Jarvis bike lanes next on the chopping block?
Right around the time that the Fort York Pedestrian and Cycle Bridge was cancelled, word started to spread that the another piece of David Miller's legacy might be undone: the Jarvis Street bike lanes. Although not classified a "priority" by the mayor's press secretary Adrienne Batra, a report from CP24 claims that the removal of the lanes is "high on Ford's to-do list."
Public works chairman Denzil Minnan-Wong sure makes it sound like this is the case. "I've heard from many councillors that they would like to revisit this issue," he told the Sun. "The separated bike lanes that I'm proposing recommends using Sherbourne St., which is a couple blocks away, which in some ways would make Jarvis St. [bike lanes]...less necessary."
That might sound like it makes sense, but let's remember that Sherbourne already features bike lanes (as crappy as they might be), and Jarvis has enjoyed increased cycling activity since the centre lane was removed. Not only that, Jarvis currently represents the easterly edge of the downtown area serviced by the BIXI bike-sharing program. For that reason alone, Minnan-Wong's reasoning is suspect.
But here's the real kicker. It would cost in the neighbourhood of $68,000 to remove them. Not a lot of money â no. And yet when one considers that the lanes only cost about $87,000 to install in the first place and don't appear to slowing cars down a whole lot, it's baffling that the project would be even be considered for removal.
Nothing's happened yet, of course. But this could be the clearest indication of where the mayor stands on cycling infrastructure that we've got yet.
Photo by Secondarywaltz via the Wikimedia Commons.
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