walking.

Each of these points is frustrating in its own right, but as a whole is particularly frustrating when it seems that this plan only benefits individuals going to and from Toronto. For those who live and work in Guelph, the benefits are nonexistent.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 3, 2020 - 21:19

My concern and that of many people in the Maragaret Greene Park area is for the health and safety of the individuals in the area. This greenspace has been an area for children and the adjacent community to enjoy for decades. Tearing down the greenspace and replacing it with a traction power substation not only is horrible for the environment, but puts the immediate residents at danger for developing major health issues. When was the neighborhood surveyed? There's no way the residents affected would approve. This greenspace is continuously used by children and residents, --- owners and is a home for much wildlife. There are other options here and Metrolinx is strongly urged to leave this area and take the project elsewhere, where it will not be right in the communities backyard.

Anonymous's avatar

Margaret Greene walking park has residential borders and is one of the most beloved walking trails in the city and the only westend off leash dog park. These natural habitats have been a staple in this community and should be protected by our city due to its forest and natural habitats Guelph is loosing it's great natural forest and parks at an alarming rate and this beautiful city and community will be devastated as these pathways are used daily by nature lovers and by regular pedestrians that have used these passages for decades. The wild species will loose their homes and wildlife education will be distroyed. The health of our community will be at risk as this Traction Power Station will be far to close to the residential borders and St Peter School. There are so many other areas on the outskirts of Guelph where this station can be built. The discussion of having this station in place of our natural forest will destroy this community. What is more alarming is that we as a community and citizens of Guelph just found out about this and have not had a say until now. This alone is a huge issue! Save our beautiful park!!

Susan Watson's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 06:49

What list of criteria did Metrolinx use for the location of the TPS, and how are those criteria weighted?

For instance, I'm not clear why the existence of a development application for a vacant piece of land automatically excludes it as a candidate for expropriation for the TPS (ie., the Lafarge property), while community use of a 50-year-old park apparently does not. Why do private interests trump public interests?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 08:45

Good day,
I am writing in response to the proposed plan to electrify a portion of the rail and potentially close a number of road that cross the current tracks to speed trains through our area of Guelph. While I am a supporter of public transit, and an improvement in rail infrastructure more specifically, I am very concerned about the impact to our community of these actions. As a health scientist, I must first express concern with the impact this will have on active transport, cutting off major bike routes to the University and open recreation space - as well as walking routes children take to get to school. The only remaining option would be a large and already overburdened road, which is notably lacking in bike lanes. Compounding this, there is already a train yard 1 block north that intersects with this last remaining thoroughfare, and when trains are shunted traffic flow is greatly disrupted. Closure of Alma in particular would also cut off 50% of the neighbourhood from one of the few community resources we have - a coffee shop/public house that was recently built along the south side of the tracks. In conclusion, I support the improvement of rail structure, which would help our community and others, but I must object to plans that potentially sever our ability to move through the city by choking off all but major auto routes and greatly impacting active transportation options. If bridges or tunnels can be built to allow the coexistence of the train and community, all such options must be considered for the health and safety of our community, and long term success of your proposed project.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 09:30

As a resident of downtown the closure of the streets between Gordon and Endinburgh will be an issue for me. I will be more likely to drive as now my walking distance has increased. You cant close off these streets, we need pedestrian access. I also have family in the Margaret Greene are which takes their kids to that forest to teach them about nature. Its the only green space they have it shouldnt been destroyed.

Anonymous's avatar

Closing intersections doesn't reduce the demand for those roadways. It will only squeeze all the traffic onto the remaining roads. So if safety is the motivator, how safe will it be to have all the cars, bikes and pedestrians crammed onto Norfolk and Edinburgh? Not very. This is a frightening idea. There has to be a better solution. Collisions are largely about probability, so the more traffic there is on a street or intersection, the more likely an accident will occur. Maybe there won't be a train collision, but the city EMS sirens will sound all day long. The most vulnerable will be injured or worse. What is happening in other cities? How is bisecting a city even a possibility?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 10:32

I understand it is your intention to close motor, pedestrian and cycling traffic across Yorkshire, Glasgow and Alma. I understand the need to close Dublin but closing these other crossings will be devastating to the city. Not just for neighborhoods movement and flow but please note that this means that the only railway crossing between Gordon in the Hanlon will be in Edinburgh. The Edinburgh/Paisley intersection is currently in crisis from increased CN rail traffic and shunting into the Junction. I’m extremely concerned about this. Please work with the city to find another alternative to closing these intersections.

Matt Saunders's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 11:00

While broadly in support of the electrification and expansion of service in this corridor, I am confused about the choice of location for the Guelph TPS. The report has several factually-incorrect statements and appears to be missing very important details.

The report states that one advantage of this location is "close proximity to Hydro One 230 kV transmission line." This site is more than a kilometer away from the line. How does Metrolinx propose bringing power into this TPS? Will there be overhead transmission pylons, and if so, where will that utility corridor be constructed? Will it be an underground installation, and if so, what are the environmental and community impacts of that construction? Will it require the closure of the Hanlon Expressway and Paisley Road, and if so, for how long?

The report further states that the property is "currently vacant," but this is a public park. There are "currently no development applications" because the land has already been developed.

Next, we are told that there are "no designated natural areas or wetlands" -- are you aware that this land is considered a Significant Natural Area in Guelph's Natural Heritage System (see our Official Plan Amendment 42, link here: https://guelph.ca/plans-and-strategies/natural-heritage-strategy/). Additionally, are you aware of the semi-permanent stream on site? Surface water continues to flow in the former Ellis Creek creekbed which runs through this property.

There is a vacant lot within close proximity of the hydro line: the lot at 35 Silvercreek Pkwy S. There are no wetlands or designated natural areas in the part of this lot which abuts the railroad. No kilometer-long extension to the 230kV transmission lines will be required. It is actually vacant, and not developed. Why was this site overlooked?

Paul's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 11:08

On July 28 I sent Metrolinx a list of questions regarding the proposed TPF station in Guelph and electrification project on the Kitchener corridor. Why is my correspondence not posted and available to all participants? I realize answers to my inquiry may take some time but I did expect at least my questions to be posted.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 4, 2020 - 11:13

Is the end goal of this project be to get faster or more frequent trains to the city of Guelph? Both are needed and I am glad further development is being looked at to connect the Guelph to the GTA.

Anonymous's avatar

Dublin st already closed, affecting me and most of my kids and grandkids. I also don't want Margaret Greene park changed to a mass of electrical stands /towers.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 11:42

are you familiar with the current amount of parkland in Guelph, and the city's Official Plan requirement to construct 3.3 hectares of park (cleared tableland) per 1000 residents? Our neighbourhood (Ward 4) has 2.06 hectares per thousand -- over 33% short of the target -- and as of 2018, and as more houses are built, that number continues to decrease.
This seven-acre parcel represents 7% of the parkland in the West End (and though it's not cleared tableland, it is still zoned as P.4 regional parkland and counted under that designation). It's Guelph's second-largest standing natural area west of the Hanlon, and currently the only off-leash dog park within walking distance of 20,000 people. The transformer pad itself will only take up one acre: how much more will have to be cleared for the access road, and the utility corridor?
Asking generally: how much of our parkland should we be comfortable giving away, if we already have less than we need?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 11:43

I live on Edinburgh Rd North between 2 rail lines (Go and CN) and on any given day there are cars literally parked in front of my house for sometimes up to an hour, basically a unmoving traffic jam. I find it absolutely ludicrous that Dublin Street was closed with zero feedback from our community. And the fact that Metrolinx is considering permanently closing 4 more streets is shocking as the negative impact with permanently alter Guelph for years to come, not to mention create such an incredibly busy street comparable to streets in Toronto or New York! Why would such a small city purposely ruin it’s accessibility, flow and history just to appease a large corporation that clearly doesn’t care about the impact on our community. Please please don’t ruin our city!

Anonymous's avatar

so if hydro one already says this area desnt have sufficient capacity than why is it still being considered?

Matt Saunders's avatar

This suggestion is beyond the scope of the current discussion, but I have to bring it up. Since Hydro One has acknowledged that the Campbell-Cedar 230kV line does not have the capacity to support this project, has there been any consideration of building the TPS on a different, higher-capacity high voltage line?

Including Guelph, there are three high-voltage lines near this project. The obvious choice is to connect to the Bruce to Toronto 500kV line which crosses these tracks at Limehouse, which is certain to have enough power available.

The other option would be to electrify these tracks a few kilometers further west, to Ira Needles Blvd, where Detweiler Transformer Station and a major 230kV line is already located. While I do not know if there is any discussion of a future Kitchener West GO station, it appears that land has been set aside at this location, and extending the wires a few KM now will make any future westward expansion significantly more feasible.

I suggest also evaluating this alternative when choosing a site for the Kitchener Line TPS.

Ted's Mum's avatar

It will funnel more traffic towards an already busy road, one that already becomes gridlocked due to trains shunting at Paisley. How will closures affect emergency vehicles trying to get to the blocked streets? As a non driver how far out of my way will I have to walk? Why on earth would you want to take and destroy Margaret Greene park?

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 4, 2020 - 14:44

This isn't about opposing modern transportation systems. People support environmentally friendly projects. They just want to be able to navigate their communities safely and efficiently. This will destroy downtown Guelph. A better solution must be found.

DaveD's avatar

This process requires much more public input, there are numerous inaccuracies, uncertainties and potentials that are not clear. I live, work and shop in downtown Guelph. I don't need the train....yet I believe that increased train functionality is crucial as we move forward as a growing community.
That being said, there is a beauty and charm that makes Guelph the city it is. That beauty and charm has been neglected in the barricades placed on Dublin Street. This should be addressed.
That beauty and charm will be ruined by the overhead electrification system. If electrification is necessary, then find a way to achieve it without harming the beauty of our community - ie 3rd rail....surely given the fact my watch can now tell me more data than the first people to the moon ever had, we can find a way to safely deliver electricity without running wires overhead.
Guelph is a loving, committed and caring community. We deserve input, we bring good questions and we offer good solutions, but in order to achieve all this we need to be involved.

My fellow Guelphites - writing here is valuable, but please, please, please - share your concerns with our City leaders too. Make sure they hear your voices - https://guelph.ca/city-hall/mayor-and-council/city-council/

Jeff Wilson's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 17:13

Email sent to MP Longfield, Mayor Guthrie and Ward 4 counselors on 8/4/2020. Feel free to copy with your name and send.

Good afternoon Mr. Longfield, Mayor Guthrie and Ward 4 counselors,

With deep concern I am writing you today about the proposed plan to level Margaret Green Park in Guelph for a Metrolinx power station.

Metrolinx has stated the land in question is vacant and would have no reprocussions if removed to make way for a power station. This statement is entirely false.... Margaret Green park is a thriving public park used by everyone in the West end community. It is not only home to a gorgeous forest and a thriving wildlife population but also a leash free dog park and a welcome green space in an ever urbanizing city.

As a home owner with my back yard backing onto the park, the prospect of losing this park is absolutely devastating. There are plenty of other locations that are acceptable according to Metrolinx stated requirements that do not destroy a beautiful valued public park.

I am writing to you, as well as Ward 4 counselors and Mayor Guthrie with hopes that my concerns (which I am not alone on) are addressed and Metrolinx will be told to choose another location.

Thank you very much for your time, I look forward to a resolution.

