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E-bikes not allowed in Toronto bike lanes just yet

Posted by Derek Flack / January 9, 2014

e bike toronto bike laneE-bikes won't be granted access to Toronto bike lanes just yet, after a recommendation before the City's public works committee was deferred this afternoon. The report in question makes a distinction between two type of electric bike -- smaller pedal-equipped versions vs. larger scooter-like models -- and recommends that the former be allowed everywhere that traditional bikes are allowed, including city bike paths and lanes. The latter would be banned from off-road and separated bike lanes/paths, but permitted to operate in lanes painted on-street.

The question of where e-bikes can safely operate has been hotly debated in Toronto since they've gained in popularity over the last few years, and it makes sense that the City make an effort to redefine what constitutes a bicycle in the municipal code to take account of these vehicles in a formal sense. The idea was to reach a compromise by distinguishing between lighter and heavier e-bikes, despite the fact that they are both capped at the same speed of 32kph.

Leading the charge to defer the motion was Councillor Mike Layton, who noted that there are still safety concerns related to the weight of e-bikes and their higher rate of average speed (most cyclists ride about 20kph). The committee agreed in voting 4-2 to defer the item. As such, no e-bike of any sort will be allowed in bike lanes or on bike paths for the foreseeable future.

What do you think of the decision? Where do e-bikes belong?

Photo by Roger Cullman.

Discussion

81 Comments

B. Ross Ashley / January 9, 2014 at 01:39 pm
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As an aging rider whose next bike may very well be electrically assisted, I can see that the presence of ebikes in the designated bike lanes is a problem for bikies. They are faster; the scooters especially are quite a bit heavier. If I had one I would not want to use a dedicated bike lane with it, unless I had the motor turned off and were propelling it by pedals alone. With most of the heavier models ... especially the scooters with their absurdly high q factor (the horizontal distance between the pedals) ... there is no way I would want to pedal one. So I'd use the side streets, and the undifferentiated bike routes such as #20, #31 or #35, but I'd ride in the general traffic lanes south of St Clair.
John Labatt / January 9, 2014 at 01:39 pm
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Let the E-Bike's ride where they want. Let them drive drunk and on the sidewalk without a helmet and headlight's off at night. Stop Persecuting these people.
CW / January 9, 2014 at 01:44 pm
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My opinion is that they should be able to go where bikes go.

A courteous person will be courteous and a jerk will be a jerk. In the end they will go where they want as there won't be any enforcement.
Joe / January 9, 2014 at 01:46 pm
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E-scooters do not belong in bicycle infrastructure: period. I congratulate the Public Works committee (PWIC) for doing the right thing. Most cyclists that I know and talk to don't have an issue with are now termed "pedelecs", bicycles that happen to have a motor-assist, that look and function like a regular bicycle. PWIC voted unanimously to allow pedelecs anywhere a bicycle is allowed, and I think that is fair and wise to do.

E-scooters should be accommodated only by possibly reducing the speed limits on Toronto's streets to 30 km/h, as Dr. McKeown, Toronto's Medical Officer of Health, has suggested. It will make the streets safer for both E-scooters and cyclists. Other than that, I don't believe there can be any other accommodation to E-scooters, they are really motor vehicles, and don't belong in infrastructure designed specifically for human-powered transportation.3.620
Sam / January 9, 2014 at 01:53 pm
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Just because the are "E" does not make it OK.

Can I ride a 50CC gas powered Vespa scooter in the bike lane? It only goes 35-40mph. Should be OK.
Lindsay / January 9, 2014 at 01:56 pm
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I don't know where they belong ... but as a cyclist, I've had way too many close calls with e-bikes. They come ripping down the trails and most of the drivers don't use the same rules that cyclist use. They hardly ever use a bell/horn to let you know they're around and I find them to be very dangerous.

But seeing as you don't need a license to drive an e-bike, I think the roads should be off limits.

