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Road Safety & Vision Zero Plan

imerk

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You clearly do not use bike lanes, they are already dangerous enough with the e-scooters whizzing along....
Oh no, I agree with you. The robots are a hazard on both bike lanes and sidewalks, especially during high traffic times. That said, I feel like bike lanes during off-peak makes the most sense if they're going 10-20 km/h.
 

W. K. Lis

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Residential streets, elementary school zones, transit malls, and cycling lanes (which could be used by motorized wheelchairs and e-bikes) should ALL be limited to 30 km/h.

Horses should be limited up to a walk, trot, canter, or gait (no galloping).

The average sprinting speed for humans will range between 20-30km/h.
 

afransen

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I'm not crazy about people using throttle-actuated e-bikes in bike lanes. I was walking my dog on a MUP the other day and she jumped a fraction of a second before a guy whizzed by going at quite a clip on a throttle ebike. IMO, if it has a throttle it should be on the road mixed with car traffic, and pedelecs belong in cycle lanes/MUPs. I think people get too much into motorcycle mode when using a throttle, whereas pedaling makes you think about speed more like you would as a cyclist. Going 32kph on a MUP is a bad idea.
 

lenaitch

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Residential streets, elementary school zones, transit malls, and cycling lanes (which could be used by motorized wheelchairs and e-bikes) should ALL be limited to 30 km/h.

Horses should be limited up to a walk, trot, canter, or gait (no galloping).

The average sprinting speed for humans will range between 20-30km/h.
Toronto has a speeding horse problem?
 

Northern Light

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Report to next week's Infrastructure and Environment Ctte on this year's program for new sidewalks (filling in the gaps)


From the above:

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Well.................. this was at Committee yesterday, and, as predicted by @W. K. Lis we lost one new sidewalk to a Councillor veto.

Wonder when the local ward Councillors will come around to veto them, somehow.

1651082439353.png


At least 10/11 made it through.............? (so far)....
 

crs1026

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Well.................. this was at Committee yesterday, and, as predicted by @W. K. Lis we lost one new sidewalk to a Councillor veto.

Richdale Court is a 22-house dead end street. It does not connect to any key destinations such as schools, parks, or community centres.

The Committee minutes indicate that 86% of residents on that street opposed sidewalk installation.

There are many locations in this city that are crying for sidewalks, but clearly this isn't one of them. I wonder how easy it would be for residents who overwhelmingly desire a sidewalk to get one, when the program is run this way. There are public schools in Etobicoke that have sidewalks that end at the school's property line, for gosh sakes.

There's no reason to ask residents on a particular street to "take one for the team" when the sidewalk program is so token and fundamentally a virtue-signalling-driven exercise.

I would like to see the City staff tasked with producing a list of 10 or 20 kms of highest-priority rated streets requiring sidewalks, using the ranking criteria that are laid out in the original Missing Sidewalk program document as approved by Council. Publish that list, with the rationale. Let residents grapple with the dangers that analysis would demonstrate, and let Councillors grapple with the question of how to fund sidewalks in those more urgent locations.

- Paul
 

Northern Light

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Richdale Court is a 22-house dead end street. It does not connect to any key destinations such as schools, parks, or community centres.

The Committee minutes indicate that 86% of residents on that street opposed sidewalk installation.

There are many locations in this city that are crying for sidewalks, but clearly this isn't one of them. I wonder how easy it would be for residents who overwhelmingly desire a sidewalk to get one, when the program is run this way. There are public schools in Etobicoke that have sidewalks that end at the school's property line, for gosh sakes.

There's no reason to ask residents on a particular street to "take one for the team" when the sidewalk program is so token and fundamentally a virtue-signalling-driven exercise.

I would like to see the City staff tasked with a list of 10 or 20 kms of highest-priority rated streets requiring sidewalks, using the ranking criteria that are laid out in the original Missing Sidewalk program document as approved by Council. Let residents grapple with the dangers that analysis would demonstrate, and let Councillors grapple with the question of how to fund sidewalks in those more urgent locations.

- Paul

Most of this program is being done when roads come up for reconstruction, to save money, and to allow a more thoughtful design w/o shortening the life of the road. This particular spot was being bundled with watermain work and road resurfacing.

***

I continue to feel the need to shout from the rafters, it is not the prerogative of area residents to tell people who use mobility aids (walkers/wheelchairs etc.) to walk in the middle of the road, in winter.

The idea that an urban street should lack a sidewalk is a conceit of the able-bodied; and those who forget that Canada has four seasons, one of which produce snow banks and slippery conditions.

