- Toronto Coalition for Active Transportation and the Clean Air Partnership for a two-year project that includes research on bike lanes, on-street parking and the impact on commercial business, a comprehensive comparison study looking at how Toronto fares internationally against other cities implementing cycling and pedestrian-friendly policies, and laying the groundwork for N/S and E/W commuter cycling arteries.
- Toronto Cyclists Union - Toronto Cycling - a one-year project in partnership with CultureLink to research, write and edit a resource to encourage and support cycling among newcomers in Toronto.
I'd like to congratulate these groups for earning these awards, and I'd like to wish them the best of luck in fulfilling their obligations for them. These are worthwhile activities for these groups to be doing and I, for one, am happy to see that this grant money has been awarded to get them working on these projects. I'm excited about these projects and I think that all of these projects will help to support a stronger cycling culture on our roads, and will empower us to encourage more people to ride their bikes.
It has long been my assertion that our parking policies are out of whack with the realities of supporting our policy and economic needs, and with the kind of parking that is actually occurring and is being encouraged. I think that TCAT's report on parking and Bike Lanes will make removing parking for Bike Lanes much more palatable, or at least much less painful, and therefore easier to accomplish.
We need to take a good look at our longer cross city routes. We want safe and continuous (contiguous) cycling routes that actually go places, that will connect us with interesting and relevant places to go. We need some longer cycling arterials running through the center of our city, not just the M-G trail on the southern edge
I think that by showing our city that other cities are doing better than we are that we can light a match under our politicians feet to start some serious movement on our own bike plan, the same bike plan that Chicago stole from us, and now other cities are stealing from Chicago -- only because we've done so little with it. We should be leading with our own bike plan, not letting Chicago and other cities lead us with our own bike plan.
Lastly, many people come to Canada and (from our media) think that owning a car is an important part of being socially accepted, and is required to get around our city. There's also a stigma that many have brought with them against riding a bike as they see it as something that "poor people" do. We know that this is not true, in fact the opposite is. However we need to share this reality with people, especially with newcomers who have their pre-conceived notions of people who ride bikes. Riding a bike should not just be for overeducated and wealthy white adult males; it should be for everyone. This project is intended to create invitations in a variety of languages asking for everyone to come out and ride a bike to get around in our cities. I always welcome everybody out to ride a bike; I don't care which planet you are from. And I don't care how many flying saucers the rich own on your planet. Around here we want to encourage everyone to get around on bicycles.