Cycling Lanes Are NeededDecember 06, 2016
In May 2016, Toronto created a new 10-year cycling plan designed to increase the number of bike lanes in the city. The total cost will be $153.5 million.
Below, you’ll learn more about why the cycling lanes are needed and Toronto’s plans to implement them.
The Need for Bike Lanes
Prior to the plan, Toronto had only 131 km of on-street bike lanes or separated cycle tracks. Traffic fatalities were at their highest point in five years and 42 of the 64 people who were killed on Toronto roads in 2015 were cyclists or pedestrians. The problem has only continued to get worse over time.
Pedestrian and cycling safety research by Toronto Public Health revealed that in 67% of cases, pedestrians who were hit by vehicles had the right of way and were hit while they were fully obeying the law. Cyclists experience similar issues, as fast-moving traffic approaches from angles they cannot see.
87% of cyclist injuries and fatalities occur on major and minor arterial roads, and 69% of cyclists or pedestrians were struck at an intersection, while 22% were struck in the middle of a block.
Cycling lanes are being created to cut back on these serious injuries and fatalities by protecting drivers from fast-moving traffic.
Types of Routes
The major goals are to expand routes, connect many routes, and improve existing infrastructure. Pilot projects on Richmond St. and Adelaide St. will become longer, for example. There are also many routes planned for the suburbs.
There are several challenges facing Toronto as it tries to create a connected network of cycling routes. One of these is that the city is dissected by many ravines, railway lines and rivers. Bridges and/or tunnels are being built to support the plan.
It’s important to remember that although these improvements will make cycling in Toronto safer, even the best network of bike lanes cannot prevent accidents. Make sure to pay attention, be cautious, and observe all traffic signs to stay safe.
If you’ve been injured in a cycling accident and want to know more about your rights, book a free consultation with a bicycle accident lawyer.
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