Yonge Subway and Highway 7 Rapidways Information

Thanks go out to Raffi Derharian for providing me with information to post here from the information sessions held while I was out of town. This post is mostly his words, with a bit of formatting and some other bits (like comparisons to some of the Transit City presentations).

At some point, hopefully soon, there will be soft copies of the presentation material. I will update this post to add links when they become available. In the meantime, Raffi has been kind enough to provide a couple of photos of the drawings. Click on the thumbnails to see them in greater detail.

Highway 7 Rapidway

  • There will be three lanes of traffic on both sides of the bus lanes, with the addition of bike lanes going in both directions and canopy where possible.
  • Midblock diagramSimilar to the Transit City plans for the Sheppard LRT, to make a left turn into certain non-light controlled intersections, the driver of a car must go to the next major intersection and make a U-Turn and then proceed to turn right into their desired side street.
  • Signalling diagramThe traffic signals will consist of three phases:
    1. The cars can make their left turns or U-turns.
    2. The buses and the remaining traffic can go straight or make right turns.
    3. The intersecting traffic can proceed.
  • Emergency vehicles are permitted to use the rapidway to avoid congested areas.
  • The VivaStations have a fairly nice design, made of all glass. They put into Intersection and station drawingconsideration various feedback that they have received regarding the windy nature of the current Viva shelters, so the new ones are designed with that in mind. There are enclosed areas with no places for air to blow through, and they will be heated in the winter.Heater button in Minneapolis LRT shelter(Cal’s Concern: Hopefully this will use a press-for-heat control, rather than something that is constantly on when the temperature is lower than some setting, or even something that is constantly on as long as it is left on. Pressing the button should activate radiant heaters for a few minutes, similar to what is in Minneapolis - see photo)Raffi asked if they will be putting any shade around because all glass during the summer would make for some green house temperatures, and they said that the final type of glass hasn’t been decided on yet and that shade will be put into consideration.
  • This project will cover Highway 7 from an area just east of the Bayview Avenue bridge through downtown Markham and to Kennedy. The proposed right of way  Town Centre Drive to Warden and Enterprise follows a similar path as proposed by this site’s LRT option.
  • The Highway 404 overpass cannot be modified, so the rapidway will end just before, and start again just after the bridge. They mentioned something briefly about signal priority to get around that, stating that they “don’t think it will be too much of a problem”.

Yonge Subway

  • North of Finch, the only two definite stations are Steeles and Richmond Hill Centre.
  • Various options were posted for users to vote on. The other potential stops were Cummer, Clark, Centre OR Royal Orchard (but not both), and a stop just south of the 407 where new development is set to begin soon.
  • The reason why there is only an option for Centre Street OR Royal Orchard station is because they only want one station within the “historic Thornhill” area. They are debating if it would be better to build a station at Centre, but it would tear up some of the historic area during construction, or further up north at Royal Orchard where there are more condos.
  • Part of the plan also includes details about a potential future expansion to 16th Avenue and beyond, with another poster described three potential station locations for the RHC terminal that have major repercussions overall.
    1. Keep the alignment under Yonge, placing the RHC station about a 500 metre walk to the bus terminal, and a bridge crossing and 100 metres more to GO’s Langstaff station.
    2. Have the alignment veer east to be closer to the bus terminal; however this means the SilverCity movie theater will pretty much be demolished in the place of a terminal. This option then proceeds to return the subway tunnel back to Yonge, through the plaza just north of High Tech Road, essentially causing some sort of demolition or changes there as well.
    3. Similar to option 2, but instead of going back to Yonge at this point, the alignment is parallel to Yonge, but closer to the railway tracks until 16th Avenue where it veers back towards Yonge under the plaza on the northeast corner of that intersection.
  • The other consideration was for the East Don River, and how to build the subway over or under it. This too has three options under consideration:
    1. Building a bridge where the road would no longer dip so far down, and the subway would run just under it (like the Bloor Viaduct).
    2. Building the subway just above the river, with the road elevated just a few meters to make space for the subway.
    3. Running the subway 8 meters under the river. Downside to this is the station would be very deep underground.
  • The plan calls for running the subway under CN’s York Subdivision tracks just north
    of Steeles.

One Response to “Yonge Subway and Highway 7 Rapidways Information”

  1. Raffi Says:

    Hey, just wanted to let you know that the soft copies of the subway presentation materials are now available on the vivaNext website. You just have to click on the “vivaNext subways” link on the right side menu under System Phases.

    Cal’s comment: Here are direct links to some of the rapidway materials:

    And some of the subway materials: