Mayoral hopeful Rocco Rossi has proposed building a curb-separated bike lane network across the downtown core.
This past summer Rossi was a vocal opponent of the bike lanes on Jarvis Street and called on the city to halt the project until after October’s municipal election. He has vowed to get rid of them if elected mayor.
Rob Ford also spoke out against the bike lanes of Jarvis.
On Monday, Rossi put forward his alternative bike network plan, which includes curb separated spaces for bikes on several downtown roads.
“In Toronto we’ve made some progress in laying down bike lanes, but we’ve fallen far behind other cities in introducing separated bike lanes that are part of a continuous network,” Rossi said.
Here’s a look at Rossi’s plan:
-Richmond Street between Parliament and Bathurst
-Complete the Wellesley/Harbord between Parliament and Ossington and separate it from traffic
-Sherbourne Street between Elm Avenue and Queens Quay
-Extend St. George/Beverly lane to Queens Quay and separate it from traffic
Rossi says that under his plan, “You will be able to bike from the Annex to the Harbourfront on a single safe, direct bike lane.”
Yvonne Bambrick, communications director for the Toronto Cyclists Union, said she’s pleased Rossi’s proposal addresses the increased interest in physically-separated bike lanes, but said ultimately the plan falls short.
“It’s a weak and downtown-based plan that doesn’t address the concerns of cyclists in the inner and outer suburbs and nor does it really do anything to improve the disconnected network that we currently have in the core,” she said.
Bambrick did note the cyclists union is pleased to see cycling included in each of the major candidates’ transportation plans, calling it a “shift from previous years.” She also said the cyclists union would like to see increased enforcement of vehicles parking in bike lanes.