Jeff Wilson

PS. Attached is the proposed project as well as many comments from concerned citizens like myself.

https://www.metrolinxengage.com/en/content/guelph-wellington-your-feedback. (Comments)

https://www.metrolinxengage.com/en/content/kitchener-corridor-guelph-wel.... (proposal)

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 19:21

For adequate stakeholder consultation, please hold a series of real-time (live) open house sessions (that is well advertised) where there can be 3 way feedback with Metrolinx, the City and residents. This online form is not sufficient for a major, permanent change like this, as well as adequately understanding all the temporary changes/closures.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 4, 2020 - 20:55

I'm concerned about closures of throughways at multiple streets (Alma. Glasgow, Dublin, Yorkshire). I strongly believe that it will negatively impact our entire West downtown neighbourhoods as well as traffic flow/congestion. Has there been any development on this front? What are your plans? Will pedestrians/bikes/cars be able to get "over the tracks" in places other than Gordon and Edinburgh?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 10:01

The presentation says "Hydro one has advised that adequate power is not available at this location and it may not be able to provide a power supply. Additional work will be required post TPAP to find a suitable connection point"

1. Is this not the connection point that is shown?
2. Why is this site being investigated if it cannot be used?
3. If this site is not being used, how much money has been wasted on investigating this site?
4. When in the process was it established that this site was not usable?
5. If this an issue, Hydro One and Metrolinx should have discussed that this site was not feasible. Did Hydro One or Metrolinx make a mistake? Where did this communication breakdown?
6. If this site is not chosen, will the other two site (Kitchener and Halton Hills) still be located in the currently proposed locations
7. The slide says that "additional work will be required post TPAP to find a suitable connection point". Will this work cost the taxpayer more? If so, what is the cost to the taxpayer.
8. When did Metrolinx become aware that the site was not vacant? And who's fault was this?

Anonymous's avatar

There is a need for better transit between Guelph and Kitchener-Warteloo. I know an obstacle for all-day service between Kitchener and Union Station is CN ownership of tracks between Georgetown and Brampton. This obstacle does not exist for better service between Kitchener and Guelph however, as Metrolinx owns these tracks.

Metrolinx should consider running a frequent (maybe half-hourly) train service between Kitchener, Breslau (once the station is built), and Guelph. This could be a “quick win” that uses existing infrastructure, and could be delivered before Kitchener-Union all-day service.

Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Aug 24, 2020 - 11:37

We have heard and understand there is a need for more connections between Kitchener and Guelph. We will continue to work on creating new and better service for our customers.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 11:52

I would like to respond to a couple things that Metrolinx wrote in an answer posted July 24:
“We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best ….. As service increases, the safety of these crossings remain top priority”
As far as Metrolinx working closely with the City of Guelph, do you mean one or two staff members and perhaps the Mayor? Dublin Street was closed without any public consultation. It never even made it to the agenda of the Committee of the Whole or Council. This is not working closely with out municipal partners. Municipal partners include the citizens of the municipality and their elected representatives.
As far as safety … I am an epidemiologist who has worked extensively in risk assessment and management. Safety at road crossings is not something you can evaluate separately from the major hazards and risks Metrolinx would introduce in Guelph by closing more of our north-south crossings. As so many other submissions note, these routes are used extensively by cyclists and pedestrians. Forcing more cars to Edinburgh, which already has major congestion issues, and then forcing cyclists and pedestrians there as well will prove disastrous. If Metrolinx closes more north-south crossings in Guelph, they and the City should be prepared for the litigation that will follow once cyclists and pedestrians start getting hit on Edinburgh.
Also, as so many others have already pointed out, Margaret Greene Park, which you claim is vacant land and where you “propose” (I would say demand) placing the TPS, is a much used and beloved City Park.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 11:54

I have several questions that I hope will be addressed by a Metrolinx project representative at the public meeting on August 6th:
1) What authority does Meteolinx have to assume land donated to the City as park space, for industrial development?
2) What other locations were considered, and why have they been ruled out in favour of designated naturalized park space?
3) What is the expected scale of additional development that will be required if Hydro One is able to bring the necessary power supply into the park?
4) Will the trails still be accessible to the community, if so, will the Ferman Dr access point still be accessible?
5) What is the planned location for replacing the trees that will be lost, and do you intend to meet Guelph's 3:1 tree replacement bylaw?
6) What studies have been done on the impact of the facility on neighbouring residents quality of life (noise & vibration, electromagnetic interference, air quality) and property values, and what compensatory plan is there for them?
7) What studies have been done on the impact of the TPS development and associated Hydro extension on the wildlife that lives in and migrates through this space?
8) If the results of pending studies prove the impact to be unacceptable for local residents, what recourse exists for them to challenge the selected location?
9) This is by far the most damaging aspect of this project to a single space within the City, where most of the disclosed materials currently focus on the OCS infrastructure, why was more transparent and informative communication not made available to the community on THIS specific location being considered prior to July 2020? By all accounts, much effort appears to have been made to mask and conceal this from public knowledge throughout the Phase 1 study period - there is no direct reference to Margaret Greene Park in the posted materials, and early study maps indicate a location closer to Hwy 6 for this facility.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 12:47

It's Margaret Greene Park, not vacant land.

Paul's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 13:56

You say that currently Hydro One can't provide adequate power to the the TPS from the Tap location. What will be required to connect the two? Is this something that will impact the south side of Margaret Greene Park (ball diamonds and such), or will this "connection" infrastructure go along the rail corridor? Why is this post TPAP? Why can't this be analyzed for this site now?

Anonymous's avatar

I understand closing the Yorkshire street crossing to vehicles, but why is it necessary to close the crossing for pedestrians? I am all for electrifying and more trains. Plenty of other areas in the world have fast (electric) trains going through much larger cities than Guelph, yet they do manage to keep their rail crossings open to both vehicles and pedestrians. Granted, it may be that in other areas the crossings are fine for vehicles and perhaps Yorkshire street in Guelph is not so fine, but why not a turnstile or something similar for pedestrians to use?

Anonymous's avatar

"At this time we do not have any confirmed closures beyond the recent closure of Dublin Street." That means Metrolinx has made a proposal to close the remaining 4 crossings in Guelph and are waiting confirmation...really?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 22:20

First of all I object to the use of Margaret Green Park for the for the TPF. This is a city Park and supports the social and economic development objectives of the neighbourhood by providing accessible connections to the WERC, recreation, library, grocery stores and other companies. I have two questions as follows [1] please clarify where the access route/ way will be to maintain the TRF located in the park, and [2] how does the electricity get from Silvercreek & Paisley Rd Hydro One Tap to the proposed TPF in Margaret Greene Park? overhead power posts?
Thank you

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 5, 2020 - 23:35

I do not agree with closing the Yorkshire crossing, carving up the city like this will do nothing but ruin and isolate neighborhoods, you guys are a large company I know you can come up with better solutions than just closing streets.

Anonymous's avatar

Not in favor for this structure to be part of Guelph .The proposal has been handled without any transparency and covertly in the midst of the pandemic when the community is preoccupied with many other major concerns such as unemployment, rise in the cost of property taxes and rising cost of living. Take an opinion poll and you will find majority not in favor of this for Guelph.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 6, 2020 - 08:59

Why is this the only site listed as possible places to put the power transfer station? Why is it listed as a vacant lot? This is a well used park area, one of the few in this end of Guelph. It is used by countless community members as a walking path, leash free dog area, and countless other amenities. Even as a small portion of the forest area will finish the beauty of the forested area. I and many others are not in favor of this location. I hope that Metrolinx truly listens to the community on this.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 6, 2020 - 09:53

The Dublin Street closure can hardly be held up as an example of Metrolinx' "working with communities." Our Guelph Councillors have informed us that they had no ability to overturn this initiative. The closure was effected by the passing of Bylaws in a Council meeting in which there was NO discussion before taking the vote.

I have two concerns: first that the closure has been to all classes of road users, apparently without consideration for the unique needs and capabilities of pedestrians and cyclists (as distinct from motorists.) Second, if there are to be additional intersections closed along this route people on bikes will be forced onto arterial routes not having safe cycling infrastructure. Quite possibly, the net result of Metrolinx' closures will be a net DECREASE in cyclist safety, and would represent a rather reprehensible shifting of liability (and cost) from Metrolinx to the City of Guelph. Shame.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 6, 2020 - 09:54

Hello:

Well, I'm fairly shocked to see that this project is in "Round 2" of feedback, as I didn't even see a Round 1. Anyone else miss this?

Like other folks, I'm concerned about the potential future closures of Glasgow, Yorkshire, and Alma. Myself and many, many other folks use these as safer side streets to bike or walk on when they are heading to work or dropping off their children at school or going downtown. The closure of the Dublin crossing was sudden and I know many folks were blindsided. Any further closures will further diminish options and feasibility of folks who are seeking more active transportation options.

To your point about engaging with the city of Guelph -- many of the councillors I've spoke with don't feel like they or the larger city has been properly consulted with on any of the avenues Metrolinx is pursuing. Any decisions about the future of the city made behind closed doors without soliciting wider input with its citizens simply can't be characterized as working with the city, full stop.

Paul's avatar

Attached is the correspondence which I sent to Metrolinx on July 28 requesting clarification on many questions not contained in the July 22 information. Metrolinx has not responded. I have 6 days to provide comments with little operational details.

July 28, 2020

It was unfortunate that poor weather for your public meeting in November in Guelph prevented my attendance although at the time I was seeking general information and had no idea of the electrification of the rail corridor or extent of the project. Now that I have read your Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP) summary I am concerned that the proposed location may have an adverse impact on my neighbourhood.

I have lived for many years on Lisa Lane abutting Margaret Greene Park in Guelph and have several questions that need clarification and several requests for further information. I find that in order to properly comment on any proposal one must have the operational details (“the devil is in the details”).

TRACTION POWER FACILITY

1. Does a Traction Power Facility (TPF) include a Traction Power Substation (TPS)? If not, what is the difference?

2. What are the maximum dimensions of a TPF (length (50m?), width (75m?) and height)? Height should include the height of the transmission wires coming into the TPF Station.

3. It is difficult to judge the size of a TPF from the pictures in the TPAP. Please provide an aerial view of an existing TPF so as to get perspective. What is the location of an existing TPF as a site visit may help in visualizing the size of the facility?

4. Over the 54 kilometres of the rail corridor between Georgetown and Kitchener, how many TPFs are required? From an engineering perspective for electrification, must a TPF be located at a specific location along the corridor?

5. Based on the objectives of the Vegetation Management Strategy, there are five (5) zones developed to protect Metrolinx infrastructure and ensure service reliability. What are the vegetation clearances required for a TPF?

SELECTION OF GUELPH TPF

6. Your TPAP identifies a general area for the proposed TPF. Is the TPF within the existing right-of-way (ie. adjacent the rail track within the recently constructed fence). If not, please provide an exact location of the TPF within the area you have identified.

7. Who owns the lands where the Traction Power Facility (TPF) is proposed in Guelph? Are these lands part of Margaret Greene Park?

8. Your study states that when choosing a TPF consideration must be given to existing/planned land use in the vicinity of the facility location (i.e., industrial areas preferred over residential areas) and consideration of social features (i.e., residences, schools, daycares, etc.) in the vicinity of the facility location. In your TPAP, you describe several criteria for why this site was selected.

-Adjacent to rail right-of-way, and close proximity to Hydro One 230 kV transmission line.

-Property is currently vacant and there are currently no development applications

-No Designated Natural Areas or wetlands

-No known cultural heritage resources within 50 metres

-No registered archaeological sites within 50 metres

Please provide a list of all other site(s) examined for the proposed TPF in Guelph and provide the rationale for their elimination as the preferred site.

9. Your proposed location in Guelph notes that Hydro One has advised that adequate power is not available to supply power at this location does not presently have power to this site. Does that mean that high voltage powerlines will need to be constructed to supply the TPF? If so, where will these powerlines be located to supply the TPF and what is the height of these towers?

VISUAL IMPACT

10. As you know, the rail along Margaret Greene Park is an elevated track. Since the City has removed the ash trees and reduced the natural canopy, we now can visually see the trains.

a. What is the present elevation of the rail track (as compared to Lisa Lane, Ferman Drive and Paisley Road?

b. With the construction of the Overhead Contact System (OCS), what will be the additional elevation?

11. What is the height of the Overhead Contact System (OCS) poles above the rail track? How far apart along the track are each set of poles? Does each OCS set of poles require a gantry, aerial/underground feeders, grounding and bonding?

OTHER IMPACTS

12. Has Metrolinx had any health complaints from residents living in close proximity to an existing TPF?

13. What affect will living in close proximity to an electrified rail system, transmission lines and TPF have on our WiFi and communication devices?

14. At present, there is only one rail track passing the area. To “increase service”, will an additional track be built along the corridor?

