News   Mar 01, 2024
 1.3K     2 
News   Mar 01, 2024
 2.4K     0 
News   Mar 01, 2024
 744     0 

Toronto Street Widths

hawc

Senior Member
Member Bio
Joined
Jun 28, 2011
Messages
2,417
Reaction score
2,911
Location
Corktown
Too bad these are roads for cars and not bike paths. Toronto shouldn't be paving any new roads for cars at all. We should be phasing out all the roads for cars we have and turning everything into bike paths or streetcar tracks. This is so disappointing to see. This whole development should have been car free. Can't believe we're still paving new roads for cars in 2023.
 
Too bad these are roads for cars and not bike paths. Toronto shouldn't be paving any new roads for cars at all. We should be phasing out all the roads for cars we have and turning everything into bike paths or streetcar tracks. This is so disappointing to see. This whole development should have been car free. Can't believe we're still paving new roads for cars in 2023.
I have not owned a car for many years but this is, frankly, stupid. Cars and trucks are necessary; the problem is that the road planners often tend to forget about the OTHER users - bikes, transit and pedestrians. The road network in Lower Don Lands seems to have been designed properly where all road users are considered.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Too bad these are roads for cars and not bike paths. Toronto shouldn't be paving any new roads for cars at all. We should be phasing out all the roads for cars we have and turning everything into bike paths or streetcar tracks. This is so disappointing to see. This whole development should have been car free. Can't believe we're still paving new roads for cars in 2023.
The roads turn me off from this development. I'd rather it be more European-style and walkable.
 
Last edited:
The roads turn me off from this development. I'd rather it be more European-style and walkable.

It's a bit early to conclude that this area won't be pedestrian focused/walkable. What does European-style mean though? Cobblestones?

Getting rid of roads entirely is not something practical. What we should be aiming for is how North America used to build before the auto age: generously wide sidewalks with quality pavers, seating, etc. So pedestrian focused.
 
Last edited:
It's a bit early to conclude that this area won't be pedestrian focused/walkable. What does European-style mean though? Cobblestones?

Getting rid of roads entirely is not something practical. What we should be aiming for is how North America used to build before the auto age: generously wide sidewalks with quality pavers, seating, etc. So pedestrian focused.
For example, look at the Canary District ... the sidewalks are much wider than the roads and have ample seating, patios, splash pads, generous foliage, sculptures, etc.
 
Last edited:
The streets will be wide. And for me this is a problem. The combination of wide lanes and wide sidewalks gives you a public realm that feels *too wide*, uncomfortably so. Image from Copenhagen’s new Nordhavn development for comparison

9BACDC15-8E3F-4B18-A522-056D5C7C3378.jpeg


E286A096-EBA1-473B-AF69-3287D745505C.jpeg
 
The streets will be wide. And for me this is a problem. The combination of wide lanes and wide sidewalks gives you a public realm that feels *too wide*, uncomfortably so. Image from Copenhagen’s new Nordhavn development for comparison

View attachment 478727

View attachment 478728

Are you offering the above as a favourable comparison?

I find the ROW above quite wide, but the sidewalk on the right hand side would really benefit from a streetscape buffer 1.4M wide. (enough for a healthy row of trees and vegetation below, interspersed with seating)

I like the idea of narrower mews/lanes/shared-streets, but for those I would also lower the street-wall/podium height to 4s max. so it's not in perpetual darkness six months of the year; I also wouldn't put dedicated bike lanes on such a street.
 
  • Like
Reactions: DSC
Roads are bad. Cars are bad. Only way forward is bicycles and transit. This city needs to do an amnesty buy-back program so that everyone with a car can turn them into to have them crushed and then get a voucher towards a bicycle. Toronto Island residents figured it out long ago. All you need are bicycles. Cars kill people and kill the planet. We need to remove all the roads we currently have and stop building new ones.
 
