01/22/2015 12:37 EST | Updated 03/24/2015 05:59 EDT

John Tory's SmartTrack plan before executive committee

Mayor John Tory’s SmartTrack plan, a key platform of his election campaign last year, is on top of the agenda at city council’s executive committee meeting Thursday.

City council is considering additional funding of $1.65 million to carry out various studies to review the SmartTrack plan — $750,000 in 2015 and $900,000 in 2016. Another $750,000 has already been approved for 2015.

Tory's SmartTrack plan calls for 53 kilometres of high-speed surface rail lines to be built along existing Go Transit rail corridors. 

The U-shaped line would run into downtown from Mt. Denis in the northwest, down to Union Station then follow the GO Stouffville line up to Unionville.  

City council is also asked to study the feasibility of the SmartTrack options on the Eglinton Avenue West corridor, from Mount Dennis station to the Mississauga Airport Corporate Centre.

The additional funding sought in Thursday's meeting would be used toward various feasibility studies and assessments of the Eglinton option, which would include at least three stations and be integrated with the Kitchener GO corridor and the regional Go Transit expansion plan. 

Tory said the plan can bring relief to the city’s overcrowded subway system within seven years. He has pegged its cost at $8 billion.

In December, the council voted 42-1 to approve a motion that will speed-up the research phase for the SmartTrack plan. Former mayor and currently Ward 2 Etobicoke North Coun. Rob Ford was the only councillor to vote no. 

Thursday’s meeting is the executive committee’s first in 2015.