Danforth Bike Lanes: What's Next?
Rendering of Danforth Ave. showing car lanes, street parking, sidewalks, and bike lanes. Created by Perkins + Will for Cycle Toronto.
Last weekend, 8 80 Cities held a temporary Vision Zero pop-up at Danforth and Woodbine. The reimagined street included widened sidewalks, increased seating and a play area, a planter-protected bike lane, and slower car traffic. It was great to see families and children outside enjoying a small vibrant stretch of Danforth.
However, not everyone was happy. We heard concerns about the loss of vehicle parking and impacts on vehicle traffic, both on Danforth and on neighbourhood streets. Some people have assumed what was seen at the pop-up is the only way bike lanes on Danforth could be realized - that is not true.
What could a Complete Street on Danforth look like?
The City of Toronto is currently conducting a Complete Streets study of Danforth Ave, with a report due in 2021. As part of the study, they are working to complete a design for a pilot protected bike lane on Danforth by summer 2020.
Danforth is a wide street with plenty of space for everybody, whether you need to walk, bike, drive, or park. As the City moves forward with their consultation process, residents and businesses will be at the table and everyone will have the opportunity to share their feedback. We’ll be working closely with the City and local community to make sure Danforth works for everybody.
Danforth really can have it all: wide sidewalks, car lanes, street parking, and protected bicycle lanes.
Misconceptions about Bike Lanes on Danforth
❌ Misconception 1: There will be no vehicle parking on Danforth!
✔️ There is ample space to maintain parking on Danforth even with protected bike lanes. Due to permitting restrictions, the pop-up event could not incorporate street parking.
❌ Misconception 2: Vehicular traffic will be a nightmare!
✔️ Danforth currently has four motor vehicle lanes and a centre median. The preferred design, which will be decided by the City and local stakeholders, may not impact the number of travel lanes at all because the lanes themselves are much wider than they need to be. Reallocating this extra space may allow for bike lanes without impacting the number of motor vehicle lanes. The City can also adjust traffic signals and turn restrictions to manage vehicular traffic and infiltration to side streets. This was not possible for a two-day pop-up.
❌ Misconception 3: Hardly anyone bikes on Danforth
✔️ It’s one of the most popular routes in the city with over 3,000 daily bike trips and one of the only east-west connections over the Don Valley, yet there is currently no safe space allocated for cycling. What’s more is the potential for that number to grow: we have heard from residents again and again, “I would bike more on Danforth if there were a protected bike lane!”
Do you want to see a Complete Street on the Danforth? Help us by spreading the word!Talk to your family, friends, and neighbours. Forward this email, discuss on social media, or chat in person. Ask them to support your safety - and everyone else’s safety - by signing & sharing our pledge at danforthlovesbikes.ca.
Thank you for helping to make Danforth into a street that works for everyone.