The Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension (TYSSE) project involves an 8.6km north-western extension to the Toronto’s Yonge-University-Spadina subway line.

The project will extend the subway line from Downsview station in Toronto to Vaughan Corporate Centre in the Regional Municipality of York.

The project is being undertaken at an estimated cost of $2.6bn and is scheduled for completion in late 2015. Toronto Transit Commission is executing the project.

The project is expected to reduce commute times and ease traffic congestion for people residing in the Greater Toronto area.

It will extend the subway line across Toronto city’s boundary to the rapidly growing York region.

Toronto-York Spadina Subway Extension project aproval

The project was officially approved in April 2008. Ground breaking took place in November 2009 with the start of construction of the Downsview station to Wilson Yard Connection section. Belor Construction was contracted to construct this section.

“The project is being undertaken at an estimated cost of $2.6bn and is scheduled for completion in late 2015.”

Tunnel boring technology and cut and cover construction are being used for building the project. The 6.2km stretch from Downsview station to Steeles West station in Toronto will be constructed using tunnel boring technology.

The 2.4km stretch from Steeles West station to Vaughan Corporate Centre station will be built using the cut and cover method.

Four custom-built tunnel boring machines (TBM) in two pairs, Holey and Moley, and Yorkie and Torkie, were procured to drill the tunnels for the project. The TBMs were procured at a cost of $58m.

Holey and Moley will work as a pair and drill the south tunnels. Yorkie and Torkie will pair up to drill the north tunnels. New TBMs were required as existing TBMs did not match the unique dimensions and curves of the project.

In October 2010, construction of the launch shaft for the TBMs commenced at the Sheppard West station site. Tunnel boring commenced in June 2011.

The project is being financed by the Government of Canada, the province of Ontario, the city of Toronto and the Regional Municipality of York.

The Government of Canada is providing $697m, the province of Ontario $870m, the city of Toronto $526m and the York region is contributing $352m.

Toronto-York Spadina Subway infrastructure

Six new railway stations will be built as part of the project. They include Sheppard West, Finch West, York University, Steeles West, Highway 407 and Vaughan Corporate Centre. Three of the stations will feature a total of 2,900 parking spaces to encourage the use of the subway.

“The trains feature stainless steel bodies and can run at a maximum speed of 88km/h.”

The Sheppard West station will be built at the northern part of Downsview Park.

It will be an integrated rail transit station featuring three levels and 110,000ft² of space. It will feature sloped green roofs and well-lit open entrances.

The Finch West station will be constructed parallel to the Keele Street and feature 400 parking spaces.

The York University station will be built along the Vari Hall of the campus.

It will feature a roof-canopy at the entrance, elevators and a double-height ticket hall.

The Steeles West station will be located at Steeles Avenue West and feature 1,900 parking spaces.

The Highway 407 station will include 600 parking spaces and a bus terminal.

The Vaughan Corporate Centre station will feature a domed main entrance with sky lights. It will provide access to the transit bus terminal and the viva rapid transit.

Aecon Group will carry out the construction of the Sheppard West station and the 2.6km of twin tunnels. The Finch West station will be built by Bondfield Construction and Vaughan Corporate Centre station by Carillion Construction. Highway 407 station and 4.5 km of tunnels will be built by Obrascon Huarte Lain and FCC Construccion.

Rolling stock

Bombardier’s Toronto Rocket subway trains will service the railway line. TTC has ordered 70 six-car rocket trains that will help in meeting the ridership demands once the TYSSE project becomes operational.

The trains feature stainless steel bodies and can run at a maximum speed of 88km/h. Each car of the train can seat a maximum of 68 passengers.