king street pilot study

Toronto is serious about making King Street car-free

The idea of a car-free King Street has been proposed many times as a way to address congestion on what is the city's busiest streetcar route and a crucial commuter corridor.

It's sure to be a controversial solution, but it has not been possible to debate its merits in the absence of a working plan that would outline its implementation.

That could be set to change as the city just launched the website for its King Street Pilot study. It's the central hub for information related to what will be a long-term project designed to improve the function of the street, particularly during rush hour.

While the city has yet to decide on one of the various pilot options, the removal of cars during some periods of the day will likely be tabled as part of this test process.

The preamble to the pilot project notes that the city and the TTC have already taken measures to improve transit on the street, but bigger changes are in store.

"A more significant change is needed to improve transit service on King Street," the website reads. "The pilot project(s) will test a range of options to determine what might further improve transit reliability, capacity, and efficiency."

The focus here is squarely on improving transit and cycling options on the street. The city's Chief Planner Jennifer Keesmaat told the CBC that the options under consideration "essentially get cars out of the way."

This is the earliest stage of the process. The next update will come at a public meeting on February 13, when the city will reveal the pilot options.

Lead photo by

Howard Yang


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