June 15, 2010
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Recent TCAT activities and news items:
- TCAT Presents Bloor Street Study at Toronto Cycling Advisory Committee
- TCAT invited to present at the Walk21 Conference in the Netherlands
- Preliminary results of multi-year study show streetcar tracks involved in 1/3 of cycling accidents in Toronto, often because cyclists have to move left to avoid parked cars
- Public buy-in crucial for getting Complete Streets, according to Spacing
- Changing Gears: Toronto releases new report on cycling in Toronto
- Traffic Control Signals and “No Turn on Red” at Public Works and Infrastructure Committee meeting on June 15 – Submit Your Comment
- "St. Clair Feet on the Street" - June 19 & 20
- Submit Your Comments – EA of Gardiner and Lake Shore Boulevard – June 20th
- TCAT Joins MEC’s Bikefest – July 3rd
- Walk and Roll Peel website now live – Visit site for more information on Peel Active Transportation Study
- New website maps cycling routes in Toronto
1. TCAT Presents Bloor Street Study at Toronto Cycling Advisory Committee
TCAT Director Nancy Smith Lea gave a presentation on Clean Air Partnership’s study “Bike Lanes, On-Street Parking and Business, Year 2 Report: A Study of Bloor Street in Toronto's Bloor West Village" to the Toronto Cycling Advisory Committee on June 7, 2010.
The committee made this decision following the presentation: "The Toronto Cycling Advisory Committee advises the General Manager, Transportation Services Division, that the Toronto Cycling Advisory Committee, as part of the upcoming Bloor/Danforth RFP process, supports the establishment of a continuous bike lane along the entire Bloor/Danforth corridor and that the noted bike lane be added to the Bikeway Network."
2. TCAT invited to present at the Walk21 Conference in the Netherlands
TCAT has been invited to present its current research on community-based walkability audits at the upcoming Walk21 Conference in the Netherlands. This research, commissioned by the City of Toronto, teases out issues relevant to community-based walkability audit tools - tools administered by community members, without the need for formal training.
Although in practice, there are many examples of community walkability audit tools, the literature pertaining to this subset of audit tools is extremely limited. The purpose of this research is to address these gaps.
Additional key findings include:
- Civic engagement and improving public discourse surrounding issues of walkability, although complementary goals, are not one in the same.
- Ensuring that information collected from a community walkability audit tool meet broader data collection needs requires that parameters for those data needs be communicated prior to developing the community walkability audit tool.
- Know who will be using your tool. Community members may be the primary users but not all community members are the same. What language(s) should the tool be available in? Can the same tool be used by different sub groups – i.e. seniors, children, etc.?
- The audit tool should be one component of a larger toolkit/resource section.
TCAT is currently working on drafting a prototype of a community-based walkability audit tool for the City of Toronto.
3. Preliminary results of multi-year study show streetcar tracks involved in 1/3 of cycling accidents in Toronto, often because cyclists have to move left to avoid parked cars
The University of British Columbia’s cycling research program, Cycling in Cities, released its preliminary findings of their Bicyclists' Injuries and the Cycling Environment study. TCAT first announced this study in 2007 when we were brought on as a consultant for Toronto.
Injuries and the Cycling Environment examined cycling routes in Toronto and Vancouver to determine what is associated with higher and lower rates of cycling injuries. The study interviewed over 600 adults injured while cycling and went to hospital emergency rooms between 2008 and 2009.
The preliminary finds, released last month and reported in the Globe and Mail, found street car tracks and dooring are heavily associated with cycling injuries in Toronto. According to Steven Friedman, an emergency room doctor that participated in the study, “’Out of 150 [accidents], roughly one-third involve streetcar tracks.’ In many cases, cyclists hit the tracks while avoiding double-parked cars or cars moving out of parking spaces.”
4. Public buy-in crucial for getting Complete Streets, according to Spacing
In her latest post, “Complete Streets: How to Build Them”, Hillary Best canvasses experts throughout North America to find out what gets Complete Streets built and finds that getting public support and political leadership are crucial components.
This is already happening in Toronto, Best points out, with Mayor David Miller opening TCAT’s Complete Streets Forum and the Public Realm Office and Transportation Services pushing a Complete Streets policy and pilot projects forward. The key? Getting the public to see how redesigning our streets creates safe and healthy communities that become destinations.
Read the full article here.
5. Changing Gears: Toronto releases new report on cycling in Toronto
The release this month of Changing Gears: Toronto for Cyclists documents cycling improvements in the city thus far and provides encouraging statistics about ridership. The report sets 7 priorities:
- Connecting the Bikeway Trails: Taking it off-road
- Completing the Downtown Bikeways: Building a solid core
- Providing Secure Bicycle Parking Options: Protecting your bicycle
- Launching a Public Bicycle Program: Making cycling more convenient
- Research & Data to Guide Investments in Cycling: Making the business case
- Engaging Communities to Support Cycling: Building successful programs together
- Training Cyclists and Drivers: Improving safety for all road users
The Toronto Star’s article on the report highlights the lack of attention the report gives to the Bike Plan’s 1000 kilometers of bike routes goal and instead how attention and focus has shifted to making improvements to the existing cycling network. This raises the question: How will the City spend the $70 million City Council approved in December for cycling infrastructure?
