[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.]
After months of pondering about the fate of these plans to build a protected multi-use bicycle path and pedestrian promenade along Queens Quay, an article by Hamutal Dotan of the Torontoist finally gave us an update on its status.
It's a bit endearing to see a councillor be willing to look silly to support a proposal for the media. Perhaps cycling is now enough of a wedge issue that even a councillor that thought the Jarvis bike lanes were a "war on the car" is willing to play his political cards in support of an ambitious bike proposal. Cyclist and journalist Catherine Porter went on a Bixi ride with Councillor Minnan-Wong to check out the proposed protected bike lane network.
It's taken a bit of community pressure from the Bike Union, business and residents associations as well as pressure from above with Chair of Public Works and Infrastructure (PWIC), Councillor Minnan-Wong as a born-again cyclist. Things are looking up for the separated bike lanes aka cycle tracks when they go to PWIC in June. The proposal has support from the left as well as the right. Even though PWIC is packed with some suburban councillors, I'm guessing they are unlikely to try to oppose the Chair's pet project.
Councillor Vaughan recently sent this note out via Facebook. I've been hammering on Vaughan recently for his opposition to the separated bike lane plan (he's still not clear if he opposes the whole thing or if he just wants to protect his John pedestrianization project). I've known that Vaughan has been relatively supportive of cycling in his ward (though really how can a politician come out as anti-bike downtown?) but I still think he's making a mistake by coming out so strongly against this plan instead of working with the cycling community to come to a compromise.
Today at the Public Works and Infrastructure meeting is a request by the chair, Councillor Denzil Minnan-Wong to have staff report on the proposed downtown cycle track network for the June meeting. This is basically a repeat of the request from last August, but suggests that DMW is still serious about the network.