15. Your benefits of an electrified rail system states that there will be “faster trains and reduced travel times”. What is the maximum allowable speed for an electric train versus conventional train along this corridor?

In discussions with my neighbours there is shock in learning of your proposal for the location of the TPF in Guelph and the extent of the electrification infrastructure. With Covid-19, our way of interacting and exchanging information has radically changed and I suggest that your public consultation framework may have to be revised and extended. A prompt response is appreciated.

Thanking you in advance

Paul McCubbin

cc: Christine Billings (Ward 4 Counsellor) [email protected]

Mike Salisbury (Ward 4 Counsellor) [email protected]

Mayor Cam Guthrie [email protected]

Mike Schreiner (MPP Guelph) [email protected]

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 6, 2020 - 15:56

I am writing to say that the planned closings of Glasgow, Yorkshire, and Alma railway crossings, following in the wake of the surprise Dublin closing, is objectionable. My family lives in The Junction on Hearn Ave. and, by necessity, we navigate the Alma crossing daily for a variety of reasons. Closing this railway would negatively reshape the neighborhood. I’m sure this is true for neighborhoods in the Glasgow and Yorkshire areas as well.

Here are my concerns:

• All traffic in the area would be driven to Edinburgh, an already overly busy street. As many people have noted, Edinburgh, which only has two lanes, would be clogged. On this note, and to make matters worse, Edinburgh lacks a cross-walk, meaning that families need to go to major intersections to cross this already overly busy road, safely.
• Access to the neighborhood. Families would no longer have reasonable access to services they depend on, such as daycare and schools.
• Driving would become a necessity. Guelph considers itself a pedestrian/green-friendly city, but this would really undercut that claim. Citizens would need to drive way more, and on far busier streets no less. Also, not everyone has a car.
• Alternative means of crossing the tracks. Why not consider pedestrian footbridges, overpasses, or other ways to cross the tracks? Apparently Metrolinx recommended this to the City in regard to Dublin, but the City decided not to accommodate. This decision not to operate in the best interests of the citizenry is maddening. We deserve to be able to navigate our city better than this!
• Lack of public consultation. Why isn't the City seeking public consultation on this? There is no excuse not to seek the public’s opinion. The fact that the City seems to have pushed this through during the pandemic says to me that they don’t care about the public at all

Thank you for your time.

Anonymous's avatar

My question is regarding health and safety concerns for the hundreds of students who cut through Margaret Green Park every day during the school year.
Let’s face it Margaret Green Park is smack in the middle of three city schools, and directly beside St. Peter’s School.
Is there a health and/or physical danger threat for the students being is such close proximity to a substation? Even if the area is blocked off, the nature of kids is that they could still access restricted areas when unsupervised. It seems crazy to build a substation in such close proximity to an area where hundreds of children access everyday.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 6, 2020 - 21:13

It’s actually not vacant. When will you change your information on your website to reflect that you are tearing down a residential community and park?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 7, 2020 - 09:36

Yesterday there was a large community gathering to discuss the huge community opposition to this plan. Representatives from Metrolinx attended “to listen”. In addition, our Mayor, City Councillors, city staff and our MPP attended. When asked by the community members when the city first learned of this plan, city staff informed us they heard about this in June (as in June 2020). WRONG! According to a news article by Global News on August 5, a representative from Metrolinx indicated that they have been working with the city since spring 2019! Someone isn’t telling us the truth and as the dates for the feedback into the assessment are closing in a few weeks, this is serious!!! Neither Metrolinx or our city staff are giving us the straight goods. Both are as bad as each other!!!

Anonymous's avatar

There are no buildings but there is a park there that is very important to the residents of Guelph living around that area. I am very against a traction power there.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 7, 2020 - 10:55

Many in my neighbourhood are deeply concerned about Metrolinx attempting to close off the intersections of the track at Glasgow, Yorkshire and Alma. Please do not attempt to do that.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 7, 2020 - 16:11

Has there been communication, in any form, between Metrolinx and Hydro One regarding bringing in electricity to the traction power substation in Margaret Greene Park? Simple question. Simple answer: yes or no.

Anonymous's avatar

This area is not a space we can afford to lose! It’s important to find a more appropriate location, one which will not disturb parkland and green space!

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 7, 2020 - 18:35

Why not use battery powered trains, or hydrogen trains, instead of electrifying the corridor? For example, Alstom's battery powered Coradia Continental trains are starting to be used in Germany and Hitachi Rail is using battery trains in the UK, so the technology exists.

Electric trains do not require dual mode locomotives, overhead contact system, traction power substations, tap structures, tree removal, expropriation, etc. Battery powered trains can be used on existing track and the route can be easily extended to Stratford, St Mary's and London.

Charging stations will be required at the overnight storage yards, but that's it. Furthermore, batteries can be charged at night when electrical demand is low while electrifying the corridor will add to the peak demand.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 7, 2020 - 18:51

The west end is hard up for parks and to take away this precious land for our community would be devastating. We need a splash pad. Not an electrical box!

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 7, 2020 - 19:44

Don't put the TPS site in a well used park and green space. You can use the old gravel pit lands off Silvercreek Parkway (just down the tracks), it checks all your boxes plus it's not parkland and you don't have to worry about vegetation since it's only got a bit of scrub brush.

Anonymous's avatar

Could you please provide the rationale that was used in the site selection for the Guelph Traction power station in Margaret Greene Park? What factors were considered, and what weightings were used for each of the factors? What other sites were considered? The only detail we have received to date is that it is the "preferred site", with no justification provided.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 8, 2020 - 07:55

without using a form reply, all that does is show disrespect to the people who live in the affected areas

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 8, 2020 - 08:57

Online at https://www.metrolinxengage.com/en/content/guelph-wellington-proposed-in... - in slide 8 - you have described the proposed TPS location as 'vacant land'.

In the impromtu in-person community meeting of August 6th MetroLinx staff agreed that this description was misleading, as the land is not 'vacant' but is actually a well-used and well-maintained city park. Your MetroLinx staff person agreed that they would change this description since it was misleading.

This change has not happened.

How will you honour the commitment to make the Virtual Public meeting accurate and how will you notify past visitors to this information, of the inaccuracy ?

GD's avatar

Your study does not highlight the loss of parkland and community recreation value due to the proposed parkland location of the traction power location.

A truly undeveloped industrial site is located at the proposed tap point under the high voltage line to the east of the Hanlon and south of the tracks.

One would think that a substation at this location - if built in collaboration with Alectra could serve to service the further development of this industrial/commercial site and the continued need for power as we densify Guelph.

Has there been consideration for the joint use by Metrolinx and the Alectra for new substation investment ? Literally, millions of dollars could be saved.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 8, 2020 - 19:13

Let's pretend that I am OK with the proposed narrow substation just so I can ask my questions:
How much of the parkland in Margaret Green Park would be changed or disturbed to allow workers, materials and equipment to get to and work at the area of the build? How much of the park area would be changed or disturbed to allow the hydro hook up once the TPAP requires hydro to run?
PLEASE find another location for TPAP.
Susan Mawhiney

Anonymous's avatar

Specifically, the slides say there are no designated natural areas. The forested area metrolinx wants to remove is identifed under the "significant natural area & natural areas" designation in the city official plan. Woodlands greater than 1 ha meet the criteria for significant woodland and are therefore classified as a significant natural area requiring protection. How was this significant natural feature considered in the site selection process if there is no recognition that it's present?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 8, 2020 - 20:45

To what degree will the TPS be lit up at night? Are we talking no brighter than a street light or a brightly lit up parking lot?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 9, 2020 - 09:23

Why would you pick on a well used and loved park that was bequeathed to the city and not an industrial site where it belongs. So instead of a beautiful park to look out on we will have a very large ugly building and to make it worse we will also be able to view it in all its glory at night because it will be lit up like an airport!!!!!

Come on this has to be a nightmare and I will soon wake up, please tell me you have found somewhere more appropriate to build this.

This is an established residential neighbourhood that values its parks and green spaces highly.

Please take this nightmare away and let us keep our green space to enjoy for many years to come.

Anonymous's avatar

What exactly were the safety issues that prompted the closure of Dublin street and the proposed closures of Dublin, Glasgow, Yorkshire, Alma.
Have there been any accidents on these rail crossings? we need data from the past 10 years.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 9, 2020 - 15:03

Hi,
I’m concern for the neighbourhood and the houses when you light up the substation after night time.
Is anyone considering the negative effects that this substation will have on the residents

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 9, 2020 - 17:32

I understand that the plan is to have the station in the Margaret Greene park. I do not see this as appropriate given that we as a society are trying to protect our green spaces. This area is used by a considerable number of residents and contains a good sized wetlands area.
Having lived for a long time in the area I can tell you that the park was given the city to remain as park land for at least 99 years. I would say that the station goes against that provision.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 9, 2020 - 20:55

I'm against this project taking away parkland when there is other land options near the Hanlon parkway to consider. I'm also concerned that more intersections throughout Guelph will be closed without bypasses installed for pedestrians/cyclists.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 9, 2020 - 21:54

A 3750m2 transmission station is not acceptable in a city park near residential houses.

For the Barrie Corridor they have one TPS in Barrie & another in Toronto, with a switching station midway and paralleling stations midway between the TPS and the Switching Stations.

Why wasn't a plan with;
1) TPS station west of Kitchener
2) Paralleling Station in Kitchener
3) Switching Station in Guelph
4) Parelling Station in Georgetown
5) Already planned TPS at hwy 24 & cn rail

OR
1) TPS station west of Kitchener
2) Paralleling Station in Guelph
3) Switching Station in Georgetown

Were any of these options considered? Will you release the report why they were not feasible?

Anonymous's avatar

Neither Upper Grand District School Board or the Wellington Catholic District School Board appear to have any knowledge of this and St. Peter School abuts the property designated for the substation! This land is not vacant, it is viable, designated REGIONAL parkland. It has a large tree canopy, is used hourly day and night by a large number of people using the trail / ball diamonds / leash free park and entrance to further amenities in the park; tennis courts, accessible playground structure, cricket pitch, soccer fields. You have other viable sites to consider within close proximity. This appears to be the "path of least resistance" for Metrolinx which is not acceptable. It is morally and ethically wrong to destroy parkland, especially one so heavily depended on in community. Please advise who has actual governance over Metrolinx and holds them accountable for their decisions?

Anonymous's avatar

regarding the TPS location? There are lots of good reasons why its a terrible location

1) its a mature forest
2) its a city park
3) its in a residential area
4) hundreds of kids use that trail to get to and from school
5) you will have build power lines over soccer fields and baseball diamonds to get power to the proposed site
6) the area is not industrial
7) it will create a steady low hum noise that will annoy neighbors
8) you may plan on adding lights that will be lit 24/7 and will affect neighbors as well as wildlife that remains in the park

Anonymous's avatar

I believe there has to be safety concerns having a TPS .43km from a elementary school and directly adjacent to a trail that hundreds of students walk on everyday to go to school. What if a student climbs into the Traction Power Station, its only a matter of time before a student dies.

Also it is very convenient for Metrolinx to have this forum during summer months when many parents won't know about this until it is over. Metrolinx should do a study in Sept 2020 & Sept 2021 to see how widely used this trail is by students and how it would impact them and what kind of safety issues will arise from placing the TPS next to a trail.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 10, 2020 - 09:08

I have become increasingly concerned over the plans to expand service through Guelph. I am sensitive to what the expanded service would bring to our city, but at the same time very concerned about the impact it could have on our downtown neighborhoods.
I live on Yorkshire St S, and the impact of closing our street to vehicle and walking traffic would have an immeasurable negative impact to our our neighborhoods.

What can be done to ensure our neighborhood is not part of any further street closures and how can we as a neighborhood group further understand what your plans are and how they will impact our community?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 10, 2020 - 15:58

You are dividing whole neighbourhoods. Please do not close off the ability for people to cross down any street between Edinburgh and Norfolk, that is ridiculous. As is the trains at Paisley disrupt things like crazy and you are forcing people to go down that street if you go forward with this plan.