I don't know ... this is a tough question.
readandfeed replying to a comment from CW / January 9, 2014 at 01:57 pm
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Sad but true. They already go where they're not supposed to (like sidewalks), and there's no enforcement at all.
readandfeed replying to a comment from Sam / January 9, 2014 at 01:58 pm
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Nope, you don't have the magic E.
Frank / January 9, 2014 at 02:00 pm
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I agree that pedelecs belong in the bike lanes, but speed should be capped at 24 kph. Further, I believe that the larger, heavier scooters should be licensed and should carry insurance and be subject to the same rules as other motorcycles (because that's essentially what they are). Their speed can be regulated at 40kph, but a valid driver's license should be mandatory for the operation of this type of vehicle. Currently, many of these vehicles are being driven by persons who have lost their Drivers' licenses due to drunk driving. I'm sure some of these folks continue to drink and cycle. This is a dangerous loophole.
Orlando / January 9, 2014 at 02:03 pm
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All due respect to people that need to ride a bicycle, but if they want to to share the road with motor vehicles, wether it be pedal or electric they absolutely should have to get a licence to show that they know the basic safe rules of the road"......
G.S. / January 9, 2014 at 02:11 pm
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When will the debate of parking these things on boulevards come up? I ride a 150cc Vespa and have parked multiple times next to an e-bike that is the exact same size as mine on a boulevard and only i will be ticketed. This seems unfair as it takes up the same amount of space.
readandfeed replying to a comment from Orlando / January 9, 2014 at 02:12 pm
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Oh, I see. A license magically makes every car driver know AND FOLLOW the safe rules of the road, does it?
iSkyscraper / January 9, 2014 at 02:20 pm
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"What do you think of the decision? Where do e-bikes belong?"

The more relevant question is perhaps "How do other cities define and regulate e-bikes? How do they share their road/bike infrastructure?"

Why must everything in Toronto be done in a vaccuum? There are other cities out there. Learn from their errors and successes.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electric_bicycle_laws
Ryan / January 9, 2014 at 02:28 pm
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E-bike riders can go to hell.
They need to be licensed.
Orlando Carvalho / January 9, 2014 at 02:35 pm
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Licences won't cure all , but at least they will know theoretacly what the propper rules are
readandfeed replying to a comment from Orlando Carvalho / January 9, 2014 at 02:39 pm
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Gee officer, in theory I knew that I wasn't supposed to drive through that red light, or make that illegal left turn, but I have a license so it's all good. Brilliant.
newearthling / January 9, 2014 at 02:44 pm
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This is a long term solution, but how about a separate lane for them too? One lane for cars,trucks, buses etc. near the centre of the road (not on streetcar roads). One lane for motorcycles, scooters and e-bikes. And one lane, near the curb, for bikes.
I think we should be promoting the use of these scooters and e-bikes to get people out of their cars. But they should be no where near the bike lanes, or on the pathways.
Rafa / January 9, 2014 at 02:47 pm
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From my experience, e-bike riders tend to look like they're missing a few chromosomes. They come from families whose choice of 4-wheel vehicle is a mobility scooter.
Rob replying to a comment from newearthling / January 9, 2014 at 02:50 pm
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Hilarious.
Seymour / January 9, 2014 at 03:08 pm
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All E-bikes should be banned from Toronto streets. They're basically drunk people on scooters. I'm pretty sure Ana Bailao drives one now.
Stark replying to a comment from Rafa / January 9, 2014 at 03:10 pm
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x 100 and they're usually smoking
Moneesha replying to a comment from Ryan / January 9, 2014 at 03:27 pm
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...or shot on sight.
Moneesha replying to a comment from G.S. / January 9, 2014 at 03:30 pm
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Cop figures it's a Leftie that drives the E-Bike and so does not want the hassle of said Leftie screaming about his/her precious "RIGHTS!!!!!!!!" being violated and the ensuing protest all the other Lefties in support of the original tickettee (ESPECIALLY if he/she is gay.) will start against the evil cops.
Moneesha replying to a comment from Rafa / January 9, 2014 at 03:31 pm
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Blob Ford for instance.
v79 / January 9, 2014 at 03:50 pm
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It's not the speed of them that creates problems, it's the bulkiness and maneuverability of the scooter type bikes which can be problematic on trails and tighter areas where pedestrians abound. Nearly no one will be racing through busy bike paths at 30km/hr. The few idiots that do will do so whether its illegal or not. Good to see them putting a bit of thought into it though, instead of painting them all with the same brush.
David / January 9, 2014 at 04:12 pm
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All the hateful comments sure do add intellectual gravitas to the discussion. I tire of hearing that the so-called e-scooters are too big and too fast. We are required by law to follow the speed limit, regardless of our ability to go faster. Hey, all cars can go faster than downtown posted speed limits, so lets ban them all. And plenty of young folks take their bikes faster than that! And too big and therefore intimidating those poor folks on bikes? Well, SUVs, large pickup trucks and delivery trucks are far bigger than my Honda Civic Hybrid, so lets toss them off the streets as well! Hey, the fact of the matter is that bikes, e-bikes and e-scooters can all coexist. So knock off the hate and lets work together to make it all work!
Crocography / January 9, 2014 at 04:18 pm
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Some of these ebikes are as large as my Vespa. The problem for me is when they ride in the car lanes. Reason: half of the car drivers now think I am an ebike and tend to want to run me off the road because they think I can only go 30km/h rather than the 110km/h I can get from my Vespa. Hell I have even yelled at the ebikes to get out of the car lanes! As for the bike lanes , when I ride my bike I also find these things a menace, they sneak up behind you really fast.

