ProjectEnd

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Tough to convey how enormous this thing is in person:

6B6096DB-2F61-4024-8DC1-F16DD5F90831.jpeg
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849A5562-5ED3-4E76-A61F-18750C0BBF7D.jpeg
 

vic

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Although that's the highest point of the bridge, it's kind of tucked away behind a bunch of other buildings and not really approachable from public space.

The part where it crosses over Wallace Ave. will feel much more imposing.
 

W. K. Lis

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Although that's the highest point of the bridge, it's kind of tucked away behind a bunch of other buildings and not really approachable from public space.

The part where it crosses over Wallace Ave. will feel much more imposing.
Hope the bridge would be high enough for the overhead catenary coming to a railway near you. Unless someone forgot to mention it to the designers (then they'll have to start working on plan B, lowering the east-west lines).
 
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sche

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The neighbourhood was in a battle about the negative impacts to their neighbourhood brought about by this grade separation. The neighbourhood doesn't get any benefit from GO trains rumbling overhead on a frequent basis and like the huge improvement removing the freeway over Lakeshore East had on things, this railway bridge through the neighbourhood will have a negative impact. In Weston the neighbourhood won the day and the rail corridor was buried. For Davenport they were sold on a whole lot of these extra benefits to make up for the fact their neighbourhood in Toronto was going to be impacted by this infrastructure that really exists to serve York region. This community doesn't want to see this infrastructure at all.

Saying lets get this infrastructure built now and worry about the negative impacts later is like saying "lets extend the Allen Expressway downtown and worry about the urban blight and livability later", or "sir here is your car, we know we promised you on a Tesla Plaid for the price you will pay, but we are giving you a 1995 Saab 9000 which is fully functional so you can drive now and maybe someday we will give you something similar to what we promised originally".
Comparing the Davenport Diamond to the Gardiner Expressway/Allen Rd is just disingenuous.

Allen Rd/Gardiner involved literally obliterating neighbourhoods and sticking in an absolutely massive new highway that never existed before.

Elevating a section of existing railway is not even close to the same thing. The railway already exists and no homes or businesses are displaced.

And, the Davenport Diamond project already contains probably tens of millions of dollars of extra spending for improving the community. Building a big embankment with retaining walls would have been far cheaper than what we are getting, while serving the exact same transportation purpose with lower maintenance costs. We're already spending extra on noise walls, the elevated guideway, making the elevated guideway split to allow for light to penetrate to the space below, connecting local streets, etc. The GO ROW is being turned from a dead zone for the community to a useful green space.

Let's be real, this is still a positive for the community, and we are still spending much more on the project than we have to in order to make that the case.
 

cplchanb

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Hope the bridge would be high enough for the overhead catenary coming to a railway near you. Unless someone forgot to mention it to the designers (then they'll have to start working on plan B, lowering the east-west lines).
well considering how the pic with the cab car shows plenty of space between the underside of the bridge and the top of the car, it looks ok
 

ProjectEnd

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The neighbourhood was in a battle about the negative impacts to their neighbourhood brought about by this grade separation. The neighbourhood doesn't get any benefit from GO trains rumbling overhead on a frequent basis and like the huge improvement removing the freeway over Lakeshore East had on things, this railway bridge through the neighbourhood will have a negative impact. In Weston the neighbourhood won the day and the rail corridor was buried. For Davenport they were sold on a whole lot of these extra benefits to make up for the fact their neighbourhood in Toronto was going to be impacted by this infrastructure that really exists to serve York region. This community doesn't want to see this infrastructure at all.

Saying lets get this infrastructure built now and worry about the negative impacts later is like saying "lets extend the Allen Expressway downtown and worry about the urban blight and livability later", or "sir here is your car, we know we promised you on a Tesla Plaid for the price you will pay, but we are giving you a 1995 Saab 9000 which is fully functional so you can drive now and maybe someday we will give you something similar to what we promised originally".
I want to see this infrastructure. Do I not count?

At the end of the day, we are going to see this infrastructure, so what are you gonna do? We're also getting the benefit of a new station at Bloor so to claim that "The neighbourhood doesn't get any benefit from GO trains rumbling overhead on a frequent basis" is disingenuous or simply wrong.
 

crs1026

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I’m not overjoyed with the two end embankments, but the additional public space under the guideway is a gain for the community and will deliver some value. The GO station does have considerable benefit also.

What has changed for me since the debate on this project began is the realisation that so much of the right of way will soon be bordered by taller residential buildings - there is some of that already, but even more to come. I had a lot of sympathy for the residents of the traditional 2- and 3- storey homes in the area who objected to a new high line towering over their back windows. But it seems they will have their skyline changed anyways, and the railway won’t be visible or audible with those new buildings in the way.. And if you are living at the 9th floor of one of those medium or high rises, it’s immaterial if the line is at grade or elevated… you will be looking down at it. So overall I would say that it had to be, and is as good as it can be.

At the same time, however, I can see that there was an initial promise to residents that was much nicer than what they are not getting. That’s not quite Hoyle in my view…. salt in the wounds for some, understandably.

