May 16, 2022

Adapting Maslow's Hierarchy to Bikes

Over the past decade, I have seen how Toronto’s cycling advocacy has evolved. While advocating for painted bike lanes may have been fine back in 2012 – one year before Toronto’s first separated bike lanes officially opened on Sherbourne Street – it certainly is not the case today where the constant threats of parking in bike lanes prompted the need for physical protection. However, advocating for safe streets goes far beyond adding physical protection. To reflect on this exercise, I took a crack at adapting Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs to cycling infrastructure.

May 04, 2022

May 2022 Cycling Consultation Catchup

As if January and February were not busy enough for cycling related public consultations, the City of Toronto has announced at least five more for May with the possibility of another two. A record for this city, perhaps? 😉 These include the Martin Grove Bikeway, Bloor Street Upgrades, Huntingwood Drive Upgrades, Mid Humber Gap, and Gerrard East Complete Street. Let’s see what the consultation materials have to offer and suggest some improvements.
Rendering of Martin Grove multi-use path (via City of Toronto)

April 27, 2022

Toronto Loop (and a Protected Intersection)

On Sunday, April 24, Albert, Mark, Arthur, and I from the Toronto Community Bikeways Coalition joined urban planner Al Rezoski for a ride covering the Toronto Loop. This recreational loop is 81 kilometres long which consists of the Martin Goodman Trail, Humber River Trail, Finch Hydro Corridor, and the Don River trail system. The loop is one of Mayor John Tory’s long term initiatives which has the potential to encourage cycle tourism in the city. Before starting by Queen’s Park, Al showed us a map of the loop and highlighted the following seven gaps which we planned to stop at for discussion. Some of these gaps will be addressed with the latest bike plan.

  • Stephen Drive (north of The Queensway)
  • Weston Road (between St. Phillips Road and Cardell Avenue)
  • Finch Hydro Corridor (between Weston Road and Norfinch Drive)
  • G Ross Lord Park (near Finch Avenue and Dufferin Street)
  • Yonge Street (at Hendon and Bishop Avenues)
  • Betty Sutherland Trail (between Duncan Mill and York Mills Roads)
  • West Don River Trail (near Eglinton Avenue and Leslie Street)

Toronto Loop highlighted in orange with the seven gaps circled

April 20, 2022

Expanding the Micromobility Discussion

Last month, I got a BlueRev X8 e-scooter which convinced me on how e-scooters can be a great last mile solution and made getting to work a lot easier. However, Toronto upheld its ban on this micromobility solution back in May 2021. I would like to take a deeper dive into this topic and make the case for why Toronto should legalize the use of personally owned e-scooters. For this post, I would like to acknowledge Jamie Stuckless – owner of Stuckless Consulting and former Share The Road Executive Director – for contributing to this discussion.

March 26, 2022

A Different Kind of Two Wheels

This past week was my first week back to the office under a hybrid model since the COVID-19 pandemic began. However, my employer moved their head office from Dufferin and Lawrence – which was bikeable for me – to Vaughan which definitely is not. The new office is a 20 minute walk from Vaughan Metropolitan Centre station and the TTC prohibits bikes on the subway during rush hour (for good reason given how packed it was on Thursday evening). To address this mobility gap, I did something on Tuesday evening which can make some fellow bike riding people cringe.

March 23, 2022

Mississauga Momentum for Bloor Bike Lanes

Earlier in March, I reported on the fight Mississauga advocates had on their hands regarding getting bike lanes installed on their part of Bloor; most notably the ridiculous complaints over charter rights. There has been a renewed sense of momentum since then with Mississauga’s third community meeting on Wednesday, March 9 and Sunday’s Ride for Bike Lanes on Bloor. Let’s recap these recent developments, as well as introduce the group Mississauga Cycling Now.

March 12, 2022

Let's Make ActiveTO on Yonge Permanent!

Yesterday, Sabrina (Brie) Young posted in the Cycling in Toronto Facebook group a flyer she received calling on residents to e-mail the Infrastructure and Environment Committee, Mayor Tory, and City Council to remove the ActiveTO complete street pilot on Yonge Street. To add insult to injury, the “Be Green. Be Rational.” tagline was used along with easily debunked arguments such as bike counts during the winter months, greenhouse gas emissions while idling, and the ability for first responders to get through. Sure, the line about the Yonge bike lanes being narrow may have some merit, but it should be noted Bloor Street from Spadina to Lansdowne Avenues is similarly narrow at less than 13 metres wide and the bike lanes worked fine. A petition was started about six months ago calling for the removal of the Yonge bike lanes which got more than 1200 signatures at the time of writing (which I won't share here for obvious reasons).

Given opponents have been organizing ahead of the March 29 IEC meeting which could see the ActiveTO complete street pilot get debated, it’s time for supporters to flip the script by urging the committee and city council to take the true green and rational action of making the Yonge pilot permanent. In addition, supporters need to call for bike lanes on Yonge to be extended north and south as soon as possible to connect with the Eglinton Crosstown LRT and future projects in Downtown and North York Centre.

Below is a sample e-mail you can use for your action, though I would encourage you to personalize it to share your story on why a complete street on Yonge is important to you. Cycle Toronto sent this action alert via e-mail this morning about Yonge, along with a link to their Yonge petition which has more than 3000 signatures.