I think if the creators of these ebikes actually had them looking like ebikes and trimmed down the top speed to 25km/h or so everyone (cars, bikes, motorcyclists) would be thrilled.
Moneesha replying to a comment from David / January 9, 2014 at 04:24 pm
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And you drive your SUV in the bike lanes and on bike paths most likely.
David / January 9, 2014 at 04:31 pm
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My e-scooter has a governor so it tops out at a max of 30k per hour. If there are other riders, of whatever variety, in a bike lane etc I would not likely approach those speeds unless I had a very clear path to pass someone who was slower AND if the posted speed limit was at that level. By the way, I see no justification whatsoever why I should be kept off of multi-purpose lanes or separated lanes. I must abide with the same speed limits and decent driving skills as anyone else, so what is the problem? And my little scooter is nowhere as big, heavy or as fast as your Vespa and, indeed, has foot pedals. So again, what is the problem? Surely you don't suggest that regular bikers never violate traffic laws!
W. K. Lis / January 9, 2014 at 04:39 pm
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What about the electric wheelchairs? Four wheels better than two wheels?
Me / January 9, 2014 at 04:46 pm
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Vespas shouldn't be in bike lanes/paths either and I wasn't aware it was legal to do so?
Jay / January 9, 2014 at 04:53 pm
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everytime I see an adult driving an E-bike i always think- "that person lost their license drunk driving"
Roger / January 9, 2014 at 04:56 pm
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As a cyclist, former e-bike rider (that's my old ride in the photo, above) and current gas scooter rider, I find this continuing fear-mongering troubling.

First of all, calling scooter-style e-bikes "e-scooters" confuses motorists and cyclists alike with gas-powered scooters (like Vespas) and further muddies the association with e-bikes being faster than bicycles, more dangerous, etc. Sure, there will always be some riders (of all kinds of bikes) who disregard the rules of the road or are discourteous.

When I rode an e-bike, I was constantly overtaken along the city streets by Lycra-clad cyclists speeding by, running red lights, etc. In many cases, I think a lot of this whole brouhaha is the pot calling the kettle black.

That said, I feel that scooter-style e-bikes deserve to be ridden wherever bicycles are allowed. The Federal and Provincial government already did extensive research to determine their safety on the roads. It's the *perception* that they're not safe that needs to be addressed. This can only be done with a widely adopted education campaign that includes mention of e-bikes of all kinds in Ministry of Transportation literature and training materials. We need to educate, not discriminate.

Forcing scooter-style e-bikes into faster-moving traffic endangers them, so I welcome the proposal to allow them to ride alongside their other two-wheeled brethren.

When I used a bicycle as my main mode of transportation to commute around the city, as a fit cyclist, I was easily able to pass other cyclists without issue. If you'd put me on an e-bike and I do the same, I'm suddenly I'm the enemy to other cyclists. I don't get this adversarial attitude.

The only possible reason I can think of is maybe envy that e-bikers are getting from the same A-to-B as them without exerting much physical power. Is that it?

I have yet to see any conclusive evidence that scooter-style e-bikes are any more dangerous than pedal bikes. They may look bulkier and some are indeed much heavier, but let's look at the facts:

Scooter-style e-bikes are about the same width and length as pedal bikes, can obtain about the same top speed as a fit cyclist (32 km/hr) and have more safety features than most traditional bikes (horn, lights, turn signals, drum brakes). Why make them the enemy?

