We are writing to you as members of Ward 32 Spokes, the local cycling advocacy group associated with Cycle Toronto.
The Woodbine bike lanes are an important addition to the minimum grid of bike lanes cyclists need to get around the city safely. The installation on Woodbine now allows cyclists from Scarborough and the east end to get to and from the Dundas East bike lane and the Martin Goodman trail in safety. Both routes continue on into the downtown core. This will only encourage more people to get out of their cars and onto their bikes as a viable means of transportation, whether commuting or for recreation.
As Councillor Mary-Margaret McMahon has pointed out, the bike lane installation is not yet complete. There are still adjustments being made, such a garbage pick-up time on Woodbine and improving the flow of bikes and traffic at the intersection of Kingston Road and Woodbine.
Our group is committed to making the cycle lanes a success. We are in full support of the further traffic-calming measures for side streets off Woodbine that have been suggested by concerned residents, such as additions of speed bumps, restricted hours of access, and turning some of the streets into one-way streets to increase the safety for everyone. There was a meeting between city staff, Councillor McMahon, members of Ward 32 Spokes, and local residents on the topic of impacts to drivers and residents surrounding the recent Kingston/Woodbine redesign on Tuesday, Oct. 3 and our group is taking pains to ensure that concerns are being heard.
As car drivers as well as cyclists, we have seen the benefits of having the bike lanes on Woodbine. Woodbine was never meant to be a main thoroughfare as evidenced by the no trucks signs posted at intersections, yet over time it has become an alternate continuation of Lakeshore as the preferred means to get to Kingston Road. Since the bike lanes have been put in, we find the traffic on Woodbine a bit slower, yes, but smoother and more predictable, having the very calming effect on the street as bike lanes do as evidenced for years on Dundas Street East.
Our plan as the Ward 32 cycling advocacy group is to continue dialogue with Councillor McMahon and the City of Toronto staff around what some of these tweaks should be to maximize the safety and enjoyability of the Woodbine neighbourhood for everyone. We would suggest other residents do the same.
The Woodbine bike lanes are here to stay as part of the City of Toronto’s 10-year bike plan, and will greatly enhance our Ward for all residents.
Mary Ann Neary
Ward 32 Spokes