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.
As reported in TCAT News,
Bike Summit 2008 was a huge success back in April of this year. One of
the goals for the one-day conference was to share the knowledge and
lessons learned at the summit with bicycle advocates, professionals and
elected officials unable to join us in Toronto. To this end, TCAT
helped to first coordinate a follow-up Bike Summit webinar, and now TCAT has prepared a summary report to help build the case for cycling investments in communities across Canada.
For over a year now the City has been talking about pulling together
all the various staff divisions involved with public space design to
create a Public Realm Division. This division would be responsible for
sidewalks, parkettes, signage, the coordinated street furniture
program, among other responsibilities.
As reported in TCAT News
the City is planning to build an active transportation connection into
Fort York over the railway tracks. According to the notice, "The
Fort York Pedestrian and Cycle Bridge is intended to provide a link
between Stanley Park to the north and the western area of Fort York
grounds to the south, improving the connections between the City, Fort
York and 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.
In the US, transportation infrastructure funding is a complicated
process. A large portion of funding is approved at the federal level
and can be administered by federal, state, regional, county and
municipal agencies. The current federal transportation bill is set to
expire shortly, and groups across the country are lobbying feverishly
to ensure that the next bill includes funding for what they believe is
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
Last Thursday in Ontario Divisional Court, cyclists joined a very
powerful contingent of litigants trying to reverse a City decision made
almost a decade ago. In the submission by a group of Bloor Street
merchants, aptly named Concerned About Bloor,
they argued that the City mis-classified the Bloor Transformation
process as a Schedule A roads project, thus negating the need for a
full environmental assessment. The Safe Cycling Coalition acted as intervener in the case, and also had the opportunity to support the argument made by Concerned About Bloor.
For those who ride BMX or maybe have kids that ride BMX, you might be
interested to learn that the City of Toronto is presenting a report to
develop a strategy and policy for BMX facilities. This report will go
to the Community Development and Recreation Committee at its meeting this Thursday, October 16th.
TCAT is thrilled to receive news that we have been awarded funding
toward three transportation research projects we proposed together with
the Clean Air Partnership. The funding is through the Toronto Community Foundation (TCF),
which is a founding sponsor of TCAT, and their continued support makes
TCAT's work possible. Other Toronto groups were also awarding funding
for projects. Below is an excerpt from the TCF press release.
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
Two weeks ago, Metrolinx released a draft version of its Regional
Transportation Plan (RTP) for the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area.
TCAT has been following the development and consultation that led to
this draft document, and so far we are generally happy with what we
see. Of course, Metrolinx is limited in how it can influence what is
translated on the ground in local municipalities. For example,
Metrolinx is committing $20 million per year to invest in cycling and
walking - however that incentive can only go so far in motivating local
One thing missing from the Metrolinx RTP, and more specifically the
accompanying Investment Strategy, is the discussion of implementing
road pricing. It seems as if this was too big a political pill to
swallow at this point in time. While TCAT is disappointed to hear this
news, we're inspired that the discussion is still going on. Please see
the notice below about an upcoming road pricing conference.