June 22, 2022

An In Person Consultation for Broadview

Monday marked the first cycling public consultation I got to attend in person since the COVID-19 pandemic began. As much as it can be more convenient to attend the virtual ones – especially when they are far away – the experience helped me appreciate the value of in person sessions. Mainly the ability to ask more detailed questions to city staff, use sticky notes to comment on street roll out plans, and network with staff and other residents. Let’s review what the Broadview Extension environmental assessment has to offer and how the City can build on the plan.

June 16, 2022

RANT – Death of ActiveTO Lake Shore West

For those of you who don’t remember, Toronto stubbornly refused to provide space for people who walk or bike in March and April 2020 when virtually every other major Canadian city was doing so to allow for physical distancing early in the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite dragging their feet in creating ActiveTO two years ago which ended up being highly popular, Toronto City Council accepted staff recommendations to scrap ActiveTO on Lake Shore West – the program’s crown jewel – except for a limited number of occasions. It seems old habits really die hard here in Caronto and there is too much eagerness to return to the status quo with people returning to the offices post-pandemic.

June 14, 2022

WTF is up with Eglinton?

The long anticipated Eglinton Crosstown LRT is nearing completion with service expected to start next year. As for what that means from a cycling perspective the City of Toronto recently announced a virtual public meeting scheduled for Wednesday, June 22 under the name eglintonTOday. (Yes, Toronto is addicted to branding everything TO.) Let’s review what this project has in store, how it differs from Eglinton Connects, and what else has been done on Eglinton.
Eglinton Connects rendering (Via SvN)

May 19, 2022

Parkside Design Options Coming to IEC

Seven months ago, Valdemar and Fatima Avila were killed while in their car at Parkside Drive and Spring Road; an intersection which is a short walk from my (soon to be former) home and one Helen and I pass by often to walk our dog Mozzie. Parkside Drive is a significant safety hazard with three fatalities and eleven people seriously injured since 2008 per the City of Toronto’s Vision Zero Mapping Tool. Since the Parkside Drive Safety Measures motion was passed at City Council in November 2021 despite resident objections over adding Green P parking, the speed limit has been reduced to 40 km/h and a speed camera has been implemented. Now, an interim report for the High Park Movement Strategy (Motion IE30.16) is headed to the Infrastructure and Environment Committee on Wednesday, May 25 which includes several design options for Parkside Drive.
Speed Camera Installed on Parkside Drive (via Michelle Dow in Safe Parkside Facebook group)

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