From Union Station Toronto you can connect with trains, buses and the subway. Find out about tickets and facilities at the Toronto train station. Access the Toronto PATH. Learn more about this stunning heritage gem.
Union Station is Toronto's hub for both local and long-distance transportation. From here you can catch VIA Rail trains, GO Transit commuter trains and buses, and the subway. Travelling to Vancouver or New York City? Hamilton? Georgetown? Or just the Eaton's Centre, a few short blocks north? You can get there from here.
The Toronto train station is on the south side of Front Street between Bay and York. Its imposing limestone façade, with its 22 columns, fills the entire block.
VIA Rail Trains: You can buy tickets from the wickets in the Great
Hall on the main floor of Union Station Toronto. You can also purchase
them online at www.viarail.ca.
GO Transit: Purchase GO Transit train tickets on the concourse (basement) level of Toronto Union Station, or online at http://www.GO Transit.com. Buy GO Transit bus tickets across the street at the GO Bus Terminal at 141 Bay Street (from ticket vendors or from machines that take coins, debit and credit cards).
**NOTE:** If you're looking for other intercity buses (not GO Transit), you'll need to go to the Toronto Coach Terminal at 610 Bay Street. That's where you'll find Greyhound Canada Transportation Corporation (GCTC), Coach Canada/Trentway-Wager, Inc., Ontario Northlands Transportation Commission (ONTC), Penetang-Midland Coach Lines (PMCL) and Can Air Coach Service.
Subway: Purchase tickets in the Union subway station, which you can reach from the concourse (basement) level. Find schedules and maps for the Toronto Transit Commission (or TTC as it’s called for short) at http://www3.ttc.ca.
You board your train on the main level in the Departures Hall, another long hall just off the Grand Hall (less elegant but with plenty of space). You meet arriving guests downstairs on the Concourse.
There are some fast food/snack places on the main level of Union Station. Washrooms are in the west wing.
Downstairs, on the concourse level of Union Station Toronto, you'll find more fast food restaurants, a bar, a few stores. Washrooms are near the entrance to the GO Transit trains.
Union Station is linked to Toronto's 27-kilometre-long network of underground routes called the Toronto PATH which takes you into office towers and shopping malls downtown without the hassle of having to go outside in the winter.
There's also an overhead footbridge called Skywalk that starts in Union Station; it will take you over the train tracks to Metro Toronto Convention Centre and the Rogers Centre. You can print off a map at http://www.toronto.ca/path/pdf/path_brochure.pdf
Union Station Toronto is a landmark of downtown Toronto. It's a National Historic Site. The Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada considers it a building of "national architectural significance".
The Beaux-Arts gem was constructed in the golden era of train travel when stations were designed to look like palaces or temples, not shopping malls. It's my favourite building in Toronto. I think of it as the Cathedral of Canadian train stations.
You'll know what I mean once you pass through the limestone columns on Front Street and into the Great Hall with its marble patterned floors and high ceiling. Light flows in from the west and east ends of the station through windows four stories tall and through smaller windows set into the upper walls on the north and south sides. Even when I’m hurrying through the Toronto train station to make a connection, the beauty of this hall makes my spirits soar. My lungs expand. My muscles loosen. Instinctively I straighten my shoulders and walk taller.
Union Station is the third train station built in this area. The previous two were torn down. The current structure went through a bit of a strange birth. Construction began in 1914, was delayed for years during World War I, and finally completed in 1920. Then the station sat unused until 1927 because of legal squabbles between the Harbour Commission, the City and the railways (wow… sounds familiar…). A team of architects worked on the project: G.A. Ross and R.H. McDonald, Hugh Johnes and John M. Lyle.
On its official opening day, August 6, 1927, His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales cut the ribbons and was given the first ticket. The price for that ticket to Alberta? $71.20.