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King Street (Streetcar Transit Priority)

So a TTC bus also would not be allowed in the left lane? That doesn't make sense. Where does it say that that's the streetcar lane?
Yes, it's the streetcar lane, since the "tracks" are in that lane.
No one is making you turn left on your bike over streetcar tracks.
A direct copy of the forum surmise:
streetcar-transit-mall-priority-measures
And yes, a bus can use it, since it's a transit vehicle. Logic should have indicated that from the start.

Another accident on King and Spadina. This can’t be a coincidence. It’s not like I’m waiting there for it to happen. Last night and tonight. Walked in to an accident on the same corner.
It's an awful corner, with a slight cant to the tracks that exacerbates it. I'm thinking that right turn lane curbs might have to extend into the turn onto Spadina, albeit ones that still allow emergency vehicles to climb over them, and pedestrian access through a space in them.
 
So a TTC bus also would not be allowed in the left lane? That doesn't make sense. Where does it say that that's the streetcar lane?

Yes, buses were allowed there. It wasn't a streetcar lane, it was a TTC lane. The new signs don't say "streetcars excepted", they say "TTC excepted".
 
Really? Perhaps you could describe how you do that at streetcar intersection? Which lane are you going to do a through intersection turn from? And how is that enabled through the HTA?
I just get off my bike and walk it across and then remount when I'm out of pedestrian and back into vehicular mode. Or, if I can stay on the bike without breaking the law, I do the below.

bike_graphic_left_turn-01.jpg
 
I don't think bicycles should be excepted from the No Left Turn sign, because I don't think a two-stage turn counts as a left turn in the sense of the sign. In terms of traffic movement (which is what the sign is referring to), its two straight-thru movements rather than a single left-turn movement.

I wonder if there is any common-law precedent for this interpretation.
 
I just get off my bike and walk it across and then remount when I'm out of pedestrian and back into vehicular mode. Or, if I can stay on the bike without breaking the law, I do the below.
That's by far the most sensible way to handle dangerous intersections. Unfortunately, most cyclists don't dismount when straying into the crosswalks. Unfortunately, there's a clash in the HTA with two clauses that conflict, I posted them prior. But common-sense alone, especially when trying to navigate crossing slippery tracks, even with larger section tires, dictates dismounting to do it safely, let alone a lot of drivers who barely slow, let alone stop while right-turning at those major intersections.

I don't trust the 'green boxes' as they have absolutely no status under the HTA, a point of contention with the City that Metro cops I've spoken to have. I've written to query on that from councillors and city cycling orgs, not one answer. They all know it puts cyclists not only in danger, it's actually in contravention of the HTA (obstructing traffic).

Which brings us back to this:
upload_2017-11-11_19-23-1-png.126890


They haven't thought this through, and the dangers won't sink-in until a very serious accident. And even then, they may not get it...

The way for cyclists to do this is exactly as you state. It also means that, for at least the test period, cyclists must use pedestrian signals *as pedestrians*. There's no way to safely accommodate cyclists going straight ahead if they are in the curb lane while crossing the right turning traffic, almost all of the drivers flummoxed by the signs and protocol as it is. Ditto pedestrians. If they're not protected by clear walk/don't walk signs, there's going to be serious problems.

And to counsel cyclists doing left turns on the outside lane? Insanity at this point. The traffic light phases must be as simple as possible until the kinks are worked out.
 
I don't think bicycles should be excepted from the No Left Turn sign, because I don't think a two-stage turn counts as a left turn in the sense of the sign. In terms of traffic movement (which is what the sign is referring to), its two straight-thru movements rather than a single left-turn movement.

