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Road Safety & Vision Zero Plan

crs1026

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One, on many routes, the traffic is the personal vehicle, as opposed to the service vehicle/truck..

If one can remove 10-50% of the passenger cars by providing higher quality transit, it ought to be plausible to reduce some roads without car-capacity replacement.

I'd also put in for cutting the maximum size of trucks on City streets; I remain of the view that the 53-footers were always a mistake, as City road geometry does not and cannot support them at most intersections.

Going back to '48 Max would be prudent.

****

None of the above, unto itself creates greater safety for cyclists or pedestrians.

Narrowing roads can be helpful; cycle tracks with physical separation even moreso.

Truck size definitely has to be addressed. I would be concerned about width as well as length.

Two lanes for truck routes instead of four might actually be safer, from the perspective that even with a marked bike lane, it is virtually impossible for a vehicle to drive alongside a large truck and stay safely away from both the truck on one side and cyclists on the other. No amount of paint or soft barriers will correct that. But, if there are too many vehicles, and we downsize them.....

I don't have any data on Dufferin either, although my impression from my own driving is it's one of the more major routes for trucks. And somehow it's a road that encourages impatience.

I wouldn't discount the idea of taking parallel side streets, declare them auto-free, and connecting them. In this case, Gladstone runs mostly parallel to Dufferin. Fill in the gaps, give it stop lights at major cross streets (with priority equal to what motor traffic is afforded), realign the stop signs so that they favour through bicycle movement... in effect it becomes an "arterial" for cyclists but vehicle free. That achieves a physical separation that just may be too hard to make work on some main arterials.

But some portions of these issues are about driver education; distractions while driving, visibility (here I'm not on about clothing or such, but about the way in which streetlights are often more harm than good)....

Driving has a high potential for sensory overload. It's probably the highest-CPU-load task the average person attempts. Inattention exacerbates this risk, certainly, as does speed.... but even cautious, attentive drivers are challenged to process everything. Reducing clutter, simplifying signage, and addressing sight lines and day/night visibility all are needed.

- Paul
 

crs1026

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^They could, but Toronto doesn’t typically set the walk signal to precede.the green for autos. Mostly that happens when there is an advance green permitting left turns in a single direction, and it only applies to a single side of the intersection. So its application is not that common.
I would worry about the confusion that could creat, and the general inconsistency of cyclists moving with autos in some situations but not in others.
And, if the walk sign is only triggered when a pedestrian pushes the button, you will have frustrated cyclists not getting a walk light when they expect one, and possibly setting off anyways, either in confusion or in impatience.
My feeling is that Toronto already has too many different and non standard things happening at indivisual intersections. Introducing another irregular practice will make things worse, even if it’s popular in Brooklyn.

- Paul
 

Northern Light

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^They could, but Toronto doesn’t typically set the walk signal to precede.the green for autos. Mostly that happens when there is an advance green permitting left turns in a single direction, and it only applies to a single side of the intersection. So its application is not that common.
I would worry about the confusion that could creat, and the general inconsistency of cyclists moving with autos in some situations but not in others.
And, if the walk sign is only triggered when a pedestrian pushes the button, you will have frustrated cyclists not getting a walk light when they expect one, and possibly setting off anyways, either in confusion or in impatience.
My feeling is that Toronto already has too many different and non standard things happening at indivisual intersections. Introducing another irregular practice will make things worse, even if it’s popular in Brooklyn.

- Paul


Its already here (general purpose advanced pedestrian signals), I've seen it a few intersections. One I encountered just yesterday at Coxwell and Mortimer.

The pedestrian signal activates first, every time, in both directions.

It didn't seem terribly confusing to me as a driver.

I don't expect, however, it would make sense to do this for cyclists.

The advance pedestrian signal is specifically to make pedestrians highly visible to turning motorists.

If you add cyclists to the mix; you have the issue of cyclist/pedestrian conflict, but also cyclists shielding the view of pedestrians by motorists. This of course happens anyway; but would seem to defeat the pedestrian head-start.
 

allengeorge

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I’ll also point out that cyclists in Brooklyn do everything, from rolling at stop signs, biking though intersections with a red (regardless of pedestrian signals), biking only on the green, and biking on the pedestrian signal. It’s kinda a mess, but that’s inevitable, given that bike infrastructure is choppy, and most people don’t know the ‘official’ rules.
 

reteequa

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^They could, but Toronto doesn’t typically set the walk signal to precede.the green for autos. Mostly that happens when there is an advance green permitting left turns in a single direction, and it only applies to a single side of the intersection. So its application is not that common.
I would worry about the confusion that could creat, and the general inconsistency of cyclists moving with autos in some situations but not in others.
And, if the walk sign is only triggered when a pedestrian pushes the button, you will have frustrated cyclists not getting a walk light when they expect one, and possibly setting off anyways, either in confusion or in impatience.
My feeling is that Toronto already has too many different and non standard things happening at indivisual intersections. Introducing another irregular practice will make things worse, even if it’s popular in Brooklyn.