Anonymous's avatar

Is there not an industrial, vacant plot that this would be better suited for?
I think it is pretty ignorant to put this in a park.

Anonymous's avatar

I understand there is the possibility of closing level crossings at Glasgow, Yorkshire and Alma streets in Guelph. These closures will force pedestrians and cyclists to make major detours on their way to schools, bus stops, churches and parks. They will force additional vehicles onto Edinburgh, which already has significant traffic on lanes that are too narrow to safely accommodate cyclists.

I'm also concerned about the location of the power substation in a public park and the 7-metre vegetation clearing zone on either side of the tracks. Electric rail may provide an environmentally sound mode of transportation, but nothing about the execution of this project speaks to environmental sensitivity or understanding of community needs.

Finally, I would like to see more information about the height of the overhead contact system and the possible need to appropriate houses on Kent Street to accommodate it.

Julie Stauffer

Anonymous's avatar

This park is an important area in Guelph and not needed for Metrolinx expansion-there is a large undeveloped area (was a gravel pit years ago) near corner of Paisley and Hanlon Parkway-use that instead and it can easily be rezoned without affecting present green space.. We need all the park areas presently designated in Guelph-this area is well used by walkers, schools,sports teams etc. And an electric station will emit radiation into the environment causing health issues in residents.

Anonymous's avatar

I believe money put into expanding and electrifying train service in Ontario is an excellent proposal and meets the objectives of lowering carbon emissions and yet supports growth in the corridor area. My problem with the proposal as it exists is with the anticipated increase in noise for residents along the line and in Rockwood (especially with freight trains traveling through the communities at night). There are cost effective easy remediation strategies (a whistle cessation bylaw where trains will not blow their whistles when they reach road crossings). I believe that the 3,000 plus people in Rockwood and surrounding area should not be subjected to all the extra noise contamination when the problem is easily resolved. Other communities have passed similar bylaws along the Kitchener line and do not have to listen to the endless train whistles at each crossing. If a whistle cessation bylaw is not applicable then maybe a system used in the United States should be considered where a pair of directional horns at railroad crossings nine to 12 feet high are pointed down the intersection road or highway. The horns are activated by the same automatic switch that controls crossing arm gates and flashing lights, targeting most of the sound toward the traffic. This automated horn system directs its warning only at traffic approaching a rail crossing instead of blasting everything in the area. It would cut the noise down and still provide adequate warning to drivers.

Anonymous's avatar

will there be freight trains still running through in the middle of the night and if so at what speed? How do I feel safe living within 5 metres of the track. When do I get to sleep?

Anonymous's avatar

At what cost to the community, our peaceful, walkable, historic downtown? How many seconds are shaved off your high speed schedule by slowing down in highly sensitive areas? What cost to Metrolinx? Is it worthwhile or viable and sustainable in the long term to race through town disturbing and scaring families living close to the tracks?

Anonymous's avatar

speed ? schedule? freight trains? Speed amplifies the disturbance to those living close to the tracks, in particular. And mile long freight trains...Will they still come rumbling through just when we thought we might get a few hours of uninterrupted sleep?

Anonymous's avatar

1) the impact with closures of neighbourhood arteries...walking, cycling; 2) impact of trains at higher speeds for those living close to them; 3) increased frequency of trains; 4) the impact on the highly sensitive areas where houses are right next to the tracks; 5) sending mile long freight trains after go stops around one a.m. long freights at two and three am; 6) where is the concern for the close neighbours of the tracks and their quality of life and property values? Please reconsider this decision which will have deleterious effect on Guelph

Anonymous's avatar

We use these streets everyday. It would be a large problem for pedestrians and vehicles. We support the trains but think you need to find a way to keep these crossings open. It doesn't make sense to anyone that lives here!

Anonymous's avatar

Where was the public consultation? What is the purpose of this closure?
Further crossing closures will not be tolerated by this community. You will essentially be cutting our downtown in half, which will impact children walking to school, seniors walking to needed services and neighbours walking to each other’s homes. You’re also going to force more traffic onto fewer streets, causing traffic congestion and creating safety risks for pedestrians and cyclists. The health and wellbeing of this community is reliant walking and cycling to access community services, friends and neighbours. Do not force us into our cars. We moved here for a walking/cycling lifestyle. The current closure has already impacted our quality of life. Please outline how you intend to inform the community of your plans, invite consultation and feedback and adjust your planning according to the feedback received.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 11, 2020 - 21:19

You state you are committed to engaging with the local community and will respond to questions within 72 hours, however the last time a responses was received was on July 31. Will you be answering any other question before this forum is closed?
It is hard to believe that our feedback is an important part of your work and that you want to hear from us, when we haven’t received any acknowledgment of our concerns or questions since July 31.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 11, 2020 - 22:13

I grew up across from 2 way, all day Electrified rail tracks in the Suburban Philadelphia area. The trains were used for commuter and freight traffic. They were and remain affordable, quick and safe. There were no local vehicle or pedestrian access issues. The safety concerns are without merit in this project. Where is your data to support your proposed need to close crossings? I can’t speak to the electrification of the line but it sounds like there are viable options beyond the selection of public parkland appropriation. A final point, I too live with the rail running behind my house. I’m not a NIMBY and I fully support public transit options. I had many with SEPTA and find current PT options here laughably deficient. But, what a garbage dump you’ve made of the corridor and the amount of destruction of trees and vegetation. I have massive piles of gravel pushed over the side to my property line. This allows runoff to collect in our yards. There is all manner of trash and metal pails full of water just breeding mosquitos. Try being better stewards of the land you are using even if it is your own.
COVID aid not a good reason to steamroll over public discourse either. You need better public forums.

Robert H's avatar

I do not see any proposed road closures on the map for the Guelph-Eramosa / Rockwood area. Are any road closures being considered?
Rural road closures will have a huge negative impact on residents, businesses and farms. It could mean someone has to travel 5+km extra distance to go around using another route to get home or to access their farm land. Any businesses on roads that are closed will suffer greatly. Please minimize rural road closures by using overpasses.

Anonymous's avatar

It is known that prior to the closure of Dublin St, Metrolinx commissioned HATCH to do a 'Kent Street Traffic Study' in 2018 to accommodate higher train speeds and 30-minute GO service. This traffic study specifically addressed the the closure of Dublin St. [Ref: https://guelph.ca/wp-content/uploads/MEM_352907_TIA+for+Kent+Street+revi....

The Kent Street traffic study included the level crossings at Dublin St, Glasgow St, Yorkshire St and Alma St. Based on the traffic volume data provided within the study, it appears that the collection of all the traffic volume data within the study happened in a short, one week time frame, between Sat, Sep 29th 2018 and Fri, Oct 5th 2018. For instance,
- Turning Movement Counts data were collected between Sat Sep 29 2018 through Fri Oct. 5th 2018,
- Pedestrian Study data were collected only on Sun Sep 30th, Mon Oct 1st 2018, and
- Speed reports were collected between Oct 2nd and 3rd 2018.
Given the short time-frame of the Kent Street Traffic Study, in particular with respect to pedestrian counts, which were done within two days including a Sunday, I very much question the representability of the collected data and its potential extrapolation throughout the year for any interpretation.

Question 1: Was this study the basis for Metrolinx' decision to close Dublin St. and if not, what other factors lead to the closure of Dub?

I would also like to bring to your attention that neither the HATCH 'Kent Street Traffic Study' in section 4.3 on page 17 under 'Active Transportation Condions', nor Metrolinx' "Kitchener TPAP - Interactive Map" [see: https://www.metrolinxengage.com/en/content/kitchener-tpap-interactive-map] includes in its Sensitive Receptors under 'School' the John McCrae Public School on Water Street, which serves the area East of Edinburgh Rd N, South of London St, and West of the Speed River [see https://www.ugdsb.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/ELEM_John_McCrae_PS_FI_J... and therefore, all level crossings, especially Yorkshire, and Glasgow will be used on a daily basis during the school year by pedestrians and bicyclists to go to John McCrae school.

Question 2: Will you make sure to include John McCrae Public School in any of your future considerations with respect to community connection?

I am aware that Metrolinx has to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connection. If Metrolinx trusts the HATCH Traffic study, which concluded on page 37 that "none of the existing grade crossings merit a grade-separated crossing by 2031 based on the exposure index (a product of vehicle volume and train volume). Even if 15-minute one-way peak-period service is provided at Guelph Central Station, a grade-separated crossing will not be required at any of the existing grade crossings in the study area." It goes on stating that "a grade separation will not be required unless two-way, all-day 30-minute service or all day one-way 15-minute service is provided between Guelph Central Station and Kitchener GO Station/Union Station after 2031." from which I conclude that a closure of those crossings is not required at this point in time.

Question 3: Will Metrolinx consider to accommodate its safety requirements through engineering controls, for instance, by installing Gates, potentially with fences as it is common in Europe [see: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/5c/Bahnuebergang_S7_Pul... at Grade Crossings for both traffic lanes so that both parties, the community and Metrolinx, will find a mutually agreeable solution to increase train speeds and volume through Guelph and, at the same time, allow the community to cross freely and safely the existing level crossings?

Khal's avatar

Fully support transit improvements and electrification of the lines. However, trains are only part of the solution and transit options should be evaluated holistically. Walking and biking should not be adversely affected to provide electrified train service. The level crossings through the City of Guelph should not simply be closed off (especially not in the fashion that the Dublin crossing was done). My kids walk and bike to school and cross the tracks at those level crossings. They should not be required to travel on the busy main road (Edinburgh). If the remaining level crossings are deemed to be a concern, accommodations must be made for the community to continue to be able to cross safely. Else there is going to be an increase in car traffic through neighbourhood streets negating the positive aspects of electrified service.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 11, 2020 - 23:22

I know that traffic studies are important with regards to potential road closures but do you consider other variables in your study. By closing Dublin St we can, and have seen more accidents and near misses as the result of traffic being rerouted down Northumberland St. The sight lines for proper visibility going through this intersection is not great at the best of times. If you continue the process of closing down Glasgow and Yorkshire, so that you can reduce commuter time, it will cause dire consequences for the residents in the area .We will be effectively cut off as the only option we have is going down Gordon or Edinburgh. And we know what these roads are like. School buses will have to be rerouted as well as passenger buses. Ambulances will no longer have the option of taking a short cut, as they rush someone to the hospital. And what ever happed to Disability Rights. There are enough people that rely on these roads for safe access as they traverse these roads in their mobile devices. For the sake of shaving some time off the commute, please leave these roads alone! If you want a high speed line you should built a new line along the proposed Hwy 7 and at least you will have a proper parking lot for your customers

Anonymous's avatar

Hopefully the links are all working now - sorry for the repost!

It is known that prior to the closure of Dublin St, Metrolinx commissioned HATCH to do a 'Kent Street Traffic Study' in 2018 to accommodate higher train speeds and 30-minute GO service. This traffic study specifically addressed the the closure of Dublin St. Ref.: https://guelph.ca/wp-content/uploads/MEM_352907_TIA+for+Kent+Street+revi...

The Kent Street traffic study included the level crossings at Dublin St, Glasgow St, Yorkshire St and Alma St. Based on the traffic volume data provided within the study, it appears that the collection of all the traffic volume data within the study happened in a short, one week time frame, between Sat, Sep 29th 2018 and Fri, Oct 5th 2018. For instance,
- Turning Movement Counts data were collected between Sat Sep 29 2018 through Fri Oct. 5th 2018,
- Pedestrian Study data were collected only on Sun Sep 30th, Mon Oct 1st 2018, and
- Speed reports were collected between Oct 2nd and 3rd 2018.
Given the short time-frame of the Kent Street Traffic Study, in particular with respect to pedestrian counts, which were done within two days including a Sunday, I very much question the representability of the collected data and its potential extrapolation throughout the year for any interpretation.

Question 1: Was this study the basis for Metrolinx' decision to close Dublin St. and if not, what other factors lead to the closure of Dub?

