TTC Fantasy Maps - The Intrepid

Monday, April 06, 2009

TTC Fantasy Maps

TTC Fantasy Map Future

Like most Torontonians, we’re obsessed with the TTC and we’d love to see it expanded in wild and crazy ways. Sure, Transit City’s new LRT tracks are going to improve the system, but streetcars aren’t as sexy as subways. So to indulge our dreams, we decided to collect all of the fantasy maps out there, and we were honestly surprised by the sheer number of them.

Transit City

TTC Transit City
Image by rokkitz. Click to enlarge.

This is the TTC’s actual plan, which the City hopes to have completed by 2020. Considering the problems the City has had in the past with transit expansions, this map might just be the biggest fantasy of all.

Eglinton West Subway

TTC Eglinton West Subway
Image by Miguel Syyap. Click to enlarge.

Construction on this subway line began in 1994, but was halted by the Ontario Government under Mike Harris in 1995 and all of the excavation work was filled in. The project has been somewhat revived through Transit City’s Eglinton Crosstown LRT, which runs underground and roughly follows the proposed route for the Eglinton West Subway.

DRL (Downtown Relief Line)

TTC Downtown Relief Line DRL
Image by Miguel Syyap. Click to enlarge.

The Downtown Relief Line has been proposed numerous times as a way to relieve congestion on the Yonge Line and at Bloor-Yonge Station. Adam Giambrone, the current TTC chair, wants to complete the line by 2020. This is highly unlikely, as the plans have yet to be finalized and funding is still up in the air.


TTC Prototype Map
Photo by Sweet One. Click to enlarge.

This map was put together for a prototype train on display at the CNE. Apparently, the red lights indicate the stations you’ve been to, the green lights are where you’re going, and the yellow lights represent station interchanges. The lighting system doesn’t seem that useful, but it’s nice to see that the TTC might eventually make it to Vaughan.

Lakeshore Local Line

TTC Lakeshore Local Map
Image by photosapience. Click to enlarge.

We’re not sure that a Lakeshore line is all that pertinent.

The Greater Toronto Map

TTC Fantasy Map GTA Greater Toronto
Image by Miguel Syyap. Click to enlarge.

We like this design, except for the lack of new lines in the west end and the fact that the Toronto Zoo doesn’t get a station.

The Boat Line
TTC Fantasy Map Toronto Subway
Image by Daniel Perz. Click to enlarge.

There are two problems with this map: there’s no line connecting the Bloor and Eglinton lines in the west and no line connecting the Danforth, Eglinton, and Sheppard lines in the east. If this design ever became a reality, hopefully the red line would be extended from Dundas West to Keele North and from Pape through Leslie South to Leslie North.

The Squiggly Map
TTC Fantasy Map

Image by Transit Toronto. Click to enlarge.

Like the Boat Line, this map needs a vertical line in the west end somewhere around Dundas West station.

The Night Girl Map
TTC Subway and LRT Fantasy Map
Image by James Bow. Click to enlarge.

The design of this map is pretty good, though the artist might be overdoing it in the northwest.

Paul Grant's Map
TTC Fantasy Map
Image by Paul Grant. Click to enlarge.

In one of the better ideas we've seen, the DRL and the Sheppard Line have been turned into a loop.

The Ridiculously Complicated Map
TTC Fantasy Map
Image by Laurence Lui. Click to enlarge.

A well designed and fairly realistic map.

The Dream Map

TTC Fantasy Map Future
Image by Ryan Felix.Click to enlarge.

According to the author, the new lines are supposed to be LRT tracks. But imagine if they were subway tunnels...drool.

Update: Our Dream Map

TTC Dream Map
Image by Stephen M.

After critiquing the fantasy maps that you see here, we decided to build our own. Check it out.

Update: Dieter Janssen's TTC Fantasy Map

 Dieter Janssen TTC Fantasy Map
Image by Dieter Janssen.

This map was created by University of Toronto professor Dieter Janssen. While I don't agree with all the design decisions—a line on Keele and on Jane seems rather redundant—this is probably the most professional looking map I've seen (including my own). You can read my write up about the map at Torontoist.

Update: Screw the LRTs we want Subways

GTA TTC Fantasy Map
Image by Miguel Syyap. Click to enlarge.

This map is highly unrealistic; though we do love seeing subways everywhere.

Update (04/08/2009): TO Penguin's Map

TTC Route Map
Image by TO_Penguin. Click to enlarge.

This map mostly just fills in Transit City's upcoming LRT lines, but there are few extensions on the Spadina line and the Scarborough RT.

Update (24/08/2009): TO Penguin's Map (Final Edition)

TTC Fiction Map
Image by TO_Penguin. Click to enlarge.

This is a realistic map that makes use of both subways and LRTs to create an integrated transit net. Its only shortcoming is in the west. Etobicoke needs some sort of line—subway or LRT—running north to south.

Update (03/09/2009): Derek Jensen's Fantasy Map

TTC Route Map

This map was put together by Derek Jensen, a regular Torontoist reader and commenter. I have never been a big fan of splitting the Spadina-Yonge line, but it actually makes sense here. It also has the added bonus of allowing the Weston Line to connect to the Toronto Island Airport. You can read more about this map here.

