Two new but overdue transit lines are expected to enter service in Toronto this year, to operate as the TTC’s Line 5 and Line 6 when they finally welcome riders later in 2024.
While the delay-plagued Line 5 has received most of the media spotlight, its less-talked-about sibling in the Line 6 Finch West LRT is racing toward a 2024 completion relative to the stagnating Eglinton Crosstown.
The 11-kilometre light rail line will soon connect passengers on a route between Finch West subway station in the east and Humber College in the west, as construction nears the finish line for the $2.5 billion project.
However, things looked very different just a year earlier.
Metrolinx has shared a new comparison that reveals just how much work has been accomplished on one stretch of the future Line 6 in only one year.
A GIF shared by the transit agency shows a portion of the line at Ardwick Blvd. and Finch Avenue West, just east of Islington Avenue.
Back in January 2023, this stretch of road was still a mess of construction as crews formed the trackbed along the route’s right-of-way. A year later, the line’s Rowntree Mills stop is essentially complete, equipped with transit shelters and fare machines.
Originally scheduled to open in 2023, the Finch West LRT has not stirred up public anger to the level of its elder sibling on Eglinton. In fact, the project has actually impressed with its relative construction speed.
The rapid strides towards completion for the Finch West LRT stand in stark contrast to the beleaguered Eglinton Crosstown line, which has idled in a near-complete state for ages as crews rush to iron out deficiencies.
Meanwhile, the Ontario government has kept a tight seal on Metrolinx’s communications with the public, and no official opening dates have been announced for either Line 5 or Line 6.
However, recent TTC documents state that the transit agency is preparing for 2024 openings for both lines, and Metrolinx since commented in late 2023 that there was confidence the line would be operational before the end of this year.
This is what one year of progress looks like on Toronto’s future Line 6 LRT