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Roads: Ontario/GTA Highways Discussion

If my memory serves, the drop from 70 mph to 60 was about 1973 (supposedly because of the oil crisis) and the switch to 100 km/hr was in the summer of 1977.
In The Netherlands (and the rest of Europe), they started switching from the automobile to cycling, to combat the 1973 oil crisis. Started with prohibiting car traffic on Sundays. They continued with more cycling infrastructure. See link.

In North America, they went with reducing the speed limits, and allowing right on red. That was to save money on gasoline. However, the right turn red allowance also increased the "collision" numbers from 43% to 107% for pedestrian "collisions" and 72% to 123% for bicyclist "collisions". See link dated 1981.
 
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In The Netherlands (and the rest of Europe), they started switching from the automobile to cycling, to combat the 1973 oil crisis. Started with prohibiting car traffic on Sundays. They continued with more cycling infrastructure. See link.

In North America, they went with reducing the speed limits, and allowing right on red. That was to save money on gasoline. However, the right turn red allowance also increased the "collision" numbers from 43% to 107% for pedestrian "collisions" and 72% to 123% for bicyclist "collisions". See link dated 1981.
That's a pretty broad brush. Turning right on a red light has been generally permissive in Ontario since at least when I started driving in the mid-1960s. I'm not that well travelled but, for Canada, I thought it was only generally prohibited in Quebec (until fairly recently). The report cited is from the US DOT which, last I looked, is only part of the North America. In that report, it identifies that turning right on a red is coined as the "Western" model since it was common in many western US States as far back as the 1930s or '40s.

I'm not going to argue the data; I didn't read it that closely but do note that they felt compelled to offer an explanation or clarification of the data on P. vii.
 
In The Netherlands (and the rest of Europe), they started switching from the automobile to cycling, to combat the 1973 oil crisis. Started with prohibiting car traffic on Sundays. They continued with more cycling infrastructure. See link.

In North America, they went with reducing the speed limits, and allowing right on red. That was to save money on gasoline. However, the right turn red allowance also increased the "collision" numbers from 43% to 107% for pedestrian "collisions" and 72% to 123% for bicyclist "collisions". See link dated 1981.
With the oil crisis of 1973 MOST states and provinces switched to allowing right turns on red. There were some states and provinces that did allow right turn of red before 1973, Ontario was one of them. After 1973, only some cities banned it, New York City and Montreal were two, at that time. Toronto should ban right turn on red, unless signed or signalled to do otherwise.

Should be implemented with the red, yellow, and green arrow, flashing or steady.

giphy.gif

The steady red arrow means stop and remain stopped until presented with a green arrow or a flashing red arrow.
The flashing red arrow means stop and remain stopped for pedestrians and cross-traffic, then proceed with caution.

The flashing yellow arrow means a vehicle is allowed to cautiously enter an intersection only to make the turn indicated by the arrow, but the driver must first yield to oncoming traffic and pedestrians, then proceed with caution.
The solid yellow arrow means it is about to turn red and drivers should prepare to stop.

The steady green arrow means they have the right of way.

Could be implemented with the proper use of sensors to switch from flashing or steady red arrows.
 
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Covering the VIN on your car’s dashboard won’t prevent theft

From link.

I recently wrote a about a thief who obtained a Ram owner’s vehicle identification number (VIN) and cut an unauthorized key to gain easy entry to the truck, negating the need to smash a window. With a VIN, a thief can obtain a key code and cut a physical key. They shouldn’t be able to, but they can. These codes are only supposed to be used at the dealership level or by a licensed locksmith. While this unauthorized key may not be a smart key, enabling the vehicle to start, it will unlock the driver’s door.

You responded, and one suggestion that came in more than half a dozen times was to hide or cover the VIN on the dashboard. Unfortunately, covering it is no longer a strong theft deterrent. A vehicle’s VIN is available to anyone using your licence plate number. I’m not a legal expert but as I understand it no driver is ever issued a VIN and when the car is sold, the VIN goes with the vehicle. Therefore, it is not considered personal information. Is your licence plate considered personal information? That’s a tough question, one I’m not qualified to answer.