I wonder if there is any common-law precedent for this interpretation.
Absolutely agreed! That may seem like semantics, but it isn't. It radically simplifies what will go wrong given the chance. There's no freakin way I'd cycle through that snake's nest the way it's set-up, but it won't stop a lot of cyclists, and it will just be one more factor of mayhem. Even pedestrians must be very carefully protected. Average driver is just not conditioned for this, and the vulnerable will be the victims.
I wonder if there is any common-law precedent for this interpretation.
I was looking for case law on that a few weeks back after conversations with TO Police. Even the sergeants I talked to, one at Traffic, were unaware of any precedents let alone laws on the book that the cops could enforce in the event of an accident involving green boxes. One sergeant, (precinct desk) who was a bike cop last year, didn't even know what they were until I showed him a pic on my phone, Cops don't recognize or enforce by-laws, and that's what most cycling infrastructure is. Until the Province writes it into the HTA, all the cops will go on record as stating is "We have to share the road". Code for "Our hands are tied right now". I was highly encouraged to pursue this with City Hall and QP, because the cops would *love* to enforce safety.

"Precedents" are the key word right now, as case law would have to be the law in the absence of it being written.
 
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I don't trust the 'green boxes' as they have absolutely no status under the HTA, a point of contention with the City that Metro cops I've spoken to have. I've written to query on that from councillors and city cycling orgs, not one answer. They all know it puts cyclists not only in danger, it's actually in contravention of the HTA (obstructing traffic).

You're correct that left-turn bike boxes have no status under the HTA. But they don't need any status, they're just a demarcation of space that has been set aside for bicycles waiting while doing a two-stage turn. For example, to install the left-turn boxes on King at Simcoe St the crosswalks were moved back, also resolving the whole 'riding in a crosswalk' issue.

Cyclists waiting in a left-turn bicycle box are not contravening any HTA rule. They are not obstructing any traffic because the boxes are always placed out of the way of any traffic movements during the bicycle's first green light, and a No Right Turn On Red sign is always installed on the street are in front of.

Absolutely agreed! That may seem like semantics, but it isn't. It radically simplifies what will go wrong given the chance. There's no freakin way I'd cycle through that snake's nest the way it's set-up, but it won't stop a lot of cyclists, and it will just be one more factor of mayhem. Even pedestrians must be very carefully protected. Average driver is just not conditioned for this, and the vulnerable will be the victims.

I think everyone agrees with this, my guess is the bicycle exception on the left-turn sign was an oversight or misinterpretation.
 
It's an awful corner, with a slight cant to the tracks that exacerbates it. I'm thinking that right turn lane curbs might have to extend into the turn onto Spadina, albeit ones that still allow emergency vehicles to climb over them, and pedestrian access through a space in them.

This. There needs to be a barrier in the intersection that prevents straight through traffic and forces right turners to make a sharp 90 degree turn into the centre lane.
 
They are not obstructing any traffic because the boxes are always placed out of the way of any traffic movements during the bicycle's first green light, and a No Right Turn On Red sign is always installed on the street are in front of.
Not so! I took pics and examples to the cops. They are appalled.

I have posted them in the Separated Bike Lanes string, along with excerpts of US v Cdn/Prov/Municipal guidelines. US (which is Federally regulated, btw) says (gist) "Rights turns on red banned when using boxes". Cdn ones state "may". Guess what happens.

Gladly discuss this with you further in the Separated string, you exactly see the conflict. It is because there is no HTA recognition that "obstruction" is all the cops can enforce. They weren't aware of any court precedents, since this does fall through the legal cracks, but they're terrified it will take a life-changing court case, most likely civil (which is very unfortunate, rulings often can't be cited in other courts as it's based on the balance of doubt) to at least start the political process of amending the HTA. It took years to get the 'one metre passing distance' enacted, and it's next to impossible to enforce.

Here's the southwest corner of Lansdowne and Dundas, the arrow indicates going north on Lansdowne.

Here's the posts at the corner where *logic* (and US law) would dictate "No Right Turns on Red":

There is absolutely no "No Right Turn on Red" posted. I tried that box...for about five seconds. Notice where the green box is. Guess what happens when traffic wants to turn right...

And to make it even worse, the blue sign is posted on Dundas eastbound where it meets College and directs cyclists to use the Green Box at Lansdowne. Why? *To avoid crossing the streetcar tracks where College meets Dundas, since they're dangerous!*

As stated with the King Street Project: They haven't thought this through...
 

