> Ontario Line LIVE - February 24, 2022 | Metrolinx Engage

Ontario Line LIVE - February 24, 2022

On February 24, 2022, Metrolinx hosted a virtual presentation and live Q&A about the Ontario Line’s draft Environmental Impact Assessment Report, focusing on Science Centre to Gerrard Stations, with over 280 live attendees. 

During the virtual open house, we answered top-voted questions submitted by registrants, as well as live questions from participants using a call-in option. Participants asked a variety of questions related to the report, noise and vibration, planning, property impacts, environmental conservation, community benefits and more. We’ll be posting responses to questions on this page as soon as possible.

For those who weren’t able to join us, you’ll find the video recording below. We’re looking forward to holding many more meetings in the future.

The Draft EIAR was released on February 7, 2022, and is open for public review and feedback until March 9, 2022.

Call-In With Your Question

As we continue to evolve the virtual engagement format, we are adding a call-in option for tonight’s event. To ask your question by voice, join the Zoom meeting here. We aim to keep each question and subsequent answer to 3 minutes allowing for as many call-in questions as possible.

NOTE: please ensure you have the latest version of Zoom installed.

Join Zoom

Agenda

6:30PM: Meeting Begins/Opening Remark

6:35PM: Presentation: EIAR (Science Centre to Gerrard Stations)

7:15PM : Questions and Answers (pre-submitted questions)

7:35PM: Questions and Answers (call-in questions via Zoom)

7:55PM: Wrap up and Closing Remarks

Meet the Speakers

Photo of Malcolm MacKay

Malcolm MacKay

Program Sponsor, Ontario Line

Photo of James Francis

James Francis

Senior Manager, Environmental Programs and Assessment

Jesse Pakkala

Jesse Pakkala

Project Manager, Environmental Programs and Assessment

Vicki Wong

Vicki Wong

Director, Property Acquisitions

Photo of Richard Tucker

Richard Tucker

Vice President, Subway Project Delivery, Ontario Line

Format & Accessibility

Questions will be answered based on popularity (total votes). We aim to answer all questions.

Please review and note that conduct inconsistent with our policies will result in removal.

To enable closed captioning, toggle captions “on” in the YouTube video player settings.

 

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 21, 2022 - 15:11

The report re: noise and vibration notes that, "Vibration levels are anticipated to be low and not cause structural damage." How many types of structures have been considered?

The report also indicates that, Metrolinx will, “develop a communications protocol for providing advance notice of construction work and addressing public complaints in a timely manner." Does this mean that construction work would not proceed until these complaints have been addressed?

Do you have a definition of what the “timely manner” might be?

The report also notes that, Metrolinx will, "maintain setback distances for construction equipment." Since the proposed train yard is already planned to be a mere 800 metres from residential buildings, how far can this setback be?

The report indicates that, "site-specific mitigation will be determined prior to the start of construction based on selected means and methods." Will you share what those means and methods are and how far in advance would those be shared?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:02

Metrolinx has examined numerous structure types, including both residential low and high-rise along with commercial and industrial buildings in the area of Thorncliffe Park. Steps will be taken at all construction sites to minimize noise impact on the nearby communities, including all available methods and techniques for minimizing noise in an area. Specific sound mitigation methods will be shared as soon as they are determined, relative to the planned construction start date.

We currently have numerous methods to contact us with any concerns, including emailing us at [email protected], calling us at 416-202-5100 or by filling out the meeting request form. We respond to requests and queries as soon as possible. 

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Anonymous's avatar

Regarding the Socio-Economic and Land-Use Characteristics Assessment portion of the draft EIAR, the findings your team has put together does not fall in line with the Provincial Policy Statement (Healthy and active communities by facilitating active transportation and community
connectivity (MMAH 2020b, Section 1.5.1)), the provincial "A Place to Grow: Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe" (designed to promote economic growth, increase housing supply, create jobs, and build communities that make life easier, healthier, and more affordable for people of all ages (MMAH 2020a) - specifically (Policy 2.2.4.10) Requires planning for lands adjacent to or near frequent transit to be transit-supportive, which relates to development that makes transit viable and improves the quality of the experience of using transit, often referring to compact, mixed-use development that has a high level of employment and residential densities), and the 2041 Regional Transportation Plan (4. Integrate transportation and land use).
When looking at the demographics of the Thorncliffe area, which you arbitrarily split into two areas (Thorncliffe Employment Sub-Area and Thorncliffe Park Sub-Area), you can see that you have clearly failed these aspects of the planning policies. This is a community made to serve 10000 residents which is now serving over 30000 residents. Due to this huge population density, the existing amenities do not serve the needs of the community and as such there is a lack of green space, recreation space, employment opportunities, and affordable housing. This is exemplified in your study as you found that a there is a greater amount of residents in this neighbourhood who have not completed secondary or post secondary education, almost 2 thirds of the population are recent immigrants, and it is the lowest earning neighbourhood in the Ontario Line North segment with less than 50% of the population employed (a majority of which is only part time employment). In addition, this is also a community with a large youth population - housing the largest primary school in North America and a large high school of young adults ready to join the work force. Knowing these demographics, how can you say the proposed OMSF site which is taking up about a third of the available space in the community is conducive to the policy objectives stated above? A site that will continue to produce noise, dust, pollution, and general nuisance next to such a vulnerable population will not create a "healthy and active community by facilitating active transportation and community connectivity" as stated by the Provincial Policy Statement. This site is taking away critical space from a community lacking amenities and affordable housing to foster an area that is "designed to promote economic growth, increase housing supply, create jobs, and build communities that make life easier, healthier, and more affordable for people of all ages" as stated by the provincial "A Place to Grow: Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe". This site also fails objective 4 of the 2041 Regional Transport Plan by failing to integrate transportation and land use by utilizing the entire area around the planned Thorncliffe Park station for the OMSF site.
It is clear from the demographics of the Thorncliffe area that the OMSF site will be hindering the positive growth of the community and as a result also fails critical objectives of the guiding planning policies Metrolinx must follow. What the Thorncliffe area needs is a Transit Oriented Community to provide the needed affordable housing and amenities around the proposed subway station, not an OMSF site that strips them of this possibility. All the maps provided show ample space on the other side of the CP Rail Corridor in Leaside Business Park, which is already slated for industrial use, for the OMSF site. Metrolinx should follow their own guiding planning policies and also make the correct moral decision to move the OMSF site out of Thorncliffe and into the Leaside Business Park (40/50 Beth Nealson and 245/255 Wickstead) where it was originally to be placed.
If you do not believe in this assessment, the community and I would like to understand your reasoning and rebuttal to these facts.

