These are the streets Toronto is closing to cars in order to make space for pedestrians

The city is closing off a whole host of side streets and major roads to car traffic in order to give pedestrians and cyclists the ability to spread out, and they just announced which streets in particular will soon be dominated by foot traffic instead of vehicles.

As a part of Toronto's new ActiveTO program, which was first announced last week, the city will be installing 57 kilometres of "quiet streets" across Toronto starting today.

These are neighbourhood streets where car circulation will be limited to local access, and signage and temporary barricades will be put in place at intersections to encourage slow and local driving only.

The first three locations of "quiet streets" are being installed today and they include Kensington Market (the area that borders Nassau Avenue, Spadina Avenue, Augusta Avenue and Dundas Street West), Shaughnessy Boulevard between Van Horne Avenue and Havenbrook Boulevard, and Havenbrook Boulevard between Shaughnessy Boulevard and Manorpark Court. 

Here's the full list of confirmed "quiet street" locations as of May 14: 

  • Kensington Market (area that borders Nassau Ave., Spadina Ave, Augusta Ave. and Dundas St. W.)
  • Shaughnessy Blvd. between Van Horne Ave. and Havenbrook Blvd.
  • Havenbrook Blvd. between Shaughnessy and Manorpark Ct.
  • Lakeshore Dr./Lake Promenade (First Ave. to Forty Second St.)
  • High Park  Ave. (Bloor St. W. to Annette St.)
  • Brock/Emerson/Cowan Ave. (Dupont St. to King St. W.)
  • Winona Dr. (Eglinton Ave. to Davenport Rd.)
  • The Esplanade (boundaries TBC)
  • Crawford St./Montrose Ave. (Bloor St. W. to Queen St. W.)
  • Howard and Earl Streets (Sherbourne St. to Parliament St.)
  • Sackville/Sumach Streets (Shuter St. to Gerrard St. E.)
  • Monarch Park Ave. (Felstead Ave. to Sammon Ave.)
  • Fulton/Sammon Avenues (Broadview Ave. to Monarch Park Ave.)
  • Woodfield Rd. (Knox Ave. to Walpole Ave.)
  • Lee Ave. (Kingston Rd. to Alfresco Lawn)
  • Secord Ave./Eastdale Ave./Lumsden Ave./Main St./Hamstead Ave./West Lake Ave. (Dawes Rd. to Oak Park Ave.)
  • Military Trail/Highcastle Rd. (Sealstone Terrace to Bonspiel Dr.)
  • Kew Beach Ave. (Waverly Rd to Lake Shore Blvd. E.)
  • Westview Blvd. (St Clair Ave. E. to Holland Ave.)
  • Dundalk Dr. (Ellesmere Rd. to Antrim Cr.)
  • Trudelle St./Cedar Brae Blvd. (Danforth Rd. to Bellamy Rd.)

In addition to creating "quiet streets," the city will also be closing some sections of major roads adjacent to parks and trails to all car traffic on holidays and weekends as per a recommendation from Transportation Services staff and Toronto Public Health. 

According to a news release from the city, this will happen on a trial basis and staff will be monitoring nearby routes with real-time data and adjust as necessary. 

The first sections along major roads are set to be closed for the Victoria Day long weekend from Saturday, May 16 at 6 a.m. until Monday, May 18 at 11 p.m.

These sections include all eastbound lanes on Lake Shore Boulevard West between Windermere Avenue to Stadium Road, Bayview Avenue from Mill Street to Rosedale Valley Road, and River Street from Gerrard Street East to Bayview Avenue. 

In the future, regular weekend closures will begin at 6 a.m. on Saturdays until 11 p.m. on Sundays and locations will be announced as they are finalized.

The city is also working on expanding the cycling network and ActiveTO-related cycling details will be provided in the coming weeks.

"Making additional space, as direction continues to evolve from 'stay home' to 'practise physical distancing when outside for essentials or exercise,' is a consistent and timely approach that will help keep Toronto residents healthier," reads the city's news release.

The city is also continuing its CurbTO program, with 30 pedestrian zones and 17 temporary parking pickup zones installed around Toronto to date and additional zones to be installed this week.

"Today, we are moving ahead with creating more than 50 kilometres of Quiet Streets across the city and starting this weekend we will be closing some major roads near popular recreation trails and areas," said Tory in a statement.

"All of this represents both a quick start and a common sense approach to respond to areas where there is bike and pedestrian congestion right now."

Lead photo by

Cycle Toronto

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