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April 29 Bulletin

29 Apr 2020 3:47 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

Making Room for Pedestrians and Cyclists
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, pedestrians have been hard-pressed to maintain the mandated 2-metre distance as they take to the sidewalks for exercise or to carry out essential errands. So when reckless drivers feel free to do "donuts" at intersections such as Yonge and Dundas, and when midnight drag racers commandeer Bloor and Bay, it's long been time to re-purpose Toronto's emptied streets.

There has been mounting pressure in the press and from individual citizens to introduce measures that help ease crowding while our own ARA has joined forces with a dozen other neighbourhood associations to petition various City officials to address the problem.

On Monday, Mayor Tory responded, but it is clear that he is flat-out against the lead of other cities in closing streets. He just wants to facilitate the pick up of food and pharmaceuticals where, presumably, delivery isn’t possible. This isn’t about people getting exercise, it is strictly about breaking up jams around the two things that the City sanctions going out for: food and pharmaceuticals. He HAS acknowledged the efforts of our residents' associations, but he also is clearly reluctant to satisfy our requests. 

We can view Mayor Tory's actions as a reasonable first step, particularly since he says there are possibly 100 more sites to be accommodated. But we could easily implement more measures intended for pedestrians and cyclists -- and not just in the short term.

If you know of a hot spot/pinch point that hasn't been addressed or would like to see the City move towards more radical and permanent accommodation of cyclists and pedestrians, then consider making your voice heard. There are three basic options:

a) dial 311
b) email the mayor at (mayor_tory@toronto.ca)
c) email our councillor Mike Layton at (councillor_layton@toronto.ca)

We were able to win bike lanes along Bloor. If we apply enough pressure we can surely achieve even more!  

Making "donuts" at Yonge and Dundas

The City of Brampton
accommodates cyclists

Volunteers Groom Taddle Creek Park 
During the pandemic, the City has been working hard to keep public spaces clean and safe. Staff are out each day picking up litter, emptying waste bins and sweeping streets. Unfortunately, the annual Clean Toronto Together community cleanup campaign was cancelled due to COVID-19. And that means most of our parks have been in a sad state awaiting the City's targeted spring cleanup.

Not so, though, for Taddle Creek Park. Just last week Ted Humphreys, a long-time Admiral Road personality, assembled his team of gardeners to groom the park. Together they raked, hoed, and edged the beds, collecting 41 bags of leaves in the process. They chopped up several massive tree branches that had fallen and removed all manner of litter and debris from coffee cups to plastic bags. As Ted told us, "I couldn't ignore the mess at the park. I wanted to give back to my community and help City workers keep up during COVID-19." Kudos to Ted for this volunteer effort.  

The crew at work in Taddle Creek Park

Ted Humphreys

Light at the End of the Tunnel?
Residents have waited an interminable amount of time for the completion of renovations to the Dupont subway station. It was more than six years ago -- on April 1, 2014 -- that the TTC held the first community consultation meeting regarding its Easier Access Program for Dupont. A year and a half later, they were ready to go with a targeted end date of 2018. Unfortunately, construction was halted for two years after the original contractor went bankrupt.

But recently there has been visible progress. Most of the hoardings are down and passersby can see the elevator canopy. The glass walls of the elevator were briefly on view last week, but once again they are muffled in white plastic.

According to Denise Jayawardene at the TTC, "The Dupont Station elevator is scheduled to open in mid-2020 (the exact date is TBD). There will be other minor work that will continue after that date at the station."  

For more information, click on the link below: 

TTC Dupont Station Improvements

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