The Davenport Diamond Guideway, a Metrolinx project, officially opened for GO Train service on April 4, 2023. The project is located from Bloor Street West to south of Davenport Road in Toronto's west end on the Barrie Line, and includes a critical crossing between the Barrie GO corridor and CP Rail’s North Toronto Subdivision, known as the Davenport Diamond. The new guideway features an elevated track, decoupling the two rail lines and allowing commuter and freight service to operate uninterrupted from one another. LEA Consulting Ltd. (LEA), as part of the Graham Commuter Rail Solution team, was the design lead for the project, providing municipal engineering and design, structural engineering and design, electrical engineering and design, and transportation engineering and design. As one of the busiest rail junctions in North America, the rail grade separation eliminates the bottleneck that typically occurs at this intersection, thereby allowing for more frequent GO Train services in the future and more reliable service for all commuters.
As part of to the GO Expansion program, Metrolinx proposed a plan to transform the GO rail network that will provide two-way, all-day, electrified GO Train services to communities across the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA). The comprehensive plan required infrastructure upgrades across the new system, which included the addition of new tracks, the expansion of stations, electrification of the rail network, and the implementation of new train control systems. One of the most significant challenges during this transformation was elevating the Barrie GO corridor tracks above the CP Rail tracks, essentially eliminating the Davenport Diamond crossing.
The new, elevated guideway presented an additional opportunity to build a public space underneath that would enhance the community experience and create key east-west connections. The space is being transformed into a people-first space, including a pedestrian underpass structure, green spaces with a sustainable approach to landscaping and plantings, a multi-use path, pollinating gardens and a dog off-leash area.
The Davenport Diamond Guideway is an important project in our portfolio as it highlights the collaborative efforts of LEA’s engineering design services and our comprehensive service offerings, which include structural design for the pedestrian structures, retaining walls, and bridge rehabilitation; lead civil design for utilities, site layout stormwater management, and roadway; electrical design for pedestrian lighting and street signalization; and transportation design.