Tiny, forgotten Ellesmere. [R.I.P.: see note at bottom]

Ellesmere station exterior night view
A translucent star creature about to digest a meal.
Foreground: GO train tracks.

As you ride the toy-like RT to this forlorn transit outpost in the middle of the night, your weary mind begins to wander. You start to reminisce, to muse about that special person who once captured your heart, long ago.

You know who I’m talking about. Her gentle, sad smile clouds your thoughts to this very day. What ever became of her? Where is she now?

Is she loved?

Ellesmere station eastern entrance
The Great Pit of Carkoon awaits

Arriving at Ellesmere interrupts your reverie, but not the mood of loneliness. By far the least-used station in the entire TTC system, Ellesmere trounces even the infamous Bessarion for lowest ridership—on most days, a single Toronto Rocket train would suffice to contain all those who pass through its gates.

Ellesmere station entrance corridor
Welcome to Inhospitable Concrete 101

Ellesmere station opened March 22, 1985. A jewel of fluorescent solitude in the evening dark, Ellesmere brooks no rival for contemplative stillness. Enjoy it while you can, and accept that you can never change the past.

Update: Of the three RT stations that retained artwork from the 2018 Nuit Blanche festival, Ellesmere undeservedly got the weakest submission. 

AM I OK? prompts the answer: No.

Tabban Soliemani’s AM I OK? is a cartoony piece that comes off as amateurish. It effectively looks as if the station got tagged with graffiti, and then wasn’t cleaned up. Moreover, did Ellesmere really need an installation that explores ‘the bleak place of emotional and mental confusion led by feelings of helplessness’?

For a one-night event I’m sure it was a provocative work that contributed to the larger exhibit, but I’m at a loss as to why the TTC decided to keep it. Maybe they figured nobody cares about Ellesmere anyway. 

Maybe they were right. 

Update 2023:

On the evening of July 24, 2023 the last car of a southbound RT train decoupled from the rest of the vehicle and derailed, immediately south of Ellesmere. Service was suspended from that point on. This event proved to be an early death-knell for the Scarborough RT, since it had been scheduled for decommissioning November 19, 2023 anyway. On August 24, 2023 the TTC announced the decision to permanently shutter the Scarborough RT.

Photo Gallery

Tour the station, and view captioned historical images from its past:

Ellesmere station photo gallery

Ellesmere station transfer
Ellesmere station transfer

More about Ellesmere

TTC Station info | Map | Wikipedia: Ellesmere

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