If you’re a Canadian, two major cities on everyone’s lips are Toronto and Montreal. The two most populated cities in Canada boast extensive train systems, and yours truly had to navigate both on a daily basis. So, how do the two stack up?
Toronto: While in Toronto, I stayed in two fairly densely populated areas, Yonge and Spadina. Both subway stations were a bit of a walk, at least 15 minutes. The stations in general are laid out decently, but seem to cover a concentrated area. The Yonge-Unversity-Spadina line is a U-shape, while the Bloor Danforth runs east and west, leaving out some grey areas in between.
Montreal: No matter where I was in the city, or what time of day a Metro station was always near. Whether hanging in Verdun, The Plateau, or NDG, I never felt stressed about finding a station to return to my hovel. Montreal’s lines are organized by color and destination name, which renders it simple to understand, even if you’re a lowly Anglophone. The orange line is a U-shape, but two separate lines (blue and green) intersect at different zones in the city east and west. That’s a lot of coverage.
The winner? Montreal. Excellent access all around!
Layout of Stations
Toronto: Their system is a veteran, first built in 1954 with 12 stations, but since then has expanded to 69 stations. Accessing the platforms is either by turnstile or heavy, awkward revolving doors, difficult to push myself and a backpack through.