August 7, 2014 2:05 pm

New bike lanes on Adelaide and Richmond unsafe: advocacy group

A Toronto cycling advocacy group says new bike lanes on Adelaide and Richmond are unsafe

File/Global News

TORONTO – A Toronto cyclist advocacy group says the new bike lanes along Richmond and Adelaide are unsafe and not what council voted on.

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In May, the green light was given to initiate a pilot project that would see cycle tracks installed along Richmond and Adelaide, but according to Cycle Toronto this is not what is now in place.

The City of Toronto defines cycle tracks as “separate lanes for bicycles that are adjacent to the roadway, but separated from vehicular traffic.”

Cycle Toronto said the new lanes fail to adhere to this definition.

“The installation on Adelaide St. is not separated, but instead a painted buffer strip,” the group said in a press release Wednesday.

“It was supposed to be a cycle track which we assume is a separated lane,” Councillor Mike Layton told Global News.

“It’s a separated lane on Wellesley, it’s a separated lane on Sherbourne. I think the expectation was that it would be,” Layton said.

“They were trying to get it done as quickly as possible, but getting it done quick isn’t necessarily getting it done right” the councillor said.

Cycle Toronto said painted lanes without any physical separations create unsafe conditions for cyclists.

“Cabs, cars and delivery trucks are routinely using the cycle tracks on Adelaide St which forces cyclists to swerve out into the roadway,” the group said.

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Cycle Toronto also said there are reports of cars using the cycling lanes to pass slower traffic.

However, even with a physical separation, Councillor Layton said sometimes more has to be done.

“They had to add bollards on portions of Sherbourne because cars were just rolling over the curb and parking right in the bike lane,” he said.

“It’s not just a nuisance for bikers to go around. They have to swerve out into traffic which sometimes takes drivers by surprise and certainly puts cyclists at risk.”

© Shaw Media, 2014

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