- Paul

The city put in a bunch of advanced pedestrian signals last year at high volume zones. There are a bunch around uoft and Ryerson and some in the financial core as well. I always laugh at the guy trying to be already moving when it turns green because they have to stop again because it doesn’t turn green right away.

There is one of these at Gerard and church I always go when the pedestrian signal turns on when I’m on my bike. Makes me feel safer. I also see most other cyclists do this as well, in front of police so I don’t think it’s an issue.

Hopefully more of these signals are introduced.
 

W. K. Lis

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Memo to Feds: To Keep Seniors Safe on Our Roads, End Car Dependence

From link.

America’s top federal safety agency is raising awareness this week about safety for older drivers, but largely ignoring how car dependence often forces seniors to take the wheel even when they can no longer do so safely.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration kicked off Older Driver Safety Awareness Week on Monday with a splashy landing page urging aging Americans and their caregivers to create a “‘transportation plan,’ much like what many are encouraged to do for retirement.” What the Administration forgot to mention, though, is that it’s about as easy for a resident of an auto-centric city to make such a “plan” as it is for a person living at the federal poverty level to simply “plan” to stop working in his or her golden years — which is to say, impossible.

And according to the agency’s own data, the problem is getting worse: the NHTSA reported that fatalities involving elderly male drivers have increased 36 percent between 2009 and 2018, and increased 17 percent for female drivers, a phenomenon that’s likely attributable to the fact that the U.S. elderly population has swelled over the same period.

The agency has so far neglected to mention that elderly pedestrians are also among the age groups most frequently killed by drivers of all ages because of poor pedestrian infrastructure. Walking fatalities among Americans over 70 increased a whopping 53 percent over the last decade.

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NHTSA’s webpage does offer a wealth of expensive, individual solutions for seniors who’d like to stay behind the wheel — think retrofitting vehicles with adaptive equipment and driver assistance technology that can help older drivers as their abilities change — but the agency is mum on how drivers might actually pay for those changes, much less strategies for seniors to safely get around without a car at all.

That’s a serious problem for a population group that has the single highest rate of fatal car crashes per mile, and who are more likely to be involved in multi-car crashes rather than single-vehicle impacts that harm only themselves. Most experts believe that some elderly drivers struggle to stay safe behind the wheel because they’re disproportionately likely to have low vision, poor hearing, memory and cognitive impairments, and a range of other medical needs that can make piloting a multi-ton automobile a functional impossibility even with advanced vehicle safety technology.

According to the most recent survey from the National Aging and Disability Transportation Center, 33 percent of Americans over 60 identify as having a disability that may make it challenging for them to operate a car, but 82 percent of them drive anyway. And that’s almost certainly because 68 percent of seniors say “it would be difficult to find alternative transportation options, if they were to stop driving.” (It also doesn’t help that most states essentially rely on the elderly or their caregivers to self-determine when it’s time to turn in their keys rather than re-testing their abilities behind the wheel; NHTSA’s campaign is heavy on fact sheets that essentially asks drivers and their chosen families to assess themselves for warning signs, regardless of their medical background or lack thereof.)

Of course, there’s a good reason why American communities generally shy away from getting even the least road-ready seniors to give up their licenses: the communities were built to be car-dependent. As a result, 79 percent of seniors who gave up their cars classified themselves as “somewhat” or “very” socially isolated, a 2019 study found, backing up other studies that showed a higher risk of early death stemming from seniors being unable to easily access food, work, or medical care.

The only trouble is, letting a medically compromised senior stay connected to his community via his coupe can easily kill him, too — as can forcing him to rely on pedestrian infrastructure that’s usually not designed with the needs of a potentially slow-moving senior in mind.

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Today’s auto-centric reality is pretty bleak for elders with mobility challenges, but our future doesn’t have to be. Other communities who have done the hard work of transportation and land use reform to center the needs of seniors and other vulnerable road users have succeeded in ending traffic violence for all age groups — and since Finland’s seniors aren’t all just Formula One tactical driving experts, experts say there’s no reason it can’t happen here.

