Our Liberty Village neighborhood will be more accessible for commuters in the future for those coming from the west. Yesterday, Mayor John Tory, alongside many other politicians including Transportation Minister Steven Del Duca, MP Adam Vaughan, MPP Han Dong and Councillor Mike Layton were at the First Capital Realty head office in Liberty Village to make an exciting transit announcement. The Province of Ontario announced four new GO Transit stations, as part of the Metrolinx’s Regional Express Rail program.
Liberty Village made the list as one of the new Go Train stops, as well as Bloor and Lansdowne, Spadina and Front and St. Clair West and Keele. These will be integrated along the Barrie and Kitchener GO Transit lines. Trains are expected to run more frequent weekly trips to almost triple the current 1500 trips that are currently made.
More than 20,000 people have a daily connection with Liberty Village, either living or working in the neighborhood. This number will surely rise with increased ease of commuting and with the new commercial developments in the works. From 2009-2014, Liberty Village saw an increase of 30% in its workforce, as noted by Mike Layton during his speech at the announcement. This increase is bigger than all other employment districts combined. It is no wonder that so many companies have located themselves to this area including Vice Magazine, Kobo, Sirius XM Radio, Cossette, Softchoice, Loblaw Digital, Beanfield, and more.
What still remains a mystery is the pricing infrastructure as the TTC Metropass program will be terminated at the end of 2016 and transitioned over to the Presto payment system. Currently, more than 1000 employees of Liberty Village participate in the discounted TTC Metropass program facilitated through the Liberty Village BIA.
The location of the new future GO Transit stop was not disclosed. It can be easily assumed that it will be closer to the King St. W tracks near Hanna Ave. The next step in the process is that these stations stops will be formally discussed at the Metrolinx Board of Directors meeting on June 28th where various factors will be taken into consideration including funding, environmental assessments design work, etc.