Harris has graduated, but remains committed to improving the North York campus and adjacent neighbourhood. He remains active in plans for a community bike centre on campus, as well as a project to improve the design of bike lanes slated for installation on Finch Avenue by 2021. At the corner of Pond and Sentinel, a building is being constructed that will mostly serve as a student residence. Part of the building – currently an empty gravel pit – will house a bike centre. The purpose of the centre will be to offer bike repair, education and programming. Once complete, Harris hopes the centre will become a community hub for cycling, allowing both students and the wider community to explore different mobility options.
While at Glendon, Harris won funding through the TD Go Green challenge to restore the forested area around the university, making the case that the forest was the campus’s greatest sustainability asset – and challenge.
But the mobility problems students experience at York University are not limited to campus. York lies on the east border of ward 8, bordering the Black Creek community to the west. The Black Creek community is better known by its defining intersection: Jane and Finch.
Darnel Harris talks transport in dandyhorse issue 13. Photo by Vic Gedris.