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Council to vote March 15 on Sheppard subway line

The Sheppard subway line's Don Mills Station.

Fred Lum/Fred Lum/The Globe and Mail

A date has been set for Toronto city council to decide the fate of the mayor's Sheppard subway plan – and fittingly, it's the Ides of March.

Councillors will vote March 15 on the recommendations of an expert panel struck to advise the city on whether the Sheppard line should be extended as an above-ground light-rail line or a subway.

In a serious blow to Mr. Ford, council voted earlier this month to revive much of the light-rail plan he killed on his first day in office. The mayor argues all new transit lines in Toronto should be buried.

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Meetings aren't normally scheduled during March break at Toronto City Hall.

"I don't know why that timing has been selected," said Councillor Peter Milczyn, a member of the mayor's executive committee. "I hope someone has a compelling reason why it had to be then and couldn't be a week later."

He was planning to be away from the office for a few days during the break, but he said he wouldn't miss the special meeting.

A motion passed at a special meeting earlier this month required council to vote on Sheppard on or before March 21. A jam-packed schedule of committee meetings the rest of the month made it difficult for the clerk to find a date outside the holiday week.

Councillor Josh Matlow said he expects the timing of the vote will not be an issue.

"I am cancelling plans and I think many people are because this is one of the biggest votes we will cast this term," he said.

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