Friday, May 30, 2014

Lake Shore Blvd / Leslie Intersection, east-side #BikeTO/#WalkTO Detour Crossing STILL a Hazard

I scouted the new construction detours at the Lake Shore Boulevard and Leslie Street Intersection on the evening of Wednesday, May 28 (4:30pm - 6:00pm). On the Friday of the previous week the @TTCLeslieBarns Leslie Street reconstruction detours were moved so that now the north-side Cyclist/Pedestrian intersection is closed - and the south side Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing is open.

The intersection accommodates the convergence of two important east-west commute cycleways - the Martin Goodman Trail and the Lower Don Recreation Trail - which connect Scarborough and the East Side to the Downtown Core and points west.

BEFORE - South-Side-Closure - Leslie/Lake Shore Boulevard Detour Configuration (since December 2013)

AFTER - North-Side-Closure - Leslie/Lake Shore Boulevard Detour Configuration (reconfigured Friday, May 23, 2014)

Since December 2013 - when the northbound lanes of Leslie Street were closed on the south side of the Intersection I've been doing walk-abouts of this part of the site and taking video of the way Motor Vehicles and Cyclist/Pedestrians are interacting at the east-side Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing point.

When the south side of the intersection was closed the Crossing came out of a 'doorway' in the construction fencing, 22 metres east of the actual intersection where motor vehicles were actually do the act of turning; 22 metres from where Cyclist/Pedestrian were being beckoned out into the Crossing by the blinking Walk pedestrian sign and Green Cyclist's signal - out into speeding traffic turning eastbound on LSB from northbound Leslie Street traffic flow.

This new configuration does many of the same things.

Close-up of the Leslie/Lake Shore Boulevard Detour Configuration - May 23, 2014

Here's a Video I took of the Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing on Wednesday, May 28th at 5:30pm:

Note the 'interviewee' says in response to my question, Little scarey corner eh?".

He retorts, "Always".

Leslie and Lake Shore Boulevard - cyclist & pedestrian east-side crossing 5:30pm, May 28, 2014

I have noted - and others have been telling me of late, including the guy in the video - that this corner was dangerous even before the construction detours. When Trial Users coming from the south and from the east approach their northbound crossing right-of-way - vehicles turning from northbound Leslie are looking west on LSB, looking for a spot to slip into the fast flow on red. They don't see the Trail Users - and 'Almosts' happen Every Time you try to cross there with the Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing signals on green. 

A 'Dutch Intersection' type configuration here would be the solution: A bump-out that forces motorists to slow to a crawl to make the corner - and as a result, come face-to-face with Trail Users as the motorist complete their turn and the Trail Users come to their right-of-way cross point.

South-Side Closure Configuration Problems

In the earlier construction configuration I asked Transportation Services to change the signal phasing to give cyclists and pedestrians a head-start - so they would be in the middle (or through) the intersection when motorists finally rounded the corner eastbound - and thus they wouldn't be as much of a surprise to motorists as they would be plainly visible out there.

I also asked Transportation to consider moving the right-turn Stop Line on Leslie, northbound. right-turn-lane onto eastbound LSB - back from the intersection as much as possible. I suggested moving it back to the usual stop line before the construction configuration (in the old configuration this would have been 17m back from where it was). This I conjectured, would have acted as a Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing head-start signal phasing - without changing the signal phasing.

I also commented to Transportation Staff that the reason a Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing user hadn't been hit up to that point was the lucky configuration of the corner there - being as sharp as it was around the retaing wall for the hole in the ground, it - just by happen-stance - slowed cars on that right turn just so that they weren't going so fast that they couldn't stop as cyclists and pedestrians 'popped' out of the construction fencing at the south-to-north entrance to the crossing.

My original idea that I asked Transportation to look into - and the best solution then - and now - is to put a Big Wide Yellow Flashing Crosswalk Sign across the wires supporting the traffic signals right above the east-side Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing.

The only things done about this since December 2013 were done by @TTCLeslieBarns and Pomerleau, the TTC contractor. They made construction infrastructure changes to provide better sight-lines for pedestrians - so they could see that the intersection was extremely dangerous place to try and cross:
  • More signs,
  • A no right turn sign on read at northbound Leslie,
  • Some slight jigging of the construction fencing,
  • Cutting down of the construction retaining walls between the intersection and the crossing point. 