The solution is to wholeheartedly accept e-bikes into the cycling infrastructure, expand the infrastructure and educate everyone about all the modes of transportation out there.
tommy replying to a comment from David / January 9, 2014 at 04:59 pm
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Maybe the solution is to be stricter about the 'pedals' these things have. The reason e-bikes are getting bigger and gaudier is because their design can get away with useless stub pedals that don't do anything. Enforce the design (can they be reasonably used outside of motor operation) and ban fold-in pedals, and let the design shrink e-bikes back to a regular size and speed.
Stop being cheap! / January 9, 2014 at 05:11 pm
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The road hazards that ride these things should pay for insurance! These people choose which laws they want to obey. Next loser on an ebike who rides on the sidewalk next to me is getting kicked right off!
Jibs / January 9, 2014 at 05:16 pm
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Anyone who rides an ebike has failed in life!
Kevin / January 9, 2014 at 05:19 pm
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I bought 2 E-bikes (scooters)about 6 years ago with the intent that my wife and I would use these to commute to work and for short trips in our neighborhood. We used the e-bikes for about 2 years. After many close calls and 2 accidents, the e-bikes have been sitting in our garage ever since. It is not possible to safely drive these on city streets. Cars routinely ran us off the roads. I even had a school bus run me into the boulevard to avoid being hit. The final straw was when I was sideswiped by a pickup truck breaking the mirror on my e-bike. I always used the signal lights when riding the e-bikes unlike most car drivers in this city but most drivers feel they are the only ones entitled to use the roads. The e-bikes are not allowed on bike paths or bike lanes so there is no safe place to ride them in this city.
Me replying to a comment from Stop being cheap! / January 9, 2014 at 05:34 pm
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I do that with bicyclists. Ironically they don't get it. Standing in front of an E-bike and hoofing them off at the shoulders may be painful though so I guess push them off from the side as they go by?
Dave G / January 9, 2014 at 06:20 pm
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So many ignorant comments to even respond to. Reminiscent to when horses ruled the roads and people complained that automobiles were scaring the horses. It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life. E-bikes are a great alternative to automobiles for short commutes and belong with bicycles. Bicyclists and Ebikers should be fined and ticketed for disobeying any laws, but both are an important and viable alternative.
Khristopher / January 9, 2014 at 06:26 pm
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I used to ride an e-bike, until it was recently stolen. I used to use the bike lanes when I first got it, until I learned I wasn't allowed. When I started using the street, I was getting yelled at and honked at on a regular basis by cars telling me to get into the bike lanes where I belong. Really really annoying to be an e-bike rider. No matter where you ride, you have someone hating you.
Wheels / January 9, 2014 at 07:01 pm
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I must say that I agree with many of the comments on here especially the suggestion to study what other cities have done). I too am glad that some thought is being put into this.

As background, I have a car, ride bikes, take the ttc, and used to own a gas powered scooter. As a car driver, my main beef about e-scooters is that at a glance they look like a normal scooter that requires a motorcycle license. However, they often don't have headlights on (to save juice) and are scuttling along by the curb. Essentially they are out of place relative to all the other participants and are thus unpredictable. Slow them down a touch, get rid of the scooter-look, perhaps have a basic license system, lose the cigarette, and I wouldn't mind them on the road.
Morty replying to a comment from Dave G / January 9, 2014 at 07:13 pm
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When the automobile first came along society had respect for rules and each other. Now we have a society where the Left have legislated that "Anything goes!! WE HAVE RIGHTS!!!!" and no one has any respect for anyone else and makes a point of proving it, especially bicyclists.
David / January 9, 2014 at 09:59 pm
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I am stunned with this discussion. As an American I am used to hate and nonsense on political blogs, but moving to Canada I expected reasonable and civil discourse. But what, pray tell, does being in favor of e-bikes or e-scooters have to do with being a 'leftie' or the fact that Georgia has a governor? And guess what, folks, I have never lost my license for any reason whatsoever and it is an insult to suggest that e-bike riders have! If you want to make a reasonable, rational contribution to the discussion, please do so. If not, please join your fellow tea party types under a rock somewhere!
Dre / January 9, 2014 at 10:22 pm
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E-bikers are riding around with their helmets undone casually cruising through traffic, not ready to take a fall at all. Totally laid back...
Steve / January 9, 2014 at 10:35 pm
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Couldn't agree more David. I was present at the stakeholders meeting after the three year pilot, and fortunately didn't have to endure these kinds of comments. It was a mature debate, and E-bikes were legalized.
Gay Guy / January 9, 2014 at 10:44 pm
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Lol @ E-bikes. It's always the crazy people riding those.

