Toronto's Eglinton Crosstown may be delayed until 2024 and people are furious
More bad news for Toronto’s long-overdue Eglinton Crosstown LRT, as a new report claims that the line will not enter service until 2024 at the earliest.
The Toronto Sun‘s Brian Lilley reported Wednesday evening that the line will likely not hit its most recently-announced targeted completion by the end of 2023, citing sources in government and the transportation industry.
Lilley’s sources tell him that revenue service for the Crosstown “isn’t something that will happen this year.”
If that wasn’t bad enough, those same sources state that the Finch West LRT, which was also targeting a 2023 completion, is unlikely to open this year.
Don’t expect the Crosstown to open to the public before 2024.
The Ford government, including @fordnation and Transportation Minister @C_Mulroney don’t think they owe you answers. They do, demand them. https://t.co/48tZfnSn4r
— Brian Lilley (@brianlilley) April 27, 2023
The revelation has been met with an outpouring of anger from commuters, taxpayers concerned about reckless government spending, and others politically opposed to the public-private partnership model used to build the line.
Is accountability no longer an option in this country?
— Joe (@joesarkees) April 27, 2023
Many are pointing the finger at Metrolinx, which has overseen the project’s protracted construction.
“Blaming the company hired to do the work while not demanding accountability from the government or its agencies is ludicrous; but behind the scenes, that’s what the Ford government is pushing — they want to blame Crosslinx.” #onpoli https://t.co/j2f2DtisUs
— Dean Rivando ⚒ ⚓ φ (@drivandalism) April 27, 2023
Work on the Crosstown line started in 2011 when boring began for its twin tunnels. Though mostly complete in 2023, issues just keep on popping up, and construction is now threatening to stretch into its 13th year.
Twelve years and counting with zero oversight? Whose pockets are stuffed with taxpayers’ money?
— Go Lady Justice (@goladyjustice) April 27, 2023
Even just last week, Metrolinx revealed that uneven concrete would be replaced for the Crosstown’s Sloane stop on Eglinton east of the Don Valley Parkway.
Meanwhile, the rising salary of Metrolinx executives like CEO Phil Verster is not sitting right with some commenters.
More Metrolinx bonuses for execs and lawsuits against the province then?
— cbcwatcher (@cbcwatcher) April 27, 2023
Even politicians and executives are playing the blame game. Transportation Minister Caroline Mulroney has placed blame on the previous Liberal government, claiming it was mismanaged from the beginning. The Ford government has also placed blame on Crosslinx, the consortium responsible for the line’s construction.
But recent findings uncovered in a freedom of information request by the Toronto Star revealed that the Ford government has directed Metrolinx to ignore requests from reporters looking into the Crosstown’s construction timeline.