This - putting the onus on the vulnerable users with right-of-way - instead of what is the proper remedy, to instal infrastructure that tells motor vehicle users they are approaching a Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing which has right-of-way in this situation.

North-Side Closure Configuration Problems: The Same - or Worse

Now with the North-side of the intersection closed, several new issues arise which put cyclists and pedestrians in the same peril - or worse peril:

Now the southbound lanes of Leslie are open and a left turn are allowed, so motor vehicles can turn eastbound onto L:SB as well as northbound traffic eastbound onto LSB - thus increasing the number of traffic vectors impacting the east-side Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing.

Plus, now the previously sharp corner at the northbound Leslie right turn lane onto eastbound LSB, is a softer angled turn - so motorists can take the turn at a higher rate of speed as they swing around the corner and accelerate for 22 metres towards the Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing.

This construction detour configured Cyclist/Pedestrian Crossing is essentially a mid-block crosswalk (on a fast Boulevard) ... Let's sign it that way please.

Michael Holloway
Ward 30 Bikes

Credits - Links

All images are screen-shot edits from the Construction Liaison Groups Meeting #9 Presentation PDF - from Meeting #9, held Thursday, May 1, 2014 at South Riverdale Community Health Centre, 955 Queen Street East.

TTC Leslie Barns - Construction Liaison Group page:

Leslie Barns  & Connection Track - Construction Liaison Group Meeting #9 - May 1, 2014 |


Wednesday, May 28, 2014

South of Eastern Strategic Direction Public Consultation Meeting talks about High Rises at Lever, Big box at Revival and Eastern Avenue as a Calmed Neighbourhood Street

[2014-05-29 - Edited to better reflect the ongoing discussions on this issue with-in the Ward 30 Bikes group]

Ward 30 Bikes attended the South of Eastern Strategic Direction Planning Public Consultation meeting at Ralph Thornton Centre, Tuesday, May 27, 2014.

About 60 people participated including 3 members of Ward 30 Bikes. This meeting came right on the heels of our Active Transportation Stakeholder meeting with the Study Team last Thursday - where we went into fine detail about our concerns with regard to building connecting Greenways north-south & east-west through the South of Eastern Study area, Broadview - Eastern - Coxwell - Lake Shore Boulevard.

Lots of talk at the Public Consultation Meeting about Eastern Avenue.

With proposed and projected developments in the area, we are at a stage where we will either lose the Eastern Avenue Bike Lane - or expand it so it goes the distance and also connects neighbourhoods.

One table at the Public Consultation Tuesday evening came up with a brilliant idea: Creating Filtered-Accesses at Queen/Kingston and at Eastern/Broadview - to prevent the roadway from being used as an commute alternate to the Lake Shore Boulevard (LSB). In other words - making Easter Ave a Neighbourhood Street rather than a Scarborough/Downtown suburban commute choice.

Also much talk about the Great Gulf plan for the old Lever site which proposes a new downtown core there - with 3 million square foot of office tower floor space.

(Which this Ward 30 Bikes member believes would be the beginning of the end of the residential character of the South Riverdale, Riverside and Leslieville neighbourhoods - and would very likely lead to high-rise development in the Port Lands as well ... a place for the 'Big Pool of Money' to expand that high-rise Lake Front development that they have going on in the West-Lake-Front-Core - now possibly expanding East.)

As well we talked about the character of the other proposed development in the study area - the StudioCentre with it's retention of the Film Studios - but also adding 1,100-2,400 parking spaces stack in three stories above glass facades that will serve a 10 story Hotel as well as a Big Box Store sized square footage of "Flex Space" --- which some interpret as a, 'WalMart by any other name').

In this "Liveable Cities" advocate's opinion, the idea of Filtering Access to Eastern Avenue is a great idea. Eastern could become a "Green Buffer" between the employment district and the neighbourhoods to the north of it.

We image lots of connections through the study area north-south to the new Port Lands neighbourhoods - and a 'Calmed' Eastern Avenue --- with Mass Transit, Green Spaces, Wider sidewalks, Narrower traffic lanes, Bump Outs at many corners, Pedestrian Crossings (especially at the chicanes at Rushbrooke and Woodfield), and Separated Bike Lanes from Queen/Kingston to Broadview ...