- Paul
 
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ARG1

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Comparing the Davenport Diamond to the Gardiner Expressway/Allen Rd is just disingenuous.

Allen Rd/Gardiner involved literally obliterating neighbourhoods and sticking in an absolutely massive new highway that never existed before.

Elevating a section of existing railway is not even close to the same thing. The railway already exists and no homes or businesses are displaced.

And, the Davenport Diamond project already contains probably tens of millions of dollars of extra spending for improving the community. Building a big embankment with retaining walls would have been far cheaper than what we are getting, while serving the exact same transportation purpose with lower maintenance costs. We're already spending extra on noise walls, the elevated guideway, making the elevated guideway split to allow for light to penetrate to the space below, connecting local streets, etc. The GO ROW is being turned from a dead zone for the community to a useful green space.

Let's be real, this is still a positive for the community, and we are still spending much more on the project than we have to in order to make that the case.
While you're right about Allen Road, this isn't true for the Gardiner. The Gardiner was built on Greenfield Land, freshly reclaimed land, and abandoned industrial land. The Gardiner did not involve demolishing any pre-existing neighbourhoods.
 

W. K. Lis

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While you're right about Allen Road, this isn't true for the Gardiner. The Gardiner was built on Greenfield Land, freshly reclaimed land, and abandoned industrial land. The Gardiner did not involve demolishing any pre-existing neighbourhoods.
Very, very, very wrong. The Gardiner Expressway destroyed the South Parkdale neighbourhood, west of the then Exhibition Park (it was renamed Exhibition Place because of all the asphalt desert they paved over the grass for parking).

20170302-LostStreets-StarCombo-649x940.jpg

20170302-LostStreets-Empress-Alt-768x759.jpg

Empress Avenue looking west from Dunn Avenue in 1956. Construction of the Lakeshore Expressway began the same year. Image: Toronto Public Library, S 1-4093.

See link.
 

vic

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What has changed for me since the debate on this project began is the realisation that so much of the right of way will soon be bordered by taller residential buildings - there is some of that already, but even more to come. I had a lot of sympathy for the residents of the traditional 2- and 3- storey homes in the area who objected to a new high line towering over their back windows. But it seems they will have their skyline changed anyways, and the railway won’t be visible or audible with those new buildings in the way.. And if you are living at the 9th floor of one of those medium or high rises, it’s immaterial if the line is at grade or elevated… you will be looking down at it. So overall I would say that it had to be, and is as good as it can be.
- Paul
Unless I'm mistaken, there's not really anything else planned to be built next to this stretch of rail corridor other than in the north-east quadrant of the diamond. There's also the commercial building on Wade at the very south end where the tracks are will be barely above current grade.

Likely something eventually coming to the former Skor Cash & Carry on Dupont (next to the new library/apartment building), though I have my doubts it would be a residential highrise. And probably the Nitta Gelatin factory too....but I think the City wants to keep that as employment lands, even leaving an employment buffer between them and the new seniors residence on Lansdowne (Though it seems like even they want to sell cash in to flip for residential construction - https://www.toronto.ca/city-governm...uidelines/official-plan/official-plan-review/ ).
 

ProjectEnd

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Correct, @vic. Everything on the east side of the Barrie Line is E / Employment right down to Bloor. It's extremely difficult to change this (OPA231) and so few will try. The Skor C&C is also E / Employment and the parcel is too small to do anything with so I doubt we'll be seeing redevelopment there either. The first, tall, redevelopment we'll see will be the Value Village / Kingsett proposal down on Bloor.
 

EnviroTO

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There are transit projects, current and past, across the city (Weston, Strachan, Eglinton, Scarborough, Eglinton West, etc) that have put transit below ground for the benefit of sound mitigation, and reduced impacts above ground like using up space, blocking sun, creating something that has poor aesthetics, etc. Many of those projects delivered local benefits like a station. At Dupont there is no station, the benefits that á railway dive down under the diamond would have delivered (much more space, less noise, lower visual impacts) are not being delivered and the way this was sold to the people of the neighborhood who clearly wanted a trench vs an elevated guideway, was the promise of a public space with design excellence.

People said "it will block light in the park" so Metrolinx showed reflective paneling, people said "the space under the elevated guideway will be uninviting like walking under the Gardiner, so Metrolinx showed a guideway with light falling between the two tracks and treatments to the support columns that brought more light in. People worried that it would create a sheltered and hidden place where tents and drug users might end up, so Metrolinx showed active spaces with lots of life. If the cheapening occurs and only basic landscaping is delivered... what is the outcome going to be? Will shadows be cast in new places that start to feel unsafe and where drug users and homeless begin to collect, or is Metrolinx going to ensure this is a very public space where people don't go to hide and which is designed to draw the neighbourhood in to make it active? Sounds like the cheapening is occurring and if you care about the public realm and the trustworthiness of government I think there is a reason to ask why what was presented before is being reduced in scope.
 

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