Building a Scarborough subway could destroy part of a mature woodlot residents of Scarborough fought to save, Toronto Deputy Mayor Glenn De Baeremaeker says.

That’s something he won’t allow, he added this week.

“We will not be cutting down any of those trees,” De Baeremaeker said.

“Never in a million years would we destroy that forest.”

A TTC board member and champion of the proposed one-stop extension from Kennedy station to Scarborough Town Centre, De Baeremaeker confirmed TTC staff told him there are just two possible staging areas near the Town Centre for subway construction.

One is the gas bar and a strip plaza facing the woodlot on the south side of Ellesmere Road west of McCowan Road. Tenants of that commercial plaza appeared at a public meeting in Scarborough last week, asking about compensation if the City of Toronto forces them out.

The other choice, he said, is the woodlot, part of a five-hectare park between Ellesmere and Borough Drive.

The subway, according to the alignment revealed at the meeting, would have to cross under part of the woodlot and reach a parking lot of the shopping mall under part of Borough Drive. TTC officials said no other paths for the subway are possible without shutting down the aging Scarborough Rapid Transit line during five or six years of construction.

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