Toronto

Finch West LRT moving ahead, construction begins 2016

Construction will begin in 2016 to build the Finch West light rail transit line, transportation minister Steven Del Duca announced on Monday morning.

'We're getting on with it,' says Mayor John Tory

The construction of an LRT will go ahead along Finch Avenue West. 2:05

Construction will begin in 2016 to build the Finch West light rail transit line, transportation minister Steven Del Duca announced on Monday morning.

Del Duca said the project would have 18 stops along an 11 kilometre stretch of Finch Avenue West, connecting York University, Humber College and the yet-to-be-completed Finch West subway station on the Toronto-York Spadina subway extension.

Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca speaks at Humber College on Monday morning about the new Finch LRT project. (Tyna Poulin/CBC)

It is projected to cost $1.2 billion and would be completed by 2021, he said. The province is said to be funding the project.

"The bottom line is, this is great news for the city of Toronto," said Del Duca.

Mayor John Tory was on hand for the announcement, and said it was an example of the city and the province "getting on with another piece of the transit puzzle."

"It's about connecting people to opportunity and opportunity to people, and that's what this transit line will do," he said.

Tory stressed the construction of the line, which has been approved by council, would not disrupt the flow of commercial traffic.

Moving ahead with the project on Finch West will set the timeline for the Sheppard LRT.

That's because the Liberals say they don't have the capacity to build both at the same time.

As a result, construction on the Sheppard LRT project won't start until 2021 at the earliest.

Ontario's governing Liberals have made several transit-related announcements in recent weeks, including the inaugural ride on the Union-Pearson Express, new GO stations and a transit-heavy budget.

With files from the CBC's Jamie Strashin

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