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:58

The maintenance and storage facility (MSF) is a critical part of any public transit operation. It’s where trains are housed and maintained to keep them clean and safe for our customers each and every day.  

An estimated 44 trains will be needed to meet Toronto’s transit needs when the Ontario Line opens, and the fleet will grow by as many as 10 more vehicles to meet future demand.   

After an extensive study of nine different sites across the route, we selected the site in Thorncliffe Park site was selected as our studies showed that it was the best option to meet all the technical needs for the project. Additionally, this location clearly demonstrated the least impact to local jobs and businesses.   

At the same time, we determined that we could, with certainty, relocate impacted businesses, community organizations and jobs within the community or nearby. This was perhaps the most critical requirement for us as we looked for a site for a facility like this in such a built-up urban environment.   

Regarding the Leaside Business Park option, our teams studied this as a possible location for the MSF. The Leaside site was technically much more challenging and presented operational challenges, particularly due to the need to cross the CP rail corridor and navigate Hydro One lands. Essentially, we would need to create, at significant cost, a grade separation while also ensuring no conflicts with hydro wires. 

You can find further details about the site selection process in the following resources on our website: 

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Anonymous's avatar

In your noise and vibration draft report it is noted that, "During operations, the stations, maintenance storage facility, railway, and emergency exit buildings have the potential to generate noise at nearby sensitive receptors*."

It is noted that these receptors would be placed in areas which would be "noise sensitive." How would you determine what, specifically, would constitute a "noise sensitive"area? You mention residential buildings but what about seniors buildings or schools?

Have you determined where, specifically, in Thorncliffe Park, these receptors would be? How far in advance of proposed construction would they be set up and how much testing would be done? And how would testing be done?

Would residents be informed if the noise exceeded what you consider to be acceptable levels?

The report indicates that noise could be a factor during operations and as such theses "sensitive receptors" would be important in determining noise levels. Would these receptors also be used during construction?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:03

The methodology for identifying sensitive receptors for both construction and operations of the Ontario Line is outlined within the Noise and Vibration Report (App. A6 of the EIAR, see Section 3.3 - Study Area Receptor Determination). In Section 3.3, Table 3-5 outlines sensitive land uses that were classified throughout the Ontario Line Study Area and used to determine sensitive noise receptors.

Yes, receptor locations within Thorncliffe Park have been identified as part of the Noise and Vibration Report, for both construction (see App. F, Fig. F-1-18) and operations (see App. G, Fig. G-1). Results for mitigated construction noise receptors are listed in Table 4-9 and for operations receptors in Table 5-9 of the report. Baseline monitoring to determine ambient noise levels in Thorncliffe Park was completed in 2020 as part of Environmental Conditions Report (outlined in Section 3.2 of the EIAR Noise and Vibration Report). Noise monitoring during construction will be implemented at each of the construction receptors before construction activities begin. These monitors will remain in place throughout construction and actively monitor noise levels to ensure potential noise impacts are properly mitigated. Metrolinx will provide oversight of noise monitoring during construction and can provide updates to residents at the Construction Liaison Committee (CLC) meetings.

The sensitive receptors identified for construction will be actively monitored throughout the construction period.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 22, 2022 - 20:54

The report states that more parkland will be available following construction. How much parkland will be available and how will it be accessed?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:04

Metrolinx recognizes the importance of existing parkland in the Don Valley, Thorncliffe Park, Flemingdon Park and Science Centre areas. We are committed to protecting and maintaining as much parkland as possible as designs for the project advance.

At this stage of the project, we do not have exact figures on the amount of parkland that will be restored or added, as these details will be confirmed as project designs progress. However, Metrolinx will take a comprehensive approach for parkland restoration to ensure that existing access to these spaces is maintained and improved where feasible. This will involve working closely with our local partners, the City and TRCA – who are subject matter experts in these areas, to identify opportunities for parkland improvements and enhanced restoration during the design process.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 22, 2022 - 19:50

Metrolinx recently bought 388 Carlaw but the environmental assessment does not show that building as being used for the station or for construction lay down. So what is it going to be used for? What is the plan for the building after construction is done?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:34

Metrolinx took possession of 388 Carlaw in December 2021. In doing so, a new property management company was brought in to manage the day-to-day operations of the building and tenants.  

