Wednesday, January 18, 2023

The Toronto Midtown Yonge Complete Street Pilot needs to become permanent!

For decades, many parts of Toronto have been dangerous for most cyclists and pedestrians.

Slowly, thanks to the leadership of community activists and many others, we continue to see gradual improvements to our road infrastructure that promotes safety for all.  While a fully integrated network of bike lanes that connects the whole city remains elusive, there has been big progress on its creation. 

Furthermore, as a winter cyclist, I can attest that most bike lanes in the downtown core are promptly cleared within a couple days of snowfalls.

The permanent implementation of bike lanes on Bloor West has improved road safety for everyone, without impacting significantly on motorist driving times. 

A more recent major win for safety was the Midtown Yonge Complete Street Pilot which temporarily created bike lanes as well as more car parking and street design on Yonge Street north of Bloor all the way up to Davisville Avenue. 

These bike lanes have impacted on me directly as my doctor's office is located on Yonge Street south of St. Clair Avenue.  Before the pilot project, I took considerable risk cycling north or south along Yonge.  So I am sincerely grateful for the pilot.  

City of Toronto data recently released shows the Yonge Street pilot streetscape between Davisville and Bloor continues to see increased use from pedestrians and cyclists with minimal disruption to the flow of traffic.  This jibes with my experience along Bloor West, where the complete street makes for a safer, more predictable trip for all involved, including motorists.  

It's urgent that the Midtown Yonge Complete Street pilot become permanent, in my humble opinion.   

We are down to a couple of weeks until the Midtown Yonge Complete Street is voted on at the Infrastructure & Environment Committee (IEC) on January 30th at Toronto City Hall.  I've been happy to help out a bit to support the group Yonge4All, including its super-active leader Holly Reid, which has been advocating for the pilot and collecting signatures from residents supporting it being made permanent.  

If you haven't signed the petition, here is the link.   

And please consider contacting Mayor John Tory or your local councillor if you agree.  I'll update this page in the days ahead with more information and ways to support this important cause.  

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