Press Release:

Olivia Chow will keep Scarborough transit riders moving

SCARBOROUGH – Olivia Chow will make sure Scarborough transit riders are treated fairly and can keep moving when the Scarborough RT closes by creating a dedicated, off-street bus rapid transit line – or busway – along the RT corridor.

The new busway would take buses off the road, and on to a dedicated corridor that runs from Kennedy Station to Ellesmere. At Ellesmere Avenue, buses will transition to the already planned on-street bus lanes that connect to Scarborough Town Centre. The currently planned on-street bus lanes will be in place while the new off-street busway is built, to keep transit riders moving in the meantime.

“Scarborough residents have some of the longest commutes in the city, they deserve reliable and convenient public transit. Poor planning and political inaction has left people to deal with a decade-long gap between the shutdown of the RT and the opening of the Scarborough subway. We need action to keep transit riders moving. That’s why I’ll make sure the dedicated busway gets built, with reliable service. It’s time Scarborough was treated fairly,” said Chow.

“My plan will save Scarborough transit riders 20 minutes off their commute, each day. That’s valuable time they deserve to spend with their friends and family,” said Chow.

The Scarborough RT carried 35,000 passengers per day, pre-pandemic. The closure of the RT without a dedicated rapid transit service to replace it is a disaster for transit riders. Scarborough deserves reliable and convenient transit.

The TTC Board has asked the province to pay for the dedicated bus rapid transit line and they have not delivered. Olivia Chow is committed to making this happen with or without funding from the province. To do this, Chow will use the money saved by rebuilding the eastern portion of the Gardiner Expressway as a ground level boulevard.


  • Olivia’s plan for the bus rapid transit line would run between Kennedy Station and Ellesmere. Stops will include Kennedy Avenue, Tara Avenue, Lawrence Avenue East, and Ellesmere Road. At Ellesmere Avenue, buses will transition to the already planned on-street bus lanes that connect to Scarborough Town Centre
  • Total time riding the busway from Kennedy to Scarborough town Centre would be 15 minutes. Using only on-street bus lanes would take 25 minutes, and without dedicated bus lanes would be 40 minutes.
  • The total cost of the dedicated bus rapid transit route on the existing RT corridor is estimated at $60 million.
  • Changing the Gardiner East to an at-grade boulevard from Cherry Street to the DVP is anticipated to save the city upwards of hundreds of millions of dollars and open up 5.4 acres of land to develop upwards of 8,000 units of housing.


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