.. And then, east-west up and over the Don Valley Parkway and the Don River - either by a radical reconfiguration of the Eastern Avenue Bridge (re: Highway Overpass 'Death-Ramp') or via a Pedestrian/Cyclist Fly-Over Bridge at Sunlight Park Rd that uses the existing unused Bridge over the river as a landing point for a two-arc fly-over that will connect South Riverdale to the new Corktown Common Park - and the Lower Don Trail connection there (through the new tunnel under the rail right-of-way at the eastern mid-point of the Park ... The Corktown Common Park is gorgeous by the way - check it out!).


Saturday, May 24, 2014

@BikeMonth 2014 - Bike to Work Day - Dundas Street East & Kingston Road Ride - Monday 7:30am

Community Bike to Work Day Start Point - Dundas East & Kingston Rd

Join this community start point and group ride via the Dundas, River & Shuter Bike Lanes - to Nathan Phillips Square for a pancake breakfast and Bike Month kick-off.

Event Type: Ride
Time: Monday, May 26 at 7:30am to 8:00am
Contact: ward_30@cycleto[dot]ca
RSVP Required: No

Bike Month 2014 Events: Community Bike to Work Day Start Point - Dundas East & Kingston Rd |


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Reconfiguration of the Martin Goodman Trail at Unwin & Leslie

Attended the walk-about of the site on the evening of May 21, 2014 - with TRCA, Planning, Transportation, Parks ... ? Many of the Tommy Thompson Park User Group were there; as well as Trail Users who responded to Ward 30 Bikes community outreach. The site visit was lead by Park Manager Karen McDonald.

Three Possible Routes - Martin Goodman Trail Reconfiguration Map TRCA - May 21, 2014

The consensus was to move it just to the right a bit into the swap. Will result is lost trees, lost swamp habitat areas of the wetland ... and Much expense.

Plus - construction staging on Unwin during the construction will restrict traffic to some extent.

The existing road bed, just under a thin sod layer about 100 meters south of Unwin, travels from beside the new Tommy Thompson parking lot, almost in a straight line over to the existing Unwin road alignment at the cooling channel bridge.

Issues with this no-brainer route though - are numerous:

1) Off-leah dogs (illegal) would endanger thew habitat and species living there. They would be free to disrupt and kill wildlife in a large area of the Baselands (which covers ~35 hectares) ... so a fence along the south side of the Trail would have to be installed (on the north side open water would theoretically create a natural boundary that would protect nesting species there from dogs).

2) In nature conservancy the idea of 'mass' is important - large areas support species and a larger network of species better than small ones. The Trail would create a barrier between habitats essentially creating one big zone, and one tiny one. Naturalists repeatedly referred to it as "losing" the habitat area between the existing fence and a set-back Trail.

3) Politically - Some participants laid out the argument that development of the Port Lands might make Park lands more vulnerable to future development along the area - that the Park land might be more liable to be enveloped by development interests if the Trail was placed back 100 metres from Unwin. The argument goes that the trail would become the *perceived* boundary line of the Park - rather than the fence - which is the Actual property line between with the Toronto Port Lands Company lands (who actually own Unwin Avenue along this section) and the City of Toronto Park.

For Trail Users, the route along the edge of the Unwin roadway would be sided on one side by a road with cars and trucks on it - noise and toxic exhaust emissions would ruin the idea of a ride in the Wilderness. Conversely along this route, the Trail would have along it's south side, an intimate proximity to the wetlands - at times swamp water (with bulrushes and Water Lilies for example) would actually touch the edges of the Trail's foundations.

Along the old road bed 100 metres south, the Trail would be in the midst of a wetland habitat, far from the noise of the road and out of visual range of it as well. It would feel like one was on a trail through a wild place - a Wilderness.

There is something to be said for the design juxtaposition that the Unwin route provides - the wild environs proximate to the technology that is a roadway..

The sequestered route through the middle of the wetland it was also noted, could have issues with misuse by individuals after hours.

Hard to call.

What do you think?

Public Consultation on this will continue for the Parks summer season (to November). New media is being produced by TRCA showing the proposed routes and possible impact points on habitat.