Roads are bad. Cars are bad. Only way forward is bicycles and transit. This city needs to do an amnesty buy-back program so that everyone with a car can turn them into to have them crushed and then get a voucher towards a bicycle. Toronto Island residents figured it out long ago. All you need are bicycles. Cars kill people and kill the planet. We need to remove all the roads we currently have and stop building new ones.

You already used up your parody post allowance on this thread; over-post fees may apply.
 
I like the idea of narrower mews/lanes/shared-streets, but for those I would also lower the street-wall/podium height to 4s max. so it's not in perpetual darkness six months of the year; I also wouldn't put dedicated bike lanes on such a street.

Well, yes, that’s Toronto urban design consensus. My point is that this viewpoint is not universal.

And given that Toronto has not produced a single new neighbourhood that is a good place in the past 50 years, maybe it’s time for a rethink.
 
Well, yes, that’s Toronto urban design consensus. My point is that this viewpoint is not universal.

And given that Toronto has not produced a single new neighbourhood that is a good place in the past 50 years, maybe it’s time for a rethink.

Wow is that an overreach for a statement. LOL

***

Also, using that timeline, I'd assuming you're going back to St. Lawrence, which it's worthwhile noting was actually built-out over 3 decades, the 'core' was arguably mostly up by the mid-80s.

But to the extent we prize St. Lawrence, that's largely the model I would advocate, with modestly higher density.

***

Edit to add, the new neighbourhoods of prominence, erected in Toronto in the last 3 decades did not follow the Toronto consensus City Place does not look like St. Lawrence, nor does Humber Bay.

West Donlands comes much closer, and is much denser; we would agree the roads should generally be narrower there, but I would again argue, the streetwalls needed to drop to make that happen.

If one spends time walking the area, only the wide streets get any material amount of sun; because the streetwalls and massing leave the slightly narrower roads cold and dark.

***

Final thought, for now, I think many people would argue that the former racetrack site along Queen came out 1/2 way decent; it's actually fairly dense SFH, framed by low/mid-rise.

1684593421742.png


1684593477860.png

The road above is too wide, and that's one of the arguably mis-steps here. The site also should have had midrise, multi-family front Woodbine, and there are some problems with the retail concept at-grade on Queen. But I digress
 
Last edited:
Final thought, for now, I think many people would argue that the former racetrack site along Queen came out 1/2 way decent; it's actually fairly dense SFH, framed by low/mid-rise.

View attachment 478741

View attachment 478742
The SFH streets there may look nice, but the fact that 90% of the land area (including all the quiet interior areas away from noisy, busy streets) were given over to houses that sell for $2m to over $3m kind of disqualifies this from being called a "successful neighbourhood" in my books.
 
The SFH streets there may look nice, but the fact that 90% of the land area (including all the quiet interior areas away from noisy, busy streets) were given over to houses that sell for $2m to over $3m kind of disqualifies this from being called a "successful neighbourhood" in my books.

It''s worth pointing out, when that neighbourhood was built, Toronto's real estate was a lot cheaper. These were not 2M houses when first sold.

Took me a moment to find the prices, but I found them in an old Globe article:

"The first 120 semi-detached and detached houses were priced between $350,000 and $400,000 in 1997"

Source: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/rea...enge-150-rise-over-nine-years/article4110672/

From there, I went and used the Bank of Canada inflation calculator to assess what the those property values would look like today if Toronto housing prices had tracked CPI which they often had in the past.....

1684594700163.png


Also, alot of the houses are actually duplexes and some are townhomes. Certainly there are things I wish had been done differently. I would have liked to see Lake Shore narrowed to one-lane each way, and the same with Woodbine.

I would have liked to see a bit more density and purpose-built rental, fronting Woodbine in particular, and I think a single east-west street across the middle of this development to shorten the blocks would have been ideal as well.

Still, it's broadly viewed as attractive and a desirable place to live, and so contradicts the notion that no such places have not been built in the last 50 years in Toronto.
 
Last edited:

Back
Top