Ring & Post: March 2024

Cycle Toronto has been leading the change for a better cycling city since 2008. As you’ll read below, however, there’s still so much more to do. And as a member-supported charity, we depend on the support of folks like you. Please consider making a monthly donation to help keep our wheels turning. Will you help today?

March’s edition of the Ring & Post features a call to join our board, an update on a couple of key projects, and an update on an infrastructure project we are following quite closely. Enjoy!

Table of Contents

  1. Message From Executive Director
  2. 2024 Call for Nominations
  3. Eglinton Delayed but Not Down
  4. Danforth-Kingston Still in Limbo
  5. Cycling Projects Pass at IEC
  6. March Advocacy Updates
  7. Upcoming Community Consultations
  8. Bike Match Program
  9. Final Call for Alex Amaro Award Nominations
  10. Just for Fun
  11. In the Media
  12. Social Media Spotlight
  13. Events

Message From Executive Director

Toronto’s climate action status report is grim. Across almost every single sector, Toronto is not on track to meet its greenhouse gas emission targets and achieve net zero goal by 2040 (NZ40). Even more worrisome is the upward trend in emissions since 2020. Instead of the “recovery and rebuild” we were promised, it’s been “retrenchment and regress”. I encourage you to dive in and read the details.

Increasing access to low or zero emission transportation is a key pillar in this strategy, specifically promoting walking, transit, and biking for the majority of short, local trips. But the report stresses that when it comes to cycling, Toronto is failing to do enough fast enough:

There is more access to safe walking and biking infrastructure than before the pandemic, but Toronto’s Cycling Network Plan remains on a Business as Planned (BAP) pace instead of the ambitious build-out seen in the NZ40 scenario, in part due to resource constraints. (p20, bolding mine)

Business as planned is not good enough. We need to get Toronto back on track. That starts with completing the 100 km of bikeways in the Council approved 2022-2024 Cycling Network Plan under former Mayor Tory, including Avenue Rd., Trethewey Dr., Eglinton Ave., and Danforth Kingston in Scarborough. Together these 4 projects account for nearly 25% of that plan. 

And we need a more ambitious vision going forward. Cycle Toronto is calling on Mayor Chow and members of council to accelerate the 2025-2027 Cycling Network Plan and build 150 km total, and average over 50 km of new bikeways a year over the next 3 years. Paris has doubled its cycling numbers in just one year with a similar investment. Don’t let Toronto get left behind. Please add your name to our call.

Like you, we want a more vibrant, friendlier public realm. We want to ease traffic congestion and give people more transportation options. We want to connect communities from downtown to the suburbs. We want to eliminate road violence and make VisionZero a reality. We want to achieve net zero for a greener, healthier future.

Bikes can do that. Thank you for joining us.

Michael Longfield
Executive Director

2024 Call for Nominations

Cycle Toronto is looking for nominations for our 2024 Board of Directors! Read on to learn more about the position.

What does the Board of Directors do?

Cycle Toronto is a member-supported charity governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. The Board of Directors provides governance, leadership, fundraising, and financial oversight to our staff and operations. Directors are elected by members in good standing at our Annual General Meeting.

Directors are also required to sit on one or more committees. These committees include:

  • Governance: advises the Board on strategic direction of the organization and on the operations of the Board itself
  • Anti-Oppression: advises the organization on how to apply an anti-oppression lens to our work and how to promote equity, diversity, and inclusion within the organization (this is a temporary committee and this work would otherwise fall under Governance)
  • Advocacy: supports and assists the Cycle Toronto staff team in pursuing evidence-based solutions to make cycling a viable option for more Torontonians
  • Finance: provides oversight, disclosure and transparency on financial matters; oversees the budgeting and audit processes
  • Fundraising: provides leadership in developing fundraising strategy and implementing the fundraising plan as a growing charity
  • Human Resources: advises and supports the staff with respect to human resources issues as they arise; develops human resources policies and practices regarding staffing, compensation, professional development, and succession planning
  • IT: provides guidance to staff on all IT-related decisions, including our websites and database systems

Read more about the call for nominations on our website and if you have any questions about the application process, or the Board itself, please contact us. We thank you for your interest and support.

