Toronto·TIFF 2018

Stretch of King Street W. closed, 504 streetcar diverting for TIFF's opening weekend

An important stretch of King Street W. downtown will be closed until next week as the Toronto International Film Festival takes over the important east-west corridor.

King Street W. closed between Spadina and University avenues until early Monday morning

A section of King Street will be closed until Monday morning for TIFF's annual pedestrian-only street festival. (David Donnelly/CBC)

A stretch of King Street W. downtown will be closed until next week as the Toronto International Film Festival takes over the important east-west corridor.

King Street is off-limits to traffic and public transit from Spadina to University avenues. The closure began at 5 a.m. Thursday morning and will remain in place until 5 a.m. on Monday morning. 

As a result, the 504 King and 514 Cherry streetcars are diverting onto Queen Street. Eastbound streetcars will use Queen Street between Spadina Avenue and Church Street, while westbound streetcars will take Queen Street between York Street and Spadina Avenue. 

The 304 King night shuttle service will be available from 2 a.m. to 6 a.m. between Parliament St. and Bathurst St.

"The road closure on King St. will also necessitate changes to designated Wheel-Trans meeting spots in the area. Customers will be advised of the new locations when booking trips within the area," the TTC said on its website, adding that red carpet events will continue to cause temporary changes through the end of next week.

"Throughout TIFF, the TTC will have identifiable staff positioned at key locations to assist customers and provide information about transit options," the transit service said. 

The annual closure of the key arterial road during TIFF — first put in place in 2014 —has come with controversy in previous years. In 2017, the TTC formally asked city staff to forego the shutdown, pointing out that the 504 King carries some 65,000 riders each day. 

This summer, the city moved ahead with the closure despite an ongoing pilot project to get the King streetcar moving more effectively.