“It’s important to remember that driving is just one way to stay mobile,” said Rhonda L. Shah of AAA. “Most older adults will tap into various transportation options to meet their needs [if they are available.]”

Of course, there’s a persistent belief among policymakers that car-addicted American oldsters would never use other modes even if we made them available — but the National Aging and Disability Transportation Center survey busted that myth once and for all. More than 50 percent of seniors it surveyed said they’d use public transport if it were available to them affordably, and that percentage increased to 61 percent among seniors who live in small towns.

Screen-Shot-2020-12-07-at-4.50.13-PM.png


Perhaps if NHTSA invested in promoting the robust mobility alternatives that seniors want and need, the agency could stop spending taxpayer dollars making the American people “aware” of the safety challenges inherent to driving with age-related medical challenges, and start actually making road users of all ages safer. But until that happens, the agency is likely to continue pushing the kind of short-sighted, individually funded, and non-mandatory solutions that have sent crash rates among senior drivers soaring year after year.

CC to DMW, Holyday, Pasternak, Crawford, Michael Ford, Mike Colle, and Mark Grimes.
 

Northern Light

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Coming to City Council next, a motion to improve safety on Dufferin Street on an expedited basis.

As the motion is seconded by the Mayor, I think we can assume it will pass.


Key points:

1. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, in consultation with the Toronto Transit Commission and any relevant City Divisions, to coordinate and expedite all studies and traffic reviews along Dufferin Street, including but not limited to the bus priority transit route being considered for implementation by the Toronto Transit Commission and that these ensure ongoing and future safety considerations for cyclists and pedestrians.

2. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, as part of the review in Part 1 above, to further consider potential expedited phasing of areas where early implementation could occur and that an update report be provided to the Toronto and East York Community Council by the second quarter of 2021.

3. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, as part of the report in Part 2 above, to include assessment of the current connectivity of existing cycling infrastructure such as Lappin Avenue/Hallam Avenue and Lindsey Avenue.

4. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services to include coordination and implementation on an expedited basis, including with consideration to warrant standards that have been updated under the City's Vision Zero program, of the following actions being proposed, reviewed or that are already approved and are underway including:

a. traffic signal light at LindseyAvenue/Sylvan Avenue and Dufferin Street;
b. traffic signal light at Geary Avenue (expedited installation);
c. traffic signal light at Goodwood Avenue and Cloverlawn Avenue;
d. guard rail at Davenport Road and Dufferin Street;
e. proposed or recommended Red Light Signal Cameras along Dufferin Street for expedited review and implementation;
f. proposed or recommended Speed Enforcement Cameras along Dufferin Street for expedited review and implementation; and
g. street light assessment (Toronto Hydro).
 

ADRM

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Coming to City Council next, a motion to improve safety on Dufferin Street on an expedited basis.

As the motion is seconded by the Mayor, I think we can assume it will pass.


Key points:

1. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, in consultation with the Toronto Transit Commission and any relevant City Divisions, to coordinate and expedite all studies and traffic reviews along Dufferin Street, including but not limited to the bus priority transit route being considered for implementation by the Toronto Transit Commission and that these ensure ongoing and future safety considerations for cyclists and pedestrians.

2. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, as part of the review in Part 1 above, to further consider potential expedited phasing of areas where early implementation could occur and that an update report be provided to the Toronto and East York Community Council by the second quarter of 2021.

3. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, as part of the report in Part 2 above, to include assessment of the current connectivity of existing cycling infrastructure such as Lappin Avenue/Hallam Avenue and Lindsey Avenue.

4. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services to include coordination and implementation on an expedited basis, including with consideration to warrant standards that have been updated under the City's Vision Zero program, of the following actions being proposed, reviewed or that are already approved and are underway including:

a. traffic signal light at LindseyAvenue/Sylvan Avenue and Dufferin Street;
b. traffic signal light at Geary Avenue (expedited installation);
c. traffic signal light at Goodwood Avenue and Cloverlawn Avenue;
d. guard rail at Davenport Road and Dufferin Street;
e. proposed or recommended Red Light Signal Cameras along Dufferin Street for expedited review and implementation;
f. proposed or recommended Speed Enforcement Cameras along Dufferin Street for expedited review and implementation; and
g. street light assessment (Toronto Hydro).

It's so bloody disappointing that this is the big policy response to a tragedy like this, and it's sadly so very Toronto. The traffic signals only help people who are crossing at those points (and the City almost always opts for a really crappy, auto-first signal timing when they install them on major arterials); the guardrail is on one tiny stretch that is nowhere near the scene of this incident (and guardrails should've been installed long ago and at places up and down this corridor); and motions 4e and 4f are classic wishy washy Toronto study overload ("maybe we should think about recommending x/y/z but I dunno, let's wait and see").