Too poor for a car and too lazy for a bike.
Mark / January 9, 2014 at 10:52 pm
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How about Toronto actually work on improving its bike infrastructure FIRST before it goes about willy-nilly allowing things that aren't bicycles into it. Just a thought.
what about my segway?! / January 10, 2014 at 08:44 am
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Scooter style Ebikes are unloved by cyclists because in a collision between the two, they ride on unscathed. Nobody wants to share an already risky situation with people who have less incentive to be careful. Also they're bulky with respect to existing bike lines which are barely wide enough as it is for faster riders to pass on the left without dancing with traffic. Once jetpacks come out all of this discussion will be moot since that's the only infrastructure/regulation anyone will want.
Dan / January 10, 2014 at 09:09 am
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Not bikes. Scooters.
Jacob / January 10, 2014 at 09:28 am
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My problem with e-bikes is that their usual speed limit of 30kph seems really, really fast. Any time I've encountered one, it was travelling much faster than the cyclists around it. They also accelerate much faster than a regular bike, which makes them harder to predict, and they weight a lot more than a bike, making them much more dangerous in a collision.

If a cyclists' average speed is 20kph, maybe e-bike max speed should be brought down closer to that. And maybe their acceleration should likewise be limited.
Ben / January 10, 2014 at 09:30 am
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So if I get one of these "e-bike's" that look like a motorcycle and limit it to 32k then I don't need a license? Okay deal.

http://www.zeromotorcycles.com/ca/zero-s-sr
Joel / January 10, 2014 at 09:46 am
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This whole discussion reminds me of the Segway debate. My two cents: If it's motorized, it's place is on the road, not on the sidewalk, not in the bike lane. (Nice segue, huh?) If it's too slow to keep up to car traffic, move over and let traffic by, the same as a bicycle should. Forget the whole licence for e-bikes thing, they're same as 125cc mopeds, you don't need one.
Dean / January 10, 2014 at 09:55 am
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Pedal your damn bike. Its costs us all environmentally to keep charging your e-bike battery. Yes there's no smoke exhaust on the back of your e-bike so it makes you feel "green" but you see those smoke stacks spewing out exhaust at that power plant some of that is from your e-bike. We all need electricity but its a waste of energy for use on an e-bike. Get a pedal bike.
St / January 10, 2014 at 10:17 am
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Specifically targeting the type of person who rides an ebike as some loser who lost his licence, is as rediculous as replacing the word ebiker with cyclist with the same sentence. E-bikes of all styles are a great alternative for short commutes. A small licencing fee for bicycles and e-bikes should be mandated.
Greg replying to a comment from Roger / January 10, 2014 at 10:20 am
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4:56 roger, well put! Share the road,fill the pot holes.put more bike lanes in .fine drivers for opening car doors on cyclists.
anyone who wants to ride on major street should have a commuters plate on their bike for accountability. use the $ to educate and fill the damn potholes!
Terry Kelly / January 10, 2014 at 10:25 am
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I'm disabled. I have used an E bike to get around.Noe I use a PMD. E Bikes have a speedometer, they can do 20km better than a reg bike. While on Bike paths, I always ,scared of reg bikes, as MOST of them speed. MOST reg bikes go over 20km. I know, I'm pasted ALL the time. I would say over 75% of reg bikes, are going over 20km. Being hit by, any kind of bike makes no difference, to me. I could still die, with, either. E Bikes are just as safe at 20km as a reg bike. I know. I`ve been there. Plastic bends, actually acts as an air bag. At slower speeds could possible be safer then, all steel, reg bikes.
Joel / January 10, 2014 at 10:30 am
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Again with the licence thing and the fees! We all pay taxes that go (indirectly) to the roads whether you have a driver's licence or not! What you're suggesting is as ridiculous as having to pay an extra fee with every new pair of shoes to maintain the sidewalk. As well, most city cyclists have a driver's licence already! Do you suggest every child acquire a cycle licence the second their training wheels come off or before?
dealy / January 10, 2014 at 10:38 am
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And why is it always the saddest sacks of sh*t riding e-bikes?
Monesha replying to a comment from Terry Kelly / January 10, 2014 at 12:00 pm
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You might want to just stay inside.
Jonesy / January 10, 2014 at 12:10 pm
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If you can afford an e-bike than take a cab at $20 a pop instead. You're getting no exercise value out of riding an ebike might as well be in a safe car.
Simon / January 10, 2014 at 01:19 pm
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I am against e-bikes in bike lanes.
They are bulky and often cause unnecessary bike lane traffic because of their size. Sometimes vehicles are too close to the curb for an e-bike to get through so they block the lane...where a bicycle could easily fit through.
I rarely see e-bikers use signals, beep/ding.
They are very slow at accelerating/turning.
Roger replying to a comment from Simon / January 10, 2014 at 02:11 pm
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Thanks for proving my point. Just how much bigger is a scooter-style e-bike to a traditional (i.e.) legacy bicycle? Measure the widest part and see. Usually it's the handlebars. Surprise! They're almost exactly the same width as your standard mountain bike. Your point is moot.