Ward 30 Bikes will keep on this and post those new media here when they become available.


South of Eastern Strategic Direction: Active Transportation Stakeholder's Consultation

South of Eastern Strategic Direction: Active Transportation Stakeholder's Consultation
Thursday, May 22, 2014
Ralph Thornton Centre (765 Queen St. East)
Basement Room
6pm - 8pm

@Ward30Bikes had a short conversation on Twitter with the planningAlliance last Fall -

Since then the South of Eastern Strategic Direction planning team (and the planningAlliance team members) have been working to find time to create a meeting where Cyclists on the East Side could sit down with Planners and expand our concerns and visions for the future of our neighbourhoods.

Tomorrow the Planning Team will hold a Cyclists and Walkers Stakeholders event where they will present their narrative so far - and ask for our feedback and new ideas.

The planningAlliance has already studied our Problems Opportunities Mapping Project - and included some of our ideas into the draft report. Tomorrow they're looking for your personal observations - that aren't on the map - or - perhaps included in the report but not fully representative of what you meant to say in your map submission.

Have you thought further about possible new development proposals in the study area that weren't on your radar 6 months ago?

  • A better fleshed out StudioCentre plan?
  • The Weston Bakery proposal?
  • First Gulf Corp's 'Second City Centre' proposal?
  • What a Second City Centre might mean for the future of the Port Lands?


Monday, May 19, 2014

Victoria Day Picnic and Ride down the Leslie Spit - Let's do that Again!

Cyclists from Wards 25, 22, 30, 31 and 32 cycled down to the Lake for the W30B Ride.

W30B Rides - Victoria Day Picnic and Ride down the Leslie Spit (photos - S. McNeil)

We had our Picnic at the Bird Blind at 'Cell 1' - and then took the Lake-side road around to where it reconnects with the Main Spur Road; then back towards the entrance to Tommy Thompson Park via the floating bridge.

A casual accounting: I figured the User Mode Split was greater than 80% Bikes, 20% walkers. The Park was FULL of people. Hundreds and hundreds of bikes. The road from the TTP Office to the main entrance at Unwin and Leslie was Congested with bike and walk traffic!

The new demographics in Toronto's country of origin mix was very much apparent. The cultural acceptance of bicycling if you're from India for example, was obvious. It was wonderful to see whole Families cycling in great long 'trains of bicycles' - everywhere!

The Intersection at Leslie and Unwin was BUSY. Thousands of cyclists, and hundreds of cars negotiating the intersection there. Car divers inched around the corner as cyclists arrived to the intersection from 4 different vectors (northbound out of the park, southbound along Leslie Street, out into the intersection from the east side via the Martin Goodman Trail southbound, and westbound out into the intersection from along the Martin Goodman Tail eastbound).

Due to the location of Tommy Thompson Park - coupled with the lack TTC service there, no Bike Share, and limited parking - the only good way to get to the place is by bicycle!

Several people on our ride talked about the lack of cycling infrastructure that could take riders out into the greenfield areas of the park - like to the places where the walking pathways go. Wider Trails - or Cyclist only Trails perhaps?

Best practice says - You gotta separate 'em. :)

We agreed to schedule more of these monthly Rides; on Saturdays or Sundays going forward.

Stay tuned, we'll post the next ride here, on the East Side Captain's List in email, at the Cycle Toronto Meetup page, and on @Ward30Bikes in Twitter.


Cycle Toronto Meetup | Ward 30 Bikes Victoria Day Picnic and Ride down the Leslie Spit |


Saturday, May 17, 2014

Victoria Day Picnic and Ride down the Leslie Spit

Join Ward 30 Bikes for a recreational ride on the Leslie Spit on Victoria Day - Monday, May 19, 2014.

Meet at the Gates of Tommy Thompson Park (the Spit) at the bottom of Leslie Street (Unwin and Leslie) at 12-12:15pm as we group to take a leisurely ride along the Park's main spur road - perhaps all the way to the Light House!

We will stop along the way somewhere beautiful for a BYO-Lunch (bring your own lunch) Picnic.

Image via TRCA - Tommy Thompson Park looking northeast towards the bird blind area at "Cell 1"

We will go as far as the group feels. It's 5km to the Light House from the gates at Unwin. Add to this the trip from your home and we may just pick a stop point at some distance that we all feel comfortable with.

