Governance refers to the decision-making structures, processes, policies and practices in place to support the delivery of transit needs to serve the City and Region.


In Toronto, planning, delivery, construction, operations and maintenance of the City’s integrated transit system involves multiple organizations with important roles, responsibilities and expertise. Close collaboration between the parties is critical to advancing public transit policy objectives.

Ontario logo, black and white with a trillium to the left and the word Ontario beside it

  • Establishes direction for guiding growth in the Province through the Provincial Policy Statement and the Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe.
  • Many Provincial ministries are involved in implementing the policies related to transit and transportation planning.
  • Created Metrolinx as its regional transit agency in 2006.
  • Contributes to funding Toronto’s transit system.

Metrolinx Logo: Image of 2 tracks in the shape of an 'M' with the word Metrolinx beside it

  • Provincial agency established through the Metrolinx Act, 2006, as the regional transit authority for the GTHA with a mandate to provide leadership in coordinating, planning, financing, developing and implementing an integrated multi-modal regional transit network, for the regional area covering 21 municipalities.
  • Operates GO Transit (regional transit network).
  • Governed by a Board with up to 15 members appointed by the Province of Ontario.
  • Has sole responsibility for many transit expansion projects and initiatives in the City of Toronto, including Eglinton Crosstown Light Rail Transit (LRT), the Finch West LRT, and the Subway Program (i.e. the Ontario Line, Scarborough Subway Extension, Yonge North Subway Extension and the Eglinton Crosstown West Extension).

City of Toronto Logo: image of City Hall to the left (in simple line art), and the word Toronto to the right

  • Local planning authority with responsibility for ensuring Toronto is a livable city. The City has responsibility over establishing local planning policies through the Official Plan that align with Provincial direction.
  • Finances the capital and operating costs of the TTC to provide local public transportation.
  • The Official Plan policies outline that the City must:
    • Maintain the existing network (e.g., ensure system is in a state of good repair)
    • Improve the existing network (e.g., enhancements such as transit priority measures)
    • Expand the network (e.g., add bike lanes, expand the rapid transit network, etc).
  • The City’s Rapid Transit Evaluation Framework is used to evaluate how transit projects achieve the City’s Official Plan goals.

TTC Logo: the word TTC inside a red upside down triangle with a red rectangle with slanted angles coming out of the bottom of the triangle

  • An agency of the City of Toronto with exclusive authority to operate local passenger transportation.
  • Governed by a 10-person Board, appointed by City Council (four are public members and six are City Councillors).
  • The TTC system makes up the vast majority (~85%) of all public transit trips in the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.

Other GTHA Providers

  • Other transit service providers and operators with authority to operate local passenger transportation in the GTHA (e.g., MiWay, York Region Rapid Transit, Brampton Transit, Durham Region Transit).

In October 2019, the City and the Province entered into the Ontario-Toronto Transit Partnership. The subsequent Preliminary Agreement, signed in February 2020, establishes the roles and responsibilities of the Province and the City in implementing major transit initiatives in Toronto.

As part of the partnership, the City and Province have also established a Memorandum of Understanding for Transit Oriented Development (TOD)  that shared objectives and the respective roles and responsibilities of the City and Province for TOD as it relates to the provincial priority projects and GO Expansion/SmartTrack. Visit the Province of Ontario’s Transit-Oriented Communities Program page for more information.

The City and Province continue to negotiate more detailed agreements to lay out and clarify respective roles and responsibilities for the implementation of transit initiatives, and operations and maintenance of the on-going Provincial transit projects.

The Province has legislation that defines roles and responsibilities among key organizations involved in transit planning and delivery in the City of Toronto.

In May 2019, the Ontario Government introduced Bill 107, Getting Ontario Moving Act, 2019, which received Royal Assent on June 6, 2019. The legislation enabled a series of changes to how transit is planned, designed and delivered in Toronto, including the ability for the Province to designate rapid transit projects as sole responsibility projects of the Province or Metrolinx.

In July 2019, Ontario Regulation 248/19 “Interim Measures- Upload of Rapid Transit Projects” went into effect. The regulation identifies the Ontario Line, Scarborough Subway Extension, and Yonge North Subway Extension in Toronto as sole responsibility projects of Metrolinx. This means that Metrolinx will lead the planning, development, delivery, and construction of the Ontario Line, Line 2 East Extension, Eglinton Crosstown West Extension and Yonge North Subway Extension in Toronto.

In February 2020, the Province introduced Bill 171, Building Transit Faster Act, 2020, which received Royal Assent on July 8, 2020, enacted legislative changes that are intended to expedite planning, design, and construction of the Subway Program. The Ontario Regulation 341/20: Ontario Line Project: and amendments to Ontario Regulation 231/08 Transit Projects and Metrolinx Undertakings under the Environmental Assessment Act related to its Subway Program projects, came into effect on July 1, 2020.

A list of staff reports to City Council, agreements, and important information related to the roles and responsibilities on transit, including major City Council decisions are included on each transit expansion program or project site.