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This is why good design has to assume that drivers won't read signage. Signage should be there only as a confirmation of what intuition tells the driver to do.

Bad design: A sign prohibiting through traffic but having the path wide open ahead.
Good design: The path to go through the intersection is completely closed by a dead end and/or an extended median into the intersection forcing a right turn.

Bad design: dark yellow stripes that are barely visible during the day, let alone at night that indicate a streetcar exclusive zone but that cars can just drive through and even wait in.
Good design: harsh rumble strips or a raised island inside the exclusive streetcar lane at intersections that would make it immediately obvious to drivers that they can't drive there forcing them into the turning lane.

Bad design: a solid green light ahead, even though transit is the only one who can use it.
Good design: a transit labelled green light and a right turning green light. Drivers would never see a straight green.

The city had something close to this in the Alternating Loops option but went ahead and chose the least intuitive design that relies almost entirely on drivers' voluntary compliance.

this is a pilot test though.
 
this is a pilot test though.

So it should be poorly designed so that it screws up a major street for a whole year or more, including the city's busiest surface route with some 60,000 odd daily riders? And as a pilot project, it's supposed to produce useful data to evaluate the best course of action going forward--if it's poorly designed and implemented, the data will be useless, not useful.
 
It's anarchy out there right now...

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Signs: do not turn left, do not go straight.

Toronto drivers: F* off. I do what I want.

Streetcars are backed up 2 or 3 light cycles. I walked from King and Peter to King and Portland faster than the streetcar in this picture.

IMG_8009.JPG


You'll need to see it for yourself to believe how messed up King is right now with cars parked there despite heavy signage prohibiting stopping and no parking metres anywhere to pay for parking. There's also the ever present "flashing lights let me stop anywhere" cars holding up traffic behind them trying to turn right.

And because the right lane on the far side of intersections is closed off, the illegal left turns during every light cycle block the only lane preventing streetcars from going through and they inevitably get stuck in the middle of the intersection, gridlocking all southbound and northbound traffic for another cycle.

And of course, Police presence is just as high as you'd expect on a Saturday night but none of them are doing anything regarding traffic.
 

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This does not look good and it was entirely predictable.
Of course it's entirely predictable. You see the same thing when they put a stop sign somewhere unexpectedly (for the driver). But a month later, everyone's stopping.

This will be fine, and it willbe followed as people get used to it.

Also Saturday is hardly typical traffic - you get all these people downtown you don't regularly drive there.

How about cameras similar to red light cameras?
Need a more temporary solution for a trial.

With the college strike on, must be lots of George Brown students with spare time. Hire a few for each intersection. Give them paint-ball guns. Problem solved.


This is a recipe for serious problems:

First off, left turns for bikes over comprehensive track diamonds (turn-outs for each direction) are very dangerous unless there's no traffic and there's room to angle the front wheel against the tracks (hardly the case or we wouldn't have this situation to begin with).
How does anything change from current though? You can turn left on a traffic light now if you are bike - and you can still do it if you are comfortable with it. I don't see how it becomes more of an issue than it is now - heck isn't it easier, given there's no through traffic.

Another accident on King and Spadina. This can’t be a coincidence. It’s not like I’m waiting there for it to happen. Last night and tonight. Walked in to an accident on the same corner.
A victory in the war on cars!

And of course, Police presence is just as high as you'd expect on a Saturday night but none of them are doing anything regarding traffic.
Situation normal then.
 
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I just told my dad about the King Street Pilot and he immediately said that it was dumb and stupid. We live in Richmond Hill and he often drives downtown for work. We talked about how it improves the streetcars and how it will improve the commutes of more people, but he still categorized it as stupid. I brought up using other streets to go through and how King should only be used if you had to go for deliveries or actual live there, and he predictably said what if he wanted to go to places on King and park there. :D Some comments he had was that cars should be able to drive on any street, streets are for cars, and that the less restrictions the better (parking, turns, speed, etc). I guess car users just want to drive on streets.

He also said that this pilot is more stupid than the Highway 7 Rapidway... :eek:I don’t think anyone can agree with that.

I just wanted to share this experience.
 

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