(The Cycle Toronto board at a recent meeting.)

Eglinton Delayed but Not Down

We were disappointed that the Eglinton Complete Street project did not come to March’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee meeting. Fortunately, we’re now expecting it to come to committee in May and if approved, still installed before the end of the year. This project, which was initially approved by City Council almost a decade ago, is crucial to the recovery of the neighbourhoods along Eglinton that have struggled through the construction of the Crosstown LRT for almost 13 years.

Read more about the Eglinton TOday project on our website and sign our petition calling for the implementation of a complete street along the route of the Eglinton LRT:

(An illustration of a complete street in the Toronto context. Image: City of Toronto)

Danforth-Kingston Still in Limbo

Another project part of the Council approved 2022-2024 Cycling Network Plan that’s still in limbo is the Danforth - Kingston Complete Street. Public consultations were originally scheduled for fall 2023, but despite a project webpage saying spring 2024 no date has been scheduled. Residents of southern Scarborough need a safe and accessible option for active transportation and a connection to The Danforth’s cycling infrastructure to the west. 

We’re still fighting to make this project a reality before the end of this year. You can help by supporting the grassroots community campaign Danforth-Kingston 4 All and add your name that calls for a safer Danforth and Kingston:

(A map of the Bloor-Danforth-Kingston bikeways. Image: City of Toronto)

Cycling Projects Pass at IEC

On March 27th, several cycling infrastructure projects that are part of the 2022 - 2024 Cycling Network Plan passed at the Infrastructure and Environment Committee. These projects will transform their respective neighbourhoods by making active transportation safer, more convenient, and more accessible.

(A map of the six cycling infrastructure projects that passed at IEC on March 27th. Image: City of Toronto)

These projects will next be debated at City Council on April 17th, and, if passed, will be installed later this year.

Read about these six cycling projects in detail on our website.

March Advocacy Updates

In March, we focused on continuing to call for consistent and systematic safety around construction zones, worked to ensure that the City’s expanding network of cycling infrastructure remains accessible and safe in the event of a major snowfall, and joined the calls for public realm improvements underneath the Gardiner Expressway.

Read more about March’s advocacy work in greater detail on our website.

(A rendering of the full Under Gardiner plans. Image: Under Gardiner)

Upcoming Community Consultations

April 4th - Bloor West Complete Street Info Session #2

Ward 3 Councillor Amber Morley will hold a second information session online on April 4th. At the meeting, Phase 2 of the Bloor West complete street will be discussed.

April 9th - Centennial Park Cycling Connections

A new bikeway has been proposed to connect Centennial Park in Etobicoke to the Burnhamthorpe Trail in Mississauga. This project includes a multi-use trail and new cycle tracks.

Attend the public consultation on the evening of April 9th.

April 15th - Steeprock - Bathurst Manor Cycling Connections

In North York, cycle tracks have been proposed on Steeprock Drive along with bike lanes on Whitehorse Road and Rimrock Road. These cycling routes would be welcome neighbourhood corridors and connect Bathurst to the Finch Hydro Corridor.

Those interested can submit feedback by email or phone until April 15th.

(A map of the project. Image: City of Toronto)

April 19th - Beltline Gap Connections

This project aims to build a new multi-use trail to close the 475-metre gap that currently exists between the Kay Gardner Trail and the York Beltline in midtown. 

Those interested can submit feedback by email or phone until April 19th.

(A map of the project. Image: City of Toronto)

Final Call for Alex Amaro Award Nominations

Alexandra Mary Orme Amaro was 23 years old when she was killed in front of Dufferin Mall December 2, 2020 while riding her bike. A journalism student in her final year, a talented florist, and passionate cyclist, Alex embodied kindness, generosity, positivity and humbleness throughout her young life.