I would also like to bring to your attention that neither the HATCH 'Kent Street Traffic Study' in section 4.3 on page 17 under 'Active Transportation Condions', nor Metrolinx' "Kitchener TPAP - Interactive Map" Ref.: https://www.metrolinxengage.com/node/752 includes in its Sensitive Receptors under 'School' the John McCrae Public School on Water Street, which serves the area East of Edinburgh Rd N, South of London St, and West of the Speed River, Ref.: https://www.ugdsb.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/ELEM_John_McCrae_PS_FI_J... and therefore, all level crossings, especially Yorkshire, and Glasgow will be used on a daily basis during the school year by pedestrians and bicyclists to go to John McCrae school.

Question 2: Will you make sure to include John McCrae Public School in any of your future considerations with respect to community connection?

I am aware that Metrolinx has to balance safety requirements with the need to maintain community connection. If Metrolinx trusts the HATCH Traffic study, which concluded on page 37 that "none of the existing grade crossings merit a grade-separated crossing by 2031 based on the exposure index (a product of vehicle volume and train volume). Even if 15-minute one-way peak-period service is provided at Guelph Central Station, a grade-separated crossing will not be required at any of the existing grade crossings in the study area." It goes on stating that "a grade separation will not be required unless two-way, all-day 30-minute service or all day one-way 15-minute service is provided between Guelph Central Station and Kitchener GO Station/Union Station after 2031." from which I conclude that a closure of those crossings is not required at this point in time.

Question 3: Will Metrolinx consider to accommodate its safety requirements through engineering controls, for instance, by installing Gates, potentially with fences as it is common in Europe, Ref.: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/5c/Bahnuebergang_S7_Pul... at Grade Crossings for both traffic lanes so that both parties, the community and Metrolinx, will find a mutually agreeable solution to increase train speeds and volume through Guelph and, at the same time, allow the community to cross freely and safely the existing level crossings?

Thank you, Thomas Eckert

Anonymous's avatar

I cannot emphasize enough how disruptive it would be to me and my family (and my neighbours, I’m sure) if the rail crossings at Yorkshire and Glasgow were closed. I would be unable to easily get to and from my daughter’s school, and would be forced to take busier routes – which will be even busier as a result of closure, and much more unsafe. It will divide our neighbourhood community in half and increase traffic to surrounding roads, which as I mentioned, will not be safe.

I also don’t understand why there can’t be pedestrian access at the Dublin crossing. There was access at first, but it has since been barricaded. Unacceptable.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 12:59

There are numerous unanswered questions posted here. When will all of them be answered?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 13:06

Will Metrolinx release all information and communications that has taken place between Metrolinx and the city of Guelph regarding the TPS? Answer: yes or no.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 13:09

By closing the rail line at Alma St, just West of Edinburgh, you will be completely dividing the thriving neighbourhood of Junction whose residents use this crossing daily. What is the benefit of this drastic (and dangerous) change to the daily lives of families who use the daycare across the tracks, the residents who gather at Fixed Gear, or the dog walkers who use Howitt Park? Let alone the commuters who cross this track to avoid the excess of traffic at Edinburgh and Wellington.
I, as well as my neighbours, am not interested in the generic copy and paste response you’ve been providing. This is a horrible proposal that will completely destroy this thriving neighbourhood.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 13:17

Guelph Politico Podcast interview with two neighbourhood residents, public consultation should be more than filling up an on-line form and mailbox. Great job Crenda King & Ashley Lewis.
https://guelphpolitico.ca/2020/08/12/guelph-politicast-233-parks-or-wreck/

Anonymous's avatar

I have serious concerns about the potential closure of at grade crossings in the old neighborhoods of Guelph. There are serious traffic issues already on Edinburgh; and the closure of Glasgow, Yorkshire and other adjacent streets will only exacerbate the safety issues and seriously diminish the walkability of our neighborhoods. Pedestrian safety and access must be a priority. If all of these level crossings are closed, the impact will be severe, in terms of safety and liveability in this community. The plan for higher speeds on the line should not proceed without a fully funded and workable infrastructure plan in place for accommodating these concerns.

Tony Darmon's avatar

The impact of all day trains cutting through the heart of downtown Guelph, severing neighbourhoods and travelling at high speeds is untenable. Surely you must have other options! Imagine you lived here by the tracks! Better yet....find a business plan with a better chance of success. Do you have federal powers or are you a private company leasing the rail property?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 13:26

I really believe that Metrolinx cannot be trusted. They renegade on a proposal with the citizens of Toronto. They poorly communicated their intentions of what they were going to do when they came to Guelph. When construction started they had no consideration for people sleeping. They are very poor at communicating as they hid behind the Covid pandemic and rammed the Dublin St. closure down our throats, for the sake of speed. When construction started they pushed over trees rather then cutting them down and getting rid of the brush. They did the same with the old telegraph poles. I also believe that this forum is nothing but lip service as they have a plan that they intend to execute without public or city council input. They have the power to do whatever they want. Once we have commuter trains flying through Guelph the freight trains will follow suit

Tony Darmon's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 13:27

Perhaps this will help us all connect to fight developments we disagree with.

Tony Darmon's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 13:35

This forum will be more helpful when we participants share our thoughts in local newspapers etc.. Metrolinx is likely happier without public outcry.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 14:21

I did not infringe on any of your policies yet my comment wasn’t posted.
I am greatly concerned about the negative impact 4 more street closures will have on my community. It will further congest Edinburgh Street as all cars, cyclists and pedestrians will be forced to use just this one road which is already an incredibly busy street. What advice do you have for folks that live on or near Edinburgh? As this street will become like a highway but also full of pedestrians and cyclists...

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 19:32

I walk through the Margaret Greene Park everyday and I am so sad to hear that metrolinx wants to build a power infrastructure in a park!!! Why can't you find another place to build it? Like at Silvercreek pkwy on the other side of the tracks where there's nothing going on!!! Plus it would be closer to the power lines, because they are RIGHT THERE!!! It makes no sense to destroy green space for people who want to get out in nature and walk through trees and parks.

Anonymous's avatar

Hello
I am writing today to express my deep concern relating to the sub station you are planning for Margaret Green Park in Guelph ON.
I wonder if you Toronto planning people realize the importance of maintaining green space. The area you plan to use is a well used public pathway that allows many area residents to enjoy a little bit of nature in our city. Had you done any research you would have noted that the area has many apartment and townhouse complexes. The park and its trails give these folks an opportunity to get out without driving to another area in the city. This is particularly important with COVID.
Do you realize that the park borders on a school playground, ball diamonds, cricket pitch, rugby field and soccer pitch, tennis courts, walking trails, dog park that is leash free and ultimate frisbee. This park is also used for cross country running meets. Do you understand the loss this represents to our neighborhood?

Have you considered how close you are building this thing to an established residential area. Unbelievable!!
Also, what will the exposure of all this electrical current be to these people. Do you have an answer to that?

Not only is this park used by people but what about the wildlife in the area. Do you think it is acceptable to displace birds, rabbits, squirrels, chipmunks, groundhogs, and various other animals?

I, as a taxpayer of this province I am appalled that you would consider our park or any other park for your ridiculous behemoth of electric current. There must be some better isolated location to be found for such a monstrosity.

I truly hope that you take a second look at this plan because it speaks poorly of Metrolinx and the provincial government as a whole.

Regards

J Massey
Guelph Ontario

BruceB's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 19:59

What corridor will be used to run 230 kV power from the Disconnect Switch near the Tap-point to the TPS (reference TPAP Public Mtg. Round 2 Slide Deck, Slide 3)

If the Metrolinx preferred TPS location is used, approximately how many towers will Metrolinx have erected between the Disconnect Switch and the TPS?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 20:47

The closing of Dublin St. without reasonable public consultation was bad enough. Closing the rest of the streets between Gordon and the Hanlon would be absolutely unacceptable. This would essential sever these neighbourhoods in two, blocking off all vehicular and pedestrian traffic, making the area much less neighbourly and human-scale. These are neighbourhoods that are valued for their walkability and child-friendliness. Please do not overstep communities. Consult and cooperate, do not impose.
Matthew C. Reeves

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 12, 2020 - 22:58

I appreciate that having better public transportation between Guelph and Kitchener will be helpful for many people in both communities so I am grateful to see that steps are being taken in this direction. What concerns me is how the process of consultation with the community about options and implications has been approached. It is not only a problem with Metrolinx, but a common pattern that public consultation is treated as an annoyance, a mere formality or a public relations exercise in order to get buy-in for a project. With these attitudes towards public consultation, as seems to have been the case with this project, avenues for input are often not well-advertised nor made easily accessible. I believe a lot can be gained if the community can be viewed more as a rich resource in the decision-making process rather than as an obstacle to be overcome. What if, rather than a well-trained professional team sitting in an office and designing what they conceive to be the most technically feasible design, the community was actually involved in the design process from the beginning, sharing insights into the social and physical reality of the locality and offering creative solutions to challenging problems that present themselves? What would it look like if the community was thought of as a protagonist in the process of development and not just as a recipient of services? Would the results of the process be different if those responsible for coordinating it went and spent more time in the places that could be affected, talking with the people who use the space, really trying to understand their connection to it and their thoughts about its use for other purposes and how this might impact different segments of the population? Are there more harmonious ways to engage with the community that can lead to solutions that work well for everyone? I appreciate the opportunity to share comments, but I also know that there are many people who use the spaces that will be affected by this project that are not aware of the few opportunities that have been made available or would not be able or inclined to access them even if they were aware of them. I wonder if there is more that could be done to really engage in a meaningful process of consultation with the community that goes beyond just collecting and responding to comments, recognizing also that the community is not a homogenous entity, but is rich with diverse perspectives and capacities. By the standards that have been set for public engagement on infrastructure projects I would say that Metrolinx has not done too poorly. However, I feel these standards are far too low and much more could and should be done.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 13, 2020 - 08:48

how has passenger load been affected? Will the need for extended service still be required?

Anonymous's avatar

I am very opposed to dividing our city in half, especially between Gordon St and Edinburgh Rd. Those two roads are heavily travelled. Edinburgh Rd especially is congested between Waterloo and Paisley as it is choked down to 2 lanes of northbound traffic at Bristol St. Building walls will not serve the neighbourhood, only Metrolinx. Walkability, and sense of community will be severely impacted.
btw, where are the timely responses from Metrolinx?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 13, 2020 - 10:06

"The land that you indicate as "vacant" is a beautiful public park used by everyone in this community. It is a walking trail, a leash free dog park, home to many different types of wildlife and a welcome green space in a ever urbanizing town. The proposed removal of this park is an absolute travesty and would not only greatly decrease property value for all houses nearby but also decimate a thriving and beautiful natural space." J Wilson
100% agree! Parks not only enhance living conditions, they are natural spaces for flora and fauna.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 13, 2020 - 12:20

We are very grateful to see increased go service between Guelph and Toronto coming into effect. I really dislike driving into the City, and already take advantage of the limited service GO is able to provide between these two areas. Looking forward to having more.

I do have concerns about the potential closures of side streets between Norfolk and Edinburgh, as well as Alma if that is being considered. I do not want to see these streets closed. It seemed that Dublin was closed with little to no community engagement. It will be a massive loss and extremely detrimental to these neighbourhoods, if Glasgow and Yorkshire were to be closed as well. Yorkshire is a designated bicycle route on the City of Guelph's Cycling Master Plan. Is is the only safe/quiet north-south route through the area - one cannot bike on Edinburgh for obvious reasons, and while Norfolk has bike lanes there is a high volume of traffic and turning movements throughout the downtown, and plus it's a steep hill to climb. Yorkshire is relatively flat, a quiet neighbourhood street and designated bike route. It will also create a significant detour for people walking if all of these cross streets are closed.

I can understand and have no issue with closing these streets to vehicles - they shouldn't be used for through-traffic anyways, and are local neighbourhood streets. Cars travel much faster, which makes seeing an approaching train and stopping in time more difficult. However, cyclists and pedestrians travel slowly. They will have ample opportunity to see on oncoming train and stop to wait for it to pass. You could use any number of barriers to enhance safety here - P-gates with automatic arms (like we have now for vehicles) that drop when a train is approaching.

