Council Approves Cycling Projects, Creating Space for People Walking, Cycling
On Thursday April 30, City Council met for the first time since the COVID-19 emergency began. In Council’s first ever virtual meeting only the most essential business was on the agenda. Fortunately, we have made clear that cycling is an essential matter!
The City Manager reported on the City’s response and management during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many councillors and even the Mayor recognized the importance of creating more space for people cycling, walking, and taking transit, and there was a lot of discussion about how important cycling will be for the city’s recovery. We have been stressing this point with our elected officials and it was clear that our weeks of conversations with councillors has helped to shape their thinking.
Two important cycling-related motions passed:
City Council request the General Manager, Transportation Services and the Medical Officer of Health to pursue opportunities to provide, where possible and under the advice of public health and through the City-wide recovery planning process, more space for pedestrians, cyclists and public transit riders to allow for better physical distancing.
City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services to report back to City Council on the possibility of fast-tracking projects within the 10 Year Capital Plan for Vision Zero and cycling infrastructure.
These are important steps for Council to take in its first meeting. We are committed to continuing to work with City councillors and City staff in the coming weeks to get clearer information on timelines, funding, and implementation. Thank you to everyone that has been asking for this—now it’s time to make it happen.
Neighbourhood Cycling Projects Approved
Several 2020 cycling projects were approved at the Infrastructure and Environment Committee (IEC) in March, but City staff still needed Council approval to move forward. Thanks to hundreds of people writing in or speaking at IEC, we were able to show members of Council that we must continue implementing our Cycling Network Plan. We are looking forward to these projects being installed, and we are now looking forward to other 2020 projects including the Bloor West bikeway extension - stay tuned for more!
See below for a map of the projects, and you can read the full details on the agenda page of the City of Toronto website:
We saw a lot happen yesterday. We’ll continue to push for safer streets with City Hall in the coming weeks, and we could use your help. Take some time to thank your councillor for voting in favour of these projects and encourage them to continue supporting cycling. The votes were unanimous. Every single councillor and the Mayor voted to improve cycling in the City. You can find your councillor’s email address on the City website, and the Mayor’s email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
There’s still a lot of work to do to make sure these projects are implemented in a timely and effective manner. Our members and donors keep our voice strong at City Hall even when everyone is working from home. Even $5 makes a difference.