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New technical team could assess Eglinton LRT problems: Tory

Don Wall
New technical team could assess Eglinton LRT problems: Tory
@CROSSTOWNTO TWITTER — Crosslinx announced the completion of structural steel work at the Eglinton Station at Yonge Street in September.

Toronto Mayor John Tory says he sees no sense in holding a public inquiry into delays and cost overruns on the Eglinton LRT project, suggesting a better idea is to “get on with getting it finished.”

Tory and Ontario Minister of Transportation Caroline Mulroney fielded questions on the project Friday (Dec. 9) while making an unrelated transportation announcement in Toronto.

The project owner Metrolinx issued a statement in September saying the project would be delayed for an undetermined period. The call for a public inquiry came from Toronto councillors Josh Matlow and Mike Colle.

The project, delayed several times, was launched in 2011 with a budget established at $11.78 billion in 2018. The cost is now expected to be a billion dollars more than that. The constructor is Crosslinx Transit Solutions.

“Why can’t they fix the problem? What is holding back the completion? What is it going to cost to fix it? And how long will it be?” asked Colle during a media presentation by the two councillors.

“We need to maybe bring some outside experts to help Metrolinx find out how to repair the problem.”

Tory said he had convened a panel of experts to address delays with the University Spadina line when he first came to office and their advice was instrumental in getting that project finished faster than was projected.

“I think it is time for a greater transparency of the fact there is a plan, some greater specific information with respect to the dates involved with those plans, and what the financial consequences might be,” said Tory.

Instead of lawyers asking a lot of questions in an inquiry setting, Tory said, “I think the focus should be on applying every possible resource including additional outside experts if necessary to sort out the issues and get this done so that people can be riding on it in the short term.”

Mulroney noted the project was inherited from the previous Liberal government. She said one of the points raised by Justice William Hourigan in his report on problems with the Ottawa LRT was that projects should not be rushed into service before they are safe to operate.

“We want to make sure that both Crosslinx and Metrolinx work out those technical issues,” Mulroney said. “Our government has been clear with Metrolinx and Crosslinx. We want it to open as soon as possible.

“People are frustrated, but they deserve a system that operates well and that operates safely when it does open and that has been our focus since the beginning.”

Metrolinx did not immediately respond to a request for information on problems with the project.

Follow the author on Twitter @DonWall_DCN.

Recent Comments (1 comments)

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Ian Image Ian

What is the problem? why do they need to bring experts? Tunnel? Signal? Safety? what?
it doesn’t say the reason!


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