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  • August 03, 2010

Metrolinx signs big contract to purchase four tunnel boring machines

Metrolinx signs $54-million contract to purchase four tunnel boring machines.
Photo- MPP Mike Colle talks to a local resident about the future Eglinton West light rail transit line on the corner of Eglinton Avenue and Dufferin Street Wednesday afternoon. Colle was on the corner passing out information about the project and the recent announcement of a plan to purchase four tunnel boring machines. (July 28, 2010) Staff photo/NICK PERRY

It's not exactly a shovel in the ground - but this week, Metrolinx took a major step to getting moving on construction of the Eglinton Light Rail Transit project as it signed a $54-million contract to purchase four tunnel boring machines.

The contract, with Lovat Inc., means that Metrolinx and the Toronto Transit Commission can start work on the underground portion of the $4.6 billion light rail line. The tunnel will run 11 kilometres through the middle of the city, on a line that will eventually connect Kennedy Station and Jane Street along a 31-kilometre route.

The line is a part of Transit City, a large-scale, long-term plan to connect neighbourhoods across Toronto using light rail lines. The plan was cut back this spring and re-cast into the Metrolinx 5 in 10 Plan. It is intended to build five transit lines costing a total of $9.5 billion.

The projects include the Eglinton LRT and the Sheppard LRT, which has already started construction, the Scarborough RT refurbishment, and the Finch LRT, as well as the VivaNext project in the Region of York.

The Eglinton line is expected to be finished by 2020.

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