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Have a look at this street. As best I can tell, not a single tree needs to be harmed to put in a sidewalk, nor does a single garden need to be removed.

The only objection I'm willing to entertain here is one in which the residents clearly want the road dieted and upgraded streetscape.

But, in fact, there is a fatuous load of nonsense about harming trees, and stormwater runoff.

If the residents were so concerned about stormwater runoff, they ought to install permeable interlock on their driveways......
 
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Northern Light

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How much of that grass or driveway is on city property. Wherever there is a lamppost or fire hydrant, that is city property.They don't need the property owner permission to put in a sidewalk on city property.

There's a lot more room than that within the ROW:

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Everything from the pink line to the road is City property.

A distance of ~5.4M, denoted by the red line above.
 

crs1026

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I continue to feel the need to shout from the rafters, it is not the prerogative of area residents to tell people who use mobility aids (walkers/wheelchairs etc.) to walk in the middle of the road, in winter.

I have some sympathy for that argument, but that's a different premise than the whole discussion about road safety. The one is about equality (a mobility-challenged citizen may live anywhere, and should be able to get around as well as anyone else) where the other is demonstrably unequal (some streets are safer than others).

Considering how we handle sidewalks generally, I'm still not sure that I would go head-on against opposition street by street. Having had some dialog with some folks who have mobility issues, the barriers they cited that obstructed their mobility made the question of sidewalks on their own street moot. Again, I would start with the big barriers and maybe people would see the issue more clearly.

- Paul
 
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allengeorge

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Considering how we handle sidewalks generally, I'm still not sure that I would go head-on against opposition street by street. Having had some dialog with some folks who have mobility issues, the barriers they cited that obstructed their mobility made the question of sidewalks on their own street moot. Again, I would start with the big barriers and maybe people would see the issue more clearly.
Can you outline the big barriers you think should be focused on when it comes to mobility around the city? (Excluding buildings, since I’m more interested in the transportation aspect). And, especially when it comes to roads/sidewalks?
 

crs1026

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Can you outline the big barriers you think should be focused on when it comes to mobility around the city? (Excluding buildings, since I’m more interested in the transportation aspect). And, especially when it comes to roads/sidewalks?

For those with mobility issues, we need to think of streets and sidewalks much more like railway or streetcar tracks than as footpaths for the able…. a single gap or discontinuity can frustrate the entire journey. An able person can step around a single temporary obstruction or use a temporary gravel pathway.. Someone using a walker may find this much more difficult. In general, standards for temporary closures or temporary alterations to sidewalk pathways are too lenient.

The city‘s threshold for when a sidewalk needs repair or adjustment is not aligned to use of mobility devices. Situations where slabs have shifted, or drainage is inadequate etc get addressed in a matter of years, not weeks or days.

The blockages on “main street” sidewalks I have seen include vendors using sidewalk as selling space, small construction that redirects people to step over a curb, or more major construction sites where hoardings or vehicular entrances create discontinuity in the surface. The street patio program of recent summers turned many busy sidewalks into a disability minefield.

A further barrier is simply distance and stamina. Motorized scooters meet some peoples’ needs but are not convenient or practical for many situations because of size and weight.. Many using non-motorised walkers frequently have absolute limits in distance. Gradient becomes much more crucial….any serious slope is beyond the person’s capability. A sidewalk on a sloping street is no help. And then there is the distance to a public washroom, which may not exist….. Many trips in residential areas are auto-dependent simply as a function of distance. One disabled resident in my neighbourhood who I asked about sidewalks just rolled his eyes and asked “Where would I go?”….other than taking a spin around the block, all destinations that mattered were further away than a mobility device allowed.

Lastly, the built form of much of our residential housing is not mobility friendly. Interior stairs, exterior doors that aren’t at grade… have seen this in my own family where we reached a point where no one could accommodate our elderly family members’ mobility needs in our homes, greatly affecting family gatherings

There is also weather. Whether maintained by city or by residents, the standard of sidewalk clearing is problemmatic. I am dubious that we can ever achieve a high enough standard of clear, level pathways on all our local streets sufficient to be safe for those with mobility issues especially for the frail or elderly throughout winter months, unless we go to massive clearing efforts or heating installations.

Just a few random observations.

- Paul
 
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TRONto

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Not all the sidewalks are wide enough for these robots. You got restaurant patio's, planter boxes, trees. Plus people using mobility scooters, walker/strollers , dog walkers, all need extra space. Plus you got construction equipment taking up space. Come winter time, we lose a foot or more sidewalk space from the snowbanks. I can picture someone glued to their phone not looking where they are going and tripping face first over a robot.

