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August 2019

Ride for Safe Streets, City Council Updates, Bike Month Recap, and more!

Join us for the Ride for Safe Streets, presented by Bike Law Canada, on September 21st, 2019!


Ride for Safe Streets
City Council approves Bike Plan - what it means for implementation
Vision Zero report recap
Vehicle for Hire report
Bike Month recap and contest winners
Ride with us to Open Streets TO on August 18
Staff announcements

Volunteer orientation
BikeSpace - why not just tweet @311?
Business Member Profile: Bike Share Toronto

Upcoming events

Ride for Safe Streets

Join us for the Ride for Safe Streets, presented by Bike Law Canada, on September 21st, 2019. Our goal is to raise $50,000 to support our advocacy campaigns to extend the Bloor St bike lanes to High Park and build new bike lanes on Danforth Ave, Yonge St and more. There isn’t a single bike lane that has happened by accident. Through our member-supported work, we’ve been able to secure some huge wins, and we’re gaining momentum this year.

Register to Ride for Safe Streets!

Help us #BuildTheGrid of protected bike lanes around Toronto and sign up now for the best group ride of the year!

City Council approves Bike Plan - what it means for implementation

Map of 2019-2021 Implementation Program, Toronto East York section

City Council debated the Cycling Network Plan Update and the short-term 2019 infrastructure implementation timeline at the meeting on July 17, 2019. Both passed and we saw a lot of our hard work come to fruition. Thanks to hours of building relationships with Councillors, working with city staff, and thanks to everyone who wrote letters of support, we’ve made some progress. The conversation on cycling infrastructure is changing - we are seeing more support across the city.

There was a huge city-wide push for more cycling infrastructure and not just in the downtown. Some major projects were given the go ahead:

  • Danforth Ave: detailed design for bicycle infrastructure from Broadview to Dawes due by the second quarter of 2020, with implementation to follow

  • Bloor St W extension: consult on and implement a bike lane extension from Shaw to High Park as early as summer 2020

  • Complete streets by default: when reconstructing a street, staff must consider building a Complete Street, which includes bike lanes
  • Cycling Network Update Plan approved, giving staff the go-ahead to pursue studies and consultation on key city-wide projects

With the bike lanes on Bloor and Danforth inching closer to reality, we’ve been hearing a lot of questions about the timeline for filling in the gap between Avenue Rd and Sherbourne St. A motion was passed at City Council requesting that a separated bike lane be considered as part of the Bloor St E cycle track improvements. Major roadwork will occur in 2022, so we will be working hard to make sure the gap is filled as part of that roadwork.

Many of the projects have deadlines of 2020, which means that a great deal of consultation will occur in Fall 2019. Keep an eye out for upcoming City-run consultations. We will also continue to work with City staff to encourage best practices in bicycle infrastructure to create safer streets for all road users.

Vision Zero report recap

City Council debated the road safety plan update, dubbed Vision Zero 2.0, eventually passing it. The updated report made some important revisions to the previous iteration of Vision Zero, but the staff report did not push for visionary changes that would realize the goals of Vision Zero.

Vision Zero 2.0 took a street by street approach to speed reduction, reducing speeds by 10 km/h on many major arterial streets in Scarborough and across the City. We also saw other important improvements, such as wider adoption of leading pedestrian and cyclist intervals, more midblock crossings and a motion that directed Solid Waste Management Services to implement vehicle side guards for outsourced waste collection vehicles. We're still waiting for provincial approval for the full roll out of speed safety cameras to assist with enforcement in school and community safety zones.

Road design paired with speed reduction is the most effective way to reduce road-related deaths; Friends and Families for Safe Streets (FFSS) continue to advocate for a bigger plans and a stronger commitment. FFSS and Walk Toronto released a statement, “To save lives, we need a 40 km/h speed limit on all arterial roads.”

Vehicle for Hire report - what it means for cycling

The City has reviewed its bylaws for taxis, limos, Ubers, and Lyfts. Now, all drivers will have to go through a training program approved by the City. Further, Uber/Lyft drivers will be required to notify passengers to look for cyclists through app push notifications and “Watch for Bikes” notices in the vehicle.

City Staff will report back next year on the feasibility of other safety measures to reduce the risk of dooring incidents such as rear-view passenger side mirrors and on requiring the Uber/Lyft apps to prohibit pick-ups & drop-offs in bike lanes.

We were disappointed that City staff didn't support all of our recommendations but will keep working with the City, the taxi industry, and Uber/Lyft to ensure cyclists are kept safe.

Bike month recap and contest winners

Photo by Nicholas Jones

We kicked off Bike Month with the 30th annual Bike to Work Day group commute on May 27 where hundreds of cyclists biked together to Nathan Phillips Square for a free pancake breakfast. Bike Month then continued with hundreds of bike-related workshops, rides, and festivals that took place all over the GTHA until June 30.

