December 1, 1916, Vol. 6, No. 17 Judgments, orders, regulations and rulings (Ottawa) Page 387

Interchange at Aurora. File 6713.124.

Heard at a sittings of the Joint Board, composed of members of the Board of Railway Commissioners for Canada and the Ontario Railway and Municipal Board, at Toronto, October 6, 1916.


The Chairman:

As intimated at the hearing of this application the Joint Board was favourably impressed with its merits and came to the conclusion that interchange should be ordered.

As the Joint Board had not inspected the location where the applicants desired interchange tracks should be installed, and had no report of any official with regard to the safety or feasibility of interchange at the point applied for, the question of the location of the interchange tracks was reserved.

We have now had the benefit of an examination on the ground and reports from the officials of both Boards (copies of which are attached), from which it will be seen that the officials unanimously agree in disapproving of the suggestion of the applicants that interchange tracks should be put in on the right of way of the Grand Trunk main line just west of Yonge street, and recommending that the interchange be made in the Grand Trunk yards with a connecting track, as shown on the line marked Estimate No. 1 on the plans submitted by the applicants. The reports of the officials are approved and adopted and an order may go accordingly.

As stated at the hearing, no cost of the interchange should be placed upon either the Grand Trunk Railway Company or the Toronto and York Radial Company.

Ottawa, October 20, 1916.

D'Arcy Scott,

Asst. Chief Commissioner.

Commissioners McLean and Goodeve of the Board of Railway Commissioners for Canada, and Vice-Chairman Ingram and Mr. Commissioner Kittson of the Ontario and Railway Municipal Board, concurred.

October 12, 1916.


Memorandum for Secretary Joint Board.

As directed by the Assistant Chief Commissioner at the Toronto sittings, October 6, we made an inspection on the ground in company with Mr. Wilson, general manager of the Metropolitan Electric Line; Mr. Middlemist, engineer for the Ontario Board; Mr. Hewson, engineer representing the Grand Trunk Railway Company; and Mr. Proctor, engineer representing the town of Aurora.

The proposed connection with the Grand Trunk railway is on its main line, Toronto to Allandale. Where this line crosses Yonge street there is a descending grade of one per cent to the north, which begins a considerable distance south of Yonge street. While the track is tangent and provides a good view the Grand Trunk railway people object to the main line being broken on account of the heavy traffic and the danger created from a facing-point switch where the speed is high.

This scheme also includes a second track over Yonge street which is a very busy highway with a great deal of automobile traffic. The crossing, you will observe, is at present protected by a signal bell, and the Grand Trunk railway point out that cars would have to stand on this transfer track so close to Yonge street as to obscure the view to vehicles or pedestrians approaching the Grand Trunk railway from the northwest.

In order to obviate the necessity of cars having to stand so close to Yonge street as to be menace, and at the same time overcome the objection to the facing-point switch mentioned, this transfer track could be extended and a cross-over put in which would provide a trailing point movement for a train descending the grade, and cars could be placed far enough away from Yonge street so that the view would be satisfactory.

This latter arrangement would, of course, increase the expense somewhat over the first proposed. It would also necessitate a little more switching across Yonge street than if there were but one switch at the end of the transfer track. The electric company owns the land required for this track except where it would be on Grand Trunk railway right of way.

An alternative scheme was suggested at the discussion namely: to take the interchange connection of the electric line a little further north and connect with the Grand Trunk railway on the east side of the overhead bridge. This was not favoured by the Grand Trunk railway, because of the switch being close to a curve, thus affecting the view of the switch; nor by the applicant as it would involve the purchase of land.

In addition to the above we inspected the proposition to make the interchange connection at the Grand Trunk Railway yard, using the farm lane, with the proposed line shown in red and marked estimate No. 1 on the second plan. This is more expensive, but would reduce the distance cars would have to be interchanged between the Grand Trunk railway and the industries: Fleury's, Baldwins, Tannery, etc., and would have the benefit of connecting with the Grand Trunk Railway siding in the station yard as against cutting the main line at Yonge street crossing. It would also put the Radial line in close proximity with five small industries located near the Grand Trunk Railway station yard, and would give an opportunity for these industries to have the electric line service, if desired.

This scheme would cost more—roughly estimated at double the amount of the connection at Yonge street.

It appears to use that if the connection were made at the station, the industries of the town of Aurora would be much better served than if it were made at Yonge street, and we would recommend that this scheme be adopted.

Geo. A. Mountain,

Chief Engineer, B.R.C.

G. Spencer,

Chief Operating Officer, B.R.C.

October 18.

The Vice-Chairman,

The Ontario Railway and Municipal Board



I am in receipt of the joint report of Messrs. Mountain and Spencer, of the Board of Railway Commissioners for Canada, on the switching interchange at Aurora, forwarded to me by your Board yesterday, and have given it my careful consideration. As requested in Mr. Scott's letter attached to this report, I now submit my opinion.

1. The applicant's plan as, originally shown to your Board, connecting with the Grand Trunk Railway at or near the overhead bridge of the Metropolitan Electric line, gives curves of six degrees and eight degrees, which should have been thirty degrees twenty minutes or 191 feet radius, and would therefore be too sharp for handling railway freight cars coupled together.

2. The amended plan, of which I believe your Board has no copy, shows a transfer track off the Grand Trunk main line on the west side of Yonge street, and crosses it to connect with the Metropolitan. This would mean facing switches on the Grand Trunk main line, where there is a descending gradient of one per cent.

To overcome this objection, the applicants propose to extend the transfer track parallel with the main line further west, and put in a cross-over, giving a trailing switch from it. This plan would mean a second track across Yonge street, and along the east side of it to connect with the Metropolitan. In other words, I mean there would be a Grand Trunk main line and the new transfer track crossing over Yonge street, which, having a heavy traffic over it, I agree with the officials' of the Dominion Commission that it would be an objection.

3. The alternative scheme suggested to place the switch on the Grand Trunk main line east of the Metropolitan overhead bridge would bring the switch very close to a curve on the main line, and would not be a satisfactory location. The applicants did not favour this connection, as it would mean purchase of more land.

4. The next scheme suggested was the one shown on the plan of the town of Aurora, which gives the Metropolitan track extensions necessary to connect with the Baldwin flour mill and the tannery. This scheme would mean the building of a single track from the Grand Trunk siding at Aurora Station, just opposite the four factories shown on the plan, thence in a southerly direction along the street parallel with the Grand Trunk main line, and westerly along a lane to Yonge street to connect there with the Metropolitan Electric Railway. This scheme is marked Estimate No. 1 on the plan in question.

The advantage of this scheme is that it will serve four additional factories, which the others would not, and that it will connect with a Grand Trunk siding already built, thus avoiding breaking the main line again and the nuisance of a second crossing on Yonge street. It also admits of the connections with the flour mill and the tannery to the west of the town. The applicants roughly estimated the cost at about double of that for the Yonge street connection.

In conclusion, I am of opinion that this is the best solution of the difficulty, and I fully agree on this point with the report of Messrs. Mountain and Spencer.

Yours truly,

H. W. Middlemist.

Railways: G.T.Ry., T. & Y.Rad.Ry.

Stations: Aurora