As part of the City’s transit expansion, the Eglinton East LRT (EELRT) will bring higher order transit to historically underserved areas of Scarborough including seven Neighbourhood Improvement Areas, and create more transportation options in eastern Scarborough by conveniently connecting to other rapid transit services. The EELRT is also referred to as the TTC future Line 7.

In addition to improved transit, the EELRT (future Line 7) will bring significant public realm improvements throughout the corridor with the implementation of Complete Streets design principles.

Light rail was identified as an appropriate transit solution for this part of Scarborough. LRT is a form of rapid transit that uses electric-powered single cars or short trains on fixed rails. ‘Light’ refers to lighter passenger capacity, not the physical weight of the vehicles.
Modern LRT originates from traditional streetcar systems but have been redesigned to run faster and carry more passengers over greater distances in a metropolitan area. Modern light rail systems typically operate in a dedicated right-of-way. This means the rail tracks and concrete structure are separated from vehicle lanes and when combined with traffic signal prioritization, avoids the challenges of operating in mixed traffic like much of Toronto’s streetcar network.

Quick Facts

  • Passenger rail cars operating on fixed rails in dedicated lanes.
  • Express service with 1–2 stops/stations per kilometre.
  • Highest passenger capacity compared to other surface transit options (i.e. conventional bus, streetcar, bus rapid transit).
  • Higher cost to construct compared to other surface transit options, but considerably cheaper than underground transit options (i.e., subway).
  • Fewer construction challenges, faster to construct and generally fewer impacts compared to underground transit systems.
Example photo of a light rail transit vehicle from the Eglinton Crosstown Light Rail Transit. The 5-segment vehicle is powered by overhead cables and runs along a set of tracks.
Example of an LRT vehicle.

The proposed route alignment of the Eglinton East LRT (EELRT / future Line 7) is an expansion of the approved Scarborough-Malvern LRT Environmental Assessment (EA) that was completed in 2009 for Transit City and further consulted on between 2017 and 2019 as part of a proposed Scarborough Transit Network Plan. The current plan provides expanded rapid transit access east of Kennedy Station, through the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus as well as to Malvern via Sheppard Avenue and including McCowan Road.

Project Timeline

  • 2009: Scarborough-Malvern LRT (SMLRT) initial design and Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP)
  • 2010: Transit City initiative cancelled; SMLRT project put on hold
  • 2016: City Council directs staff to update 2009-approved SMLRT concept to 5 per cent design and rename project Eglinton East LRT (EELRT)
  • 2017: City initiates early conceptual design and planning process for EELRT
  • 2018: City Council approves the alignment along Military Trail through the University of Toronto Scarborough Campus (UTSC)  and requests staff to consider a recommended extension to Malvern
  • 2019: City acknowledges funding for four priority subway projects, including a modified 3-stop Line 2 extension (Scarborough Subway Extension) to Sheppard opening in 2029/30
  • 2019: City Council approves EELRT alignment to Malvern and public and stakeholder engagement on early conceptual design and planning
  • 2020: City Council directs staff to advance EELRT design to 10 per cent, complete Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP), and continue discussions with UTSC on Maintenance Storage Facility (MSF) location
  • 2022: EELRT Scarborough Subway Extension (SSE) interface constructability assessment informs Council direction for a separate service connecting to the Eglinton Crosstown and expansion of the EELRT to Sheppard/McCowan. Council also confirmed preference for Conlins Yard Maintenance and Storage Facility site at 8300 Sheppard Avenue East
  • 2023: City anticipated to complete the functional 10 per cent design for the EELRT, draft the Environmental Project Report and Launch a Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP)

What we Heard in 2019

Extensive Public Consultation for EELRT planning took place between 2016 – 2019 resulting in the project extension to Malvern. In addition, we heard the following:

  • Make good connections to existing and planned transit in Scarborough
  • Provide good planning for amenities and public spaces along the corridor (e.g., seating area, wider sidewalks, more trees along the corridor)
  • Manage traffic and improve accessibility and the experience for pedestrians
  • Prioritize local access to LRT stops along the corridor
  • Create gathering spaces, public spaces, civic spaces

The 2019 Public Consultation report is available on request.

The project is currently at the functional 10 percent design stage. At this design stage, the focus of the project is on advancing confirmed route alignment engineering and architectural design details, including the allocation of public space for different uses and LRT stop and station design preferences.

The functional 10 per cent design is reviewed through a Transit Project Assessment Process (TPAP), which is an environmental assessment process specific to public transit projects.

The TPAP ensures that project impacts are communicated to the public and that the public has an opportunity to provide positive feedback on project benefits, raise concerns about potential negative impacts on the natural or built environment, and draw attention to economic and social considerations.

The TPAP is required by the Ontario Ministry of Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) and includes a minimum 120-day public review period.

There are 6 steps identified in the functional 10 per cent design review process:

  1. Identify and evaluate solutions for the functional 10 per cent design.
  2. We are here now. Phase One Public Consultation from May 15 to June 21, 2023.
  3. Report to Council.
  4. Launch TPAP and Complete Environmental Project Report (EPR).
  5. Phase Two Public Consultation expected in late 2023.
  6. Complete TPAP.

For information on how to provide feedback on the EELRT (future Line 7) project refer to the section on Public Consultation.

The vision of transit in Scarborough is to improve local accessibility, provide more transit options for residents and commuters and to support the development of more connected and complete communities. As part of this vision, the EELRT will include convenient connections to the TTC bus network as well as to the following existing and proposed rapid transit:

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