People are embarrassed by the designs of Toronto's curbside patios compared to other cities
Curbside patios are back in Toronto's streets this summer, and some people aren't happy to see them again.
People have been critical of the design of CafeTO curb lane patios, leading many to compare them to the designs of street patios in other places.
Councillor Josh Matlow tweeted on June 5 "asking for more inspiring design, and far less ugly concrete and orange cones."
We love CafeTO. But I’m asking for more inspiring design, and far less ugly concrete and orange cones. Let’s design a beautiful city. pic.twitter.com/80DifH9ThA— Josh Matlow (@JoshMatlow) June 6, 2022
From the landslide of replies on Twitter, other people seem to agree, and are pointing out how this doesn't seem like an impossible feat since other cities have managed to make their patios aesthetically pleasing.
Has anyone on city council ever seen....other cities? This is not hard. At least you're calling it out.— Paul Foots (@paulfoots) June 6, 2022
"New York has done a great job with similar programs," Bar Volo pointed out, posting a photo of their own jersey blocks faced with wood to make them look nicer.
Hey Josh, we faced our jersey blocks with wood. There needs to be more consultation with locally owned restaurants about CafeTO. New York has done a great job with similar programs. pic.twitter.com/Bv9CRxEJ0J— Volo (@barvolo) June 6, 2022
Another person chimed in that New York City does seem to largely have dealt with this issue, posting several photos of patios there.
They figured it out in NYC just fine. pic.twitter.com/ZxaCASwIzP— Alex Mather (@AlexDRMather) June 6, 2022
Another person posted a photo of a patio in Milan that looks lovely.
100% Here's a shot of a cafe in Milan - middle of winter. Be inspired TO! pic.twitter.com/2UmNGpM0o7— Holly Reid (she/her) (@Notweetin) June 6, 2022
Some people are even saying you don't need to stray too far from Toronto to find nicer looking street patios.
I drove through Guelph recently and their sidewalk patios are larger, go into the street, and are surrounded in wood. It looks really good. Not like Toronto.— Eva Cherney 🐸 (@spoonifur) June 6, 2022
One person gave an example of patios in Montreal looking great.
If Montreal can do it there is zero excuse for Toronto pic.twitter.com/FNCJYq6vOi— Jason Moore (@Jayo1987) June 6, 2022
They even seem to be present in places in Guelph, Hamilton and Burlington.
I don't know if it's prettier, but Burlington does it better: real barriers from traffic, not pylons; separate the customers further from the street by putting the walkway between them and the traffic. Toronto can't do anything right. pic.twitter.com/WacLtvn1qi— Read Only (@ReadOnl05607981) June 6, 2022
While the city streets choked with jersey blocks and skinny orange pylons may be ugly, people are pointing out that the concrete and bright markers are necessary to keep Toronto's drivers from mowing patio-goers down.
We need concrete because otherwise toronto drivers would be plowing down diners in their seats… similarly to how we need more concrete barrier for cycling lanes— Brad Merrill (@imbradmerrill) June 6, 2022
However, cyclists say they're having the opposite effect for them, the blocks and pylons and other elements often obstructing bike lanes and making them dangerous.
Plus they need to place concrete barriers safely... dundas, south side, east of Ossington... pic.twitter.com/rrFWRpm6iH— Danny Heap (@DannyHeap4) June 6, 2022
One person actually proudly spoke up saying they felt the Junction neighbourhood was doing a better job than others at constructing nice-looking CafeTO patios.
There are some good examples of how to do better on Dundas in the Junction. Come check them out.— Jim Gough (@JimGoughTrans) June 6, 2022
Someone else argued that the necessary blocks could at least be beautified, perhaps with local artwork.
We could at least paint the barriers. Work for artists and art for us all!— alex wesson (@alexwesson) June 6, 2022
Another person put their foot down and argued that it's simply time for CafeTO to come to an end.
How about we stop doing this instead.— alex (@xeal_) June 6, 2022
Nothing is less appealing to me to want to eat out right beside a car buzzing by, honking and trusting that driver to not hit the sidewall.
If Covid is going to be treated as over with no restrictions time to revert to start.
That said, it's probably not gonna stop your favourite CafeTO patio from being so booked up you can't even sit on it any time soon.
Yet others seem to find it appealing. I rode the length of the Danforth yesterday on my bike around 8pm - and every CafeTO patio (where the business was open) was bustling.— Paul Morrison (@ekkridon) June 6, 2022
So if a pretty curbside patio is what you're looking for, you might want to head out of town.
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