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King Street (Streetcar Transit Priority)

Shouldn't there be at the very least a green arrow to show that you can go straight only (left traffic light at minimum).

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That doesn't make sense. The green arrow means you can only turn right, not go straight. Going straight is prohibited by the posted sign.

You also cannot turn left so there's no indication on that left traffic light.
 
That doesn't make sense. The green arrow means you can only turn right, not go straight. Going straight is prohibited by the posted sign.

You also cannot turn left so there's no indication on that left traffic light.
As I note above, the light is far more prominent that the signage and the instincive thing is that green means you can go straight ahead - particularly if you have been going straight ahead for decades.
 
As I note above, the light is far more prominent that the signage and the instincive thing is that green means you can go straight ahead - particularly if you have been going straight ahead for decades.

I agree but it's a bit tricky since a right arrow as we have on King now, or a right turn signal with a green light as on Queen's Quay or Cherry St, is for protected right turns with no pedestrians allowed to walk on the right. I think the ONLY way to say you're allowed to turn right but must yield to pedestrians is a green globe on a standard light (i.e. not a 'right turn signal').

Optimally, you'd have a regular traffic light that's red 100% of the time but with a vertical white bar for streetcars when the light would normally be green, and beside it 1) a bicycle signal that's in sync with the transit signal on the main light (green when transit has a white bar), and 2) a right turn signal for cars. Unfortunately this would require strictly separate right turn and pedestrian phases, not a brief advance then a mixed phase. That said, this might be the most logical solution; have the phasing be: north south, east west streetcars+bicycles+right turns but no pedestrians, east west streetcars+bicycles+pedestrians but no right turns, north south.
 
It's unfortunate this is off to such a lousy start.
Is it? They don't need 100% compliance to improve transit times. Come rush hour, if you follow the streetcar through the light, you'll find yourself parked behind it while it loads/unloads.

This all seems to about Saturday. I thought the streetcars weren't even going to using the new stops until today. When you were there, were the old stops removed yet?

Is the city committed to seeing this current arrangement through, or is there a chance they'll make some sensible modifications in the near future?
There's a lot of latitude to make modifications. City council has delegated some powers to the General Manager of Transportation Services for this very reason until the beginning of 2019. See item 2 of http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2017.EX26.1 where they delegate the following powers:

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I agree but it's a bit tricky since a right arrow as we have on King now, or a right turn signal with a green light as on Queen's Quay or Cherry St, is for protected right turns with no pedestrians allowed to walk on the right. I think the ONLY way to say you're allowed to turn right but must yield to pedestrians is a green globe on a standard light (i.e. not a 'right turn signal').

Optimally, you'd have a regular traffic light that's red 100% of the time but with a vertical white bar for streetcars when the light would normally be green, and beside it 1) a bicycle signal that's in sync with the transit signal on the main light (green when transit has a white bar), and 2) a right turn signal for cars. Unfortunately this would require strictly separate right turn and pedestrian phases, not a brief advance then a mixed phase. That said, this might be the most logical solution; have the phasing be: north south, east west streetcars+bicycles+right turns but no pedestrians, east west streetcars+bicycles+pedestrians but no right turns, north south.

Took the words out of my mouth. This would effectively ban straight through traffic. Otherwise, they'd be running a red and the red light camera at some of these intersections would capture them. People would learn real quick.

Maybe a separate right turn and crosswalk phase isn't such a bad idea. Given that King is supposed to be only local traffic, the light wouldn't have to be very long and it would prevent pedestrian/right turning car conflicts.
 
Walking down Yonge Street today after the matinee at the Mirvish Theatre overheard a young chap on the phone as he walked.....”Took the King Streetcar today, haven’t done that in years. I think those new rules started today and I can’t remember ever moving that fast on King with TTC”
 
I biked and took the streetcar across King today between 1 and 2 pm. I did notice many cars not following the rules, even on cross streets turning onto King. Seemed like all the signs didn't mean anything, and did not see a single cop out anywhere (though did see many police vehicles parked along the route). Also saw pedestrians walking out in front of turning vehicles who had advanced turns more than a few times. I think they will be blitzing during the week, so hopefully everyone should get the idea in a week or so, and the few who will continuously break the law won't significantly slow down service (I'm an optimist...).