All tenants were notified back in December of the change in ownership, new property management and that all existing lease agreements remain unchanged.  

Metrolinx intends to use a portion of the west parking lot beginning in spring 2022 to support project work. The property is also needed to support construction staging activities (storage of construction equipment and materials) for the Ontario Line during the entire construction period over the next several years.  

Vacant office space will be used for construction project offices throughout construction of the Ontario Line project.  

Given the Ontario Line project construction timeline over the next several years, it is much to early to know what the plans are, if any for 388 Carlaw Ave. 

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 21, 2022 - 09:14

We live in the last house on Minton Place. The Don Valley cliff runs beside our home. There is a large forested area behind our house and another behind the houses across the street from us. There is a rather large herd of deer that live here and travel between the two wooded areas regularly using the sloped area of the Don Valley cliff face - especially in the winter. We have photos of as many as 10 deer in/around our backyard at the same time. What will happen to these deer when construction starts to build the portal in the cliff face? What will happen to them when there is construction to stabilize the cliff face? These deer have been here since before we moved here in 1981, 40 years ago: it is their home too! To just expect them to adapt and carry on is naive. What considerations are in place to mitigate any disturbances to the lives of these deer? How will you ensure that when construction is done and you leave these deer will still be here and able to do their wandering in search of food. Specifics please, not platitudes.

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:05

As part of the EIAR, our subject matter experts identified and assessed potential impacts to wildlife habitat, including Deer Winter Congregation Areas. Once designs progress and before construction, we will have our subject matter experts in this area identify potential mitigation measures for the work area around Minton Place portal to avoid any direct conflicts with wildlife. This would include establishing buffers around work zones and installing protective fencing to prevent wildlife, like deer, from entering these areas. During construction, we will have qualified wildlife experts on standby to regularly assess existing mitigation measures and adaptively manage onsite works to further avoid impacts on local wildlife.

Once construction is complete, these areas around newly installed infrastructure will be restored to ensure local wildlife, like deer, can continue to use these areas in the future.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 21, 2022 - 15:05

Your report indicates that, "The maintenance and storage facility doors will remain closed (a central colling system may be required in the garage area) and/or a sound-reducing vestibule will be constructed around the door openings." I'm assuming you mean "cooling" system.

Where do you anticipate that these "doors" would be? Are you proposing that there would be "doors" around the entire yard? Otherwise could you please explain what the doors are and what impact they would make on reducing sound in the neighbourhood?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:08

Thank you for flagging this error, the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIAR) is meant to state “cooling” system and has been revised accordingly for the final version.

The Ontario Line maintenance and storage facility (OMSF) facility features these doors on the building itself, to allow trains to enter/exit. The cooling system for this facility is intended to allow indoor works to continue throughout the hot summer months while keeping the facility doors closed, except for when trains are moving in/out, to contain noise levels from maintenance activities.

The noise assessment provided in the EIAR accounts for the doors on the maintenance facility, and the resulting sound levels are shown to be well below regulatory limits and much quieter than existing noise levels at nearby receptors. If you’re interested in future noise levels at specific locations in the study area, this information can be found in Section 5 of the Noise and Vibration Report.

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Anonymous's avatar

addition to noise-induced hearing loss, there is growing body of evidence that shows an association between environmental noise and health impacts including cardiovascular disease cognitive impairment in adults and children, sleep disturbance and mental health impacts. Emerging evidence suggests that exposure to environmental noise could lead to adverse pulmonary effects increased mortality from diabetes, and negative impact on behaviour in children. (Reference: Toronto Public Health. How Loud is Too Loud? Health Impacts of Environmental Noise in Toronto. Technical Report. April 2017) Additionally, the World Health Organization and the Ministry of the Environment
Given the impact on auditory and non-auditory health, what will Metrolinx do to ensure that those decibel levels do not exceed either of the daytime and night-time noise thresholds of 55 dBA and 50 dBA respectively?
Additional Background Info: Recommended safe noise exposure levels depend on which adverse noise effect is being considered. To prevent hearing loss, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) adjusted the U.S. occupational recommended exposure level of 85 A-weighted decibels for additional exposure time to calculate a 70 decibel time weighted average (TWA) exposure level. EPA did not adjust for lifespan years so the correct safe exposure level is likely lower. The World Health Organization (WHO) also recommends 70 decibels to prevent hearing loss. EPA and WHO determined that non-auditory health impacts of noise occur at 55 decibels TWA, with annoyance starting at 45 decibels. These are the safe noise exposure levels for the public.

The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America 141, 3731 (2017); https://doi.org/10.1121/1.4988188

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:06

Metrolinx is taking all available precautions to reduce noise levels, both during construction and operation of the Ontario Line. This includes, but is not limited to, electrification of the rails allowing for quieter vehicles during operation, sound-dampening material being used in the construction of rail tunnels, and constructing the tunnels at such a depth as to minimize both sound and vibration felt in the immediate vicinity of the tracks and stations.

