Breaking the Cycle
The City of Toronto is not doing enough to make the streets safe for cyclists, says law grad Kristen Courtney
Kristen Courtney is a lawyer and a founding member of Bells on Bloor. www.bellsonbloor.ca
I have always loved bicycles, and the freedoms they provide: freedom from paying for gas, from bus schedules and even from my asthma symptoms as my fitness improved. Even more, I love what bicycles do for other people, for communities and for the Earth. I know that cycling helps combat obesity, heart disease and air pollution. I see people from very different walks of life lock up their bikes at the same rack while sharing a friendly good morning. I have seen others develop a respect for nature while mountain biking.
Torontonians have called on their city for action [in making streets safer for cyclists]. In May, 2,000 cyclists rode their bikes at Bells on Bloor, the largest cycling-advocacy ride in Toronto’s history. Cyclists are out in full force at public consultations and environmental assessments for street reconstructions. But it is time cyclists began demanding more than lip service: we are not interested in painted white lines on quiet side streets – we need safe bike lanes on the streets we use. How much longer Toronto will ignore these calls for change remains to be seen. Change is inevitable. The death and injury of cyclists on Toronto streets is not.
[Duncan just mailed me this article from the UofT Magazine... the UofT site breaks his computer. :( ]