Metrolinx begins tree and vegetation clearing work for concrete retaining wall on Lakeshore East Rail Corridor between Woodbine and Main

Tree and vegetation removal work has started on the north side of the Lakeshore East Rail Corridor between Woodbine Avenue and Main Street. Here a worker can be seen at the construction access point at the south end of Westlake Avenue by Stephenson Park. Photo by Alan Shackleton.

Metrolinx work crews have begun cutting trees and removing vegetation along the north side of Lakeshore East Rail Corridor between Main Street and Woodbine Avenue.

The clearing and cutting work began earlier this month and is expected to be completed by the middle of March.

The clearing of the area is in preparation for the installation of a concrete retaining wall which is part of the expansion of the rail corridor to four tracks from its present three.

“Once on site, crews will begin by installing sediment control fence and tree protection fence, followed by vegetation removal and earthworks,” said a Pre-Construction Notice sent by Metrolinx.

Called Retaining Wall 3, which will run along the rail corridor’s northern boundary approximately between Cedarvale Avenue and Westlake Avenue, Metrolinx said the wall will be made of “steel piles drilled into the earth and backfilled with concrete to ground elevation”.

The tree cutting and vegetation work now ongoing will see work crews access the site at the foot of Westlake Avenue, on the western edge of Stephenson Park. Work will be done during the day, said Metrolinx, and equipment used will include a tree feller, feller buncher, mulcher, dozer, excavator and dump trucks.

The grading work for the wall is expected to begin in the middle of March. It will see prep work done for the installations of the steel piling, and the construction of an access road. Equipment used will include a dozer, excavator and dump trucks. This grading work is slated to be done during night shifts, said Metrolinx in its Pre-Construction Notice.

The work on the wall itself will begin in June and will take approximately three months. Metrolinx said this work will be done during the day.

This stage of the wall construction will see the steel piles, backfill and concrete work take place. Above ground level, the wall will have “pre-cast concrete piles above ground level, said Metrolinx. Equipment to be used in this final stage of work will include a drilling rig, concrete trucks, dump truck, dozer and excavator.

The final stage of the wall construction is expected to begin in September of this year. That work will take approximately two months and will see the installation of “horizontal material added between the piles of the retaining wall to hold back the earth,” said Metrolinx.

Once work on the retaining wall is complete, Metrolinx said there also be the installation of an underground electrical conduit for “the future track electrification”. That work is expected to begin in October of 2022.

For more information on work being done by Metrolinx along the Lakeshore East Rail Corridor, please go to or send an email to

The Lake Shore East Rail Corridor expansion plans have raised numerous concerns among local residents regarding their impact on the environment, especially the area between Main Street and Coxwell Avenue which includes Small’s Creek Ravine.

For more information on these concerns please see:

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