<PREMIER KATHLEEN WYNNE, UP-Express, June 22, photographer Frank Gunn, Toronto Star>
TORONTO’s new dedicated air-rail link will cut travel time between Pearson International Airport and downtown’s Union Station and Financial District (with two stops along the way) beginning on Saturday, June 6. Travel time between Union and Pearson will be 25 minutes, with trains arriving every 15 minutes.
Of the top 25 financial centres in the world, TORONTO is the last to launch an air-rail link. Being Canada’s largest city and financial centre, and North America’s fourth largest city (after New York, Los Angeles and Mexico), by 2030 Pearson is expected to be the origin and destination point for almost 60-million travellers annually.
The service will offer airline check-in kiosks from Union Station, free Wi-Fi, charging stations, infotainment screens and luggage racks. In its first year of operation, the new service is projected to remove 1.5-million cars from the roads.
After 20 years of studying, planning and building, TORONTO’s air-rail link is on track for completion in 2015, in time for the Pan-American Games. The UP Express will travel the 26 kilometres in 25 minutes from Union Station to Pearson International Airport, with two stops along the way.
Every 15 minutes one of 18 ‘clean diesel’ trains, built by Sumitomo of Japan, will leave the airport and downtown terminals. From Union Station, the trains will follow the Kitchener GO line to Goreway Road, then branch off onto an elevated guideway parallel to Highway 409. At its highest point, the Express will be 8 storeys above the ground – offering a panoramic view of suburbs and city.
The province of Ontario and its agency, Metrolinx, is managing the $465-million project.
At long last, TORONTO is building a fast-train connection between Pearson International Airport and Union (railway/bus) Station downtown, with two stops along the way. Scheduled opening date is 2015, in time for the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.
The Union Pearson Express will run every 15 minutes. Onboard – Wi-Fi, flight information screens, and easy ticketing options including PRESTO for payment. Travel time – 25 minutes.
A panel of international transportation experts has named Union Pearson Express ‘Project of the Year at the Global AirRail Awards’ in Frankfurt, Germany.