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tracks in the toronto area

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  • Member since
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  • From: Toronto Ont. Canada
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tracks in the toronto area
Posted by rambo1 on Monday, February 16, 2015 11:19 AM

I'm taking a long shot at this one in the toronto area on a street called dufferin st north of eginton before lawrence ave.there is a bridge going over dufferin. Can anyone out there know what railway used that route and when did they stop? Could it be TH&B thanks rambo1...

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Posted by 54light15 on Monday, February 16, 2015 1:13 PM

I think that was the Belt Line railway. You can see the former roadbed that is now a path where it crosses Caledonia Road and also Yonge st just south of Davisville.

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Posted by BR60103 on Monday, February 16, 2015 8:59 PM

Looks very much like the Belt Line. This was an early commuter train, running a circular route up from Union Station, across the city about at Eglinton, the down the Don Valley. IIRC, it only lasted a couple of years.

The part of the line east of Mount Pleasant into the Don Valley disappeared first, but the rest of the line stayed, serving a few industries until the 1970s. As the line crossed the subway's Davisville yards, it was used to deliver subway cars until the Greenwood shops opened.

The line was converted, mostly, into a walking/biking trail. I may be able to get dates for all this.

TH&B didn't have track in Toronto; their line was Hamilton-Buffalo with extra lines running to Lake Erie. Part owned by CPR, they ran trains to the Toronto station.

 

--David

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Posted by 54light15 on Thursday, February 19, 2015 4:57 PM

I wonder if it would be useful made back into an electric transit line? I know it won't happen but I wonder if any politicians or whoever have addressed it?

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Posted by ROGER KEAY on Tuesday, March 3, 2015 5:15 PM

The Toronto Belt Line Railway opened in the summer of 1892 but the passenger operation only lasted 2 years. The western end continued in operation as a freight line and the east end became industrial trackage for the GTR. I got this information from 'Steam in Northern Ontario' by Ian Wilson. You can see the RoW route on Google Earth by following the Beltline Trail and the Kay Gardner Trail. Start at Eglinton Avenue and the Newmarket Sub (Blackthorn Avenue), go slightly north and the old RoW diverges to the right.

With respect to reactivating the route, TTC wants to build a relief line for the Yonge Street subway. The Davisville yard is right on the old RoW so a diversionary line could be constructed running east along the Belt Line to the Don Valley and then parallel to the GO line on the Bala sub into Union Station.

The diversionary route would allow some trains serving stations north of Davisville to bypass all stations between Davisville and Union Station reducing journey time. To create traffic slots north of Davisville, some existing northbound trains would be turned back, starting nearly empty heading south into the core and thereby providing additional capacity in the very congested part of the system. These trains would be particularly helpful in serving passengers transferring from the Bloor line.

The Belt Line diversion would be largely above ground avoiding expensive tunneling. The section nearest Davisville would require some underground construction but much of it could be cut and cover through a park area. The overall project would be much less expensive than a relief line tunnel.

The real question is how many passengers are willing to go to Union Station on a faster schedule and walk to a final destination that might be closer to an existing subway station. In addition, the route through ravines and a park, plus the current use as a trail, will generate protests and complaints about potential noise problems. The section all the way to the Don Valley might have to be enclosed to solve this issue.

None of this is likely to happen but it is a fun mental exercise to think about it.

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Posted by gardendance on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 7:06 AM

And how much faster could it be with a right hand turn to get from just south of Davisville station to the Don Valley, then a left turn extremely downgrade into the valley, then another right turn to get from the Don back to Yonge and then Union Station?

Besides the turns and grade isn't that a couple of miles of backtracking?

Patrick Boylan

Free yacht rides, 27' sailboat, zip code 19114 Delaware River, get great Delair bridge photos from the river. Send me a private message

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Posted by 54light15 on Wednesday, April 22, 2015 2:03 PM

I walked up the downgrade from the Don Valley last summer. Man that was steep! Hard to believe a non-cog railway operated there.

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Posted by gardendance on Tuesday, April 28, 2015 6:19 AM

And once upon a time I had walked from somewhere on Broadview down to the Don and back up, taking trolley and subway photos. For those not in the know, the Bloor-Danforth subway's bridge across the Don is through a truss that's open on the sides.

Plus the line from Davisville station to the belt line is downgrade, and passes under the belt line, which itself passes over Yonge St, so that's a rather considerable grade to overcome in a short distance, as well as a 90 degree turn.

Patrick Boylan

Free yacht rides, 27' sailboat, zip code 19114 Delaware River, get great Delair bridge photos from the river. Send me a private message

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