A Car Free High Park is possible. It just needs you.

Spring is here and Torontonians are flooding to the city’s parks. These public spaces provide a refuge from hectic city life and are integral to the health and vibrancy of our city. Toronto is currently in the midst of evaluating High Park, one of the city’s largest and most popular parks, with the objective of improving the experience for all park users.

Cycle Toronto is an active member of the Car Free High Park, a coalition of over 20 organizations calling on the City of Toronto to prioritize creating an outdoor space that serves the needs of Torontonians seeking to safely enjoy the outdoors by closing the park to cars. Have you signed the petition?

Learn More about Car Free High Park  Sign the Petition Today

We know accessibility is crucial for a Car Free High Park to be welcoming for everyone
, and more must be done to ensure the park is more accessible including accommodations for those with disabilities. But 50% of Toronto’s residents are renters, many without access to green space in their home. More than 1 in 4 don’t have access to a personal vehicle, and more than 1 in 3 don’t have a driver's license. And motor vehicles themselves are a leading cause of serious injury and death. With the success of the innovative ActiveTO program during the first years of COVID-19 pandemic, Toronto now has a multitude of strong examples that demonstrate how the health and vibrancy of our city improves when we open up more public space for people.  

High Park cherry blossomsHigh Park in the spring, photo courtesy of Jun Nogami

“With the city’s rapidly growing population, many of whom don’t have their own personal outdoor space, the need for more park space can not be understated. Research has shown that green spaces are linked to improved mental health, lower levels of stress and loneliness, reduced rates of depression and anxiety, and improved general well-being.”
-Car Free High Park​

If you have visited the park on car-free weekends, you have witnessed firsthand this freedom, peace, and joy that is possible - kids are able to bike down the road safely, families can walk side by side, and all road users are able to enjoy the park respectfully. The car-free weekends have demonstrated the full potential of High Park, but we need a strategy that reflects the wants and needs of these people all of the time, not just 2 days of the week. High Park can be like this all the time, 7 days a week.

The City is planning to evaluate the High Park Movement Strategy at Council sometime this spring, with implementation scheduled for summer of this year. Subscribe to our Action Alert mailing list to be informed of project updates:

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Prospect Park
Prospect Park in New York City, which has been car-free since 2018.

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