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Does Harbord Need a Bi-Directional Separated Bikelane?


Harbord St. might be getting a shake-up as the city drafts plans for a bi-directional cycling track, coming in 2014. At a consultation at Kensington Gardens last week, planners heard out opinionated cyclists and unveiled plans to construct a route leading around the Queens Park Circle and continuing west to Ossington. Some expressed concerns over whether or not the strip actually needs this bi-directional lane, or if money might be better spent on new tracks and painting new lanes in other areas that have been getting less attention, with a less efficient lane currently implemented.

Read more: Toronto Standard

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Subway Closure? More Bikes!

This is a good post to share with your friends who don’t bike (yet).

We had better gear up for lots of new cyclists on the road this October… the TTC is shutting down the subway for 9 (!) consecutive days to upgrade the signal system.

Badly needed upgrades will grind subway service to a halt in the heart of downtown for nine consecutive days in October, an unprecedented closure that stands to affect hundreds of thousands of commuters.

While the TTC replaces the outdated, increasingly unreliable signalling system that caused a major disruption this week, there will be no service on the Yonge-University-Spadina line between Osgoode and King stations, from Oct. 12 to 20.

The entire downtown “U,” from St. George to Bloor stations, will be closed during the two weekends that bookend the nine-day period, the first of which is Thanksgiving weekend.

Full story: TTC plans unprecedented subway closure | Toronto Star.

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Bi-directional bike lane coming to Harbord in 2014

Fabulous article from Dandyhorse on the planning of the Harbord Separated bikelane:

In 2011, City Council voted to begin designing and consulting with the public on a separated bike lane on Harbord-Hoskin, as part of a downtown network of separated bike lanes, which will also include Wellesley, the Bloor Viaduct, Sherbourne and Beverley (south of College).

On Thursday, June 27, the City hosted a drop-in public consultation session at Kensington Gardens, and unveiled plans for a separated, bi-directional bike lane on Harbord and Hoskin, which will include a bi-directional bike path around the periphery of Queens Park Circle and continue west to Ossington (about 2.5 kilometres).

Full story: City plans to install bi-directional bike lane on Harbord in 2014 | dandyhorse magazine.

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Does infrastructure design lead to bad behavior on bikes?

Lloyd Alter of TreeHugger weighs in on if cyclists should play by rules made for cars:

Toronto City councillor Karen Stintz gets a $110 ticket for rolling through a stop sign that didn’t exist. Toronto’s own Dorothy Rabinowitz, Judith Timson is outraged that Stintz is fighting the ticket, writing in the Star: “She’ll get off on a technicality. Know what you should do Karen? Set an example, pay up, and quit rolling through stops. It’s against the law.” Timson says “I’m a motorist … and I’ve come to the end of silently tolerating cyclists who break the law.”

Timson and the hundreds of commenters on every article attacking cyclists miss the point about why they roll through stop signs. It’s because the infrastructure is designed to control cars.

Full article: Bad infrastructure design leads to bad behavior on bikes : TreeHugger.

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How should we deal with law-breaking cyclists?

The Star has a tough article to pigeonhole today – it starts off all “linkbait-ish”, with a title designed to play to the (wrong) self-righteousness of drivers who feel that any transgression by a cyclist is justification for road rage.  A cyclist rolls slowly through a stop sign?  Let’s yell at/ticket/license them!!  Let’s ignore that 90% of car drivers do the same thing, often at higher speeds.

It then tries to trash Karen Stintz for fighting a ticket she received for rolling through a stop sign… a stop sign which doesn’t exist.

Finally, the article gets a little better and talks about how most cyclists are law-abiding and most drivers are careful drivers, yet it’s the small minority of idiots riding bikes and drive cars that ruin it for everyone else.

What do YOU think?  Do you think a slow rolling stop is a cardinal sin?  Do you yell at cyclists bombing through red lights (like I do)?  Do you know the solution?

Please leave your thoughts in the comments below.

I am a motorist, fearful and angry, and I’ve come to the end of silently tolerating cyclists who break the law — placing themselves and others in danger.

Karen Stintz — TTC Chair and possible mayoral candidate — tweeted last week that she got a $110 ticket for a rolling stop, but she’s “fighting it” because even though she admits doing rolling stops, the stop sign cited on the ticket didn’t exist. She’ll get off on a technicality. Know what you should do Karen? Set an example, pay up, and quit rolling through stops. It’s against the law.

Full article: Law-breaking cyclists putting everyone in danger: Timson | Toronto Star.

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