At the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee meeting yesterday, the John Street Corridor Improvements Environmental Assessment Study was approved despite the number of people in the cycling community who voiced their displeasure of being ignored. It was a plan that was pushed by commercial interests along John, as well as by Councillor Vaughan, but provided very little for cyclists who comprise up to 1/3 of the traffic along the street.
[Update: It was brought to my attention that these cyclist and pedestrian counts took place in October. Why did the City use October numbers instead of dates more representative of good cycling and walking weather? The Bicycle Cordon Count the City did last year were specifically conducted in September because it is an optimal time to count cyclists. People are back from vacation and it is still good weather for cycling. October is getting late and is not representative of peak demand.]
Councillor Vaughan's proposed bike lanes:
The regular bike lanes would be 1 km on Dan Leckie, 1.4 km on Bremner, and 1.3 km on Blue Jays Way, for a total of 3.7 km.
Sign the separated bike lanes petition if you are interested in seeing a leap forward in appropriate infrastructure for cyclists downtown. Councillor Minnan-Wong, head of the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee, had presented the idea to the media last month. It's not a done deal by any means since local Councillor Vaughan and residents need to be on side, and some public consultation is already going on to change some streets such as Richmond/Adelaide. The petition calls for pilot projects to being in 2011.
Alan Heisey can't understand why some cycling activists are still hostile to separated bike lanes, given how common they are in other cities. So Heisey, who proposed separated bike lanes on Sherbourne Street at the City last year, provides us with an outline of some reasons why it is desirable to have a core network of continuous bicycle lanes separated from traffic in Toronto. I, however, think that Heisey has more to worry about the Mayor's opposition rather than some cyclists.
No, Holland is no land of unicorns and candy cane trees, despite being below sea level, and filled with tulips, bicycles, and people who don't stop cycling for any kind of weather (except maybe if the polders fill up with water). This is why their expertise is particularly useful as an export, as the following videos demonstrate well.