Update (20/09/2009): Jupiter's Fantasy Map

TTC Downtown Relief Line
Image by Jupiter. Click to enlarge.

Another proposal for the Downtown Relief Line.

Network 2011 Plan

TTC Downtown Relief Line
Image by C. Livett. Click to enlarge.

This proposal for the Downtown Relief Line was put together in 1985. You can read more about it here.

Update (18/10/2009): The New Blue

TTC Extension Map
Image by Dieter Jansen. Click to enlarge.

An early draft of Dieter Janssen's TTC Fantasy Map.

Update (26/10/2009): Brainfreezed's Fantasy Map

Future TTC Map
Image by Brainfreezed. Click to enlarge.

Another practical map from the people over at Urban Toronto.

Future T.O.

Future TTC Map
Image by TO Penguin. Click to enlarge.

This is the first time I think I've ever seen a Kipling line.

Update (13/11/2009):Future Transit Map
Future Transit Map TTC
Image by MisterF. Click to enlarge.

Another highly realistic transit map.


Unknown said...

Thanks for the link to my photo! :) (the CNE one)

No fantasies there, though - that map actually illustrates the Spadina line extension that will be underway as soon as they get the remaining details sorted out -- that project's a-go pretty soon!

Stephen M. said...

The TTC has started expansions before and stopped work. (See: Eglinton Subway Line) The expansion to Vaughan will probably be completed, but you never know how budget shortfalls or a change in government might affect the project.

Daniel Perz said...

Thanks for referencing my map. Though I'd appreciate it if you referenced my map (what you call the Boat Line) with my name (Daniel Perz) rather than my Yahoo/flickr username (starryeyedguy).

In regards to the DRL, it could always go further north on both sides, at least as far as Eglinton. I've thought about it before, but haven't touched the map in a month or two.

Nice post with all the fantasy maps though! :)

Stephen M. said...

No problem. Thanks for making the map in the first place.

James Bow said...

Thanks for the link, and I'm glad you liked the map. Why did you decide to refer to it as "the 70s map", though?

If you wouldn't mind, why not refer to it as "The Night Girl" map, as the map goes with the story I'm working on (see Of course, in the course of this story, this subway network is only possible thanks to the infusion of extremely cheap troll labour. :-)

Stephen M. said...

I started naming the maps after their characteristics and your colour scheme reminded me of the 1970s.

But I'll change it to "The Night Girl" for you.

James Bow said...

Many thanks. You guys interested in joining the Blogging Alliance of Non-Partisan Canadians? You qualify. (More at

Unknown said...

Thanks for referencing my map, hahaha. BTW; Sly Lockhart is my pseudonym when I first started doing this stuff. If you notice, my work and "Sly's" look the same.

I have a newer map hosted at my website: here

Kenneth M. Kambara said...

Great blog & great post! I hope you don't mind me linking to it. I wish I saw this before I made my post. Cheers.

Stephen M. said...

Sure, no problem Kenneth. You might want to check out this fantasy map by a professor at U of T. I wrote up an article about it a few weeks ago for Torontoist.

Stephen M. said...

Nevermind, I see you've already taken a look at it.

Paul G said...

Thanks for profiling my map! ("Compact Map") and I really enjoy seeing everyone's maps, and conveniently on one page.
Mine comes from my Interactive Map (made with Flash) where people can click on stations to hide them, and click on tracks to change their colour.
Could you change the link on my name to this:

Stephen M. said...

Hi Paul.

I've made the changes you asked for, and I changed the name of the map to Paul Grant's Map.

I used your loop idea as the inspiration for my own crazy map.



Unknown said...

Ridiculously Complicated map needs a username and password.

Stephen M. said...

hmmm... I'll try to find another link to that map.

Stephen M. said...

The links to the "Ridiculously Complicated Map" have been updated.

Dieter Janssen said...

Great work Stephen!

Have you considered having an exhibition of these maps anywhere? The Design Exchange or the Toronto Public Library or Spacing Magazine?

I've updated my map - mostly minor changes in response to commentary. If you're updating this post, I'm happy to forward you the new image file.


Stephen M. said...

Hi Dieter,

No, I haven't considered that possibility.

Since writing this post, the number of TTC fantasy maps out in the ether has kind of exploded. There's hundreds of them out there now.

I think an exhibition of all the different maps would be interesting, but unfortunately I wouldn't have the time to put it together.

By all means, send me an updated copy of your map.

soli82cat said...

how do you guys create a fantasy map using the existing ttc map?

Unknown said...

Websites are not expenses, they are investments with great returns if done correctly.
As an integrated web site developer, we serve a diverse list of clients
and industries. Myriad Interactive Media delivers strategic ideas in brand
strategy, communications, web design and application development solutions.
We do not develop just "a" website. We develop successful web sites that have
the highest return on investment.

toronto web design
toronto website design
toronto website development anchor texts

John Ross Harvey said...

Find my Greater Southern Ontario concepts c/w budgets in the dropbox link, too large to upload much of it via emails.

Load the Powerpoints for the clear as mud version.

GTA, Peel, Durham, Simcoe, Wentworth, Niagara, you name it, I probably did it.

Steeve Frank said...

We offer web development in toronto. Toronto web designer have a look.

yotoronto12 said...

Really wished 70% of the actual TTC plan happened. sorry 2009!