Tunnel contract for Scarborough Subway Extension awarded to Strabag team

May 26, 2021
The project will tunnel nearly eight kilometers that will provide the route for future TTC Line 2 trains that will travel into Scarborough.

Strabag AG has been awarded a contract from Infrastructure Ontario and Metrolinx to design, build and finance the Scarborough Subway Extension tunnel.

Strabag AG was named as the project’s First Negotiations Proponents in March.

The C$757.1-million (US$627.8-million) contract includes supplying the tunnel boring machines to bore 7.8 kilometers (4.85 miles) of tunnel between Kennedy Station and McCowan Road/Sheppard Avenue that will eventually shuttle riders on the Toronto Transit Commission’s (TTC) Line 2 into Scarborough.

Strabag Inc. will lead the construction team and serve as the project’s financial advisor, with project design being handled by Arup Canada Inc. and Brian Isherwood & Associated Ltd.

Infrastructure Ontario explained onsite mobilization and pre-construction work began this spring, with launch shaft construction beginning in June 2021. Major tunnel boring is expected to begin next year. Strabag estimates most of the labor needed on the project will come from the Greater Toronto Area.

The Scarborough Subway Extension is one of four priority transit projects the province of Ontario is working with municipalities and transportation providers to deliver. Earlier this month, the four projects, which also include the Yonge North Subway Extension, Eglinton Crosstown West Extension and Ontario Line, received a commitment from the government of Canada to fund up to 40 percent of construction costs. The province of Ontario has also committed funds toward the projects with the Scarborough Subway Extension estimated to cost C$5.5 billion (US$4.56 billion).

The Ontario Ministry of Transportation issued a statement from Ontario Minister of Transportation Caroline Mulroney and Associate Minister of Transportation (GTA) Kinga Surma and Parliamentary Assistant to the Minister of Transportation Vijay Thanigasalam that read in part:

“For far too long, Scarborough commuters have unfairly dealt with outdated transit that couldn’t keep up with the growing and thriving communities in Toronto’s east end. The Scarborough Subway Extension will create thousands of jobs during construction and unlock better access to employment spaces, schools and other key destinations throughout the city.

“The three-stop subway extends service from Kennedy Station to Sheppard Avenue and McCowan Road, providing quick and seamless transit for those heading in and out of the downtown core and those travelling within Scarborough.”

Infrastructure Ontario separated the tunnel construction from the remainder of the work to deliver the extension to accelerate project completion. A separate contract will be issued for remaining work on the extension including stations, fitting out the tunnel and installing and commissioning the systems to put the subway in to service.

Using conversion rate of C$1 = US$0.83

About the Author

Mischa Wanek-Libman | Editor in Chief

Mischa Wanek-Libman serves as editor in chief of Mass Transit magazine. She is responsible for developing and maintaining the magazine’s editorial direction and is based in the western suburbs of Chicago.

Wanek-Libman has spent more than 20 years covering transportation issues including construction projects and engineering challenges for various commuter railroads and transit agencies. She has been recognized for editorial excellence through her individual work, as well as for collaborative content. 

She is an active member of the American Public Transportation Association's Marketing and Communications Committee and serves as a Board Observer on the National Railroad Construction and Maintenance Association (NRC) Board of Directors.  

She is a graduate of Drake University, where she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism and Mass Communication with a major in magazine journalism and a minor in business management.