Congratulations, Toronto For Supporting Bixi; 1,000 Subscriber Goal Reached!

Toronto Bixi

Last night, October 18, 2010, Bixi Toronto held a party for the existing 884 subscribers.

According to ibikeTO.ca the party was a success and coincided with the announcement that the 1,000 early subscribers goal set by Toronto City Council was reached (and surpassed)!

However, Bixi Toronto is not a sure thing just yet. The good news is that you can help. In addition to 1,000 early subscribers the bike share system also needs to secure $600,000 in sponsorship. Of that total, ING Direct has contributed $450,000. The remaining money can come from both additional sponsors and from subscribers beyond the 1,000 mark.

If you haven’t subscribed to Bixi Toronto yet you can do so here: http://toronto.bixi.com/

If your company would like to become a sponsor, information can be found here: Corporate Memberships and How to Sponsor Bixi Toronto

Patch stencil artwork by Janet Bike Girl

Biking, ‘Blading, Bearding in Muskoka

Via RollToronto.ca

The Changing Face of the NYC Commute

11 miles is just shy of 18 kms and a fairly long commute. Yet, because of constant development and political support for cycling infrastructure 90% of this journey includes streets featuring some form of cycling infrastructure.

Notice that only a small percentage of the ride is along streets with sharrows and, notice too, that NYC DOT isn’t trying to squeeze one size fits all cycling infrastructure onto a wide variety of streets.

Thinking back on my former commute, 25 kms each way and exactly 0% of my route including any form of cycling infrastructure, it’s no wonder I was often alone on two wheels. Cycling along major arterials with boulevards wide enough to play soccer on I wondered why there wasn’t a bike path there. I would cross over multi-lane bridges that themselves spanned across 400 series highways and wondered why both cyclists and pedestrians were ignored there as well.

Real cycling infrastructure influences real change. How hard is that to understand?

Via StreetFilms.org

Marry Me – The Trials of Young Love and Bicycles

Via Copenhagen Cycle Chic

Bicycles on Bloor?

Construction on Bloor between Avenue Road in the west and Yonge Street in the east is starting to be cleared. Revealed beneath the trucks and equipment are bicycle stencils on the fresh asphalt.

Now, these aren’t sharrows as they are missing directional chevrons.

And these aren’t bike lanes as they are missing painted lines and the diamond.

Best guess is that these are sharrows simply missing their hats as there are sharrows on Bloor east of Yonge. After studies and continuous calls from the public for better bicycle infrastructure on Bloor, it looks like all we’re getting for now is a little paint that cars can soon park on.

Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Two-way Sharrows Along Macdonell Provide Unofficial Alternate Route to Sorauren Avenue Park

The work of the Urban Repair Squad and quite possibly a unique invention, two-way sharrows have been placed on the one-way, southbound only Macdonell Ave.

Photos by Martinho:

More information at Urban Repair Squad

Charlie Winston and Audrey Tautou “I Love Your Smile”

Recently saw Charlie Winston perform at Osheaga in Montreal. There simply aren’t enough high energy, super fun performers like him around. This video is perfection. Happy long weekend, folks!

Via RidingPretty

Let the Learning Begin; Bike Boxes at Harbord and St. George

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Considering how many cars I see stopped in the middle of crosswalks, there’s obviously going to be a few growing pains with these new bike boxes in Toronto.

What are bike boxes and what do they do? Bike Boxes allow cyclists to move to the front of the line at red lights and position themselves for faster/safer left turns. In addition to dedicated space for turning cyclists, bike boxes are paired with no right turn on red light restrictions, reducing the chances of right hooks at busy intersections.

More photos of the new bike boxes by Martinho below:

Updated October 12, 2010: Here’s the info card distributed by the City of Toronto explaining the use of Toronto bike boxes:

What are Bike Boxes?

The 2010 Toronto Cycling Map includes a brief description of bike boxes, a piece of infrastructure soon to be seen on Toronto streets.

Bike boxes will soon be installed at several intersections on Harbord and College. They allow cyclists to move to the head of waiting traffic, giving them priority for making left turns. Intersections with bike boxes will also restrict right turns on red lights (a safety feature I feel ALL Toronto/Ontario intersections should have) for both drivers and cyclists.

In anticipation of the soon to be installed bike boxes, the City of Toronto recently updated their cycling web site with a short postcard explaining bike boxes. I’ve include the postcard content below and you can also download the info here (PDF): Introducing Bike Boxes

Images via City of Toronto