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Park Lawn


Many considerations factor into the assessment of new sites including:

Connectivity and Ridership Drivers

  • How many trips will start and end at this station?
  • Does the station connect to other transit lines and have the potential to improve service?
  • Does the station connect to key destinations?

Travel Time Savings

  • What are the time savings associated with the new station?

Market Potential

  • How well situated is the station in relationship to future market demand?

Development Potential

  • Can the station support future development and intensification?

Policy Alignment

  • Does the Station Area conform to Regional land use policy?

Construction Affordability

  • What is the cost to construct the station?

Ease of Construction

  • Can the required facilities be constructed in this location?

Park Lawn

This station has been evaluated as follows:

  • High: Market potential, development potential.
  • Medium: Policy alignment, affordability, ease of construction.
  • Low: Connectivity and ridership, travel time savings, construction affordability.

What are your thoughts on this analysis? Have we missed anything?

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crs1026's avatar

I'm surprised to see the rating for Connectivity and Ridership to be Low, considering that this stop would be within walking distance of the Humber Bay condo area. I would expect a very large number of riders to start their commute here, particularly to downtown Toronto. The only transit options in the area are either the TTC 501 streetcar, which is a very slow ride downtown, or the 66 Park Lawn bus to Bloor, which is a very roundabout route to take. GO service would be a very fast commute for this ridership. Also, one would expect that a station in this location would reduce auto use considerably. The roads in this area are badly congested. The ability to walk to the GO station (for the Humber Bay population) or take a short bus ride down Park Lawn (for the residential area north of the Queensway) and then transfer to GO would be a much faster commute. I would have expected the rating to be High.
Similarly, Considering how slow and unreliable the 501 streetcar is, I would expect the Travel Time Savings factor also deserves a High rating.

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Will's avatar
Mar 6, 2016 - 06:56

This is one of the most important stops being considered. The area has and continues to boom with new condos and these people are starved of transit. This stop is needed ASAP.

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sgha.heavy.industries_491's avatar

Mar 4, 2016 - 11:51

This analysis needs to be redone, it doesn't capture the on the ground feel of the area. The Humber Bay is dense residential (with traffic congestion only getting worse) all situated within walking distance to the site. Upwards of 40K+ residents will live in the station area by the time tracks are electrified. Additionally, the city put out a transit map in Feb 2016 indicating Park Lawn is a hub connecting to the Waterfront West LRT. What's the deal? This area should be IDEAL for a station, not sure what's been missed. Suggest actually visiting the area physically.

Mimico is not a viable alternative, you can't take the bus there, you can't take the streetcar and you can't really walk a direct route. And there's no parking. Do you want people to take transit or not?

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A Q's avatar

I face west towards the Humber Bridge. Almost regularly I see the Gardiner/Lakeshore/Queensway all jammed. The only thing moving is the train and streetcar tracks in the middle. Swansea/Old Mill/Humber Loop streetcar routes were designed in the 1950s and can not handle the overload in volume from all the new condo residents. Gardiner/Lakeshore/Queensway traffic were extreme during Pan Am Hov lanes, Gardiner construction work, and any weekend events downtown. Neighbourhood has not yet reached max capacity with more condos in development.

The Christie site is an ideal location to create a community hub similar to European planned communities with a GO station, retail, and maybe school. With regards to closeby Mimico it can become "limited service" similar to Exhibition. Mimico can keep existing service but any new trains will be prioritized to Park Lawn.

Humber Loop needs to be redeveloped to connect it to Park Lawn. At present buses and pedestrians can not travel eastbound. Westbound buses can not enter. There needs to be pedestrian access to the Christie site from the north side of the train tracks from Humber Loop (not the current foot tunnel which goes south to Lakeshore). Or an alternate suggestion on this thread is to move the Humber Loop to the Christie site, then the Royal York/Old Mill/Swansea/501 Streetcar/Waterfront LRT can all connect in a new transit hub.

Consideration should also be given to a seasonal ferry service from Palace Pier. Stockholm/Oslo/Helsinki comparable northern cities also have seasonal ferries from Apr-Sept included in the base transit fare.

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Franky's avatar
Mar 4, 2016 - 12:21

This area is exploding in density and has no good connections downtown. This station is needed asap!