We had a record number of participants in the bike month contest this year with nearly 5000 entries committing to ride to work, school, or during Bike Month. Congratulations to our contest winners who each won a $300 MEC gift card! The winners are:

  • Duygu Ozaslan from Toronto
  • Michael Bui from Hamilton
  • Allison Fleming from Guelph
  • Kim Molnar from Brampton
  • Olga Eletckaia from Durham Region
  • Thia Wlaters from York Region

You can also read more about the contest winners.

Ride with us from Flemingdon Park to Open Streets TO

Join Cycle Toronto as we ride the Don Valley from Flemingdon Park to Open Streets TO on Sunday, August 18, 2019. We will meet at the Gateway Bicycle Hub (10 Gateway Blvd) at 9:00 am and take the Lower Don Recreational Trail for a relaxing and casual ride appropriate for all ages.

Register for the Ride to Open Streets TO!

We will begin the ride with a short introduction about the possibilities for cycling infrastructure with the Eglinton LRT and highlight our advocacy for protected bike lanes on Eglinton. The ride will end at Yonge and Bloor, where you and your family can join the festivities.

Staff Announcements

Joining Cycle Toronto: Our team of staff has grown over the last month and it is with great pleasure that we introduce the newest members of our team

Kevin Rupasinghe - Campaigns Manager
Kevin oversees Cycle Toronto's major campaigns, whether getting protected bike lanes on key arteries such as Bloor and Danforth or rebuilding uptown Yonge as a complete street. He works closely with citizens and politicians to make our cycling dreams a reality. Kevin enjoys tinkering with technical projects, has a strong interest in urban and civic affairs, and is passionate about sustainability. He completed his undergraduate studies in Electrical and Computer Engineering and is currently pursuing his graduate studies in Civil Engineering (Cities Engineering Management), both at the University of Toronto.

Tamara Nahal - Community Engagement Manager
Tamara is the Community Engagement Manager at Cycle Toronto. She supports our ward advocates and district leaders, assists in campaign management, and provides program assistance and coordination. Prior to joining Cycle Toronto, she worked in the fields of public policy, communications, and urban planning, most recently working as a content writer. Her research interests include active transportation, public transit, visual art, identity, and public space. She holds a Masters of Urban Planning from Ryerson University.

Departing Cycle Toronto: After more than 9 years with Cycle Toronto, Jared Kolb is stepping down as Executive Director. Read more about the transition here.

Volunteer Orientation

Interested in volunteering with Cycle Toronto or know someone who is? We're welcoming new volunteers and introducing them to Cycle Toronto on August 28. We'll share upcoming opportunities to get involved in both outreach volunteering and ward advocacy.

Register for volunteer orientation

Bikespace - why not just tweet @311toronto?

BikeSpace is back and it’s better than ever! The web app has had some of the kinks ironed out and now it’s ready for you! Use BikeSpace to:

  • Report a lack of parking
  • Identify bike racks that are full (and request more!)
  • Report damaged bike parking
  • Abandoned bikes

Since reports on BikeSpace are made public, it’s easy for other people to see which issues have been identified and it makes the city more accountable. While reporting issues to the City through the @311Toronto twitter account is also public, it's not easy to search through previously-submitted complaints.

Lastly, BikeSpace is built with detailed reporting and data collection tools, which are all public.

Business member profile: Bike Share Toronto

Bike Share Toronto Grows to 5,000 Bikes and 465 Stations

Bike Share Toronto expands into new neighbourhoods with 105 new stations and 1,250 new bikes. With the exciting 2019 expansion, the system now spans 90 square kilometres of the city. Whether you are looking for a single trip or an annual membership, the broadened system makes navigating Toronto on two wheels convenient, flexible and fun!

Learn more and get your membership today!

NEWSFLASH: cycling in the news


  • Sunday, August 4, 9:00AM-1:00PM: Ward 14 Cycling Info and A-B-C- Quick Check, Leslieville Farmer's Market, 1515 Queen St E

  • Wednesday, August 7, 7:00-9:00PM: Ward 14 Bikes Social, Timothy's, 320 Danforth Ave

  • Wednesday, August 14, Jared's Going Away Party, Louis Cifer Brew Works, 417 Danforth Ave

  • Saturday, August 17, 11:00AM-11:00PM: Wheels on the Danforth, 3400 Danforth Ave

  • Sunday, August 18, 9:00AM-11:00AM: Ride to Open Streets TO, Gateway Bicycle Hub, 10 Gateway Blvd

  • Wednesday, August 21, 7:00-9:00PM: Ward 14 Bikes Meeting, Frankland Community Centre, 816 Logan Ave

  • Friday, August 23-Saturday, August 24: 8-80 Cities' Vision Zero Danforth Pop-Up, Danforth and Woodbine Ave

  • Saturday, August 24, 10:30AM-4:00PM: 10th Annual Toronto Bicycle Music Festival, Bell Manor Park to Trinity Bellwoods Park

  • Wednesday, August 28, 7:00-9:00PM: Cycle Don Valley Midtown Meeting, Trinity Grace Church, 826 Eglinton Ave E

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