Okay, so you seem to think e-bikes are too slow at accelerating. Other think they accelerate too fast. Which one is it? I could say the exact same things about most cyclists.

I've seen complete doofuses on bicycles, riding without helmets, smoking cigarettes while riding, listening to iPods, texting, etc. I could go on. These behaviours and *perceived* wrongs aren't exclusive to those who ride e-bikes. And they're rampant downtown.
Toucan Sam / January 10, 2014 at 03:23 pm
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I love seeing the cyclists complain about e-bikes infringing on their bike lanes, e-bikers not obeying road rules, blocking cyclist traffic in bike lanes. Does this sound at all like what some motorists say about bicycles on the road?
Roger / January 10, 2014 at 04:16 pm
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People don't like what's unfamiliar to them. Never have. Never will. It's the new Xenophobia!

Cyclists aren't used to seeing different-looking bikes on the street. So they demonize them and make them out to be the enemy. If every one of those e-bikers were in a car, they'd be a lot worse off, don't you think?
Lock / January 10, 2014 at 07:31 pm
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Ummm… Is is possible folks like getting around town faster? And for waaay cheaper than the 20th-century horseless carriage? No more “last mile”? Or peering down some street/tunnel/etc, wondering when/if that next bus/subway/streetcar might arrive? Whether there will even be standing room? That maybe there are other ways (safer ways?) to get exercise? That they might pull a cart/etc for loads? Some might wonder why electric travel use has already “exploded” in “out of the way” places (see the EU, or China – the writer Gibson once wrote “The future is already here, it is just not evenly distributed”).. But humans fear change, don’t they. Kinda pathetic, really.

LH
PS. The safest part of any vehicle isn’t a part at all. It’s when you strip away the air bags and seat belts and air bags. Shift some of the risk of collision back to the operator. Helps make the vehicle safer for *EVerybuddy else*.

Lock replying to a comment from Gay Guy / January 10, 2014 at 07:45 pm
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... and some are apparently not bright enough to trade burning food energy (there are other waaay safer waze to get exercise, than EG arriving at work, ready for a nap) to energy stored as electric energy stored in a recyclable rechargeable batt by chemistry, which is ultimately waaay cheaper than growing veggies and hunting bears, etc in your own back yard.) Betcha for some, school was waay too "boring". And physics and chemistry, or reading? Yuck!
Moneesha replying to a comment from Roger / January 10, 2014 at 08:46 pm
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No.
Steve / January 10, 2014 at 11:19 pm
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Well said Lock. Unfortunately it will go over the heads of the haters and knockers. All forms of alternative transportation for short commutes should be welcome. Tunnel vision and ignorance is blind to this rationale.
mariposaman replying to a comment from Jonesy / January 11, 2014 at 10:05 am
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It costs about 10 cents to fully charge an ebike battery which can go about 30-40 km. How far can a person go by cab for 10 cents?

