John Tory is hearing the message about pedestrian deaths in Torono but still hasn’t wrapped his head around the cause. Here’s the Public Service Announcement. It’s the usual slow down and keep your eyes on the road, same message runs over and over and yields no results.
This is why Vision Zero came up with a new approach. What evidence shows which policy is working towards the goal of Zero pedestrian deaths from vehicles.
For example – drive south on Bayview from Pottery rd and the traffic will move at 70-80 km/hr irregardless of the posted speed limit. Same with Prince Edward Viaduct, there it’s 50km/hr speed limit with regular enforcement. The reason is both rods are 4 or 5 lanes, each lane is nice and wide and with straight roads the sight lines are long. Feels like a highway so drive near highway speed. The point is the road is designed to enable that speed.
Here is an alternate version of the PSA that John Tory should be promoting:
Toronto road design has lead to drivers to think they own the road. We can’t erase 100 years of road building overnight but it’s time to rethink Toronto’s roads, sidewalks and bike lanes.
Amsterdam came to this conclusion decades ago after an intolerable number of pedestrian deaths. At that time Amsterdam looked no different than Toronto does today; lots of traffic, parking problems and citizens complaining about congestion. Under strong pressure from citizens, the city moved away from auto centric road planning. It worked and now Amsterdam is the bike friendly Tourist magnet it is.
That’s why as your Mayor we will embark on a top to bottom review of road design policy following the Vision Zero concept. That is we aim to reduce the number of road deaths to Zero. That is a lofty goal. However working with other cities such as New York, Amsterdam, London and Paris we will be adopting a different way to get Toronto moving.