We could walk our bikes along the walking tails to a great spot on one of the "Embayments", or on the walking trails around one of the "Cells" near the Bird Blind; or we could ride to one of the "Lookouts" off the Lake-side road; or check out the raised landing area with a cool meeting-place-circle-of-giant-rocks, places to sit, just past the floating bridge --- whatever people feel like.

I made a map.

Michael Holloway,
For Ride Creator, Ward 30 Bikes member,
Jo Oppenheimer

Image via

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Queen / Leslie Closure could be "#Leslieville Open Streets Weekends" Opportunity

The Queen/Leslie closure detours cars and buses Jones to Greenwood; and Street Cars from Broadview to Coxwell.

The Queen/Leslie closure May  through June, offers an opportunity here in Leslieville to try a Pedestrian Mall on our neighbourhood's Main Street.

Map showing area of  possible "Leslieville Open Streets" Weekends during the Queen St closure

Open Streets Leslieville

Ward 30 Bikes notes that Queen Street from Jones to Greenwood could be seen as a Pedestrian Mall for May and June. Like the "Open Streets" idea that the City is trying this year on Bloor Street from High Park to Sherbourne1 - this is an opportunity to create a vibrant pedestrian centred street for a couple of months.

We note that businesses are likely trying to get as much car traffic into the dead ends on both sides of the blockage - they need the access for deliveries, and for many, not just businesses, off-peak on-street parking.

The Leslieville BIA is planning a Festival in the closure area one weekend in June. Let's expand that good idea.

Every weekend in May and June we could completely block Queen Street - at Jones and at Greenwood - and allow only pedestrian traffic into the area. Businesses could push their business concepts out their front doors and onto the sidewalks in some fashion. People would use the street to walk on - just like the Taste of the Danforth weekend; except this would happen Every Weekend for the duration of the construction closure!

This Open Streets - Taste of Leslieville idea could actually increase business!

Shops all along Queen Street East - and especially from Broadview to Coxwell - are going to experience reduced traffic flows past their font doors during the closure. The Greenwood - Jones area has the advantage that the road is also actually closed. We can take advantage of that and do a Yonge Street style Pedestrian Mall thing for 6 weekends in a row starting this coming weekend!

This is not a half-baked idea out of nowhere from us here at Ward 30 bBikes. This idea is central to our thinking around an idea called "Liveable Cities". Liveable Cities include "Complete Streets" - streets that have narrower traffic lanes, wider sidewalks - and bike lanes. Room on our roadways for more kinds of activities - not just commuter car traffic passing through. An Open Street Weekend is a way to help people vision what a Complete Street could do for a neighbourhood. What a Liveable City might 'feel' like.

The massive highway-like traffic flows on Queen everyday, all through the day (almost) - make Queen the kind of street people like to stay away from if they can help it, during the peak hours. It's only at night when traffic volumes subside that everyone comes out for a casual walk after dinner - or whatever it is they like to do on our neighbourhood's Main Street.

Now we have an opportunity to experience this All Day - Saturday and Sunday - for 6 weekends on a row! If it works, we might even want to expand the idea to Friday's as well!

It is quite likely that this concept just might result in an increase in business on Queen! Locals will come out to support it at first; and then as the news spreads, folks from other neighbourhoods would grab the Bus or Walk or Bike over to Jones - or west to Greenwood - and arrive there just to experience the thing.

Leslieville Open Streets Weekends!

Let's turns this road closure thing on it's head. This is a great opportunity to try something that we couldn't try at any other time - ever.

This is a unique opportunity.

The noisy part of the hole they're making at Queen and Leslie is already almost over. Next comes the task of laying the concrete bed; and then the complex 3/4 Grand track placement - and then more concrete pouring. The street should be relatively quiet these next two months - Especially on weekends!

Come on - let's just do this thing. Leslieville Open Streets Weekends!

1 Toronto Star - Wednesday, April 16, 2014 | Open Streets: pedestrian Sunday on Bloor off to a plodding start |

Open Streets TO (Original plan: High Park to Withrow Park - scaled back by Council's Economic Development Committee last month) |

8-80 Cities (one of the sponsors of @OpenStreetsTO) |

Open Streets TO


@TTCLeslieBarns Queen St Closure May 11 to June 21, 2014 - Cyclist & Pedestrian Detours

Queen Street East is closed at Leslie Street until late June 2014.

