The city’s chief planner says “there won’t be expropriations along Pape” as planning for the so-called downtown relief line moves forward, despite concern from local residents about the new route potentially running directly under their houses.
Jennifer Keesmat, the city’s chief planner, said part of the consultations and planning for the line have included how to maintain “healthy neighbourhoods,” including looking at how deep the subway could go so as not to disrupt the houses above.
But until the route is finalized, it remains unclear how many houses will be impacted, she told CBC’s Metro Morning on Friday.
“There won’t be expropriations along Pape. But there will be people who didn’t have a subway running underneath their house before who will now,” Keesmaat said.
The long-awaited relief line came back into the news this week, as city staff identified the desired route for the line, which would run south from Pape and Danforth before moving west into the downtown core.
TTC chair and Coun. Josh Colle said Wednesday he believed some of the funds would go toward planning where stops should go, including studying any geotechnical challenges that could come with burrowing under the city.
Keesmaat acknowledged that the relief line isn’t happening as quickly as many commuters would like.
But, she said, “the reality is when you stop something for 30 years and you try to start it up again, which is what we’re doing on transit planning and transit investment, it takes a while to get the wheels going.”