That would completely eliminate safety concerns. When the TTC subways pull into the stations they are travelling at an extremely high speed as they approach, and only slow down once they're already in the platform area. That is arguably just as dangerous as a high speed train travelling through downtown. Residents of Guelph deserve to have safe, direct active transportation connections - forcing pedestrians and cyclists to travel km's out of their way to access north-south crossings is absolutely unacceptable. I hope Metrolinx takes the needs of our residents into consideration in their plans. There are many many safe potential solutions to closing these quiet neighbourhood streets to active transportation users.

Anonymous's avatar

I'm not gong to be saying anything that hasn't been said, but to add to the chorus: I'm extremely concerned about the potential for closure of Glasgow, Yorkshire, Alma, etc. One of the great things about this neighbourhood is its walkability, and this includes access to areas south of the tracks. And for drivers, adding a convoluted route that takes them either through downtown or way out of the way towards the Hanlon, is going to be a big inconvenience and will add to traffic congestion in adjacent areas. Finally, what is the deal with the visual impact of the closure at Dublin? Can we expect that any additional closures will just be a bunch of fencing and road barriers? It's ridiculously ugly and takes away from the character of the neighbourhood.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 13, 2020 - 14:21

What work if any has been done to validate the safety of this type of equipment near humans? It is currently known that EMF contain both electric and magnetic field at 90 deg of phase difference and oscillating at angle of 180 deg.The electric field traverses the air and starts oscillating human cells at high frequency, causing them to heat up. Thus high-power EMF can damage body cells. Similarly the varying magnetic field induces an electric current in human cells and tissues. Since skin is directly exposed to these radiations, it can be badly damaged. As such, what other location can be considered that will remove the proximity of this equipment from homes where people may be pregnant, have small children, adults and elderly residing? Would it not be more cost effective for you to place this equipment outside of the general Guelph neighbourhoods so that your land costs and property taxes are reduced in addition to reducing your risk with exposing people to this type of EMF radiation?

Anonymous's avatar

I did not see anywhere in the consultation materials explaining why the rail will be electrified

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 14, 2020 - 07:51

multiple rail lines on Edinburgh, increase in rail and vehicular traffic year by year, little room for construction due to old, and established neighbourhood design, and closures of nearby parallel roads. This will be a tragically hilarious nightmare for this already jam packed Guelph artery. Yikes.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 14, 2020 - 10:19

It is imperative that any traffic study completed on Yorkshire Street in Guelph, needs to be completed once schools are back open. As a resident on this street for 13 years, I can tell you that both car, bike, and pedestrian traffic increase substantially once school starts back, especially from 8:30 - 9:00 AM and 2:30 - 3:15 PM. I suspect this would be the same for Glascow and Alma. I understand from the media reports that additional traffic studies are being performed @ level crossings in Guelph. Could you please confirm the timing of these studies.

Anonymous's avatar

I would like to ask why a pedestrian signal and/or gate was not installed on Dublin street when it closed to car traffic. It only takes a quick search and some discussions with neighbours who have lived in Europe and Asia, where high speed trains have been around for quite a while, that there are many options to keep active transport corridors open. Why was this not considered or installed on Dublin street.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 14, 2020 - 10:26

I'm concerned with the deep distrust that Metrolinx seems to have of grade crossings when it comes to upgrading rail infrastructure or building new crossings.

There are dozens of grade crossings across the GO network and tens of thousands around the world that safely accommodate train speeds up to three times as fast as the 30 mph planned for the section between Guelph station and the Hanlon. The only new grade crossing (as far as I know) that Metrolinx has approved on one of its own corridors, on the Finch bike path crossing the Newmarket sub, has a spotless safety record despite trains passing at 75 mph. Crossings limited to pedestrians and bicycles are tried and true: apart from the Finch one we also have Marilyn and Corvette Avenue in Toronto, London Road in Newmarket, the platform crossing in Bradford and Old Derry Road in Mississauga, all but the last with trains running at 30 mph or more.

With so many examples of grade crossings that just work, why is Metrolinx in such a hurry to close even more of them in Guelph? If sightlines are too short for high speed car traffic, why isn't the plan to keep them open for pedestrians and bicycles?

Anonymous's avatar

This Transit Assessment is governed by the requirements set out in Regulation 231/08

https://www.ontario.ca/laws/regulation/080231#BK12

Section 8 on consultation states the following:
(4) As part of the consultation, the proponent shall provide information about,
(a) the basis on which the proponent selected the preferred method of carrying out the transit project, including,
(i) the proponent’s assessment and evaluation of the impacts that the preferred method and the other methods considered might have on the environment,
(ii) the proponent’s criteria for assessment and evaluation of those impacts, and
(iii) any completed studies with respect to those impacts;

I do not see that Metrolinx has provided information or studies about "other methods considered" as part of this consultation and why they were set aside:

a) Regarding the selection of Margaret Greene Park for the TPS, Metrolinx has provided no information or assessment criteria for the community about why 35 & 40 Silvercreek Pkwy South were not chosen for the Traction Power Station. This site is within the original Traction Power Station Study area AND directly adjacent to the Hydro One Tap Study Area. It is currently vacant land and a former industrial site. In terms of power lines required to connect the TPS to the TAP, there would be minimal impact on the community.

As of the Public Information Centre which was held November 20, 2019, there was no active development application for this site, although there has been a flurry of activity to obtain development approvals. “Notice of Complete Application” for the development was not issued until January of this year.

There is a map of 35. 40 & 55 Silvercreek Pkwy South at this link which shows its location adjacent to the TAP study area and within the TPS study area:

https://guelph.ca/wp-content/uploads/Feb-10-2020-Notice-of-Complete-Appl...

TPS and TAP study areas are on p. 9 and 10 of this link. Selection criteria are on p. 15

https://www.metrolinxengage.com/sites/default/files/kitchener_-_guelph_b...

b) Regarding electrification of the track, Metrolinx has provided no information as to why planning is not based on fully electric trains which would be charged overnight and could run on the tracks as they currently exist (this is a very interesting comment from a community member in the Feedback section). What other options for electrification have been considered and why were they not put forward?

Anonymous's avatar

Hello where I Appreciate the work toward green energy please don’t destroy the forested area and lovely trails that start on Ferman Drive and meander behind Lisa Lane. It is used extensively for walking dogs, children playing, birds and wildlife. It is a joy to be near. Please find somewhere away from our homes.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 14, 2020 - 16:33

I am a resident of the West End in Guelph and go to Margaret Green Park often. It is the only off leash dog area in the West end.
This park is used by may families for different activities and having an electrical substation in the area is a huge safety issue. It would also negatively effect the ecosystem and destroy a much needed naturalized area for wildlife.
There must be a better more suited location to put this substation, instead of destroying green space in a park.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 14, 2020 - 17:30

Do the electrical wires hum or otherwise make any noise / give off any sound? Have you received any complaints about noise/sound being emitted from any of the equipment being used to electrify the trains?

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 14, 2020 - 18:03

2-way, all-day Go service and the fantasy of high speed trains with a Guelph stop is as much a political matter as a planning matter. I live on the tracks. At least from K/W to Guelph - Guelph to K/W there are very, very few people on any of the Go trains. Commuting from K/W to Toronto is a tough way to live and I feel for those people who are doing it. With COVID, I suspect that many of those commuters are now working from home and employers who were not open to work for home arrangements are seeing that their employees are as productive. I suspect that post-COVID will see some flexibility continue - what does it matter where someone is sitting with the technology we have to communicate with each other and get our work done without hours of commuting. Railroading became a term because of the overwhelming power the railroads have to push through a plan, without consideration to those who will be negatively impacted, cleaving neighbourhoods and cities, some being left out and some making a fortune. We know 1000's of Guelphites will be negatively impacted by closing our streets. Other than the handful of people who get on and off in KW, who is gaining from few minutes shaved off the trip (developers selling the dream of a big yard?)? What is the equation here? Is there a business case or even a vision you can share that would help the sacrifice of our neighbourhoods make sense?

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 14, 2020 - 18:12

What is the future of train travel? I am for clean and fast commuting options but maybe COVID makes this project a little less urgent. Another poster mentioned trains in Europe running from battery power which does not require all this ugly infrastructure running down the centre of our historic neighbourhood. Battery powered trains are an option. Why not pause this plan, shift gears to a more future oriented plan? Skip electrification go straight to battery power and save our neighbourhood. Has this been considered? What is the argument against this?

Matt Saunders's avatar
Aug 14, 2020 - 23:18

In several comments, Metrolinx has written: "It is important to note the proposed TPS will not encompass the entire parcel of land identified in the materials."

Metrolinx: until you design the new hydro corridor, you don't actually know how much land will need to be expropriated. This parcel is nearly a mile from the power line. Come back with a plan to bring power to this site, before making claims that the impact will be small.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 15, 2020 - 17:20

I am in favour of electrification and better, more frequent rail service. But I am concerned about the impact this could have on the neighbourhoods of downtown Guelph. We are already seeing the ill effects of the closure of Dublin Street. Pedestrians and cyclists have to detour. Traffic is rerouted to Glasgow, which has no traffic lights at either Paisley or Waterloo. The idea that other streets could be closed, essentially severing the Old City in two is just not right. I understand the need for change. What I don't understand is why trains that are coming into, or just leaving a station would be at such speeds that level crossings are unsafe. Please explain.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 16, 2020 - 13:50

The decision to stop traffic (foot and vehicle) on Dublin street at the tracks needs to be re-evaluated. This road is an essential street in Guelph, both for its heritage value and access to the church, school, and grocery shopping that this road provides. The closure of this road will hurt everyone who lives in this procimity. I am extremely disappointed in the City of Guelph and Metrolinx decision on this.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 16, 2020 - 17:13

Margaret Greene Park is not the right location for this infrastructure. Surely there is another location that can be used so that this green space can preserved, as it is.

Anonymous's avatar

Guelph only has 4 major north/south arteries for vehicle traffic to flow. If you close all the smaller streets between Norfolk and the Hanlon for the trains then all the cars will be forced onto those main arteries which will significantly increase east/west traffic. Currently, we can navigate our neighborhood with little traffic as it’s quiet and safe for the kids to play. That’s why we value our neighborhood so much. You close those crossings and we will see cars zipping through trying to get to a main artery. Some of these side streets in winter barely fit one car due to snow banks. Imagine impatient drivers added to that. As many people have already noted,Edinburgh is already painful due to the shunting. This doesn’t just affect the local neighborhood- it affects the entire city.

I am also very concerned about pedestrian traffic...there are so many children who cross those streets to go to school. How far must they walk now? Add all of the pedestrians to the cars on streets that are already unsafe and overcrowded. Where is your conscience MetroLinx?

Anonymous's avatar

The apparent advanced selection process has been anything but transparent. The letter sent to residents was void or any actual detail, regarding potential location or this installation. Apparently notices of open house were in Guelph Mercury Tribune, a free publication that is almost never delivered to our area. Still, we are only guessing about this installation, there is only a general size given. But how will this area be accessed? Will access to the park via Ferman Drive be blocked? Will this be lit 24 hours, day and night? How much construction, are there plans to conserve mature trees, when is this planned, how will hydro be brought to the installation, will there also be hydro towers strung across the park?
This is not vacant land, it is a park, a leash free dog walk, sports fields, tennis courts, play and walking area, trails, connection with nature, which was the intention of Margaret Greene when she gave this land to the City of Guelph. How many generous donations such as this will happen, if Crown Corporations take the power they have to destroy communities, and spoil this valuable land.

Janet's avatar

Why do you ask for comments and feedback now, instead of before site selection? Even now, you have not given us the full picture of this project. There should be actual drawings, inventory of trees to be removed, compensation and plans to reconnect the community after streets are blocked, cleaving neighbourhoods in half. Where do pedestrian overpasses go? What is the scheduled use of this line? Where are the poles and overhead structures going? There are many more questions than answers.
Regarding Margaret Greene Park land, not vacant land, a vital green space donated for recreational uses.