Regardless, there are multiple ways to obtain a VIN from a license plate, one way is by using the Carfax Car Care app on your phone. I downloaded the app, created an account, and typed in my own personal car licence plate and there it was. Total time spent was about two minutes. Carfax integrates with most automotive repair invoicing systems and tracks vehicle maintenance. They also have access to records from motor vehicle agencies, financing and insurance companies, auto auctions and police departments in Canada and the United States. All this is provided without any personal information and is extremely valuable to the second and third hand buyers of any vehicle.

The Big Brother is watching analogy is something I’m sure all vehicle history reporting companies must deal with, and honestly, I’m on the fence. When I think others can access information about my car on the internet it gives me pause. Then I think that once I sell the car I probably won’t care anymore. What do you think?
 
The current MTO Northern and Southern Highways Program, with all the currently listed entries for expansion:
MTO Highways.png
 
And Toronto (population 3M) citizens pay for most of Ontario (population 15M) highways, whether they use them or not.
The rest of the province is paying for Toronto's transit projects.

If we make everything about petty regional differences, nothing will ever get done.
 
And Toronto (population 3M) citizens pay for most of Ontario (population 15M) highways, whether they use them or not.
Toronto pays for the transportation network for economical benefits in the rest of Ontario such as farming goods trucking routes, Northern Ontario mining routes and improved tourism routes.
In return the rest of Ontario would pay for the development of a bigger metropolis to support more people and a bigger financial centre.
 
The rest of the province is paying for Toronto's transit projects.

If we make everything about petty regional differences, nothing will ever get done.

I substantially agree with the above; but I would add that we ought not to exempt MTO anymore than Mx from a critique about whether they are pursuing the right projects, at the right time, and in the right way.

I won't do an item by item on the list posted; but putting aside those suburban GTA highway proposals for which I have already expressed my loathing, I really do feel the MTO continues to be stuck in a 20thC mindset about many things and just gets a lot of choices wrong.

Putting aside state-of-good-repair and basic safety enhancements with which I take no issue; I would like to see a lot more from the MTO on the demand management side.

I want to see investments in active transportation, inter-city and public transit precede most investments to widen or build new highways. I wouldn't say 'never' to the latter, but rather 'show me the need' first; and that need is predicated on reasonable implementation of alternatives.

I completely get that many of the routes in question do not have and will not get 'public transit'; at least of any quality.

But I want to know, in 'goods movement' how much consideration was given to whether improvements to CN/CP/Huron Central etc. might reasonably shift some existing and projected demand off the highways?; and could this be done cheaper or at comparable cost to the highway alternatives?

In passenger/commuter travel, I likewise want some sense of comparison where applicable. It may well be that one can't realistically shift 'x' traffic to rail {so be it) but I want to see the analysis first.

I want to see investments that deliver a continuous multi-use path, or cycle tracks in either major highway corridors or along parallel main roads; which then have connections in to Provincial Parks, and to urban areas.

I'd also like to see some integrated strategies with Ontario Northland and GO (and VIA) where appropriate allowing for dedicated bus lanes (even if only on an exit ramp), or provision of carpool/rail station/bus parking etc. etc.
 
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The current MTO Northern and Southern Highways Program, with all the currently listed entries for expansion:

Isnt this based on the 2022 data .. which will be getting updated some point in the next month or so ... as it missing some things .. ie the highway 11 2+1 project.
 
I substantially agree with the above; but I would add that we ought not to exempt MTO anymore than Mx from a critique about whether they are pursuing the right projects, at the right time, and in the right way.

I won't do an item by item on the list posted; but putting aside those suburban GTA highway proposals for which I have already expressed my loathing, I really do feel the MTO continues to be stuck in a 20thC mindset about many things and just gets a lot of choices wrong.

Putting aside state-of-good-repair and basic safety enhancements with which I take no issue; I would like to see a lot more from the MTO on the demand management side.

I want to see investments in active transportation, inter-city and public transit precede most investments to widen or build new highways. I wouldn't say 'never' to the latter, but rather 'show me the need' first; and that need is predicated on reasonable implementation of alternatives.

I completely get that many of the routes in question do not have and will not get 'public transit'; at least of any quality.

But I want to know, in 'goods movement' how much consideration was given to whether improvements to CN/CP/Huron Central etc. might reasonably shift some existing and projected demand off the highways?; and could this be done cheaper or at comparable cost to the highway alternatives?

