Monday, October 15, 2012

Toronto Can't Even Do a Separated Bike Lane Right


The City of Toronto is finally getting a separated bike lane. It's on Sherbourne Street, but the separation is a rounded bump that is too big for a cyclist to cross easily and safely, but not too big for a UPS truck. So now, when they park in the "Delivery Lane", cyclists will have to dismount and go around them.
According to Jack Lakey in the Star, they didn't have any choice.
Dan Egan, Toronto’s manager of cycling infrastructure, said the curbs had to be designed to allow police vehicles, ambulances and fire trucks to pull over them in emergencies. “It’s not an ideal situation,” said Egan. ‘If we had a lot wider street, it would have been a much simpler design. “This is the challenge of trying to do a separated bike lane on such a narrow two-way street.”

They should implement something like the image above, or like in New York. The image above is from Montreal, where hundreds of people riding their own and Bixi bikes on Maisonneuve in the separated bike lanes. The delivery vehicle is forced to block a car lane, something that is unheard of in Toronto.

I recognize that things are different in Montreal and New York, where there are extensive networks of one way streets, it makes it much easier to take out a lane and do it right, but sometimes I think transportation engineers don't even try.

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