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mdrejhon's avatar

Thumbs down to transit potential/speed being "low". Travel time savings would be very big for downtown travellers, but the icing on the cake is travel predictability. The TTC Queen streetcar which reaches Park Lawn, was more predictable in 1976 and the route 66,000 passengers per day! Now today it doesn't even have that many passengers, partially because the waits are a lot more random/inconvenient than it used to be.

This is a very condo-dense area that is continuing to boom unexpectedly, by the time GO RER electrification is built (2020s), it is literally almost a new CBD! Let's not look at the poor statistics from the Liberty Village ridership at Exhibition Place. It'll be much faster than the streetcar especially during transit integration, and provide good relief for the overcrowded streetcar that the Park Lawn condo dwellers have to rely on. This analysis seems to assume people will prefer to wait for a street car at the Humber loop, instead of an identically-priced (during "Transit Integration") electric 15-minute GO RER train that zooms to Union in less than one-third the time, with a much more reliable timetable than a long ride in the Queen streetcar. Parts of the reason why TTC Queen ridership declined from 1980s to 1990s, when the TTC schedule became so bad that sometimes you were waiting 15 minutes during peak for a streetcar.

TTC 501 Queen once carried a jawdropping 66,000 people per day (1976 statistics) -- more than the entire GO network combined back in the day. Now it caries barely above 40,000 because of reduced number of streetcars on Queen compared to 1976. Service cutbacks between 1976-1991 killed a lot of its ridership. Not even looking into the future, there is a lot of latent demand for more reliable service than TTC 501 Queen if pedestrian access and station comfort is good (another part of why lot of Liberty Village residents doesn't even use Exhibition Place, also extremely difficult to cross the tracks). Even for today, and not the ongoing condo booming, the "Low" rating here seems short sighted.

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mdrejhon's avatar
Mar 4, 2016 - 16:57

Useful read on how more popular the Park Lawn TTC Queen streetcar was (than today) -- http://stevemunro.ca/2006/02/26/how-to-kill-ridership-the-saga-of-the-qu... .... It used to have 66,000 passengers per day in 1976 but today only has 45,000 passengers per day now. Many don't like the transit reliability from Park Lawn because of how unrelable Queen 501 became over the years and given up on it from Park Lawn. I'd rate it a "Transit: Medium" during Transit Integration (similar or identical price with streetcar) even with zero parking.

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Filip's avatar
Mar 3, 2016 - 15:51

Did anyone from Metrolinx check out the surroundings of this potential station? Ridership and travel time savings being rated low shows the due diligence was not done properly.

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Art Vandelay's avatar
Mar 15, 2016 - 15:41

As previous commenters have noted, a GO station at Park Lawn is sorely needed. Three new condos are set to be occupied this year (~2,000), with several more in the next few years, including Eau du Soleil, which will be the tallest building outside of downtown core. The area is already significantly congested during the morning rush hour.
The rating for the station (High for "Market potential, development potential" and Low for "Connectivity and ridership, travel time savings, construction affordability") would probably have been valid 5 years ago, but with the existing population and density, "ridership, travel and time savings" category should surely be upgraded to at least medium.
The former Mr. Christie site provides a great opportunity for GO facilities, including parking. I hope Metrolinx is in discussion with Mondelez (Mr. Christie site owner) with regards to potential land purchase. There has also been a past proposal to relocate the exsiting streetcar Humber Loop to Parklawn, which can tie-in to the GO station (another point for connectivity category).
Lastly, James Maloney, a liberal MP that secured the Etobicoke-Lakeshore riding in the recent federal elections, has stated his support for a transit hub on the former Christie site. Hoping that Metrolinx, together with all levels of government, can make this station a reality in the near future.

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Jen Parklawn's avatar

I challenge anyone from Metrolinx to spend a week trying to get into the city from Lake shore and Park lawn using our available transit! I will pay for your fare and ride with you personally!!
You will no doubt determined we should be 1st on the list of getting a Go Stop!
We have taking a serious back seat to all transit infrastructure compared to the rest of the city and surrounding areas! We have had one of our lines (508 Streetcar) taken away last summer, the grid locked traffic all morning, every morning, in all directions and not to mention the icing on the cake...having our streetcar route split so we have to take 2 streetcars to get downtown!
IT IS A NIGHTMARE!! And extremely unacceptable!
And with our area growing more than any other, I can only see this getting worse!
We desperately need a Go Stop!