6. Traffic Control Signals and “No Turn on Red” at Public Works and Infrastructure Committee meeting on June 15 – Submit Your Comment
The Public Works and Infrastructure Committee, at its meeting of June 15, will be considering a staff report seeking authority to install 13 new traffic control signals and road alterations to enhance 5 uncontrolled trail crossings, related to 30 kilometres of new trails and 4 kilometres of upgraded trails along the Finch Hydro Corridor, Gatineau Hydro Corridor and CN Leaside Rail Corridor, across the North York and Scarborough Districts. View the report here.
In addition at its meeting on June 22 Toronto and East York Community Council, will consider a staff report to implement "No Right Turn on Red" regulations in order to facilitate the introduction of bike boxes and a pedestrian priority phase for pedestrian scrambles, at the following intersections.
- College Street and Spadina Avenue;
- College Street and St. George/Beverley Street;
- Harbord Street and Spadina Avenue;
- Harbord Street/Hoskin Avenue and St. George Street; and - Bloor Street West and Bay Street.
The staff report, TEY35.76 "Right Turn on Red Regulations", is available here.
Both reports will then be considered by City Council at its meeting of July 6 and 7.
Anyone wishing to submit correspondence related to either of these reports, or make deputations, should contact the City Clerk's Office, City Hall, 100 Queen Street West, Toronto ON M5H 2N2 or call 416-392-8016.
7. "St. Clair Feet on the Street" - June 19 & 20
The City of Toronto is celebrating the culture of walking with “St. Clair Feet on the Street”.
Pedestrians will get to enjoy St. Clair Avenue West closed to cars, but not streetcars, in both directions between Vaughan Road and Winona Drive on Saturday, June 19th from 5-11pm and on Sunday, June 20th from 9am-8pm.
The event will feature sidewalk sales, displays and information tables from businesses along the street and restaurant/café patios operating on the sidewalks. The TTC heritage streetcar will offer FREE rides on Sunday.
For more information, please see the attached poster, and please feel free to invite others to come and enjoy the "St. Clair Feet on the Street" event.
8.Submit Your Comments – EA of Gardiner and Lake Shore Boulevard – June 20th
An Environmental Assessment (EA) study is underway for the eastern Gardiner Expressway and Lake Shore Boulevard corridor between Jarvis Street and the Don Valley Parkway.
A survey of pedestrians, cyclists and drivers who use this corridor has started. Members of the general public are invited to provide their input so that informed, high quality decisions can be made about the future of the Gardiner.
The results of the survey will provide valuable public input about key travel behaviour and attitudes concerning the future of the eastern Gardiner-Lake Shore Corridor.
You can complete the online survey here by June 20, 2010.
9. TCAT Joins MEC’s Bikefest – July 3rd
- Bike clinics and seminars
- Bike swap
- Different bike rides through the city
- Live music and gear giveaway
Bikefest will be on July 3, 2010 at Toronto’s Liberty Village.
Proceeds from this event will be donated to MEC’s non-profit partner, Toronto Coalition for Active Transportation.
10. Walk and Roll Peel website now live – Visit site for more information on Peel Active Transportation Study
Walk and Roll Peel, a joint initiative between Peel, Mississauga, Brampton and Caledon, launched this month.
The website contains many resources on walking and cycling, everything from planning a recreational ride to research on active transportation to a greenhouse gas emissions calculator to help you figure out your emissions reductions from walking or biking.
Visit the website for:
- The Region-wide trails map;
- information about trails and paths in Peel;
- cycling and walking safety/rules/benefits;
- the cycling and walking Events Calendar + add your own event!
- the Lounge where users can share their thoughts about walking and cycling.
Available on their website now is notice of public consultation process for the Peel Active Transportation Study. The region is investigating ways to improve cycling and walking in Peel.
Visit the website here.
11. New website maps cycling routes in Toronto
A new website, Ride the City, is offering a mapping service just for cyclists. The site lets you choose from “safe”, “safer” and “direct” routes. Give it a shot!
- Bikechain events calendar
- Bike Events T.O., a joint project of Toronto Cyclists Union, Community Bicycle Network, and I Bike T.O.
- Biking Toronto events calendar
- City of Toronto cycling events
- Heritage Toronto Walks
- High Park Nature Centre
- Jane's Walk
- A Stroll in the Park
- Toronto Bruce Trail Club
- Toronto Field Naturalists
- Toronto Ornithological Club
If you know of other cycling or pedestrian related calendars to include, please let us know by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
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