Metrolinx will actively monitor noise and vibration levels to ensure the expected levels outlined in the Noise and Vibration Report are maintained throughout construction (i.e. Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM) operations) at the identified receptors. The monitoring program will include warning levels prior to triggering an exceedance, to ensure that Metrolinx can adaptively manage and prevent potential noise and vibration impacts from occurring during construction.  

The criteria that Metrolinx adheres to is provided by the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks for stationary noise sources such as the Maintenance and Storage Facility, as well as rail industry noise guidelines for noise associated with train movements (i.e. FTA guidelines, see Section 5.4 of Noise and Vibration Report). These criteria target impacts to existing noise levels, which in the study area for Ontario Line have been measured to be typically higher than the 55 and 50 dBA levels cited by the World Health Organization. The Environmental Impact Assessment Report outlines the existing noise levels we identified during monitoring activities throughout the Ontario Line study area, which were presented in the Environmental Conditions Report (2020).

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 21, 2022 - 09:30

The cliff face of the Don Valley at Minton Place is not a natural one. It was created in the 1960's for the construction of the DVP. Five homes were demolished and the natural hill removed. So far, this created slope has been stable. The many trees have helped keep things in place. Now with the impending construction for the portal, this slope will be disturbed by making the tunnel exit hole itself, heavy construction equipment, vibration, etc not to mention the necessities for building the new bridge). I suspect that the slope will have to be stabilized to prevent occurrences such as what happened on Eglinton near Brentcliffe and some years ago on the DVP north of Bloor/Danforth. I suspect, in part, this is the reason for our receiving "easement" notification as well. ( some real details would have been appreciated!) Will you please explain what will need to be done to improve the stability of the slope/cliff face and what implications this has for those of us living here? What will be done to ease the impact for us and our resident deer population?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:10

Metrolinx is working with closely with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), who regulate and provide subject matter expertise on ravine slope stability, as we carry out geotechnical and slope stability studies in this area. This ongoing work with TRCA during the design phase will ensure that all slopes disturbed by construction are left in a stable and safe condition.

As part of the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIAR), our subject matter experts identified and assessed potential impacts to wildlife habitat, including Deer Winter Congregation Areas. Once designs progress and before construction, we will have our subject matter experts identify potential mitigation measures for the work area around Minton Place portal to avoid any direct conflicts with wildlife. This would include establishing buffers around work zones and installing protective fencing to prevent wildlife, like deer, from entering these areas. During construction, we will have qualified wildlife experts on standby to regularly assess existing mitigation measures and adaptively manage onsite works to further avoid impacts on local wildlife as required.

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Anonymous's avatar

The speed factor is assumed to be 20 dB, from the reference speed of 80 km/h. • The Minton Place Portal is considered as a point source resulting in a sound pressure 4 dB higher than the related tracks, at a distance of 25 m from the portal (per Eglinton Crosstown LRT project (J.E. Coulter, 2010)). • For each track direction, 496 trains travel between 07:00 and 23:00 (daytime), and 81 trains travel between 23:00 and 07:00 (nighttime), based on service levels in Appendix M and OMSF operational data for the pre-service hour (05:00 to 06:00).

QUESTION: This sounds like there will be a constant sound/noise of 80 dBA. Given that noise carries over valleys, and that Toronto residents encountered this problem when the subway was created over the Bloor Via Duct, why has there not been consideration of covering the train as done for the residents of Rosedale? This should be included to mitigate sound and noise, and to ensure quality of life for residents around portals and along the Don Valley. Will this be done?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:07

The first steps in reducing impacts from noise and vibration starts at the source – with the train and track. When the Ontario Line trains are running, they will be electrified, which means they will be quiet, in addition to clean and fast. The trains will also be automated, or driverless, which will eliminate a lot of the noises that result from human error, like when brakes are applied too heavily, or vehicles accelerate too quickly.

The discussion on noise through the bottom of the elevated structure is relevant to buildings adjacent to the elevated structure (Thorncliffe area). For the Minton Place portal, and associated bridge, this is not a factor. Furthermore, the train on the bridge structure, as well as the train passing through the portal, have been accounted for in the noise modelling. The detailed analysis considers acoustical variables in accordance with the applicable Federal Transit Administration (FTA) train noise prediction methodology, that covers the requirements of a detailed analysis. Based on the predicted results, the Minton Place portal and bridge does not warrant covering the train near the portal to address train noise.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 22, 2022 - 11:53

What will Metrolinx do to protect the area with all the noise and vibration?

Which measures are being taken for this?

How will you compensate the residents for all the inconvenience this will cause and if there are significant delays?

What other processes and criterias is metrolinx putting in place for the Neighbourhood from any further delays from happening.

Thank You,

Irshad

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Mar 18, 2022 - 16:30

Metrolinx is taking every available precaution to minimize noise and vibration disruptions as much as possible, both during construction and operation of the Ontario Line with modern techniques. In the event a delay to a planned completion or opening date is necessary, we will be in contact with the affected communities to provide updates as soon as they are available with revised timelines. 

