The Eglinton Crosstown LRT will be a valuable transit asset serving residents and visitors in the city of Toronto.

The $9.1 billion Alternative Financing and Procurement (AFP) contract awarded to Crosslinx Transit Solutions (Crosslinx) represents a successful procurement for the province in achieving value. A number of AFP efficiencies contribute to this value-based contract:

a. A rigorous, fair and competitive bidding process: for complicated projects like the Crosstown, bid teams must bring their best solutions forward in responding to a request for proposals to meet the project specifications while also being competitively priced. Teams must prove they can deliver quality work under realistic timelines for a fixed price.

b. Project integration: instead of breaking up the Crosstown project into many separate contracts, it was procured as one design-build-finance-maintain project to minimize integration risk, which historically is a factor for project cost overruns under traditional models.

c. Project risks deferred to the private sector: consistent with other AFP projects, most project risks will be transferred to Crosslinx. The project agreement makes Crosslinx responsible for:

  • design, project management and sub-contractor coordination
  • increases in construction material prices and labour costs
  • schedule and project completion delays
  • maintenance and lifecycle replacement on the entire line for 30 years, inclusive of materials within the stations and stops, rails, control systems and vehicles. Components are to be kept in excellent working condition over the term of the agreement.

d. Financial risk: Crosslinx team members have taken a large financial stake of more than $1 billion of their own capital to deliver this project. This considerable financial risk is a significant motivator for Crosslinx to build to high standards, on time and on budget.

e. Optimize financing: measures were implemented to reduce borrowing costs, such as Crosslinx's use of bonds to raise sufficient market capital and the structuring of payments during construction.

f. Payment for performance: Crosslinx will receive progress payments during construction and upon substantial completion, as well as monthly service payments during the 30-year maintenance contract. As the contract ties such payments to Crosslinx's performance, it results in a quality design and an integrated construction and maintenance program. Crosslinx will face financial penalties if the infrastructure it has built and maintained does not perform as agreed upon. The AFP model incentivizes contractors to finish on time and on budget, and the contract includes penalties if there are service and/or construction delays.

g. Efficient energy production: through the innovation of locating a back-up power facility at the Eglinton Maintenance and Storage Facility, Crosslinx provided a solution to ensuring for a continual, efficient energy source that can draw on lower energy costs and provide power back up for the LRT system in case of an power outage.

Quality: Innovating for Value and Efficiency

The Eglinton Crosstown LRT will offer a new transit option serving the city of Toronto, as well as provide other significant community benefits, including:

1. A system-wide principle for putting passengers first - elevating the passenger experience:

  1. Whether going from city streets to an LRT station or stop, consistent branding and seamless wayfinding will help passengers navigate through the system and make connections to alternate modes of transportation such as the TTC or GO Transit.
  2. Consistent use of natural light for optimal visibility and safety at the concourse and platform levels and use of public art
  3. highly visible, safe entrances, designed and built in accordance with the Crime Prevention Through Environmental Design principles
  4. Integration of main entrances into the surrounding environment, with public spaces and landscaping elements
  5. Expansion of bicycle lanes and the largest expansion of bicycle parking in Toronto's history
  6. WIFI capabilities throughout the LRT system
  7. Increased reliability and comfort for passengers riding on the city's transit system
  8. Stations/stops that incorporate provincial Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act standards and principles of Universal Design to maximize accessibility for users with a disability

2. Sustainability: targeting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Silver certification for the Eglinton Maintenance and Storage Facility; Toronto Green Standard Tier 1 for environmental performance for all 25 stations/stops; pilot project of green track that will seamlessly blend into the environment, as well as landscaping elements along the corridor and stations and stops that harness natural light for optimal visibility and safety

3. Lane and door closures: Crosslinx's targeted duration of lane and door closures was significantly less than Metrolinx's estimate (approx. 65% less). Rules are in place to ensure no vehicle traffic lanes are closed unnecessarily and there are limits on the impact construction can have in closing or restricting access to businesses. Bid teams weighed the financial impacts of the lane/door closures with the costs of their construction. This resulted in an efficient design/construction schedule with the goal of minimizing impacts to the surrounding community.

4. Performance: stringent, performance based criteria for safeguarding the community from excessive noise and vibration. If standards are not met penalties can be assessed and remedy tactics ordered until performance standards are met.

5. Economic and Community Benefits

  1. At the peak of construction, Crosslinx estimates more than 2,500 workers will be on site daily. Many other opportunities for subcontractors will be generated once the project commences construction.
  2. Commitment to deliver a Community Benefits program with other stakeholders to help contribute to economic opportunities, training and workforce development, social enterprises/social procurement and neighbourhood improvements.
  3. Planning along Eglinton is consistent with urban design principles of the City of Toronto's Eglinton Connects plan. Transit-oriented development, upgrades to streetscaping, new trail connections and bike lanes at sites along the LRT corridor will support strategic planning practices for the corridor.
  4. A reduced number of buses travelling along Eglinton Avenue and less overall traffic congestion, greenhouse gases and transit vehicle fuel consumption.