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awakenthedawn3_1872's avatar
Mar 17, 2016 - 23:01

Building a GO train stop at Park Lawn & Lake Shore is an obvious solution to alleviate the traffic congestion in this part of the city. There's a huge piece of land that's currently awaiting development (the former Mr Christie plant), the train tracks are already there, and the population is continually growing at an exponential rate. The current infrastructure simply cannot support more cars on the road, and the location of this GO stop would be just the convenience that's needed to finally get people out of their cars and onto transit.

I've lived in this neighbourhood since 2008, and have done the daily downtown commute since the day I moved in. I've watched the population (and transit need) grow at an alarming rate. I could go on all day about the struggles of unreliable and insufficient transit options in this part of the city. I've regularly used all 3 options: the 501 streetcar, the 66 bus, and the 145 Express bus. Each one is currently at its limit, and no It's no wonder that those who have the ability to do so, often drive downtown. What we desperately need is a solid, reliable, convenient transit option that will discourage people from driving downtown once and for all. It will also take some significant pressure off the bus and streetcar options. Not to mention the environmental effects of less cars idling in traffic.

I urge everyone in the neighbourhood to support the construction of the Park Lawn GO stop!

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Evan's avatar
Apr 1, 2016 - 15:38

If I leave my condo anytime past 8 am, the trip from my building to the Gardiner (500M) takes 20 minutes.... 20 minutes to travel 500 meters.... If I have to go to my office downtown the trip takes roughly 40 minutes... to travel 7KM it takes 40 minutes... absolutely insane. Both Park Lawn heading north and Lakeshore heading east are completely jammed, the worst imaginable gridlock you could think of... Oh - and when Eau Du Soleil finishes their 2 towers ( one 70 story, one 50 story ) and the Westlake Phase 4 ( 55 Story ) and Riva de Lago (50 story) lets just add another 4000+ cars to the already 30,000+ that are commuting out of the Humber Bay Area.... we NEED a GO station !!

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mdrejhon's avatar

Toronto city Councillor Mark Grimes and Councillor Justin DiCiano just started a (now popular) petition for Park Lawn GO: https://www.change.org/p/bruce-mccuiag-a-go-stop-at-park-lawn

.... See Comments section. I am observing Mimico is huge problem for many Park Lawn residents. Too far for walk, too impossible to park, too difficult to public-transit to Mimico. Many residents claim "Time Savings" would be very massive for them. I suspect that the desk-bound consultant/staff who rated "Time Savings: Low" totally missed the ballpark, because TTC schedules and Google Transit, and outdated transit statistics, doesn't remotely reveal the true story on the ground at the actual location, in the quickly densifying-and-overloading reality of Park Lawn. There are residents who trip times would shorten by 60-75% -- that's not "Time Savings: Low". A friend of mine lives in the Park Lawn area. Needs to get boots muddy to realize how badly Park Lawn needs better downtown Toronto access, and why Mimico doesn't work well.

And if "Time Savings: Low" is because of the QEW blocking pedestrians ("Google Transit research" shows terribly slow walking times from condos to Humber Loop TTC). Then simply build a couple of great big, bright, pedestrian tunnels under the QEW, one for each end of the Park Lawn GO station. Problem solved, saves 10+ minutes for many pedestrians. Pedestrian tunnals may be expensive but would massively expand commuter catchment. There is already an (ugly, unattractive) pedestrian tunnel to Humber Loop (see https://goo.gl/0sBRIa) which will need to be massively improved/brightened, along with a 2nd pedestrian tunnel reaching an the opposite end of the station. It is a very cold and --------- walk, despite many Park Lawn condos being less than 500 meters from the Humber Loop.

As seen how cold/ugly the existing pedestrian tunnel is (https://goo.gl/0sBRIa), and the overhead Google Earth view (https://goo.gl/bL2AJE) which shows how really close Humber Loop is to all the Park Lawn condos (only stymied by the totally --------- and freezing ghetto pedestrian tunnel https://goo.gl/0sBRIa -- a narrow sidewalk next to streetcar tracks).

Tall condo towers with thousands of residents, dozens 500 meters walk/mere minutes walk from Humber Loop, stymied by this 150 meter ghettotunnel! (That probably distorted the consultant's analysis).

