rapid transit is coming to yonge street

The next generation of rapid transit is coming to Yonge Street. We’re excited to announce that York RapidLINK Constructors have been awarded the $260.5 million design build contract for the York Viva Bus Rapid Transit [vivaNext] rapidways along Yonge Street in the Towns of Richmond Hill and Newmarket.

The project involves widening Yonge Street within Richmond Hill and Newmarket to accommodate approximately nine kilometres of dedicated rapidway lanes for viva rapid transit vehicles in the centre of the road as well as 10 new vivastations.

In Richmond Hill, the Yonge Street rapidway will extend 6.5 kilometres from Highway 7 to 19th Avenue/Gamble Road, including seven new vivastations. In the heritage area north of Major Mackenzie Drive, viva will continue to drive in mixed traffic as it does today.

In Newmarket, the rapidway will extend 2.4 kilometres on Yonge Street from just south of Mulock Drive to Davis Drive, and will include three new vivastations. Construction is expected to begin later this year, and be completed by the end of 2018.

This is an important project that will benefit the local economy for generations and will support the significant development and growth of these communities by reducing congestion and providing commuters with a better way to get around.

To learn more about the Yonge Street project and sign up for project updates, visit vivanext.com.


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One Response to “rapid transit is coming to yonge street”

  1. Aaron says:

    I’m not sure if I’m the only one who has thought about this, but how do you plan on improving the speed of buses travelling through the downtown/heritage section of Richmond Hill? Having buses travel in a dedicated lane is great and all, but once it comes to an end and they have to slow down, don’t you think the buses will bunch up a bit? Seriously, taking a bus through heritage Richmond Hill is time consuming enough. I really just don’t see the point of this. How about we concentrate more on bringing the subway up to highway 7 already?

    DaleA: Hi Aaron,

    Thanks for your question. Dedicated bus rapid transit lanes will be built from Highway 7 to Major Mackenzie and Levindale to 19th Avenue. Due to space constraints and in or to preserve and protect the heritage area in Richmond Hill, viva buses will return to mixed traffic in this area.

    Other possibilities were explored for the heritage area. A tunneling option was proposed, but was later eliminated due to the cost of construction. The travel time saved in this short section by having rapid transit separated from traffic was not considered to be worth the additional cost of construction.

    Page 66 of the environmental assessment further explains the mixed traffic/tunneling options.

    The main difference riders using the viva rapidways will notice is that it will make it faster to get around and travel times will be more consistent, with dedicated transit lanes moving past traffic congestion.

    In 2009, the Environmental Project Report was approved and in 2012 the Conceptual Design Study was completed and approved by the TTC and The Regional Municipality of York for the Yonge subway extension. With both of these reports completed and Metrolinx identifying this as a priority project in their next wave of funding, the Yonge subway extension is ready for capital funding and provides the missing link to the transit network.

    The planned Yonge subway extension will extend 6.8 km north from Finch station to the Richmond Hill/Langstaff Urban Growth Centre at Highway 7. This will be a major transit hub where riders will be able to make seamless and convenient connections to GO trains, Go Buses, TTC Subway and YTR/Viva buses.

    For more information about rapidways in York Region and the Yonge Street Subway Extension, please go to http://www.vivanext.com.

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