Bike Spotting at Bloor and St. George: Do we need bike lanes on Bloor?
Photos by Claire McFarlane, interviews by Tammy Thorne
Adam Vaughan: I not only to moved the motion to get the EA started, I still think it should be passed. We need the east-west connections... but you also need to get other ribbons north-south so it's not just St. George. One of the things we looked at was having Brunswick as a contraflow lane. I think some neighborhoods were uncertain about [contraflows], they didn't know how it could work, but they can now look at things like Grace and Shaw and some of the other extended contraflow lanes, and they work. And they work in a way that is safe and that get people riding and it takes the pressure off the one or two bike lanes downtown. I live in the Bathurst and King area and if I have to get to City Hall, I may take the Adelaide bike lane. But on days like today, I had to run an errand on Queen Street, and I'm not dropping back down to Adelaide to get in to city hall on Queen Street. So you need a network.
A network is just fundamental to the operation and the one problem we're having is that the EA...is so cumbersome, it makes building quick and easy and supportable ideas really tricky. The transportation funding has got to be supportive of cycling infrastructure. When we rebuild Bloor St. we aren't just going to add bike lanes, we're also going to make the pedestrian flow here magnificent.
Firooz: Of course! We need bike lanes everywhere in the city, especially in this area because of the traffic.
Juan: Yes, it would be great to have a bike lane on Bloor. I think I would take Bloor Street if it had a bike lane.
Although a Bloor St. cyclist named William did not want his photo taken, he said: "Yes we should have bike lanes on Bloor." We thought it was noteworthy that the three children he was riding with (all had adorable orange flags on their bikes) were biking on the sidewalk instead of the street. Children (with small-wheeled bicycles) are meant to bike on the sidewalk according to Can-Bike for kids, but we do see a lot of parents biking with their children where there are bike lanes, on the road where there is less likelihood of collisions with cars backing out of hidden laneways. It does make sense for Toronto to install bike lanes that are protected from encroachment of motor vehicles -- that is, if the city is, in fact, interested in getting families cycling.
Related on the dandyBLOG:
What’s Up Bloor Bike Lanes? (From our current issue.)