Anonymous's avatar

Has Metrolinx considered that post pandemic the demand for more frequent, high speed trains just might decrease as the world is changing and more people are working from home (possibly permanently)?
As a person who lives directly on the tracks (in Guelph) I can see the heads in seats as trains pass by and I tell you the trains are no where near full. Perhaps that early morning train is as I don’t see that one. Would there be more people if they were faster? Maybe- I’d love to know the stats on that. I just can’t believe how many local people Metrolinx is willing to negatively impact so a comparatively small number of people can ride the train faster from KW to Guelph. Maybe the stats will tell me I’m wrong on the numbers /projections but then I reiterate my first point.

Janet's avatar
Aug 17, 2020 - 16:59

The area around MARGARET GREENE PARK, the designated vacant land for the electrification of the Go Track contains many new Canadians, persons who fled regimes that discounted the needs of their Citizens. WAIT, WHAT IS HAPPENING HERE? An illusion of transparency, over riding community needs by a Crown Corporation. How are we any better?
Janet Kierdorf

Anonymous's avatar

Margaret Greene Park is a well used park by families and sports teams. The rival of green space will detract from the tranquility and friendly feel of the park. The area is Residential and this is not the right place for Metrolink to build a parking facility.

Anonymous's avatar

I oppose the use of Margaret Greene Park as a location for a hydro substation. The vacant lot on Silver Creek Parkway makes much more sense to me as it is not an existing park and fewer people would be negatively affected by this location. If possible, a rural location would seem ideal as this would affect even fewer people. Many people's homes back onto Margaret Greene Park. A school also backs on to Margaret Greene park. Many people use the trails for walking. Many children use the park for playing. As well, other people use the park for baseball and cricket. Why should green space be destroyed for a hydro substation when there are other more appropriate locations?

Greta DeLonghi's avatar

Greta DeLonghi
Aug 22, 2020 - 17:07

I live on the south side of and near to the level crossing at Yorkshire Street, but I feel burned by the closure of Dublin Street -- as a pedestrian, a cyclist, a lover of the entire core neighbourhood, and a parishioner of an historic basilica in said neighbourhood, . I am deeply concerned about potential closures at Glasgow, Yorkshire and Alma, as well as the proposed designation of Margaret Green Park for a power station.

My question will not be easily answered with words. How are we to trust a corporate citizen that seems to answer to no one, to consult in no meaningful way with its neighbours, and to have no conscience or sensitivity around community fit?

-- For example, outside of Guelph, Metrolinx reneged on a plan to donate land for a community centre in Toronto's Jane-Finch area. https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2020/07/21/metrolinx-reneges-on-plan-to...

-- For example, Metrolinx, you closed historic Dublin street in the core of Guelph with little to no consultation, did it swiftly and early the morning of July 6, then left an eye-sore of a barrier and many bereft pedestrians, cyclists or others else seeking passage through what had been a peaceful and beautifully walkable neighbourhood connected to the downtown.

-- For example, the designation of Margaret Green park for a proposed power station, as if it were an empty parking lot, demonstrated a lack of sensitivity and knowledge. Metrolinx, start doing your homework and stop with the doublespeak: "Vegetation removal" really means cutting down trees, doesn't it?

-- In your responses to previous posts, Metrolinx, you claimed to be working in consultation with the City of Guelph, but from what I've gathered, it seems to have been more of a one-way conversation, cornering the city either to pony up millions of dollars to change the crossings or pay a different price with road closures, as you brandished a federal safety law like a cudgel. That seems to be bullying behaviour, Metrolinx, and you seem to want to have your way, literally, without paying the price. What if you were to assume most or all of the costs to preserve access through these crossings and to assure their safety? That might build some trust as a neighbour who wants to benefit from its space in our city without gutting that city in the process.

So, I invite you, Metrolinx, to convince me somehow that you are worthy of trust. Be straight with me, Metrolinx. When you say that closures at Glasgow, Yorkshire and Alma are not planned "at this time", what are your plans and when and under what conditions might they change?

Finally, the irony of all this, Metrolinx, is that your trains and electrification would purportedly clean up and speed up rail travel, maybe get some cars off the 401. But your behaviour thus far has antagonized the very people who value cleaner means of transportation and liveable cities -- who like to walk to school or church or to play in the park or ride bikes or not idle their cars at a single clogged rail crossing. Your poor planning and lack of consultation and collaboration has made this an unpalatable binary choice somehow and that doesn't seem to be a true choice at all.

Thank you for this space to speak.
Greta DeLonghi

Diane's avatar

I have lived in the west end of Guelph on Ferman Drive for ten years and have enjoyed our close proximity to Margaret Greene Park. It was one of the primary reasons we purchased where we did. When Metrolinx engaged with the public in November 2019, only the larger TPS study area was presented. I can only speak for myself and my family, but never would we have imagined that an already established park surrounded very closely by homes would be the preferred site for a large high voltage substation. I am extremely disappointed that a location so close to homes as well as an elementary school would have even made it on the list of potential options. Other options must be considered. Please do not take advantage of this well-used and appreciated park because it may be the easiest route. This is not a temporary disruption to our neighbourhood – this will have long-term significant consequences that we should not bear.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 23, 2020 - 10:03

I thought that the purpose of this forum was to encourage and support a dialogue between Metrolinx and its constituent communities. However, there seems to be very little input from Metrolinx in this dialogue - just a one way conversation from the stakeholders into a digital vacuum - so I conclude that the platform is broken, since it is not functioning as intended.

Anonymous's avatar

The park is a very important woodland space and one of the few large green spaces in the west end. Many people, including our west end marginalized folks, gather there. It's in important space in our community.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 24, 2020 - 01:02

So far all of the responses have been double-, triple- and quadruple-checked to not let any overly useful information slip. With the onslaught of questions on this page I humbly suggest just posting the first draft of every answer, so we don't have to wait the rest of the year till the whole Cabinet has read everything through. So what if you say too much? You're subject to FIPPA anyway.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 25, 2020 - 13:05

The Margaret Greene Park is a greenspace that is used and appreciated by many Guelph residents. Why couldn't the TPAP be situated on the east side of the Hanlon Parkway, south of Paisley Rd and the railway tracks, west of Silvercreek Parkway S, on or adjacent to the hydroelectric right of way? This land adjacent to a hydroelectric right of way, the railway tracks, and the Hanlon Parkway seems unlikely to be developed. It is in close proximity to the railway tracks, electrical power, and easily accessible for maintenance. Plus, this site would seem less disruptive to the neighbourhood.

Anonymous's avatar

While I support the overall electrification of the GO rail line through Guelph, I am writing to voice my complete opposition to siting the Traction Power Station on local parkland, particularly naturalized areas that include important active transportation routes. To further label this area as 'vacant', as reported by various media, is both ridiculous and indicates a lack of thought on the part of Metrolinx regarding impact to local citizenry.

Maureen Busby-O'Connor's avatar
Aug 27, 2020 - 20:55

To Metrolinx:
Metrolinx Go Train proposals for Margaret Greene Park and the Downtown Core contravenes Guelph Community Values as a Walkable, Liveable City.
Guelph needs a thoughtful, sensible and ethical plan

The area you propose for the Traction Power Station is chosen because you consider it to be vacant land and you describe this area as devoid of cultural interest or worth. This perception is blatantly wrong. Furthermore, there has been a lack of transparency regarding the process of selecting Margaret Green Park as a preferred site and a lack of regard concerning the impact the traction power station will have on local residents. Your current plan to to bring GO to Guelph will have a negative impact on the downtown city area and the Margaret Greene Park area. Overall your plans are disrespectful to the values of the surrounding community and of Guelph citizens.

The area of Margaret Greene Park selected is not vacant. It is not idle and it is certainly not abandoned. This land is vibrant land that is bustling with activity. It is a community hub used by hikers, students, dog walkers, cross country runners and skiers. It is a play space and nature trail for children and a thoroughfare for connecting schools and shops. This land is essentially inhabited land. It is a vital part of our ecosystem. We need this open wild space for pollinators, butterflies and birds to flourish and as a place for owls and small animals to live.

This land is not devoid of cultural interest and worth. It is a prime example of the culture of community and connectedness for which Guelph is renowned. This land was bequeathed by Margaret Greene for the benefit of Guelph citizens. Over a period of 40 years this area has been thoughtfully nurtured and transformed from a barren piece of land into an exceptionally welcoming green space with a well-used walking trail. This has been possible due to careful tree planting and management by the City of Guelph and environmental groups. Furthermore this park space has enduring benefits to human health. An entire neighbourhood community and visitors beyond, revere and take pride in this land. They are refreshed by this space which fosters mental and physical well being so vital to community health.

In particular, this area is designated naturalized park land, nurtured by the City of Guelph and environmental groups.
The signs posted at both ends of the preferred site reads:-
This site has been designated as a NATURALIZATION AREA. The City of Guelph Parks and Recreation Department has seen the need “to recognize, protect and restore the viability of natural ecosystems within the city, and thereby provide a healthy environment for our housing, recreation and economy.”
Natural parkland is an integral part of our urban park systems. These natural areas represent self-perpetuating landscapes that lend strength, beauty, and ecological stability to our urban parks, while providing passive recreational opportunities for its users.
For more information, please contact Parks and Recreation Dept, City of Guelph Making a Difference

In addition, there appears to be a lack of transparency regarding your talks with the City of Guelph and Hydro One. Local residents were not informed of the Guelph Subdivision TP Station proposal until July, during the summer vacation period and during a pandemic. Residents were given three weeks to respond to your general information presented in a flyer which was delivered to only some houses. The information you provided required deeper research in order for residents to be fully alerted to the immediate effect of your proposals on their neighbourhood.

Informing local residents of your proposal at short notice, with few details and during a pandemic has increased the alarm of these times. Please respect our community by providing more depth, detail and the reasoning leading to your proposal. There is uncertainty regarding the exact location, the effect on the visual landscape, noise, light pollution, vegetation disturbance and overall safety, all of which is unsettling. Importantly, the effect of the electromagnetic field on the health of local residents needs absolute clarity. Your comment that “no adverse effects of EMI are anticipated” based on preliminary studies, is not reassuring.

Precise evidence of your consultation with partners at the Provincial Government level and at the Municipal Government level, who you say are “those who know Guelph citizens best”, needs to be transparent. Guelph is highly regarded as a place to grow, offering open park spaces. Your proposals for closing roads in downtown Guelph will lead to segregation of neighbourhoods and congestion on the remaining open streets. Your proposal for Margaret Greene parkland similarly contravenes the integrity and values of Guelph citizens.

You are urged to consider alternative locations (e.g. the Lafarge site and other designated industrial lands) for the Traction Power Station, away from residential areas and a naturalized community green space. Similarly, alternatives to road closures downtown (e.g. overpasses/underpasses) need to be provided that are in keeping with Guelph's reputation as a walkable and increasingly bike friendly city.

Development Projects in Guelph must be thoughtful and reflect the values of the citizens of our progressive green city. It will be appreciated if you take the time necessary to carefully reconsider your proposals for Guelph and present a plan that is both sensible and ethical and that respects the integrity and values of Guelph citizens.

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 27, 2020 - 21:05

I am very concerned about the possibility of Glasgow, Yorkshire, and Alma streets being closed like Dublin St. I understand that there are safety concerns, but requiring all traffic (including pedestrians and cyclists) to be diverted to Edinburgh would also create significant safety issues. Just as someone previously commented about Alma being vital to the walkability of students to various schools, Yorkshire is a major walking/cycling route to GCVI, John McCrae P.S. and the University of Guelph. I truly hope that Metrolinx is working with the City of Guelph, and that residents will be properly consulted in this process.

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 27, 2020 - 21:44

Reverse the closure of Dublin Street and to stop the closures of the arterial streets Glasgow, Yorkshire, and Alma for the benefit of Metrolinx.

