The Eglinton Crosstown LRT project is now underway. The LRT will span 25 kilometres from Black Creek to Kennedy and will connect Etobicoke to Scarborough. This is the single largest infrastructure project in Canada and will transform the entire centre of Toronto. This is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to make Eglinton a safe, complete street for all users – pedestrians, bicyclists, transit users, and motorists of all ages and abilities. The City is redesigning the streetscape along Eglinton as part of the Eglinton Connects planning project.
Amazingly, City Council unanimously approved the recommendations of City staff for full, separated bike lanes for the entire length of Eglinton - from Jane St to Kennedy!
‘Eglinton Connects’ is a set of streetscape improvements including greenery, improved sidewalk and pedestrian realm, and bike lanes. It is planned to be built as part of the 19km Crosstown LRT. The LRT is anticipated to be completed by 2021. Streetscape improvements, including bike lanes, would be constructed after the completion of the LRT. However, Cycle Toronto is currently trying to work with stakeholders to ensure that bike lanes are built before the LRT construction ends. Streetscape improvements are currently funded for 60% of the project.
We can't express how excited we are about transforming Eglinton from this:
Into a beautiful space, with wider sidewalk, and protected bike lanes:
This is our opportunity to have safe and accessible cycling infrastructure along the whole length of Eglinton, including:
- Safe, protected bike lanes along Eglinton
- Connections to off-road trails and on-road bike routes
- Safe crossings over Eglinton
- High quality bike parking in accessible, well-lit areas
- Cyclist access into the new transit stations
- Clear, visible signage
In 2014, Toronto Council unanimously approved staff recommendations for Eglinton, including protected bike lanes, at the May 6th, 2014 Council meeting! We deeply appreciate the strong support from councillors across the political spectrum for this transformative project. Just as importantly, Council also approved a request to Metrolinx to allocate a portion of the funding to implement the plan.
We're not finished yet. The streetscaping portion of the LRT project remains partly unfunded. We need to continue our advocacy work to City Hall to ensure the funding is in place so that the streetscaping improvements are coordinated with the opening of the LRT in 2021-2022.
Eglinton Connects is supported by schools, community groups, business improvement areas* (2)*, school trustees* (2)* and residents’ associations, and many individuals who live, work or study near Eglinton. The project was awarded Transportation Project of the Year Award from the Institute of Transport Engineers. Cycle Toronto fully supports the Eglinton Connects plan for its investment in 11km of protected bike lanes through midtown Toronto.
- Eglinton is not going down "from 5 lanes to 3." Most of Eglinton has from 2-4 rush hour traffic lanes, with 1 or 2 rush hour bus/taxi lanes (which are parking the rest of the time).
- The new plans have 4 rush hour full traffic lanes over most of Eglinton. In many places this is an increase in auto lanes over what exists today, and much fewer buses on the street.
- The section of Eglinton near Yonge St, which sees the lowest auto traffic of all (600-900 cars per direction per hour*), is planned to have 3 traffic lanes - but the heavy bus traffic into Eglinton station will be gone.
- The Yonge & Eglinton intersection moves 70% more pedestrians than cars and is the second busiest pedestrian intersection in the city.
- The Eglinton Connects project will fight congestion by increasing the people-moving capacity of the avenue.
- The LRT can carry up to 15,000 people per hour per direction - the car lanes top out at 2,000.
- The street designs for Eglinton Connects have been worked out in meticulous detail through a community consultation process that has taken into account the needs of all of Eglinton’s users, including motorists