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Anonymous's avatar

The report on p. 13 of the Natural Environment notes that Metrolinx is exempted from some municipal policies and processes (City of Toronto Ravine Strategy, Ravine & Natural Feature Protection, TRCA Ontario Regulation 166/06), and will engage with the city in these areas. Why is it exempt from such policies that protect our environment? What does that engagement look like? Does the city have any say in those areas or is it merely information sharing?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:12

As a crown agency, Metrolinx is exempt from certain Municipal and Provincial policies. However, Metrolinx is committed to working closely with regional partners, such as the City of Toronto and Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), to ensure impacts to the natural environment are minimized as design progresses and throughout construction.

In addition, required mitigation measures are presented in the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIAR) and the Natural Environment Report, and the contractor will be required to follow them. Mitigation requirements will be included in the contract document as a contractual obligation for the contractor.

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Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Feb 22, 2022 - 20:19

The Environmental Assessment specifically says that train pass-by noise levels are 80 dB and, near the portal, due to "sound pressure", that noise will be 4 dB higher.
At the Tuesday Open House, Metrolinx apparently said that the line will have noise around 50-55 dB. The EA itself says that is completely false.
If a train passes by in 1 direction every 45 seconds, how can you say that noise will be at 50 dB and not at 80-85 decibles, which is the level in which there are health issues causes by the noise?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:14

Train noise is modelled in what is called a “line source” – where the sound produced comes from the entire length (in this case, a train). The noise from the portal (when the train goes in or out) is modelled as a “point source”, where the sound produced comes from a single point. We ----- both noise impacts, combined, to the residences at Minton Place. To account for this, and as per analysis references for the Eglinton Crosstown LRT project, we note that using the train noise level would under-estimate the impact of the portal on the train noise, so we applied an additional 4dB correction to the train noise to account for this (Section 5.4.2.1 of the N&V Report).  In this way, we are conservatively increasing the portal noise to account for how we expect the train and portal noise to interact, thus ensuring we are conservatively assessing the noise impacts to residences at Minton Place.

Both the average noise impact and the instantaneous passby limit have to be met. For this project, an average noise level of 5dB above the existing baseline (for a 16hr daytime and 8hr nighttime average level) is considered, in addition to the individual train noise as it passes by not to exceed 80dBA.  Note at Minton Place, we predicted average noise levels of 56dBA daytime and 51dBA nighttime, and a passby noise level of 65dBA (around conversational level).

The criteria that Metrolinx adheres to target impacts to existing noise levels, which in the study area for Ontario Line have been measured to be typically higher than the 55 and 50 dBA levels cited by the World Health Organization. The Environmental Impact Assessment Report outlines the existing noise levels we identified during monitoring activities throughout the Ontario Line study area, which were presented in the Environmental Conditions Report (2020).

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 22, 2022 - 14:05

The World Health Organization and the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change has stated that acceptable levels for hearing are 55 dBA and 50 dBA, day and evening respectively. Given that an excess of these levels can impact auditory (hearing) and non-auditory health (cardiovascular, mental anxiety etc..), what will Metrolinx do to ensure that those decibal levels do not exceed either of the daytime and night-time noise thresholds of 55 dBA and 50 dBA respectively?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:14

The criteria that Metrolinx adheres to is provided by the Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks for stationary noise sources such as the Maintenance and Storage Facility, as well as rail industry noise guidelines for noise associated with train movements (i.e. FTA guidelines, see Section 5.4 of Noise and Vibration Report). These criteria target impacts to existing noise levels, which in the study area for Ontario Line have been measured to be typically higher than the 55 and 50 dBA levels cited by the World Health Organization. The Environmental Impact Assessment Report outlines the existing noise levels we identified during monitoring activities throughout the Ontario Line study area, which were presented in the Environmental Conditions Report (2020).

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Anonymous's avatar

We've received several notices indicating that some sort of easement may be required for our land. These requests are extremely vague and often dont give us any information. What will noise levels be like during the boring of the tunnels? What are the anticipated noise levels for residents whos homes will be above the completed line, specifically on Muriel avenue south of Selkirk? Will this impact property value negatively moving forward? Are we going to be dealing with the entire home shaking every time a train passes through the tunnel beneath our home?

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:47

Letters have gone out to property owners across the project where we have identified that there is or may be a need for a subsurface easement. These may include, but are not limited to, easements around a tunnel or around an underground structure.  

When property easement acquisitions are unavoidable, Metrolinx will work with property owners to negotiate mutually beneficial agreements to acquire the required property easement. Whenever Metrolinx needs to acquire property easements, property owners can expect to be compensated at fair market value, as determined by a third-party appraiser. 

Metrolinx will enlist the services of a third-party appraisal expert to estimate the unbiased value of the property easement. Market factors at the time of the easement acquisition will inform the valuation and will be based on comparable sales of similar easements in similar locations and situations.  

Metrolinx is committed to proactive monitoring and mitigation of noise and vibration to maintain levels below international standards. Measures to manage construction noise and vibration include measures to minimize transfer of noise and vibration (e.g., use of muffling devices, equipment enclosures, temporary hoarding, noise barriers).  

Before construction begins, pre-condition surveys will be completed at properties that may be affected by vibration-causing activities. 

Metrolinx also commits to continuing to engage and communicate with both residents and businesses to provide advanced notice of noise and vibration causing activities. 