Anonymous's avatar

You have been asked this question in different ways several times and have never given a direct answer. The question is about power (ironically). Who has the power to make decisions? Does Metrolinx have ultimate power? Has the City any veto power? I have the impression and enough experience to realize citizens have very little. Your broken record response, "We work closely with our municipal partners – in this case, the City of Guelph – who know their communities the best to assess the existing conditions...." does not address the central issue. It is simply dodging the question. Would you please help our community understand the power structure and how it will impact decision-making. In other words, does Metrolinx have the power to impose their will on a community despite opposition from the City and citizens? Melissa Dean

Anonymous's avatar

It is outrageous to close Dublin Street to pedestrians and bicycles - that is a major pathway for non-motorized travel in Guelph. Any effect of the proposed rail line on existing street layout should be honestly discussed with citizen groups and the city of Guelph. Electric railway - YEAH, bulldozing over existing pathways without input - NAY

Anonymous's avatar
Aug 28, 2020 - 13:20

Friday, August 28, 2020

RE: METROLINX HYDRO SUB-GENERATING STATION FOR GO TRAINS
“To recognize, protect and restore the viability of natural ecosystems within the city and thereby provide a healthy environment for our housing and recreation and economy. Natural parkland is an integral part of our urban park system. These natural areas represent self-perpetuating landscapes that lend strength, beauty and ecological stability to our urban parks while providing passive recreational opportunities for its users.”
The quote above is from the plaque that is posted as you enter Margaret Greene Park – Metrolinx’s “preferred” site for a hydro sub-generating station for GO trains.
Margaret Greene Park is one of the most heavily used parks in Guelph. It has many amenities – a playground, washrooms, tennis courts, ball diamonds, soccer fields, a cricket pitch, a naturalized area and trails, as well as the most used leash-free dog park in Guelph. It is also adjacent to the school yard of St. Peter’s Catholic Elementary School.
Through discussions with the planning department, it was revealed that the park (7 acres) is indeed designated as parkland not vacant land. Although Metrolinx has retracted its use of the term “vacant land” for Margaret Greene Park, this shows very little respect for lands that are reverting to a naturalized condition.
Changing the land-use designation and removing trails and trees to accommodate the hydro station in parkland, sends mixed messaging to the residents of Guelph and all of Ontario. The message is that it is okay to change parkland to industrial land.
Why has parkland been deemed an ideal site in Guelph?? Processes to determine site selection in Barrie and Toronto is unknown to us, but in each of these cases, the site selection was industrial land and not parkland.
If the prime reason Margaret Greene Park was chosen as the preferred site was due to the fact that it can be expropriated at insignificant costs, Metrolinx should consider other sites adjacent to railway tracks with similar characteristics that do not have a parkland designation, even though they may be at a higher cost.
Guelph has a master plan for parklands as well as sanctioned plans for attaining a certain percentage of tree cover (~30%). Converting a piece of parkland for industrial use is contrary to achieving these goals. Guelph takes pride in this initiative. Planting trees and enhancing parkland is an activity that instills a sense of pride and investment for the long term which improves the natural environment for the economic, social and environmental benefit to us all.
Metrolinx has a Sustainability Strategy it uses to guide its operations. The message from the CEO is very clear with regard to how Metrolinx will interface with Ontario communities. It states:
“Consider the environmental, social and economic outcomes of their decisions. Engage the broader stakeholders in our decisions and actions. Use continuous improvement as a boundless guidepost.”
In the case of Margaret Greene Park, situating a sub-generating hydro station to serve GO train improvements in parkland, shows a lack of regard for sustainable actions. It demonstrates little concern for environmental and social aspects as well as a short term view with respect to economic outcomes. The presence of city parkland attributes to a healthier lifestyle reducing health costs, which will have economic ramifications.
Locating infrastructure in parkland increases impacts through removal of a parkland designation and naturalized land designation by the City of Guelph. The installation of a power facility will require the removal of natural vegetation. It will require road access and lighting. There will be light pollution associated with the facility. These installations in a naturalized area will not serve the families that utilize the park on a daily basis, as well as the wildlife that need the parkland to survive within an urban setting.
Health hazards (ie. cancer associated) with living next to a hydro generating station have not shown direct links at this time. Why take the risk and locate a power supply next to housing (171 immediate households), when the risks associated with living next to one could in the future show more conclusive evidence that there are indeed significant risks?
Attempts at screening the sub-station with natural cover as well as maintaining existing trails around the footprint of the station would not serve park users well if it was determined that close proximity to it were proven to be a health hazard.
Also, Metrolinx has not adhered to its principle of “engaging the broader stakeholders”. There has been very little outreach and involvement with the 171 immediate households to date in decision making and actions taken. At an August “meeting” in Margaret Greene Park where Metrolinx communication staff were present, along with City of Guelph officials and many residents, the Metrolinx staff were not able to answer any of the technical or environmental questions asked of them. It would have been more appropriate to have Metrolinx staff present that were able to address these issues.
In order to electrify GO train service, Metrolinx has purchased 53 kms of tracks from CN rail. There must be other ideals sites without a parkland designation within the 53 kms of track to locate a sub-generating station.
Setting all the above aside, there is a saying: “Treat others as you would like to be treated”. My husband and I have worked our whole adult lives to support our family in this beautiful neighbourhood. We have proudly owned our home for 33 years and have never thought of moving. Our children have grown up enjoying what Margaret Greene Park has to offer. We would like to think our grandchildren will enjoy it as well. We love the quietness of the naturalization area at the back of our house and enjoy listening to the birds and crickets while having a cup of coffee outside on a Saturday morning.
I am saddened to think that this will be taken away from us in favour of a hydro sub-station!!! Instead of listening to birds and crickets, we will have light pollution and be listening to a very audible hum!!! Would you like to have that built next to your backyard??
Please think long and hard before deciding that Margaret Greene Park is your “preferred” site. Think of all the families that will be disappointed that they will no longer be able to enjoy their green space. Please choose a site that will not impact the 171 immediate households in this neighbourhood. Please choose a site on an industrial property so the 171 families can continue to live happily knowing the future of their family is safe and not at risk of unknown health hazards.
We are agreeable to enhanced rail service in/through Guelph, but not at the expense of parkland.

Concerned resident impacted by your decision,

Heather Roberts
33-80 Ferman Drive
Guelph, ON N1H 8B3
[email protected]

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 28, 2020 - 14:53

I am a downtown Guelph resident. I’m in favour of rapid rail transit between Toronto and Kitchener. I’m also in favour of maximizing utility of existing infrastructure and electrifying major sections of the line where it makes sense. But I’m against any design that introduces significant safety and potential health issues into communities, I’m also against changes which negates the historic aesthetic nature of downtown communities and alters the flow of vehicular and pedestrian traffic in our downtown communities. The following are design issues that I concerned about and feel should be addressed during front-end scoping design, i.e. well before final project approval, full project funding and before detailed engineering.
1) The closure of densely populated area streets in Guelph disrupts the entire downtown community. Vehicle traffic is diverted to other streets that were never designed to accommodate this traffic. No project should significantly add safety issues into any community, especially a downtown area. There should be zero road closures in Guelph due to this project.
2) The Guelph downtown area depends on easy downtown walking and bicycle traffic. Closure of streets causes a major disruption of the natural flow of pedestrian and cycling traffic and forces residents to their cars. We should be encouraging walking and cycling, not impeding this trend. Again, no closure of any Guelph downtown streets.
3) Closure of the Guelph downtown streets divides and creates a barrier in our healthy downtown community. How will this change our community? Are we creating a situation where the dead-end streets near the rail line become our future ghettos? How many people want to live in a community with restricted access and right next to an industrial looking rail system, not me? Again, no closure of any Guelph downtown streets.
4) What will be the speed limit of the trains running through the downtown Guelph area. It should be no different than what’s occurring today. How many accidents have occurred at these intersections? I have never heard of a single area resident being overly concerned about the safety at downtown rail / road intersections. There are far more safety issues at our street intersections. I live at an intersection where we easily have half a dozen accidents per year. Concentrating more vehicle traffic to the remaining open street is a far greater risk to the community than the rail intersections; if you maintain the crossing switches properly the risks would be very low. Has there been any specific safety study conducted at the Glasgow / Dublin rail crossing; again the safety risk would be very low, especially considering how close to the rail station is to this crossing. The Glasgow/Dublin intersection should be reopened. Again, no closure of any Guelph downtown streets.
5) The Overhead Contact System thru the downtown core is very industrial looking and not at all in keeping with the historic nature of the neighborhood. Can’t Metrolinx design the system so that the relatively short stretch of rail within the city does not have overhead lines. A good portion of the rail system between Toronto and Georgetown will not be electrified. I’m assuming the trains running in this stretch will be diesel or battery powered. Why can’t the short stretch thru the Guelph downtown core be low speed diesel or battery?
6) The current proposal shows bridges with electrical barriers to protect the public. The Kent Street section of line will be very close to these houses. Will they require barriers to protect residents? Again, this would not be neighbor friendly. Again design out the requirement for overhead contact system in the Guelph downtown area.
7) The EMF literature in your documentation is minimal. The mG levels in the house example relates mostly to intermittent EMF sources. The example of electric blankets and heated waterbeds has been a long term health concern by many. I suspect full-time EMF exposure is very different than intermittent exposure, and I image the acceptable full time exposure limit will be considerable lower than the acceptable intermittent EMF exposure; no one wants to build beside Hydro One Towers due to this concern. The Electrified Railway in North America Europe charts is based on measurements 18 meters (60 ft) away. The houses along Kent Street are immediately beside the Overhead Contact Lines. Again, this introduces a potential Health risk that should not be introduced into our neighbourhood. Again design out the requirement for overhead contact system in the Guelph downtown area.
8) Why do the Traction Power Facilities need to be in the city of Guelph; they’ll never be a cultural heritage feature in our community. The electrified rail lines are approx. 30 km in length. Why can’t Metrlinx design these industrial stations outside of the city way from our neighbourhoods and parks?

Anonymous's avatar

Metrolinx has been presenting information piecemeal through this entire process. In the first Townhall consultation you do not flag any potential sites within the broad study area. No right-minded person would think that a designated city-owned park would be part of the discussion, so of course there was no dissent from those attending the meeting. Now you have chosen a preferred site without indicating what other sites were under consideration. You indicate that "only an area 50m x 75m" will be used but there will be a far greater impact once the specific site is chosen, as there will be vegetation mitigation necessary, as well as an access road and a high voltage line transmission corridor to bring power from the TAPP. By the time you provide that additional information so that the public knows the full extent of the impact many months will have passed, the project will have progressed and there will be no process to revisit other sites. This process is flawed and in my opinion is not a consultation in the sense that Metrolinx is taking input from the community to heart and trying to incorporate the TPS into another site that has less impact on the community, from across Guelph, that uses the green space at Margaret Greene Park for health and wellness.
Respectfully, Jeff Overton

Anonymous's avatar

I am adding my voice to the opposition to siting the Guelph TPS in Margaret Greene Park. The reasons have been listed here by many other posters, so I will only briefly reiterate. Before I do that, I support expanded rail service. Margaret Greene Park, however, is green space which we are short of in Guelph and in particular in the part of Guelph served by this park, and it is well used by those of us who live in the area, as well as by people who come from beyond walking distance.

It is inappropriate to designate Margaret Greene Park as the lead option, especially when there are other options that, while there are other interests, will not degrade the location of installation.

Tom Kosir's avatar

A note that the 2020-Aug-28 16:25 post was mine - I was too quick in hitting "post"

Tom Kosir

Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Aug 28, 2020 - 17:35

Using the Metrolinx provided Vegetation Removal Information Sheet, we have measured and see that on our section of upper Kent Street between Dublin and Glasgow, the OCS poles will be installed where the street currently runs. The tiger lilies we’ve planted between the curb and the retaining wall are in the “No Growth Zone” – so is half the canopy of the tree in our front yard. I imagine the maples on the street will be assessed as either in the “No Growth Zone” or as a hazard to the apparatus that Metrolinx in planning to install. All of the trees and plants between the retaining wall and the street on lower Kent are in the “No Growth Zone”. The house we own and have lived in since 1996 and which was built in 1898 is in zone 4 and 5 which is also somehow governed by Metrolinx according to their information. No one should have to live in a “No Growth Zone”.

Until Metrolinx showed up, our neighbourhood was quiet, walkable and charming. We need to stop this proposal. It will destroy our historic neighbourhood.