The City of Toronto’s ActiveTO initiative, which closes major roads to vehicular traffic for people to get out and enjoy outdoor activities such as cycling and walking while observing safe social distancing to stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus, will be adding some extras for the final two weekends of September.
For East Toronto residents, the eastbound lanes of Lake Shore Boulevard East between Leslie Street and Kew Beach Avenue (just south of Woodbine Avenue) will once again be closed to traffic both days this weekend (Sept. 19 and 20).
What’s different for this weekend and next is that Yonge Street, between Davenport Road and Queens Quay, will also be closed to traffic on Sunday, Sept. 20 and Sunday, Sept. 27 for ActiveTO – Presented by Open Streets celebrations.
The city announced those additional closure earlier this week.
“Toronto has hosted Open Streets road closures twice a year since 2014,” said the city’s press release. “Earlier this year, Open Streets was one of the many events cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Making Yonge Street available for the upcoming two Sundays through ActiveTO – Presented by Open Streets was made possible through the support of presenting sponsor, Coco Group, as well as contributions from CentreCourt, Menkes, and 8 80 Cities.”
Yonge Street will be closed to vehicle traffic on both Sept. 20 and Sept. 27 from approximately 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Motorists who normally use Yonge Street during those hours are advised to make alternate travel plans, the city said.
“During the closure, a physically distanced activity is planned (from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) as part of Open Streets,” said the city’s press release. “The Live Green Eco-Walk is a fun activity, administered in a safe, physically distanced manner, that involves finding decals on the street that use QR codes to link to a green fun fact about Toronto. Test your knowledge with a quiz at the end for a chance to win great prizes.”
The ActiveTO initiative, which has usually been closing portions of Lake Shore Boulevard (both east and west) along with a portion of Bayview Avenue and River Street, has proved very popular with residents looking to get outdoors and Mayor John Tory praised it’s success in helping Toronto deal with COVID-19.
“ActiveTO has been an important part of our restart and recovery planning. By giving people space to practise physical distancing while being outside for activity, we have been supporting fundamental public health advice while continuing to work to stop the spread of COVID-19,” Tory said in the city’s press release.
“Council approved a common-sense, rapid approach to the cycling network in late May, we continue to make room for people, bikes and cars on neighbourhood streets, and I am pleased that through this partnership with Open Streets we will be expanding ActiveTO to Yonge Street on the last two Sundays in September.”
This weekend’s closure of the eastbound lanes of Lake Shore Boulevard East will begin at 6 a.m. on Saturday, Sept. 19 and will continue through until 11 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 20. Lake Shore Boulevard West (from Windermere Avenue to Stadium Road), and Bayview Avenue from Front Street to Rosedale Valley Boulevard, and River Street from Gerrard Street East to Bayview Avenue will also be closed to traffic for the same time periods.
Part of ActiveTO is also the Quiet Streets program which limits a number of neighbourhood streets to local traffic only in order to provide more space for people to safely take part in outdoor activities.
In East Toronto, the following areas have been designated as Quiet Streets:
- Monarch Park Avenue (from Felstead to Sammon avenues)
• Fulton/Sammon avenues (from Broadview to Monarch Park avenues)
• Woodfield Road to Knox Avenue
• Lee Avenue (from Kingston Road to Alfresco Lawn)
• Secord/Eastdale/Lumsden avenues/Main Street/Hamstead/West Lake avenues (from Dawes Road to Oak Park Avenue)
• Kew Beach Avenue (from Waverly Road to Lake Shore Boulevard East)
- Westlake Avenue Avenue (from Hamstead Avenue to Cosburn Avenue)
- Cosburn Avenue (from Westlake to Oak Park avenues)
- Kippendavie Avenue (from Kew Beach Avenue to Queen Street East)
- Waverly Road (from Kew Beach Avenue to Queen Street East)
The ActiveTO initiative will end on the final weekend of September.
For more information on the city’s ActiveTO program including the Yonge Street closures, please visit https://www.toronto.ca/news/activeto-major-weekend-road-closures-to-expand-to-yonge-street-on-final-two-sundays-in-september/