The Alex Amaro Cycling Kindness Award was created to recognize an individual or group whose efforts exemplify a positive approach to making the city cycling friendlier, safer, more accessible, inclusive and environmentally healthier and sustainable for everyone.

The deadline is on Monday, April 1st.

Bike Match Program

As spring approaches, the Women’s Cycling Network’s BikeMatchWCN program has begun revving up for donation collection. Entering their fourth year of existence, the Women’s Cycling Network’s BikeMatchWCN program matches bikes that people no longer need with families all over Toronto. This program serves as a success story in creating equitable conditions for cycling in the Greater Toronto Area with over 323 bikes being redistributed over the past three years.

We currently have more than 450 people needing a bike and are looking for more bikes, specifically medium, small and extra-small bikes for women, and kid’s sizes 24 and under. Learn more about the program and how to contribute by visiting their website.

Just for Fun: How a Bike Lane is Born #3

How a Bike Lane is Born is the new investigative series where we try to understand, and then explain, how new bike infrastructure comes to be. From the earliest line on a map to the final flexpost, no stone will be left unturned.

Our first two editions focused on the future Portland Street bikeways’ historical context and its community consultations.

(A screenshot of the livestream of March 27th's IEC meeting.)

In this third edition of How a Bike Lane is Born, our project heads to City Hall for the first time and is discussed at the Infrastructure and Environment Committee. Will a villain emerge on our bikeway’s quest to provide safe cycling infrastructure? Head to our website to find out.

Social Media Spotlight

Can’t get enough Cycle Toronto content? As we near the end of this month’s Ring & Post, you may find yourself already yearning for more. Although our newsletter is monthly, we post on our social media channels daily. Follow us on Instagram, Twitter / X, or TikTok to stay up-to-date on Cycle Toronto news and events. Here are some highlights from this month:

(A video shows a man threatening to run over cyclists at the chaotic Etobicoke Centre Cycling Projects meeting in late February)

(A post showing various community comments posted on a map at the Oakwood Village Streets Plan community consultation.)

In the Media

'These aren't accidents': Second cyclist death in Scarborough sparks anger over lack of bike lanes | Toronto Star

Paris cycling numbers double in one year thanks to massive investment and it's not stopping | Momentum Mag

How these two cities are making the wheels turn for cyclists | National Observer

Toronto e-scooter pilot program facing roadblocks | City News

Metrolinx is making room for more bikes on GO trains amid surging demand | CBC

Meet the man trying to fix Toronto’s infamous gridlock | Toronto Life


Cycle Toronto’s Learn-to-Ride Returns!

Cycle Toronto’s wildly successful pilot program is returning in 2024!

(Cycle Toronto cycling educators with Learn to Ride participants.)

We’ll be partnering with our friends at Scarborough Cycles-Access Alliance to deliver the first round of programming in Scarborough Southwest later next month. Stay tuned for more information.

Learn-to-Ride is generously supported by The Zita and Mark Bernstein Family Foundation.

Willowdale Community Environment Day

Eco fair, seed exchange, and more! Folks in Willowdale are invited to come out to celebrate. Cycle Toronto will be on hand providing bike safety checks.

(A poster for the event. Image: Lily Cheng)

When: Saturday, April 13th

Time: 10:00 am - 2:00 pm

Where: Earl Haig Secondary School (100 Princess Ave, North York)

Fill the Podium Applications Open for Gender-Diverse Cyclists

The Fill the Podium is a program to ensure that no rider rides alone. Even when there are opportunities for gender-diverse athletes to compete in cycling events there are many barriers that remain. Fill the Podium aims to provide all the support necessary for gender-diverse athletes to focus on enjoying their time on and off the bike. Successful applicants will get free registration and access to financial support, transportation, gear, food, accommodation. 

Applications are open now. Learn more and apply at theycycle.ca.

(Fill the Podium participants. Image: They Cycle)

Hope you enjoyed this edition of the Ring & Post. Feel free to follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and stay updated by checking our website.

And as always, every donation counts to help us continue the work you've read about in this newsletter.

Cycle Toronto


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