If you have ever been to downtown Brampton during rush hour, you know how crowded it can get. The city council also knows this an issue as well and is discussing plans to help make things flow more easily.
At a city council meeting to be held on Wednesday, May 15, the council will discuss plans to add three alternative LRT routes for Brampton. Light Rail Transit refers to a route for streetcars or trains similar to the ones you would see in Toronto’s downtown area. These LRT routes would also incorporate bike paths for the city roads.
The addition of these LRT routes would make transit around the city much easier overall. There are currently three options on the table for LRTs in Brampton.
(From left to right) Options 1, 2 and 3 for Brampton LRT route
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Option 1 is the Hurontario-Main LRT route with dedicated LRT lanes in the centre of the roadway south of Nanwood Drive, shared running LRT/vehicular traffic lanes in the centre of the roadway between Nanwood Drive and Wellington Street, and dedicated LRT in the curb lanes north of Wellington Street into the Brampton GO station.
Option 2 is a one-way loop that travels northbound on Main Street, connects to the Brampton GO station, and travels southbound on George Street and eastbound on Wellington Street West before travelling further southbound on Main Street. This option was discussed as part of the facilitated sessions with Council in the Fall of 2015 and was presented at the October 27, 2015, Council meeting.
Option 3 is divided into three subcategories. Option 3.a is a route to the south of Nanwood Drive and a tunnel from south of Nanwood Drive to the Brampton GO station with one at-grade LRT stop and three underground LRT stops.
Option 3.b is almost identical to Option 3.a except that the underground Nanwood LRT stop is replaced with an LRT stop further south at Elgin Drive, and the two LRT stops in Downtown Brampton are combined into one underground LRT stop, significantly reducing its cost compared to Option 3.a.
Option 3.c is also similar to Option #3.b except the LRT tunnel, diverts from under Main Street to under George Street in Downtown Brampton. This option avoids any potential constraints on Main Street in downtown such as the underground channel if needed.
These cost estimates for the LRTs range from $400 million to $450 million for the street level options and $1 billion to $1.7 billion for the underground tunnel options. These cost estimates are very high as there are several unknowns that may affect these options.
The council has more research planned going forward on what challenges, both financial and geographical, the LRTs will face. A final decision will be made sometime in the future.