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Thursday, April 15, 2010

More Bicycle Lanes coming to Toronto

CANADA - Good news for Toronto cyclists, there are more bicycle lanes coming and even a pilot project for an European style dedicated bike lane (with barrier posts).

The three-month pilot project will see two car lanes — one northbound, one southbound – removed from University Avenue between Richmond St. W. and Wellesley St. W./Hoskin Ave. Cyclists will get their own lane alongside the inner median, separated from motorized traffic by a metre-wide buffer and solid dividing posts.

HOWEVER this pilot project seems rather silly... the area they've chosen doesn't really connect anything. Its not a high traffic zone for cyclists.

A better solution would have been dedicated bike lanes in areas that have large numbers of cyclists (or even a history of cycling accidents), and then expand from that area in a grid-like fashion.

Plus its TINY. A mere 1.3 km on a stretch of street that has really only be chosen because it goes from Osgoode Station to Queen's Park (the home of the Ontario Provincial Legislature)... Its as if Toronto City Hall is trying to piss off the Ontario MPPs.

The various Mayoral candidates are currently bucking for attention and its my feeling they are just using the bicycle lanes issue as political fodder and cyclists/motorists as pawns.

Here's how the 5 main mayoral candidates stand:

Sarah Thompson want to focus more on expanding the TTC subway. Less cars on the road means less gridlock and more room for both drivers and cyclists. See Sarah Thompson's Subway Expansion Proposal.

Joe Pantalone wants to expand bicycle lanes in high traffic areas for cyclists and also areas with a history of bicycle accidents.

Rocco Rossi hates cyclists. He wants to scrap bicycle lanes altogether and go back to the dark ages.

Giorgio Mammoliti said he would charge cyclists $20-$30 to register their bikes and use the lanes. (Like hell I am paying that! I pay my taxes, I have a right to use the road like any other commuter.)

George Smitherman has yet to take a solid stance and seems to favouring the status quo.

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