In Toronto, Pedestrians Have a Voice


In London, my proposal for a Pedestrian Subcommittee was underhandedly dismissed without any public scrutiny. Which is why pedestrian issues only come forward periodically, presented one by one by affected individuals, where the issues and the individuals can be easily dispensed with by local politicians.

In Toronto, on the other hand, pedestrians are treated with some respect. Today’s news includes an article (‘Committee wants better snow removal on sidewalks‘; Toronto Star; 2008/02/02) about some of the recommendations just made by their Pedestrian Committee:

  • Plow sidewalks on all arterial roads.
  • staff should prepare a report on the cost and feasibility of plowing all residential sidewalks.
  • Provide improved service for older and disabled residents who can’t clear their own walks.
  • speed installation of chirping traffic signals to help blind and visually impaired pedestrians cross busy intersections.
  • an extra $1.35 million this year for pedestrian traffic signals that help people who don’t see well get across the street.
  • In London, where local politicians pretend to support TDM and a transportation hierarchy, snow clearing of pedestrian roads (sidewalks, walkways) is often just an afterthought. If there was any truth behind the Official Plan and the Transportation Master Plan, wouldn’t pedestrian streets get cleared first, before any consideration was given to the automobile?

    But whoever said that politicians have to be honest?

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