Toronto Bike Share Expansion: 700 more bikes, 70 more stations
Story and photos by Jun Nogami
Today, Davenport MP Julie Dzerowicz, Mayor John Tory, and Ontario's Minister of Transportation Steven Del Duca announced an expansion of the Toronto Bike Share system, funded by all three levels of government. This expansion adds 70 new stations, as well as 700 new bikes. The announcement was made in Ward 18, at the intersection of Ward St. and Wallace Ave. The new stations will bring the total number in Toronto up to 270 with 2,750 bikes and 4,700 docks.
The building to the left houses the Toronto branch of UBISOFT, a major computer game company. Around the corner, you can see evidence that they need more bike parking around the building. I was told by a UBISOFT employee that they have bike parking inside the building.
MP Dzerowicz noted that the federal government has promised $45 million in funding for bike infrastructure in cities, including the $1.2 million that partially funded the expansion announced today. She emphasized that the federal government was fully aware of the first mile/last mile problem, and that bike sharing would be a piece of the solution. Many of the new bike share stations were located in consultation with the TTC to be close to subway stations or streetcar stops.
Minister Del Duca said that the provincial government was committed to making Ontario a cycling leader. He announced that $50 million in funding for cycling infrastructure will come from monies raised through the cap and trade program. He also used the phrase "well connected cycling networks" in reference to sustainable transport solutions.
Mayor Tory thanked the other levels of government for the funding and noted that transformative change can only happen when all three levels work together. He reiterated that 50 stations come from federal and provincial funding, and that the city will match this with 20 more stations. He also noted the growing popularity of the bike share system, with a record number of 6,490 trips recorded on June 21st. He said that the way people are getting around is slowing changing, and he observed that yesterday he saw "as many bikes as cars" on Richmond.
There was a great turn out for this announcement. Toronto is truly embracing bike sharing.
Councillor Josh Colle was also present as head of the TTC. In addition MP Arif Virani was there as he is the bike-friendly MP of the neighbouring district. I had a conversation with him about the West Toronto Railpath, and he confirmed that he has discussed with city councillor Ana Bailao the need for an additional bridge to get from the railpath extension to Sorauren Park. (Ed's note: dandyhorse will soon publish an update on the progress of the railpath.)
More photos from the day below.
A group picture with representatives from UBISOFT.
Another picture with Toronto Bike Share.
This is a map showing all the new station locations. The stations are due to be installed this month, by the end of August.
(map from Toronto Bike Share)
CBC coverage of the announcement is here.
Star coverage is here.
Related on dandyhorsemagazine.com
Bike Share expands (from 2016)