Here's a bit of good news in a city where bad transit news occurs weekly: Toronto's new airport train appears on track to begin service by early May. That's well ahead of the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games, which Toronto is hosting in July.
The high-speed train will link two of Canada's busiest transit hubs, with Union Station serving about 65 million passengers a year and Pearson servicing more than 35 million.
Here are five things you need to know about the Union Pearson Express.
1. How long will each trip take?
Trips to and from the airport and Union Station will take 25 minutes, with departures every 15 minutes.
2. How much will it cost?
Adults will pay $27.50, but there are significant price breaks for paying with a Presto card — the reloadable transit payment card already used at many transit stations and vehicles across the GTA. The TTC and Metrolinx are working to expand Presto use.
Other fares from Union to the airport break down as follows:
- Student (13 to 19 years) $23.40 ($16.15 Presto).
- Senior (65+ years) $23.40 ($16.15 Presto).
- Child (Six to 12 years of age) $13.75 or $9.50 Presto).
- Family (Two adults and up to three children under 18) $55 (same for Presto).
Fares are slightly cheaper for trips that start or terminate from either Bloor or Weston stations.
3. What will it be like to ride?
Metrolinx promises a "relaxing atmosphere" on board, complete with WiFi, comfy seats, large luggage racks and flight information screens.
4. When will it enter service?
Metrolinx said Monday they expect to begin service some time this spring. The plan is to have UPX running well ahead of the Pan Am and Parapan Games, which start July 10.
5. Does it serve other stations besides Union and the airport?
UPX will stop at Bloor station (at the Dundas West TTC station) and Weston.