The Walking Detours

The sidewalks are open on both the north side of Queen and the south side. The south side sidewalk detours south to Memory Lane and then back up to Queen. The north side sidewalk detours north to the lane just behind the Nose Bar - about 1/3 the distance out of your way compared to the south sidewalk route. So your better through-route if your walk is straight through the intersection, east-west, is the north side, sidewalk.

Cyclists have to walk their bikes along the sidewalk with pedestrians. If your not willing to do that - Jones Bike Lanes, Dundas Bike Lanes, and Greenwood Bike Lanes comprise the cycling detour (right).

Here's the Pedestrian Detour Map, a picture I took at Curzon and Queen - north side, May13, 2014.

The Mass Transit Detours

For Bus and Street Car, here's the @TTCLeslieBarns Detour Route map from "Construction Notice May 7, 2014 – Queen and Leslie Intersection Closed" (

TTCLeslieBarns Map Queen and Leslie Intersection Closure Bus and Streetcar Service May 11 - June 21 2014

TTC Leslie Barns (blog) |


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Active Transportation/Livable Cities - Stakeholder Workshop

South of Eastern Strategic Direction - Resource List and Discussion Primer:

Resource List

Official Documents

City of Toronto | City Planning | Community Planning | Toronto and East York District | South of Eastern Strategic Direction |

Links listed at the 'South of Eastern Strategic Direction' link.

Active Development Applications

Here is a list of active development applications in the South of Eastern Area

629, 633 & 675 Eastern Avenue

(at the "629, 633 & 675 Eastern Avenue" link)
Supporting Documentation
Plans and Drawings                                     Jan 21, 2014    Download
Planning Rationale                                     Jan 21, 2014    Download
Environmental Impact Study                             Mar 12, 2014    Download
Transportation Impact Study                            Jan 21, 2014    Download
Arborist/Tree Preservation Report and/or Declaration   Jan 25, 2014    Download

A Community Consultation Meeting was held for this application on January 27, 2014.

629, 633 & 675 Eastern Avenue Preliminary Report
629, 633 & 675 Eastern Avenue Community Consultation Presentation
629, 633 & 675 Eastern Avenue Community Consultation Meeting Notes

459 Eastern Avenue (Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment)

A Community Consultation Meeting date has not been scheduled for this application.
462 Eastern Avenue (Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment)

A Community Consultation Meeting date has not been scheduled for this application.

More Generally...

Port Lands Acceleration Initiative (all the links to all the Study Documents) |

Ward 30 Bikes Outreach

Google Maps | CycleTO Ward 30 Bikes: Problems/Opportunities | 

Ward 30 Bikes label: "South of Eastern Strategic Direction" |

A Discussion Primer:

How do the major Avenues in the South of Eastern Study Area; LSB, Eastern, Carlaw, Leslie and Coxwell relate to each other and to the neighbourhoods of Ward 30 and Ward 32?

A vision of their functioning - an article (the essence of which was outlined at Ward 30 Bikes monthly meeting on May 6th):

Ward 30 Bikes | The Amazing Shift - Eastern Avenue draws commute traffic into Riverside, Leslieville, South Riverdale - via Leslie and Carlaw from Lake Shore Boulevard |

Connect the City to the Lake

Vision 1

One vision presented at the May 6 meeting was of creating many, many crossing points south across the LSB. This is reflected in the Port Lands Transportation Plan. The crossing points being considered are one of the four streets just west of Leslie (Rushbrooke, Berkshire, Larchmount, Caroline); plus Carlaw, Logan and a new street, an extension of Broadview down to Bouchette Ave (west side of McCleary Park) and the Don Roadway. The idea is this would bridge the Lake Shore Boulevard and create north-south connectivity through well designed intersections across it.

Vision 2

I have  problem with the vision above. I don't think it will solve the barrier problem.