The Ontario Line tunnels are constructed as two separate “tubes” approximately 20-25 meters below ground. Each tube is individually lined with noise dampening concrete liners, and the vibrations are dampened further from the surrounding earth. The Ontario Line is being designed and built to meet international standards for vibration control, which consider a range of sensitivities, including residences, office and commercial buildings, as well as special-purpose buildings such as concert halls, hospitals, and research and manufacturing facilities. Testing will be done before the line is operational to ensure the vehicles and tunnels are within the allowable limits for vibrations set by the City of Toronto and Province of Ontario. 

Finally, you can find a sound demonstration here that models what you can expect in terms of sound in a Muriel Avenue basement. 

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 21, 2022 - 16:40

What will Metrolinx do to help redevelop the Valley and neighbourhood after the tunnel has been built off Minton Place? Please share concrete action items.

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:15

Metrolinx will develop restoration plans for areas within the Don Valley as design progresses. Metrolinx is working with the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA), who are renowned restoration experts, to identify restoration locations within the Don Valley and will compensate vegetation removals to account for ecological value within natural areas, ensuring more trees are planted than removed. If any amenities within parks are disturbed, they will be restored following construction.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 23, 2022 - 09:29

We live on the west side of Minton Place next to the ravine. We will be here (unless there is a change in plans) after the houses on the east side are demolished and while construction of the portal and bridge is taking place. This raises many very serious questions about our quality of life during this time. Concerns like:
>allowable noise levels during construction
>allowable noise levels during subway operation
>time/days when construction is allowed
>the control of dirt and dust during construction
>control of truck dirt tracked onto the streets
>night time noise
>guaranteed free access to our home (car) during this time
>guarantees regarding vibration/construction/traffic effects on the integrity of the valley slope
>construction damage, directly or indirectly, to our home
>duration of the lead up time, demolition time, construction time
>control of truck traffic, noise, dirt, exhaust during this time
>safety of us residents, children, pets during this time of disruption to our lives
>concern for the wildlife (eg deer herd) during this time

We have many questions, but few answers. We phoned to set up a discussion as directed in your flyer, were promised a return call with 24-28 hours. That was nine (9) days ago. Waiting...

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Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:17

Throughout the construction period Metrolinx will ensure noise limits are enforced. There’s an immersive sound demonstration posted on our website for public viewing. It can be viewed here.

Integrity of slope will be maintained, and wildlife safety prioritized as part of the contractor’s works. We are still in the procurement process and are yet to award the contract for the construction of this segment of the Ontario Line. However, control of dust/dirt & tracking will also be part of work performed by the contractor.

It is our intention to ensure community members’ safety isn’t interfered with and the interference to their daily routines is minimal. Construction times will vary depending on the kind of work that is being done. As we draw closer to the commencement of the project more details will be made available to the public via the Metrolinx website.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 22, 2022 - 15:44

We are just south of the Danforth Pape intersection.
1) Should we expect noise/vibration during construction?
2) Some folks who live above the existing bloor-danforth line (line 2) are able to hear/feek the train below. Will we hear or feel the train below us once the line is up and running?

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Metrolinx
Mar 18, 2022 - 16:34

The Ontario Line tunnels are constructed as two separate “tubes” approximately 20-25 meters below ground, which is far deeper than the average underground TTC Station.  

Each tube is individually lined with noise dampening concrete liners, and because there is earth surrounding each tunnel, the vibrations are dampened as well. The Ontario Line is being designed and built to meet international standards for vibration control, which consider a range of sensitivities, including residences, office and commercial buildings, as well as special-purpose buildings such as concert halls, hospitals, and research and manufacturing facilities. Testing will be done before the line is operational to ensure the vehicles and tunnels are within the allowable limits for vibrations set by the City and Province of Ontario. 

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Anonymous's avatar

I would like to know the area and extent of the construction sites for each stop and egress and what the footprint the expropriations/buy out will be. I'm a realtor and need to advise clients of areas that will have heavy construction if they wish to avoid purchasing there. Some might consider those areas to be good long term investments as well.

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Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:48

In addition to station maps on our website, you can also find links under each map to the applicable project footprint map in the draft Environmental Impact Assessment Report. You can access each of the station pages here on our website under Neighbourhood Updates. 

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 22, 2022 - 16:28

What arrangements have been made for vehicles belonging to construction workers for parking during construction on Hopedale and immediate area? There is limited street parking on Stanhope and Hopedale and I am concerned that several dozen vehicles will be parking on our streets for months at at time.

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Metrolinx
Apr 4, 2022 - 10:40

Parking mitigation strategies for workers accessing the construction sites will need to be discussed with the Project Company selected to deliver the work once they are on board. Closer to construction, the Community Liaison Committees (CLCs) we are establishing for station areas across the line will provide a forum to discuss concerns, such as parking mitigation, with the selected Project Company.

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Anonymous
Feb 24, 2022 - 11:37

There to be numerous requirements for mitigation plans—the environmental assessment are full of mitigation points but lacking in any tangible details. When will the plans be shared with community stakeholders and publicly tracked to plan (i.e. traceability matrix). There does not appear to be any stakeholder oversight outside of Metrolinx and chosen contractors to provide input. Without community review and approval, community engagement is only a buzz phrase.

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Metrolinx
Mar 18, 2022 - 16:49

In addition to the measures outlined in the EIAR, we will have more details regarding further mitigation strategies once we have a Project Company on board to prepare detailed construction plans. We are expecting to select a preferred Project Company by Fall 2022. We’ll continuously refine plans to ensure we’re minimizing or avoiding as many impacts as possible, and we’ll communicate about those plans regularly and often throughout the project. 

