From City Hall: Shifting Plans on Transit (and Open Houses)

From City Hall: Shifting Plans on Transit (and Open Houses)

The City has once again announced a shuffling of the deck on high speed transit proposing amendments to several projects previously approved by Council.  While residents have grown weary of constant change, in this case there is reason for optimism and hope that the City is not only moving forward, but inching closer to getting it “right.”

The Mayor’s SmartTrack proposal leveraging the Province’s electrification of the GO lines was approved for study by Council in 2015.  It adds stations to these lines in the eastern …

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Mayor Updates Congestion Management Plan at Yonge-Sheppard

Mayor Updates Congestion Management Plan at Yonge-Sheppard

The City of Toronto has been analyzing “big data” related to traffic movement and this week made official what Willowdale residents have known for years.  Traffic at the Yonge-Sheppard and Yonge-Finch intersections both rank in the top-10 worst in the city.  Mayor John Tory and Councillor Jaye Robinson, chair of the City’s Public Works & Infrastructure Committee revealed these stats as part of an announcement at Yonge & Sheppard this week.

Mayor Tory has made traffic congestion one of his top priorities.  Phase one of his …

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Mayor Tory an Important Ally on Yonge/401 Interchange

Mayor Tory an Important Ally on Yonge/401 Interchange

For more than a decade, Willowdale residents concerned with traffic have been following the political drama surrounding the Yonge Street/Highway 401 interchange.  City Council first approved John’s motion to study the area in 2006.  This study identified the interchange – and in particular the route for moving southbound Yonge traffic onto eastbound 401 – as the single most fixable contributor to local gridlock.

Since then, the City has been attempting to work with the Province, which owns the land around the interchange, to complete the necessary …

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Pedestrian Safety a Top Local Concern

Pedestrian Safety a Top Local Concern

When frustrated motorists leave major arterial streets to avoid congestion, it creates safety concerns on our residential ones.  John has continued to work on local initiatives designed to create safer conditions for pedestrians, an important part of getting more people walking to where they need to go, and ultimately reducing the number of cars on our busy roads.

1) “Watch Your Speed” Signs Review

In the fall of 2014 John initiated, with City staff, a pilot program in Ward 23 bringing radar speed display boards to a number …

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‘Please Slow Down’ Signs Available

‘Please Slow Down’ Signs Available

In the Fall of each year, Transportation Services has historically noted a significant increase in the number of pedestrian and cyclist collisions on our roads. With rising congestion on major arterial streets in our community, we continue to see more and more cars driving on “quiet” residential roads trying to bypass traffic making pedestrian safety a pressing local concern.

Transportation Services is undertaking a Fall Safety Awareness Campaign in order to bring the issue of pedestrian safety forward in the minds of our motorists. The campaign …

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From City Hall: Future of the East Gardiner (UPDATED)

From City Hall: Future of the East Gardiner (UPDATED)

Updated (June 2015)

On June 10 & 11, City Council approved the rebuilding of the East Gardiner Expressway – the “hybrid solution” – by a vote of 24-21.  John was among those who preferred the teardown option, replacing 1.7 km of elevated highway with an at-grade boulevard with an elevated ramp only where the boulevard would connect with the Don Valley Parkway.

John’s position on this issue was supported by more than 70% of the more than 400 Ward 23 residents who completed his online survey through …

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From City Hall: Using Traffic Data to Get Moving

From City Hall: Using Traffic Data to Get Moving

The City of Toronto recently announced steps toward investing in data to better understand how, where and when people travel and how the City can use this information to better assist the public in moving around Toronto. Transportation Services’ new Big Data Innovation Team will build on work already underway partnering with McMaster University to analyze historical travel data on city expressways and streets.  It will also integrate data collected from the City’s bicycle tracking app to help identify gaps in the City’s current cycling infrastructure.

In …

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Watch Your Speed Pilot Program (UPDATED)

Watch Your Speed Pilot Program (UPDATED)

John recently met with the city’s Transportation staff to review the interim data for the pilot. In order to meet the interest and demand from all local schools, Transportation Services recommended rotating 3 of the 7 signs in March. Staff will be presenting a report to Council at the end of the one year study in the fall of 2015.  We look forward to that report in the fall in hopes of maintaining the use of these signs beyond the pilot period.

 

Update (September 2014)

I am …

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New Subway Tunnel Opens at Hullmark

New Subway Tunnel Opens at Hullmark

Greater incentive for new condo residents to rely more on transit and less on their vehicles – that was a key part of the community’s vision when the plan for the Hullmark Centre passed at Council in 2009.  As the new development nears completion, a milestone was reached late last month with the opening of a new access tunnel from Sheppard Avenue connecting directly to the building and the platform of the Sheppard Subway.

In addition to connecting residents of the new high rise towers and shoppers …

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From City Hall: SmartTrack Moving Forward with Study Approval at Council

From City Hall: SmartTrack Moving Forward with Study Approval at Council

It was a centrepiece of Mayor Tory’s election campaign and with Council’s approval in February, a work plan will get underway formally studying the feasibility of the SmartTrack proposal and seeking to integrate the work with the Province’s ongoing Regional Express Rail (RER) plan.

SmartTrack seeks to piggyback on the Province’s existing plan to electrify the GO transit lines – specifically the Etobicoke/Lakeshort East,Kitchener and Eglinton West lines – running new surface subways along those routes from Markham to Mississauga.  SmartTrack would seek to add 13 …

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From City Hall: Mayor Making Moves on Traffic & Transit

From City Hall: Mayor Making Moves on Traffic & Transit

They dominated the recent mayoral and ward elections and remain some of the most critical issues facing our City and community.  Mayor Tory announced last week that he is making traffic on of the top priorities for his administration.  Highlighted in his announcement was:

“Zero tolerance” for illegal parking on main roads during rush hour
Better coordination of road closings and establishing higher fees for developers taking over lanes.
Increasing the amount of traffic signal retiming work next year by 40%
Increasing the number of traffic cameras to allow …

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Toronto Opens New Transportation Operations Centre

Toronto Opens New Transportation Operations Centre

In August, the City of Toronto opened its brand new Transportation Operations Centre to help improve safety and traffic flow on city roadways.

Upgraded technology permits the new centre to act as a state-of-the-art transportation hub monitoring and responding to issues on the city’s roadways in real time.  This will be done by monitoring more locations on video cameras as more locations are added to the system.  It will also allow operators to alter signal timings as needed and coordinate with emergency services more quickly to clear lane …

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