One of these pedestrian routes or tunnels (this one or the other) need to become a "higher-order pedestrian tunnel", perhaps with doors, winter heating, and bright lighting. Again, it's a very dark and --------- 150 meter tunnel that's very cold in the middle of winter, despite condos being right next to it. Improve the tunnel, and transit use on the opposite side (TTC Humber, Park Lawn GO) will boom quite a lot, reducing transfers by 1 (not needing to transfer streetcars) because people don't want to walk a --------- 150 meter tunnel. That becomes more "Transit Potential: Medium", not "Transit Potential: Low", if you improve pedestrian connectivity to Humber Loop + Park Lawn GO.

I notice developers working near Mimico (a stalled condo build) but Park Lawn is densifying an order of magnitude (or two) more, faster, and continuously. If any developers are still betting on Mimico and blocking the Park Lawn GO proposal, buy them out (at a reasonable price) so we don't all have to wait 20 years for Park Lawn GO. Or find a way to run both stations (even with different timetables).

Edit: I've posted a [slightly sarcastic] editorial of the ghettotunnel:

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SensibleTransit's avatar
Mar 19, 2016 - 13:26

The assessment "low - based on connectivity and ridership level, time-saving, and construction affordability" needs to be re-assessed. This is a dreadful commute downtown for a location that is so close to the city. With the development currently ongoing in this area, a GO train stop at this Park Lawn location is a no-brainer. Street cars/LRTs will never be adequate. Anyone who considers otherwise, doesn't live in this neighbourhood!

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mdrejhon's avatar
Mar 4, 2016 - 16:47

[duplicate removed]

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downtown_ray's avatar
Mar 18, 2016 - 23:44

The problem with Mimico vs Park Lawn is the spacing - The station locations would be only about ~1 km apart. Park Lawn probably makes more sense from a system perspective given the density and potential for the connection to LRT/streetcar in my opinion.

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flyinggoats's avatar
Mar 18, 2016 - 13:45

I would be extremely disappointed if Mimico Station was closed. We recently bought a house that's walking distance to the train station. If Mimico was closed in favour of a Park Lawn station, this would add 20 minutes to to my walk each way.

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Will's avatar
Mar 18, 2016 - 14:07

I don't think they would get rid of Mimico station in favour of park lawn; both are equally important. Mimico is also growing and has always fit the urban/village planning methodology.

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Jen Parklawn's avatar
Mar 18, 2016 - 14:09

I agree with Will! The plan is to have both stations up and running.

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Mathieca's avatar

I've read comments from those who want the station at Park Lawn built but no one seems to have considered the additional time that would be added to the trips of those to the West of the this new station. The push seems to be to build the station NOW because it is needed NOW but why should those who already take the line be punished because the City of Toronto was stupid enough to allow all those condos to be built without ever considering how the people would use public transit? The City issues construction and occupancy permits so it's not like they didn't see the problem coming. How involved were the two City Councillors in getting these projects approved? The Travel Time Savings are low because Metrolinx is thinking about the existing users of the line not how much users of the station would save over the time a TTC trip would take.

Did the people who bought into these condo buildings think about the transit options in the area before they bought or did their developers tell them that transit would be improved.? GO Transit users should not be inconvenience because the TTC and the City of Toronto haven't kept up with the services needed in the area which would include the Liberty Village area too.

When I bought my new home in 2003 in Mississauga I paid a $5000 go levy on my unit and so did all the other people who bought into the development regardless of whether they would use GO Transit or not. If this station is built before electrification of the line will this kind of levy be put on ALL the units built within say the last 5 to 7 years within a certain distance of this new station? That would then pay for the cost of creating a new station near the old Christie factory though any parking should only be for those with handicap stickers because most of the condos would be within walking distance of the proposed station.

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flyinggoats's avatar
Mar 18, 2016 - 14:00

The city councillors have been trying to slow down the growth of condos in that area with limited success. The City of Toronto has its hands tied because developers will just appeal to the Ontario Municipal Board and get development restrictions overturned. The current situation is unfortunate: certainly planning should have been better, but we can't undo the existing developments.

Painting the issue as 905 vs. 416 is divisive. Yes, another station will slow down trains (if you're not taking an express). However, there are also Torontonians who can't get on a subway train at Ossignton station because the train is full of Mississaugans who get on the train at Kipling. People from outside Toronto ride the TTC even though it is subsidized by Toronto property tax payers.

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