Councillor McMahon at the East Lynn Farmers' Market in her ward, Beaches-East York. Photo by Molly Crealock.
Heels on Wheels with Toronto City Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon
photos by Molly Crealock
Q&A by Tammy Thorne
Why did you get into politics?
I enjoy people and working with the community. As a community activist I saw the benefits of my actions and crusades and wanted to spread that passion across the ward and city.
What would you tell young people who want to become politicians, or get involved in municipal affairs?
Start volunteering right now!
Why should young people be hopeful about the future of the planet? [Get our current youth and employment issue to read more about this.]
Because they can change the world.
What do you hope to achieve during your first term in council?
A great transit system, separated bike lanes, Bixi in the beach, 'Friends of' groups for every park in my ward, civility on the floor of council, and alot more.
What have you already achieved as councillor that you are most proud of?
Local food procurement policy; arranged field trips to Waterfront Toronto; our motion for ongoing dedicated funding for transit (to be debated in October); educating people on backyard hens, and the Visioning Study for Queen Street East.
You have a lot of parks in your ward and you are on the Parks and Environment committee. What is being done to improve our park trails?
We're working on better signage for the Martin Goodman Trail in my ward. I'm trying to encourage cycling groups in each ward. There is some work being done to study cycling trails in the Hydro corridors.
Why is cycling important to the city?
[Because it helps with] Air quality and congestion.
What do you like most about summer in the city?
Our glorious tree canopy. I would also just encourage people to get out -- hop on their two wheels and enjoy our wonderful city.
What is your favourite place to ride?
Flying down Southwood Avenue like I'm on a roller coaster at Wonderland.
How long have you been riding a bike for (as a commuter)?
I've always biked around my ward. I've been commuting downtown ever since I got into office.
Have you ever worn formal attire while riding your bike?
I wear all kinds of clothes riding while my bike, including my vegetable costume.
We've seen you dressed as vegetables, but have you ever worn heels on wheels?
Yes, I have. But I've been advised to always wear closed-toed shoes while riding.
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