We are also working on establishing Construction Liaison Committees across the project. These committee meetings provide a forum for the community to hear directly from Metrolinx and the Project Company about project plans and mitigation details. We look forward to sharing more details as these committees are introduced across the line.

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Anonymous's avatar

As stated in the EIAR: Vegetation removal will be reduced to the extent possible and limited to the Metrolinx right-of-way. • An IVM Plan will be developed and implemented that is in adherence with the Metrolinx Vegetation Guideline (2020) and the IVM Program.
When Metrolinx refers to compensation for the number of trees and vegetation that will be destroyed at the portal on Minton, ET Seaton park and Crothers Woods (an environmentally sensitive area). How will the compensation be determined? Given the environmental sensitivity of the Don Valley, how will you protect and preserve trees that do not need to be removed?

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Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:18

Metrolinx will only remove trees where necessary and is fully committed to compensating these tree removals to restore ecological value in accordance with the Metrolinx Vegetation Guideline. For areas within the Don Valley, an ecological compensation approach will be implemented that will replace more trees than are removed and will ensure that native species are replanted within the existing ecosystem.

For trees that will be preserved, Metrolinx will follow the City of Toronto Urban Forestry guidelines to protect trees during construction. This approach will implement a combination of barriers around the trunk and roots where necessary, as well as using construction setbacks to minimize disturbance to adjacent trees. Prior to construction activities, all trees within the work area will be identified and protection measures will be installed, such as tree protection hoarding/fencing.

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Metrolinx
Mar 20, 2022 - 13:43

When the Ontario Line is operational, 47,000 more jobs will be accessible in 45 minutes or less to the average Toronto resident.

The four pillar projects in the Subway Program portfolio (Ontario Line, Yonge North Subway Extension, Scarborough Subway Extension and Eglinton Crosstown West Extension) will also support the combined equivalent of more than 12,000 full-time jobs through each year of construction. Expected jobs will vary from station workers, trade workers, surveyors, engineers and more.

We are also anticipating 300 full-time jobs at the Ontario Line maintenance and storage facility when the line is in operation.  

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Anonymous's avatar

Expropriation along Pape and Cosburn

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Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 15:43

We understand that residents and businesses want those details and we will reach out to impacted property owners at the earliest opportunity and we always try to provide at least a year’s notice, if not longer. If Metrolinx confirms that a property is needed to support construction or operation of the project, the property owner will receive written notification from us informing them that this is case. 

After that, Metrolinx will arrange to meet with the property owner to answer any questions they may have, including how much property is needed and why, how the acquisition process works, and expected timelines. Multiple meetings will take place throughout the property acquisition process to ensure property owner has the information and support they need. 

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Anonymous's avatar

Can you please speak more to the erosion and sediment plan, particularly in reference to the Don Valley. The report mentions a plan in accordance with the Greater Golden Horseshoe’s Erosion and Sediment Control Guideline for Urban Construction (2006) and Erosion and Sediment Control Guideline for Urban Construction (TRCA 2019) will be prepared prior to and implemented during construction to reduce the risk of sedimentation to the vegetation communities. What does this mean specifically and how will measures be monitored?

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Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:19

Metrolinx will prepare site specific Erosion and Sediment Control (ESC) Plans in accordance with the Erosion and Sediment Control Guideline for Urban Construction which was prepared by the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) who are at the forefront of managing erosion and sedimentation. Metrolinx is committed to developing these plans as per the Environmental Impact Assessment Report recommendations.

The ESC Plans will include a description of the measures that will be used on site to manage erosion, prevent the release of sediment, and how these measures will be monitored and maintained. In accordance with the TRCA’s guideline, a qualified Environmental Inspector will conduct inspections of all erosion and sediment controls on a regular basis, after significant rainfall and snowmelt events, and more frequently during extended rain or snowmelt periods

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Anonymous
Feb 24, 2022 - 17:28
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Anonymous's avatar

No drawings for stations, bridges, developments wall have been provided. How can an EA be done without these drawings. Why have these not been shared with the community? Surely the developments will have an impact on the environment.

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Metrolinx
Mar 18, 2022 - 16:55

Project design work is ongoing, and we look forward to sharing station design concepts and renderings as soon as they are available. These renderings will be made available on the station pages under the Neighbourhood Updates section of our website where we host station maps. You can sign up for our newsletter to stay updated on the project and the release of design concepts.

In the meantime, we have launched an interactive map to provide another tool for community members to check out the Ontario Line route, including the ability to search specific addresses and see them in relation to the line.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 24, 2022 - 20:37

I would like a definitive answer (YES of NO), will there be any transit oriented development on top of the operation, maintenance, and storage facility? Who is responsible for this? When can I see open houses or presentation on it?

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Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 12:01

Please note that a transit-oriented community (TOC) development has not been announced for the Thorncliffe Park area to date. 

Infrastructure Ontario leads the TOC program. You can find out more about previously announced TOCs for the Ontario Line and get in touch with Infrastructure Ontario at engageio.ca.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 24, 2022 - 18:43

How will Metrolinx reflect today’s rapidly appreciating real estate market in its assessment of fair market value given the need for property owners to find a new home in this market?

