The College Street bike lane is quite possibly one of Toronto’s most used. Hundreds, if not thousands, of cyclists use this east/west bike lane to go to work, school, shop or simply get across town. Unfortunately, this bike lane is also a perfect place to let your car idle while you quickly run into one of the many shops and businesses that line this busy street.
The bike lane starts at Bay Street at its east end. In the image above we see a cyclist using the lane, a parked bicycle and another cyclist peaking into a window, a nice little slice of daily life.
Heading west, we pass the long intersection of University Avenue. And we find our first bike lane parker. Sure, a delivery truck may only park for a few minutes at a time… many times a day, every weekday… oh I guess that adds up:
Moving further west, we see things are as they should be at Henry Street:
But then we spot a van on the south side of the street just east of St. George:
A little further west and it’s another white truck, only this one is much larger:
On the north side of College, east of Spadina, the bike lane ends as the road narrows. On the South side we see the bike lane makes the perfect place to park or wait for your next fare:
Even when not parked in the bike lane vehicles pose a risk… watch out for the “door prize”:
Just because you’re making deliveries in the bike lane doesn’t mean cyclists can get by you… you just make it more dangerous to do so:
Another delivery truck, another squeeze out for cyclists:
Delivery trucks could use empty parking spaces, but, since they don’t buy parking permits they could get a ticket, better stick to the bike lane:
As we continue our trip we see things get back to normal:
Parallel parking also poses a risk. Sure, it is a temporary risk that does come with the added benefit that cars are equipped with reverse lights, so you know they’re coming. I assume this car was waiting to park:
But after we pass by and look behind us, the car is still there and the way is perfectly clear. Possibly they are just very slow parallel parkers… hopefully:
On the south side it looks like a biker has met with a cyclist:
Is this a stand-off? I’m not sure what’s going on here, but that biker is quickly outnumbered:
And I bet you thought only parcel delivery trucks used the bike lane… All cube-shaped trucks are welcome of course:
And just a few more metres beyond Euclid, it’s delivery time:
And then we reach the end of the bike lane as College narrows and on-street parking is a must:
For cyclists using the College Street bike lane, I’m certain that the above images come as no surprise. The fact that the Google Street View car was able to capture this many bike lane parkers in such a brief amount of time shows just how prevalent this illegal activity is.