Awaiting Yorkie and Torkie: campus site preparation begins for subway

Work is now underway to prepare the construction site in the Harry W. Arthurs Common in advance of the arrival of tunnel boring machines Yorkie and Torkie.

The site preparation work is located near the Accolade East Building and the Seymour Schulich Building.

 A tunnel boring machine in actionLeft: A tunnel boring machine in action

The announcement of the machines also answers the question posed after York history Professor Thomas Cohen won a prize for naming two of the four machines Holey and Moley – see YFile, Feb. 17. Yorkie and Torkie were named by Vaughan resident Rose Rinella.

This first stage of work includes preparation for the excavation, utility diversions and installation of protection for the buildings. The initial activities include tree and landscape removals, installation of hoarding, minor utility relocation as well as contractor staging and site set up. The contractor will be installing hoarding across the north edge and partial east edge of the Seymour Schulich Buidling, within the south east end of the Harry W. Arthurs Common, across from the Accolade East Building.

There will be intermittent lane restrictions on Ian Macdonald Boulevard and York Boulevard for site preparations. Traffic control personnel will be on campus to facilitate the safe movement of pedestrian and vehicle traffic around construction work areas. All current roads will remain open and operational during this time.

Construction updates will be provided as required through the first stage of construction. A detailed update will be provided for the all subsequent stages, in advance of the work.

For more information on the subway, visit the Toronto York Spadina Subway Extension project website, e-mail to, or call 1-800-223-6192.