I thought the pink robots were great. They are bright and slow so you'll see them. They are thinner than a stroller so they'll make it through most spaces. I think most would agree that these are best than experiencing the 6 delivery bikes I passed on the sidewalk in one short walk last night.
 

crs1026

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Can you outline the big barriers you think should be focused on when it comes to mobility around the city? (Excluding buildings, since I’m more interested in the transportation aspect). And, especially when it comes to roads/sidewalks?

If you will pardon me one further digression (not a Vision Zero matter, but it relates to your question at least) - having been the primary caregiver to a family member now in their nineties for the past decade.... the biggest transport/mobility barrier I have encountered relates to access to health services in locations other than major hospitals. All buildings with clinics meet some level of accessibility codes, but many lack amenities directly related to transportation needs. The amenities I am referring to are - a building lobby with adequate waiting space for patients awaiting transport, clear sightlines to whatever curb or ramp is used for mobility access (which includes use by private auto drivers such as myself, as well as taxi or Wheeltrans), a mobility equipped washroom immediately adjacent to the waiting area, and security such that the caregiver can leave the disabled or unwell person while they park or retrieve their vehicle (since parking may be at a distance and/or not amenable to loading/unloading a disabled person).

Major hospitals mostly meet this standard, but a huge number of clinics, health providers, etc - who may be located in strip malls or less well maintained office buildings that cater to medical services - clearly do not. It has been hugely stressful to deposit my charge in a weather affected, possibly sketchy location while I parked/retrieved my vehicle.

- Paul
 

Northern Light

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If you will pardon me one further digression (not a Vision Zero matter, but it relates to your question at least) - having been the primary caregiver to a family member now in their nineties for the past decade.... the biggest transport/mobility barrier I have encountered relates to access to health services in locations other than major hospitals. All buildings with clinics meet some level of accessibility codes, but many lack amenities directly related to transportation needs. The amenities I am referring to are - a building lobby with adequate waiting space for patients awaiting transport, clear sightlines to whatever curb or ramp is used for mobility access (which includes use by private auto drivers such as myself, as well as taxi or Wheeltrans), a mobility equipped washroom immediately adjacent to the waiting area, and security such that the caregiver can leave the disabled or unwell person while they park or retrieve their vehicle (since parking may be at a distance and/or not amenable to loading/unloading a disabled person).

Major hospitals mostly meet this standard, but a huge number of clinics, health providers, etc - who may be located in strip malls or less well maintained office buildings that cater to medical services - clearly do not. It has been hugely stressful to deposit my charge in a weather affected, possibly sketchy location while I parked/retrieved my vehicle.

- Paul

I've been through this myself.

My mother in her last couple of years, post-stroke, having COPD, using a walker, and also having some dementia was a challenge to get to many appointments. I had to drive her in most cases, and her ability to walk was limited to one block at most, and because she was prone to short-term memory lapse and disorientation, leaving her unattended was not really acceptable.

As such I'm very sympathetic w/those challenges.

That said, most don't fall within the City's prerogative.

One could argue that the City should mandate/create patient pickup and drop-off in front of all medical facilities; of course, if there was no grandfathering, this would displace perhaps a majority of doctor's offices in the City.

But even that doesn't address the issue of continuous supervision of someone. Something I found I had to phone-ahead and arrange, and it could be quite the challenge as staff were not set-up to do this in many cases (walk out to a car to escort someone in for example).

****

I feel strongly we ought to address such challenges, I expect most of those fall within the sphere of the province; in the same way the building code does.
Mandating full accessibility in every residence is entirely impractical, it would force much larger unit sizes if all bathrooms/kitchens had to have the requisite space for wheelchair users.
That said; there is an argument in new builds, that at least one powder room should meet the standard for accessibility in every apartment/home; but there would certainly be some pushback from industry on cost.

The City is reasonably on the hook for maintenance standards, interruptions of sidewalk/path caused by construction and the program for winter snow-clearing and safety.

We can all agree they ought to be doing better on pretty much all of these; but if you did everyone perfectly, you wouldn't allow a mobility impaired person to access a sidewalk-less street when there are snowbanks on the road.

Equally, I'm not sure such a mobility impaired person should be left in the midst of a road without quality traffic calming and a probably as-driven speed below 30km/ph.

***

We could add, for homeowners (or businesses) that the case could be made for having snow melt systems under at least one path, to one entrance (ideally an accessible one); but that is rather a gold-standard that I don't
see being achieved in this generation.
 
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