Signal phasing will enable the high speeds that the Lake Shore Boulevard is built for (built for 100km/h speeds - signed at 60km/h - but does 80-100km/h most of the day). Unless we reduce the Boulevard to a regular Avenue - it will remain a barrier of speed and noise and width - and attract the business models we see at Leslie and LSB - and planned at 629 Eastern (creating a new Caroline south of Eastern and a new intersection at LSB).

These business models create a traffic "nexus" at the intersections where they are located. The entire intersection area becomes a barrier to active transportation and eventually (via the motor vehicle congestion it also creates) a barrier for all modes. (see Leslie and LSB; see Carlaw and LSB).

The political will to reduce the LSB to an Avenue is not on the horizon.

Instead of focusing on what the Grand Boulevard is doing, this vision focuses on Eastern Avenue. Calm Eastern in order to help create a buffer between the Employment zone (which is likely going to be all about cars) and the neighbourhood by making Eastern Avenue a Complete Street. This calming of Eastern will stop pulling traffic up from LSB onto an avenue/expressway (Front/Eastern/Kingston Rd ---> Scarborough. This will calm the north-south Streets that intersect with LSB, and allow us to create Greenway Routes accoss the Great Barrier to the Waterfront.

To Complete Eastern Avenue - narrow the traffic lanes add buffered bike lanes; create the widest possible sidewalks all along it. Add better setbacks where possible (as suggested at the 629 Public Consultation meeting on January 27, 2014 - about the 'Back Lot' concept - several suggested that the 'Back Lot' be moved out from amidst the buildings where it would be a policing issue, and bring it out to face the neighbourhood along Eastern Avenue).

Thus, a calmed Eastern becomes a collector from Broadveiw all the way over to Kingston Rd for Greenway links to it north-south: at Broadview Logan, Rushbrooke/Berkshire, Knox, Woodfield and at Jonathan Ashbridges Park and the system of Parks there - and points East and Northeast via On-street Connections and Informal Routes though Woodbine Heights to Scarborough.

By making Eastern a Complete Street we thus lessen the pull on traffic up from Lake Shore via north-south neighbourhood streets up to Eastern Avenue as an high speed avenue/expressway to Scarborough

This will lessen the pull at a proposed new Lower Caroline, as well. Thus the proposed separated bikeway through the planned StudioCentre (just to the East of new lower Caroline) works as part of the Greenway network also.

This vision allows businesses to cross the Lineal Park (the LDRT runs along it) as a trade off for the over-all good that it accomplishes.

What's YOUR vision?

Please add another vision in comments.


The Amazing Shift - Eastern Avenue draws commute traffic into Riverside, Leslieville, South Riverdale - via Leslie and Carlaw from Lake Shore Boulevard

The PM Peak.

In the pm peak the traffic through Ward 30 takes Eastern Avenue from Front St in the office tower release, to Eastern Avenue to Kingston Rd to Scarborough.

Traffic from the core also takes the Gardiner to the Lake Shore Boulevard to Carlaw and up to Eastern to Kingston Rd to Scarborough.

The Leslie Street closure has made this apparent.

Now that Leslie is closed or clogged, all that Scarborough traffic flows up Carlaw to Eastern to get to Kingston Rd to get to Scarborough.

The congestion on Carlaw is a foreshadow of what is to come as doubling of density proceeds. When Leslie opens again in the spring of 2015, the pressure on Carlaw will end, Carlaw will become a less used street and become again, more like a neighbourhood street that it was a year ago.

But this will be illusion.

Increasing density of population along the Avenue Queen Street and Avenue Carlaw will - is - creating more traffic volume on all the area streets - the continuation of growth in the city of Toronto in general is leading to higher volumes of traffic generally - congestion is getting worse.

Within this understanding is the idea that the capacity of roadways actually increases congestion over time.

The capacity of the 6-lane Lake Shore Boulevard is actually creating more traffic volume on the Lake Shore Boulevard than it can handle - that overburden volume is then funneling up Leslie and Carlaw - the only two egress point north through this area that escape to a fast Avenue - up to Eastern Avenue, to Kingston Rd, to Scarborough.

How do we stop this?

I say we make Eastern a Complete Street. 'Calm' Eastern from Power street to Queen.

Please Comment.

View No More Gardiner Expressway East in a larger map

The complex Eastern Avenue bridge over the DVP presents a special problem within this idea - please ask about it in comments in order to evolve this discussion.