bike lanes, Public infrastructure, Public safety, Safe streets, Toronto, Vision zero, Ward 4

Parkside Drive needs more (raised) crosswalks with traffic signals

Without traffic it only takes 4 minutes to drive along Parkside, from Bloor to Lakeshore.

A prediction from residents that one day there would be a fatal car collision on Parkside Drive became a tragic reality a few days ago. Joanna Lavoie’s excellent article documents many of the facts regarding this crash, and recommendations to make Parkside safer. So, rather than repeating this information kindly refer to this very informative article:

https://www.toronto.com/news-story/10496599-parkside-drive-residents-predicted-a-fatal-crash-on-their-speed-prone-street-now-two-people-are-dead/

It’s been said on social media that some drivers treat Parkside as an on-ramp to Lakeshore Blvd as if Lakeshore was a speedway. As someone who drives along Parkside once a week to visit my parents in Scarborough I must sadly agree. Furthermore, many pedestrians and cyclists have stated how unsafe it is to cross Parkside to get to High Park.

Consequently, a recommendation that should be strongly considered is the implementation of more crosswalks (preferably raised) with traffic signals along Parkside. Since more red lights mean less jaywalking, and less chance for vehicles to accelerate beyond the speed limit.

Parkside stretches almost 2 kilometers and only has four pedestrian crosswalks with traffic signals at Indian Valley Cres, Howard Park Ave, High Park Blvd, and Spring Rd. Without traffic, it takes only 4 minutes to drive along Parkside from Bloor to Lakeshore. No wonder many drivers treat it as a main artery. It’s time we put safety first and demand more crosswalks with traffic signals along Parkside, and other safety measures. Two lives were lost, and we have a moral obligation to try our best to prevent further injuries and deaths.

Of course, there are also many other good suggestions to improve safety in Lavoie’s article. More crosswalks with traffic signals are one idea. Finally, please consider contacting Councillor Gord Perks about this very critical local issue that has affected our community: https://gordperks.ca/contact-us/

Update: you may have heard the argument that Parkside is already classified by the City of T.O. as a major artery, as a pretext to justify the status quo. This argument fails to note that classifications can change, and having Parkside which is next to High Park (one of the largest public parks in the city) classified as a major artery was an incredibly bad decision in the first place. So, perhaps, it is time to reclassify Parkside as a minor artery. Finally, many in social media have recommended raised crosswalks which protect pedestrians by acting as speed bumps. This is an excellent idea.

4 thoughts on “Parkside Drive needs more (raised) crosswalks with traffic signals”

  1. I fear crosswalks will have no effect – in fact they can create a false sense of security if you expect drivers to pay attention to them. (The closest I have ever come to being hit by a car is 1) in a crosswalk and 2) crossing on a green light when a driver went late after his advanced green ended. I had the right of way both times – both times I had to run/jump out of the way.)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good point, I will add that maybe they have to be raised crosswalks which act as speedbumps and are more effective during snow fall and work better for anyone using a stroller or wheelchair. Best regards,

      Like

      1. Yes, raised crosswalks are much much better than those at street level.

        I would also love to see traffic-calming bump-outs (similar to those that exist on Logan at Langley (I think?)

        Liked by 1 person

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