Cyclists rally, calling for safer streets in Scarborough

Cyclists rallied in the east end to call on the city to get moving on the Danforth-Kingston Complete Street Extension project. Michelle Mackey explains how the project aims to make streets safer and cyclists’ concerns about the timeline.

Around 100 cyclists took part in a bike ride Sunday from East Lynn Park along Danforth Avenue to Victoria Park to raise awareness for what they say is a significant safety contrast between Toronto streets and Scarborough streets.

“Today we are riding as a big community to raise awareness about the somewhat stalled Danforth complete street,” Marvin Macaraig with Access Alliance tells CityNews. “This was approved by council three years ago and we haven’t seen any movement on this progress yet.”

The Danforth Kingston Complete Street Extension bike lane plan aims to make travel on Danforth Avenue from Victoria Park Avenue to Kingston Road and Kingston Road to Scarborough Golf Club Road safer by changing the layout of the existing road space to accommodate vehicular traffic, transit, parking, bikeways and other safety improvement features.

Danforth-Kingston Complete Street Extension plan

“We live at Danforth and Birchmount, about 2 km from where these cycle lanes end, and it just feels really unfair to be in a neighbourhood where our main street is a drag race,” said Ian McVey of the community group Danforth-Kingston 4 All.

The bike lane plan was first approved by city council in 2021 with a completion date set for 2024. However, a staff report set to go before the city’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee on Tuesday shows that the completion date is now projected to be 2027 or later.

Organizers with Danforth-Kingston 4 All hope Sunday’s rally will help push the city to change that timeline.

“The city committed to completing the Danforth Kingston extension by 2024. So it was supposed to start in 2023 and finish up this year, still nothing is in the ground and we just found out they’re thinking 2025 to 2027,” said group member Kevin Rupasinghe.

In a statement to CityNews, the city says in part it “is committed to delivering the Danforth-Kingston Complete Street Extension to make travel on Danforth Avenue and Kingston Road safer, more inviting and attractive for everyone.”

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