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One Step Closer to Separated Bikelanes on Adelaide and Richmond Streets

Back in June, Rob Ford presented his BikePlan, which essentially was just a re-hashing of some earlier concepts by other politicians and I think, originally, by Dave Meslin, including most signficantly, an idea to put separated bikelanes on Richmond and Adelaide Streets.

That plan is one step closer now due to the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee carrying an item at their meeting on Thurs, Nov. 3rd to move ahead with an Environmental Assessment on the feasibility of the separated lanes.

The full text of the item is as follows:

1.         City Council authorize the General Manager of Transportation Services to initiate a Municipal Class Environmental Assessment study for separated bicycle lanes within the Richmond-Adelaide corridor, between Bathurst Street and Sherbourne Street, which could include consideration of a pilot project to install and evaluate separated bicycle lanes on the preferred alignment during the course of the study.

2.         City Council direct that the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment Study for separated bicycle lanes within the Richmond-Adelaide corridor be limited to existing one-way road configurations.

3.         City Council authorize the General Manager of Transportation Services to initiate a second study to develop preferred bikeway route alignments to connect the future Richmond-Adelaide corridor bike lanes to existing bikeways east of the Don Valley, including, but not limited to, Dundas Street East, Eastern Avenue, and the Lake Shore Boulevard East path, as well as to the west of Bathurst Street to connect with bikeways on Strachan Avenue and Shaw Street.

The PWIC Agenda Item on the City’s website has a lot more background information on this as well.  I recommend you checking it out if you’re interested.

[Image by Dave Meslin, via the Bike Union]

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Public Works Committee Kills Fort York Bridge

The dismantling of Toronto continues, sadly, with the Public Works Committee nixing plans for a beautiful cyclist and pedestrian bridge (above) meant to link Fort York to neighbourhoods and parks north of the rail corridor.

Councillour David Shiner - this is why we can't have nice (non-automotive) things.

Even though financing for the bridge is already budgeted, Councillor David Shiner, a Rob Ford ally who subscribes to the school of thought that anything that doesn’t make life easier for car drivers is too expensive, no matter how much value it brings to a neighbourhood or the city:

The bridge, said Shiner (Ward 24, Willowdale), does not need to be so “fancy” given the city’s fiscal constraints and given that it will not carry many people.

“You want to connect the people there, but at what cost? I have a lot of concern that we’re so financially tight — just think about what that $23 million could do for bridge rehab, for road repair; think of the community centres it could fix up, of the children’s services and child care centres it could provide,” he said.

“I think it’s important to have a sober second look at this, and that’s all I’m trying to do. I definitely want to have a connection; I know how important it is to connect our pathways and our parks. But this is like a Golden Gate Bridge . . . it’s unaffordable.”

Read the full article about this sad turn of events at theStar.com

I bet if this was a bridge for CARS, Shiner would be fine with throwing $23 million or $230 million towards construction.

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