However, despite the traffic rules non-compliance, the ride on the streetcar was really fast. Going eastbound we just flew from stop to stop. I don't know if it was some sort of signal priority, or if the driver was good at judging the next light, but seemed to keep getting greens (hit maybe 3 or 4 red lights). Much less starting and stopping. Street activity seemed to be as busy as it always is, with lots of people out.

I like that idea of having a permanent red light at intersections with separate but linked bike and transit signals. That would for sure stop most cars from going through. I guess the green would have to work again between 10 and 5 for taxis though.
 
I biked and took the streetcar across King today between 1 and 2 pm. I did notice many cars not following the rules, even on cross streets turning onto King. Seemed like all the signs didn't mean anything, and did not see a single cop out anywhere (though did see many police vehicles parked along the route). Also saw pedestrians walking out in front of turning vehicles who had advanced turns more than a few times. I think they will be blitzing during the week, so hopefully everyone should get the idea in a week or so, and the few who will continuously break the law won't significantly slow down service (I'm an optimist...).

However, despite the traffic rules non-compliance, the ride on the streetcar was really fast. Going eastbound we just flew from stop to stop. I don't know if it was some sort of signal priority, or if the driver was good at judging the next light, but seemed to keep getting greens (hit maybe 3 or 4 red lights). Much less starting and stopping. Street activity seemed to be as busy as it always is, with lots of people out.

I like that idea of having a permanent red light at intersections with separate but linked bike and transit signals. That would for sure stop most cars from going through. I guess the green would have to work again between 10 and 5 for taxis though.

I think the

1) no left turns anywhere, and
2) no street parking

Are making a huge difference, even with everyone ignoring the no straight through rule
 
Biked along King today as well, many cars were ignoring the new signs - not sure if they were confused or they chose to ignore. It was announced by the TTC spokesperson that the new signage would not really be enforced in the first week or so, so I expect some drivers will be “playing stupid” for now. I did however see parking enforcement out of their vehicles giving out warnings to cars(mostly taxis) for sitting in the right lane. As said above, the no left turn and no street parking will really make a difference.
 
Maybe a separate right turn and crosswalk phase isn't such a bad idea.
Unless the attitudes of some drivers improves, it will be a necessity. As stated prior, cyclists will have to dismount and use that same pedestrian phase to continue along King, as the potential for conflicting the rabid right-turners will be high. Pedestrians and dismounted cyclists crossing have to have the protection of their own crossing phase, which would be shared with streetcars unless the streetcars are turning off onto Spadina or Bathurst.

Did notice streetcars waiting at red lights before being able to cross the intersection to the farside stop. So much for "transit priority" at the traffic signals.
This brings up the "transit priority" discussion again. This is going to have to be revisited, as indeed it was for Melbourne's Bourke Mall.
 
I think the

1) no left turns anywhere, and
2) no street parking

Are making a huge difference, even with everyone ignoring the no straight through rule
I think you are right.....which makes the lack of enforcement of the old rules even more frustrating......remember, we had no parking and no left turns during rush hours before.....if enforcing those rules (and maybe extending the length of the windows) is what is going to account for the bulk of the improved streetcar experience, we could have gotten there a while ago with less angst!
 
^ ^ ^

That’s the third accident that I’ve seen in 3 days, all at King and Spadina.

As I walked from Brant to University, there were tons of cars making illegal moves. But when I got to around Simcoe, King Street was absolutely deserted. No cars. None. Wide open road ahead for the streetcar. I found that a nice surprise but weird. Then, I found the answer when arriving at University. There were cops there actually enforcing the rules.

So the King Street Pilot would work if it were actually enforced. The problem with that is that permanent police presence at all intersections along King is not feasible.

I think that the real solution here — if they want to maintain this design — is to cut off the cross town route at the middle.

From Spadina to University, there are no driveways or garage entrances and commercial loading is done via back alleys. Discontinue all traffic there except for streetcars. Make it all sidewalk with 2 centre lanes for streetcars.

Drivers would never be able to use King to go crosstown because they’d arrive at Spadina or at University and have to divert anyway. This would be a self enforcing solution that would make King Street useless for crosstown drivers, propagating the idea of King as a local only road.
 

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