How far can you go by cab for $20? By ebike you can go 6000 km.
mariposaman replying to a comment from Dean / January 11, 2014 at 10:19 am
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@Dean Ontario has all but phased out coal fired plants, and probably has the least emissions electricity in Canada behind Quebec. Besides I have to option of using Bullfrog power which is 100% sustainable and green power, or a solar rooftop, not an option for your food that you use to power your bicycle. That food energy for your muscles driving your bicycle along takes a lot of oil energy to farm, harvest, transport, process and store. Grapes from Peru, orange juice from Florida all shipped by airplane or truck. Using energy directly stored in a battery is much more efficient, and hardly a waste.
mark h / January 11, 2014 at 11:41 am
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ebikes are too heavy fast and most importantly quiet to to ride in the bike lanes. they sqeeze in between bikes and cars which ismt safe for anyone.
Arriviste / January 11, 2014 at 06:40 pm
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Ahem. Pedestrians? Remember us? I submit that the sidewalks are already full: skateboards, roller bladers, baby carriages, dogs, wheelchairs, walkers. Oh, and those nice bicycle people who overtake you like they're CIA assassins: silent,speedy, lethal. Sure, let the e-bikes on the sidewalks too, why not?? Just attach a rear-view mirror to my shoulder and I'll walk on the streets with the cars. Probably just as safe.
Allan Harmsworth replying to a comment from Arriviste / January 11, 2014 at 08:01 pm
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You will notice in the proposal that only bicycles ridden by up to 14 year olds will be allowed on the sidewalks. If there was a decent separated cycle track network, even the youngsters could use that, and leave the sidewalks to the pedestrians.
Allan Harmsworth / January 11, 2014 at 08:03 pm
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Sure, everyone wants to be green, until they have to actually do something about it, like share "their" space with new safe environmentally friendly ebikes.
Matt replying to a comment from Allan Harmsworth / January 11, 2014 at 08:20 pm
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And the assholes who ride them, don't forget.
KT / January 11, 2014 at 09:00 pm
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Where they don't belong is in the middle of traffic. Toronto streets are not wide enough for both vehicles and bikes, whether they're electric or not. I see too many cyclists swirving to avoid pot holes, ice, etc. and end up right in the path of a vehicle, not to mention those who go the wrong way on a one-way street. Why can bikes of all kinds be confined to side streets with less traffic, fewer TTC vehicles and less debris? It would be safer for them, less stressful for drivers and there would be enough space for bicycles and e-bikes to ride together in harmony.
Fudgee / January 12, 2014 at 01:01 pm
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I ride my E-Scooter in Markham all Summer,Fall and save lots of momey.I make no noise and Air pollution , I feel realy good about that.So come on in Markham the water is fine . You won't regret it.
eBikes Blow / January 13, 2014 at 01:14 pm
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Toronto's e-bikers are amongst the biggest arseholes on the planet.

Without fail, I see them illegally on the friggin' SIDEWALK, bearing down on their stupid bikes. Last year I almost punched one of them in the throat...this year, I won't miss :)
Allen / January 18, 2014 at 06:29 am
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I see no reason not to allow them in bicycle lanes. It’s not like the bicycle lanes are congested. Its true that e-scooters go faster than the average cyclists but as long as they pass on the left outside of the bike lane, there is plenty enough room for both e-scooter and bicyclist to co-exist. However, I don't believe they should allow them on multi-use paths. Too many children and mothers with baby carriages using those paths.
robert delarge / April 23, 2014 at 06:55 am
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I think that that is a terrible idea. The ebike business has sold hundreds of thousands of bikes and noone told them they wouldnt be able to drive there bike.Their also becoming more sales in other countries which means more sales are coming out. What kinda of biker isnt going to notice someone ahead of them or around them and drive through them. The things only doing 32 km an top. Most 20km. When drivers got there road test they were taught not to pass close to other vehicles the proper use of the bikes is all thats needed afull bikes distance to pass with a good distance of traffic coming on the opposite side i think thats what we pay police for if accidents happen proper laws in place should take there place. But imean i drive a bigger model scooter and i know if im not a safe distance nera you im not tring to pass near you.
gordon / August 20, 2014 at 01:16 pm
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hi i ride a gio scooter it has the pedals on the side my gio pedals fall off if i try too pedal the bike cause of a bearing issue cause of traffic so i had too veer off too the right which forced me on too the harbor bike lane right off the hop i was warned by cyclists an was ignorantly talk too about not being allowed in the bike lane i said nothing what for ? the crime was already committed? right according too them! My bike has a cruise control on it i can set it for 10 mile an hour an im very courteous too others these cyclists are speeding at top speed on there bikes an the roller bladders too so stop judging the book ok not all of us r turds there's tons of you out there who don't watch an go too fast too on yr bikes oh an another thing if your walking on the bloody bike lanes get off them there's board walk fools

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