See the very first Finch West LRT train in action (VIDEO)

Feb 24 2022, 3:31 pm

The very first Finch West LRT train has officially made its way onto the tracks.

The shiny new light rail vehicle travelled along 700 metres of track outside a Metrolinx maintenance facility to see how it fares before sending it on to the future 11-km route that will provide rapid transit between Humber College and Finch West station.

The test train wasn’t exactly going full speed, moving between just 2-5km/h. This slow roll, Metrolinx says, allowed teams to monitor and follow the vehicle’s movement to ensure safety.

“It might not seem like a lot but is a very important first step in ramping up the vehicle testing,” Metrolinx wrote in a blog post on Wednesday.

Construction on the line is still very much underway, with crews not only not only laying down tracks and building new stations, but also creating a 10,000-square-metre maintenance and storage facility that will house the LRT vehicles and shops for service, repairs, and inspections.

Road closures along Toronto’s Silverstone Drive, just west of Martin Grove Road, began in late January to to allow for the installation of the preparatory duct bank and guideway — the dedicated lane that the light rail vehicles will travel on. This closure is expected to last until approximately March 4 at which point Silverstone Drive will reopen.

Then, beginning on March 7, Damascus Drive, just west of Martin Grove Road, will close for similar work until March 31.

The work is largely taking place Monday to Friday from 7 am to 5 pm, Metrolinx says. However, there may be overnight or weekend work if needed. The surrounding community will be notified of any changes to the schedule.

Metrolinx is also planning further vehicle testing which will include coupling vehicles together to see how they can apply power and open doors, among other things.

Once the line is complete — which is expected to happen in 2023 — it will have 18 stops and trains running every five to seven minutes during peak hours. Riders will have access to the Yonge-University subway line at the Finch West station and the TTC, GO Transit, Viva, and Züm at Humber College.

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