In the spring I wrote about the stretch of the Waterfront Trail between Norris Crescent and First Street. This is really the only part of the trail that's not off-road, not on quiet side streets and doesn't have a designated bike lane.
Since then, I've cycled this stretch with my two oldest kids many, many times, and I've seen how dangerous it can be. My daughter is a confident street rider, and she knows how to ensure she doesn't get doored by parked cars on Lake Shore, which forces her into unmarked lanes. Experienced cyclist Sue Trainor was killed in this very section just last summer. Surely we can do better for a key part of the 1400km Waterfront Trail.
I tweeted Mark Grimes, the counsellor for this area, about this concern and learned about PW32.6.
@torontomike We have staff looking at it right now. Agree we need to find a solution.http://t.co/pOiq0EgB8S— Councillor Grimes (@Mark_Grimes) July 30, 2014
The Waterfront Trail stretches over 1,400 kilometres along the Ontario shores of Lake Ontario, Lake Erie, and Lake St. Clair, as well as the Niagara, Detroit, and St. Lawrence Rivers. It connects 68 communities and over 405 parks and natural areas. The Waterfront Trail follows Toronto's waterfront on a combination of multi-use trails, quiet residential streets and in a few locations along major arterial roads. The long-term goal is to relocate the Waterfront Trail from these arterial roads wherever feasible and to provide a continuous route on multi-use trails and quiet residential streets. The Waterfront Trail was recently extended from just west of Humber Bay Park to Norris Crescent. However, there is no opportunity to provide a continuous Waterfront Trail route further west, between Norris Crescent and First Street, because there are no connecting streets south of Lake Shore Boulevard and no public access along the Lake Ontario shore line. To continue west, trail users must travel along Lake Shore Boulevard to First Street to connect with the Waterfront Trail, continuing along quiet residential streets and multi-use trails to connect with the Mississauga section of the trail.
The Public Works and Infrastructure Committee has requested Transportation Services to investigate the feasibility of providing a cycling facility along Lake Shore Boulevard West to connect the Etobicoke sections of the Waterfront Trail. This report provides an update on the ongoing investigation. A final report on a proposed solution will be submitted to the Public Works and Infrastructure Committee in the first quarter of 2015.
I'm looking forward to reading the proposed solution early next year and I'm pleased this issue is getting the attention it deserves. I'll be following this home and will update along the way.