Ontario Premier Doug Ford's promise to build an Eglinton Crosstown West extension with direct access to Pearson Airport is now one step closer to coming true, thanks to a massive financial boost from the airport's owner and operator.
The Greater Toronto Airports Authority (GTAA) announced late last week that it will be putting $40 million toward advancing "the technical work necessary to extend the Eglinton Crosstown West from Renforth to the airport," in partnership with Metrolinx.
These funds will be in addition to $38 million already pledged by the GTAA as part of its joint work with Metrolinx for a grand total of $78 million.
It makes sense, given how much the airport operator wants to build its own "Union Station West," a new major transit hub centered around Pearson International Airport.
The GTAA is committing $40 million to advance the technical work necessary to connect Eglinton Crosstown from Renforth to Pearson. You can #CountonPearson to continue advancing measures for improved regional transit that benefit our community. https://t.co/nCozFuRKsa— Toronto Pearson (@TorontoPearson) November 29, 2019
In fact, the GTAA released an all-new whitepaper outlining its plans to date for a Regional Transit Centre at the airport, based on a series of "extensive stakeholder listening" sessions throughout 2019.
"A Union Station West at Pearson makes strategic sense for the Greater Golden Horseshoe," reads the whitepaper.
"Pearson is already a major trip generator in the region and is within the second-largest job area in Canada. It is also adjacent to several 400-series highways and multiple existing or planned transit services."
Attended a roundtable with the Greater Toronto Airport Authority and Airport Employment Zone coalition to discuss our investments in infrastructure. We're building the Eglinton Crosstown West Subway Extension to @TorontoPearson as part of our historic transit plan for the GTA. pic.twitter.com/qEOSiHSiqe— Doug Ford (@fordnation) November 29, 2019
The GTAA praised Ontario's provincial government in the whitepaper for pledging to extend the Eglinton LRT all the way to Pearson, as well as the City of Toronto for agreeing to work with the province on four key transit projects announced by Ford back in April.
"Our government is making the single largest capital investment in new subway builds in Canadian history," said Ford in the GTAA's press release on Monday.
"We welcome the GTAA's multi-million-dollar investment to help connect the Eglinton Crosstown West Subway Extension to Toronto Pearson Airport."
Duh. Who wouldn't welcome an extra $40 million in funding?
by Lauren O'Neil via blogTO