The revitalization project of the Union Station in downtown Toronto has been completed. The CAD$824 million overhaul of the near century old station began in 2009 and has faced several hurdles involving finances and supply chain problems that extended the ultimate interior completion date by several years, from 2017 to 2021 with final budget of CAD$824 million, an astounding increase from the initial price of CAD$640 million. Highlights of the completed heritage project include tripling the amount of space for GO Transit customers with the new concourses off of York and Bay streets, the creation of a new food court, a renovated Via Rail concourse and lounge, installation of glass-covered moats along three sides of the building to provide protection from the weather, digging under Union Station to create a new level of retail which adds around 160,000 square feet of commercial space, new accesses to the underground PATH system and two new bike storage areas.
Other major projects at and near Union Station in the past ten years include the expansion of the TTC’s Union subway station with the creation of a new platform, the creation of a new UP Express station on the east, and the opening of the new Union Station GO bus terminal at the corner of Lake Shore Boulevard West and Bay Street. Officials estimated approximately half a million people a day will travel through the Union Station post-pandemic.
“This has been an incredibly challenging overhaul, but today represents a very good day not just for the city of Toronto but the entire Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area because thousands of people come through Union Station on their commutes. This was no easy task. Throughout the revitalization, the most remarkable thing is Union Station has remained open … We kept the building open, we kept the transit running and we completed an incredibly complex renovation on a historic project.” said the Toronto Mayor, John Tory.