In passenger/commuter travel, I likewise want some sense of comparison where applicable. It may well be that one can't realistically shift 'x' traffic to rail {so be it) but I want to see the analysis first.

I want to see investments that deliver a continuous multi-use path, or cycle tracks in either major highway corridors or along parallel main roads; which then have connections in to Provincial Parks, and to urban areas.

I'd also like to see some integrated strategies with Ontario Northland and GO (and VIA) where appropriate allowing for dedicated bus lanes (even if only on an exit ramp), or provision of carpool/rail station/bus parking etc. etc.
Fair enough, but how do you put some of those points at the feet of the MTO? I'm not sure how the Ministry has a mandate involving freight rail. In terms of inter-urban and urban transit, the government writ large perhaps. Metrolinx, falling under the MTO, can only spend as much money as the government gives it.
 
Fair enough, but how do you put some of those points at the feet of the MTO? I'm not sure how the Ministry has a mandate involving freight rail. In terms of inter-urban and urban transit, the government writ large perhaps. Metrolinx, falling under the MTO, can only spend as much money as the government gives it.

I would argue that the MTO is the Ministry of Transportation (the movement of people and goods); not the Ministry of Cars.

How it goes about ensuring that people and things get to where they need to be, in a reasonable period of time, and at a reasonable cost, to both themselves and the state is for it to determine.

Mx, its worth noting, specifically carried out a 'Goods Movement' (freight) strategy for the Golden Horseshoe.

It inferred that its mandate included that; likewise, when an argument is made to expand Highway 69 into Highway 400, one of those arguments is the movement of trucks, which is, after all, freight.

To me the Ministry should, at best/worst be agnostic on the form of movement, if not show preference to those forms of movement that might further provincial goals be they economic, environmental, land-use or quality of life.

Worth adding here, Ontario Northland is a freight rail operator and is part of the MTO.

So they literally are in this line of business already, just within a fairly limited geographic zone of the province.

Here, I am not suggesting they can regulate CN/CP; at least not directly, but they can surely offer them a choice of making trucking more competitive, or accepting MTO money to improve their offer in exchange for certain guarantees to the public on how the money is used and the gains it must achieve.

It could, of course, also create Ontario Southland Railway and give the freight carriers something to really worry about; but I would not suggest that a serious course of action, at least not at this time.
 
And Toronto (population 3M) citizens pay for most of Ontario (population 15M) highways, whether they use them or not.
Hmm... using that logic, I would encourage Toronto to generate its own electricity, have its own airport, get timber from its own land, find its own oil and gas, exploit its own natural resources, have its own cottage country, fund its subway construction on its own.

PS - People in Toronto own cars and drive on its highways and on the highways outside its territory. They do not magically teleport to Niagara falls for example. And if they use GO train, then rest of Ontario is funding, and providing land for GO tracks that they may or may not use.
 
I would argue that the MTO is the Ministry of Transportation (the movement of people and goods); not the Ministry of Cars.

How it goes about ensuring that people and things get to where they need to be, in a reasonable period of time, and at a reasonable cost, to both themselves and the state is for it to determine.

Mx, its worth noting, specifically carried out a 'Goods Movement' (freight) strategy for the Golden Horseshoe.

It inferred that its mandate included that; likewise, when an argument is made to expand Highway 69 into Highway 400, one of those arguments is the movement of trucks, which is, after all, freight.

To me the Ministry should, at best/worst be agnostic on the form of movement, if not show preference to those forms of movement that might further provincial goals be they economic, environmental, land-use or quality of life.

Worth adding here, Ontario Northland is a freight rail operator and is part of the MTO.

So they literally are in this line of business already, just within a fairly limited geographic zone of the province.

Here, I am not suggesting they can regulate CN/CP; at least not directly, but they can surely offer them a choice of making trucking more competitive, or accepting MTO money to improve their offer in exchange for certain guarantees to the public on how the money is used and the gains it must achieve.

It could, of course, also create Ontario Southland Railway and give the freight carriers something to really worry about; but I would not suggest that a serious course of action, at least not at this time.
Again, all good points, but your view of the mandate of the MTO might be more encompassing than it actually is. A Ministry and its agencies, boards and commissions, can only do what 'the centre' allows then to do within the funding allocated to it.

You might want to come up with another name. OSR is a shortline operating in s/w Ontario. 😁
 

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