Dear Councillor Fletcher,
We are writing to encourage you to vote in favour of item PW2.11 (http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2015.PW2.11), A Road Safety Plan for Toronto, which would direct Transportation Services to prepare a comprehensive plan to improve road safety. Our group, Ward 30 Bikes, is the local advocacy wing of Cycle Toronto, and we represent hundreds of Cycle Toronto members in Ward 30, and also work to advocate on behalf of the thousands of others who bike, walk, or roll to improve their mobility in Toronto Danforth.
The Road Safety Plan for Toronto promises to review international best practices from other jurisdictions (including Vision Zero), review existing city policies on road safety, improve analysis of collision data, and provide specific recommendations to improve road safety, particularly for pedestrians and cyclists. To these ends, the plan would include an implementation plan, funding strategy, reporting mechanism, and the creation of a Road Safety Advisory Group and Road Safety Task Force. The Road Safety Plan would identify intersections which warrant enhanced pedestrian and cycling infrastructure, and develop a plan to implement safety improvements at these intersections.
The development of this plan is a long overdue step towards improving safety and comfort for people of all ages and abilities who walk and bike for mobility in the City of Toronto. While overall, the motion is quite strong, we wish that it also directed staff to collect more and better quality information about cycling and pedestrian data in the city, not just “an enhanced analysis of city-wide traffic collision data.” Bike and pedestrian counts on all major roadways would help make the Road Safety Plan more successful, as well as help citizens advocate for better infrastructure that serves the needs of all road users - not just drivers.
We hope you agree on the importance of PW2.11, A Road Safety Plan for Toronto, and we look forward to your vote in favour of this issue on March 31, when it comes before council. We also look forward to seeing the specific recommendations of such a plan, and concrete steps and resources towards improving safety for people who walk and ride bikes in Toronto. It will be important to ensure that the plan that results from this motion is comprehensive, and receives the resources it needs to succeed.
Brandon Quigley & Sylvia Slaughter
Co-leaders, Ward 30 Bikes