When can affected property owners expect Metrolinx’s third party appraisals?

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Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 15:44

Metrolinx will enlist the services of a third-party appraisal expert to estimate the unbiased value of the property easement. Owners have the opportunity to obtain their own appraisal. Market factors at the time of the acquisition will inform the valuation and will be based on comparable sales of similar properties in similar locations and situations.

When property acquisitions are unavoidable, Metrolinx will work with property owners to negotiate mutually beneficial agreements to acquire the required property. Whenever Metrolinx needs to acquire a property, owners can expect to be compensated at fair market value, as determined by a third-party appraiser.

For questions about your specific property, we encourage you to please contact us at 416-202-5100 or [email protected].

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Anonymous
Feb 24, 2022 - 18:49

Metrolinx makes many promises around noise, vibration and response. Given your complete dismal of community concerns and lack of response from your "community offices" What assurances or contracts are you providing the communities that you will responsibly respond to concerns? How do you plan to be accountable?

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Metrolinx
Mar 18, 2022 - 16:33

Metrolinx is taking every available precaution to ensure all noise and vibration from both construction and operation of the Ontario Line are minimized as much as possible, using all available techniques. 

If you wish to further discuss this matter with a member of our team, please call us at 416-202-5100, email us at [email protected], or fill out the meeting request form here, and we would be happy to speak with you. 

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 24, 2022 - 18:50

Transparent transit structures kill many migratory birds each year. Will this project be following Toronto’s bird-friendly construction guidelines? Could you give details.

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Metrolinx
Mar 18, 2022 - 16:28

Bird-friendly design has been considered in the Ontario Line Design Guide and includes glass facades that are designed to meet the City of Toronto Bird Friendly Development Guidelines, facade glass with a graphic interlayer as a gradient frit that will tie into the Bird Frit pattern as per the Toronto Bird Frit Standards, and platform screen doors glazing that complies with the bird friendly performance measures set out in the Toronto Green Standard when located at-grade or above grade. 

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Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Feb 24, 2022 - 18:52

Our concern is the use of the parking lot of Leaside Park during the construction phase along Overlea Blvd. What steps will MetroLinx take to ensure no construction vehicles or the personal vehicles of construction workers will be using the parking lot of Leaside Park. This is a small lot today and needs to be available to residents of Thorncliffe using the park, tennis courts, and swimming pool. This lot cannot be leveraged for construction related vehicles to ensure the use of the facilities is are not impeded for use by local residents. Thorncliffe already has limited park space and use of the park must not be negatively impacted.

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Apr 4, 2022 - 10:41

Parking mitigation strategies for workers accessing the construction sites will need to be discussed with the Project Company selected to deliver the work once they are on board. Closer to construction, the Community Liaison Committees (CLCs) we are establishing for station areas across the line will provide a forum to discuss concerns, such as parking mitigation, with the selected Project Company.

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Anonymous's avatar

And how long before that will you need to actually purchase the land?

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Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:45

Work for this area of the project falls under our North Civil, Stations and Tunnel procurement package, which includes all stations east and north of the Don Yard. The timeline for construction will be confirmed through the procurement process, and we currently anticipate that work is likely to begin in 2024 or 2025.

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Anonymous's avatar
Feb 24, 2022 - 19:18

At pape school it was indicated noise levels can increase 3DB. What does that mean is acceptable? Your staging ground is next to our school. Noise is known to impact learning and concentration. We were also told noisy work would be done overnight or on weekends. How will that impact neighbours. There has been a low level of sharing of information to date.

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Metrolinx
Apr 11, 2022 - 19:20

Construction noise and vibration from the adjacent staging area and tunnel will comply with noise and vibration limits for schools to address health concerns for students and staff at the Pape Avenue Junior Public School. Mitigation measures will be in place (e.g. 5m hoarding) to ensure noise and vibration impact is minimized and maintained below these limits. Ongoing construction noise and vibration monitoring the Pape Ave School will also be considered, as it is noted as a noise and vibration sensitive location.

The daytime construction noise levels at the school itself are expected to be within reasonable levels of 65-70dBA (as per Table 4-9 of Appendix A6-Noise and Vibration Report) with standard mitigation, and additional mitigation noted in Appendix K of the Noise and Vibration Report can be considered to further reduce these levels. In addition, the noise at the playground (i.e. baseball diamond) is shielded from the construction noise, thus would be much lower (expected 50-60dBA or less).

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Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Feb 24, 2022 - 20:02

I am one of the property owner and operator at Pape station.
What do you take into account for compensation.

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Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:50

Where acquiring property is unavoidable, Metrolinx will compensate the owner at a price they could expect through a sale at fair market value. 

Fair market value represents the value of the property based on the market conditions at that time. A third-party appraisal will be completed to estimate the fair market value. A property owner may also complete their own appraisal to determine or confirm the fair market value. 

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Anonymous's avatar

Anonymous
Feb 24, 2022 - 20:05

When I am force to sell. Wouldn't I not want a value above "fair market value"

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Metrolinx's avatar

Metrolinx
Mar 16, 2022 - 11:51

Fair market value represents the value of the property based on the market conditions at that time. A third-party appraisal will be completed to estimate the fair market value. A property owner may also complete their own appraisal to determine or confirm the fair market value. 

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