Answer from Metrolinx and Infrastructure Ontario: The site requires extensive work to prepare it for its future use, including archeological work that is seasonal in nature and must be advanced this fall.
Much of the work at the site will involve substantial remediation of contaminated soil before any major construction begins, and Metrolinx will be assuming the significant costs of performing this extensive and sensitive work. Metrolinx cannot responsibly incur these costs or exercise the degree of control required to effectively remediate the issue unless it owns the land.
Negotiating license agreements for the work required would also add considerable time to the project schedule and may introduce administrative processes that will delay the extensive preparations that need to be completed in a relatively short period of time.
Furthermore, the province is pursuing a transit-oriented community proposal for the site that would create a dynamic community with housing, jobs, commercial uses, and community spaces, such as a library – all connected to the Ontario Line subway and TTC bus and streetcar services. In recognition of the historical significance of the land, the province will work closely with the City of Toronto, stakeholders, the community, and Indigenous partners to collaborate on a meaningful plan to commemorate the rich heritage of Canada's First Parliament site. This will have the benefit of delivering much-needed infrastructure at a lower cost to taxpayers.