Someone's killed in this manner? Get Transportation Services out there the next f***ing day. Identify spots where new bollards and guardrails will be installed later in the week. Start an immediate assessment of where the road or lanes can be narrowed. Motion for the immediate installation of speed cameras up and down the corridor where speeding has been endemic for years. Motion for the immediate installation of red light cameras at every major intersection along the corridor.

This actually isn't hard, you just have to get your head out of your ass and respond to the scale of the crisis unfolding literally every week on Toronto's streets. SMDH.
 

afransen

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Someone's killed in this manner? Get Transportation Services out there the next f***ing day. Identify spots where new bollards and guardrails will be installed later in the week.
Reminds me of this:


and this:



The fact that someone has to die before we consider maybe making a street safer is ludicrous. Maybe the way to change this is to make cities and engineers liable for road designs that contribute to these types of accidents.
 

Amare

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This city acts idiotic when it comes to these issues. There are so many problems the plague Dufferin, but the city is living in their own delusional world.

For one, they should start raising the damn sidewalks along Dufferin. So you know, it doesnt seem as if pedestrians are almost at walking with cars. Secondly they need to force any new developments that take place on Dufferin to have a setback, regardless of how small the development is to allow for a larger sidewalk width. The sidewalks are so narrow on vast stretches along this street, that one can feel the gust of wind as cars blaze past them on the road. Unfortunately Dufferin is not the only road that suffers from the same horrid streetscaping, Dupont is vastly similar and that's another disaster waiting to happen.
 

Ward8

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Secondly they need to force any new developments that take place on Dufferin to have a setback, regardless of how small the development is to allow for a larger sidewalk width.
They could also reasonably remove a full lane in each direction and half a lane in each direction at intersections. 3 lane roads have the same capacity as 4 lane roads due to the left turn bottleneck. Dufferin already acts as a defacto 3 lane street (south of st clair) when you consider the street parking and the need to merge right when someone is turning left. They could remove a lane from most major arterial roads without really affecting vehicle traffic.
 

Towered

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Coming to City Council next, a motion to improve safety on Dufferin Street on an expedited basis.

As the motion is seconded by the Mayor, I think we can assume it will pass.


Key points:

1. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, in consultation with the Toronto Transit Commission and any relevant City Divisions, to coordinate and expedite all studies and traffic reviews along Dufferin Street, including but not limited to the bus priority transit route being considered for implementation by the Toronto Transit Commission and that these ensure ongoing and future safety considerations for cyclists and pedestrians.

2. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, as part of the review in Part 1 above, to further consider potential expedited phasing of areas where early implementation could occur and that an update report be provided to the Toronto and East York Community Council by the second quarter of 2021.

3. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services, as part of the report in Part 2 above, to include assessment of the current connectivity of existing cycling infrastructure such as Lappin Avenue/Hallam Avenue and Lindsey Avenue.

4. City Council direct the General Manager, Transportation Services to include coordination and implementation on an expedited basis, including with consideration to warrant standards that have been updated under the City's Vision Zero program, of the following actions being proposed, reviewed or that are already approved and are underway including:

a. traffic signal light at LindseyAvenue/Sylvan Avenue and Dufferin Street;
b. traffic signal light at Geary Avenue (expedited installation);
c. traffic signal light at Goodwood Avenue and Cloverlawn Avenue;
d. guard rail at Davenport Road and Dufferin Street;
e. proposed or recommended Red Light Signal Cameras along Dufferin Street for expedited review and implementation;
f. proposed or recommended Speed Enforcement Cameras along Dufferin Street for expedited review and implementation; and
g. street light assessment (Toronto Hydro).

Not a single mention of protected bike lanes.
 

W. K. Lis

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This city acts idiotic when it comes to these issues. There are so many problems the plague Dufferin, but the city is living in their own delusional world.

For one, they should start raising the damn sidewalks along Dufferin. So you know, it doesnt seem as if pedestrians are almost at walking with cars. Secondly they need to force any new developments that take place on Dufferin to have a setback, regardless of how small the development is to allow for a larger sidewalk width. The sidewalks are so narrow on vast stretches along this street, that one can feel the gust of wind as cars blaze past them on the road. Unfortunately Dufferin is not the only road that suffers from the same horrid streetscaping, Dupont is vastly similar and that's another disaster waiting to happen.

You mean the powers-that-be made a mistake in the 1950's by widening Dufferin Street? OMG!!!

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From link.
 

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