Beach Hill bicycle lanes

Photo: Beaches-East York Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon, after being struck by a car while cycling on Woodbine in 2014.

By summer, we should have pretty good bicycle lanes on Woodbine Avenue, extending from Queen Street, up Beach Hill, across the Danforth and all the way to O’Connor Drive. Cycling to the Taylor Creek paths should be much safer.

Some drivers oppose the new bike lanes, citing potential slowing of auto traffic, but others I spoke to at last year’s public meeting say that’s what they like best about them.
   

Doorings in Downtown Toronto 2014-2016. (Cars doors injuring cyclists). [+MAP]

Obviously, bike lanes reduce collisions, but some car drivers incorrectly believe that cyclists are guests on the road and would prefer them to stay in the parks, out of their way. How to get to the parks? Car racks, I guess.

But really, bicycling has become a serious commuter option in Toronto, just as it is in many other large cities. We can learn from them.

Photo by Brian Hickey: Wider sidewalks in Tel Aviv make room for cyclists. Bike lanes are also placed in roadways where necessary, like here.

Curbs and bollards, please, not just cheap painted lines and more signs.

Physically separating bicycles from cars is the best way to go, as is done in the photo above, but Brian observes that everyone, pedestrians included, have to observe the rules. “Do not stray into a bike lane. If you get hit, and you will, no one will have any sympathy for you”.


Lanes planned for Woodbine Avenue, to be installed in early Spring, 2017

Cyclists have to grow up and follow rules of the road.

Toddlers are allowed to ride their bicycles on the sidewalk, but full-size bikes are supposed to stay off. Dismount and walk, fine.

Cyclists sometimes display holier-than-thou attitudes about their fitness, environmental innocence and physical vulnerability, then charge past open streetcar doors, menacing transit riders. They often ignore basic traffic rules and consideration for others. Not good enough.

Yes, this goes for me, too.

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