July 2, 2015 10:45 am
Updated: July 2, 2015 7:46 pm

Union subway station done but overall revitalization still two years away

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WATCH: Mark McAllister reports that the work to create a second TTC subway platform and renewed concourse at Union Station is now complete in advance of the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games.

TORONTO – The work to create a second TTC subway platform and renewed concourse at Union Station is now complete in advance of the Pan Am Games.

“We promised that we would open this and finish this project before the Pan Am Games,” TTC CEO Andy Byford said. “I’m very proud to say that we have met that promise.”

After four years of construction, the major transit hub now has more room for the 250,000 passengers it serves to get to and from transit and the downtown core’s PATH system.

One of the highlights is the new art installation from Stuart Reid called ‘Zones of Immersion’ featuring 166 glass panels with veiled images of subway riders on their daily commute.

“It’s about being in the subway,” Reid said. “Being conscious of riding for it, waiting for it, looking around at the people who surround you.”

The TTC budget of $137 million for the subway pales in comparison to the $800 million now required for the overall Union Station revitalization.

The massive renovation is due to have another $4 million added to the overall budget to be approved at a city council meeting next week and won’t be complete until 2017.

Construction began in 2010 with an estimated budget of $640 million at that time.

“There is still work to do on the bigger vision on the bigger project above us,” TTC Chair and city councillor Josh Colle said. “Probably over the course of the next two years the full concourse and that work will be built out.”

The York concourse opened at the end of April and offers 50 per cent more space than the east concourse used by most GO passengers right now.

An antique clock that once stood outside along Front St. has been restored and put back in place as part of the complete plaza makeover.

When all is said and done, the overall project will feature 160,000 square feet of restaurants and retail.

© 2015 Shaw Media

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