Cyclists who haven't had the opportunity to ride on Wellesley Street
lately are in for a pleasant surprise. New bike lanes have been
installed, all the way from Queen's Park to Parliament. The lanes are a
great new addition to the bikeway network - providing a good connection
to the University of Toronto and the Hoskin/Harbord bike lanes. See
photos posted here.
As reported in last week's TCAT News,
City Council voted to install bicycle lanes on Annette Street,
reversing the plan approved by the Public Works and Infrastructure
Committee to install "sharrows" instead. Sharrows are painted arrows on
the pavement reminding drivers to share the road, but they do not
provide the protected space on the road that bike lanes do. The Globe
Last week cycling advocates witnessed the potential of a strong
political push for bicycling at City Council. Despite an initial
setback at the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee meeting,
pro-cycling councillors voted to reverse the committee's decision to
install sharrows, and instead directed staff to install full bike lanes
instead. Ward 13 residents and Annette Street users can now expect a
full bike lane to be painted from Jane to Runnymede.
Last September, TCAT made a deputation to Toronto and East York
Community Council in support of a proposal to study an alternate
crossing for the current at-grade crossing of the rail corridor on
Strachan Avenue. We stressed the fact that any new crossing design
should meet the safety needs of cyclist and pedestrians first, since
this is a major connection to the waterfront.
Last week, TCAT News reported on immediate action needed
to show City Council your support for the Annette Street bike lane,
which is facing challenges to approval at City Hall. This effort is
being led by the local group World19.
TCAT has heard from City Hall insiders that the chances of overturning
the committee decision at City Council are looking pretty good, but the
e-mails of support are still needed to back-up this effort.
From the City's bicycle infrastructure planning group:
Do you live in the downtown west-end in the area bounded by Bloor
and the Gardiner, from Keele to Bathurst? Do your ride a bicycle? If
you answered yes, we want to hear from you!
In partnership with the Toronto Cyclists Union, the City of
Toronto is seeking your ideas on bikeway projects for west-end Toronto.
We are looking for quick fixes that can be built in 2009-2010, so
please keep in mind potential hurdles associated with your suggestions.
Yesterday, TCAT News reported on the disappointing defeat for bike lanes at last week's Public Works and Infrastructure Committee
meeting. Cycling advocates from a broad range of groups have been
working hard in the past few days, trying to find out what can done to
While we are nearing the end of the construction season, and the City
is far short of its target to install 50 km of bike lanes in 2008, only
one bike lane was up for approval at last Friday's Public Works and Infrastructure Committee.
The Annette Street bike lane from Runnymede to Jane was actually a
deferred decision from a previous committee meeting. After some debate
over the reduction in some on-street parking to accommodate the bike
One of the above-mentioned projects for which TCAT has been awarded
funding is a study looking at the impact on business resulting from the
removal of on-street parking in order to install bike lanes. The study
area is the Annex section of Bloor Street, between Spadina and
Bathurst. The findings from this report should be published by the end
of 2008 and will be of significant interest to City staff working on
the Bloor Corridor Visioning Study. This study was mostly completed in
2007, but the final report was just recently released (thanks to one
A group calling itself the Safe Cycling Coalition has
been granted the right to intervene in the recently launched court case
involving some members of the Bloor-Yorkville Business Improvement
Area. The court case is challenging the decision by the City not to
conduct a full Environmental Assessment (EA) for the Bloor
transformation project. Below is an excerpt from last week's press