Department of predictable headlines: York subway costs mounting

Department of predictable headlines: York subway costs mounting

Most of the candidates running for mayor of Toronto are basically in love with subways and have said so. There are just a couple of problems: one, subways start off being more expensive than other options; two, it’s rare to hear of a government project that doesn’t exceed its budget. Those two issues dovetailed perfectly today in the pages of the Toronto Sun, which reports that the cost of the Spadina subway line extension up to York University is growing.

Design work alone on the station, one of six on the 8.6 km extension, will cost up to $18 million, or $3.2 million more than previously expected, the report says.

That’s on top of a $3.7 million bump up to the design contract the TTC approved in June.

The extra costs are due to the need to have consultants draw up two alternative designs, the report says.

To put this in perspective, the total cost of the Spadina extension is estimated to be north of $2.6 billion [PDF], so a $7-million increase amounts to costs going up by only 0.27 per cent. This won’t throw the books wildly off balance, but it’s worth keeping in mind that everyone’s favourite form of transit is expensive to operate. And don’t worry—there are plenty of opportunities for the spending to skyrocket before the line opens in 2015.

• York U subway costs going up [Toronto Sun]

(Image: FHKE)