Cycling is Growing in the City’s West End Neighbourhoods
The City of Toronto is proposing to install a bikeway on Argyle Street from Ossington Avenue to Shaw Street. A combination of “contra-flow” bike lanes, shared travel lanes, and a change to the direction of motor vehicle traffic will provide a legal eastbound and westbound bike route on Argyle Street and connect to existing popular bike routes on Shaw Street and Argyle Street west of Ossington Avenue. Changes to the direction of Halton Street, Bruce Street, and Rebecca Street are also proposed to maintain motor vehicles into and out of the neighbourhood.
This work is part of the City’s Council-approved Ten-Year Cycling Network Plan to connect, grow and renew infrastructure for cycling routes across the City.
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A Narrow Road Width
Most of Argyle Street has a road width (curb to curb) of 7.2 metres, which allows for one travel lane (shared by motor vehicles and bicycles), one contra-flow bike lane, and on-street parking on one side of the road. This design currently exists west of Ossington.
However, the road width between Ossington and Givins is 6.0 metres. The City’s proposal to permit two-way cycling will not remove any on-street parking. Eastbound motor vehicle traffic would be prohibited from entering the block from Ossington and nearly all motor vehicle traffic on this block would be westbound.
Objectives for the Argyle Bikeway Proposal
Provide legal two-way cycling on Argyle Street
Maintain motor vehicle access in and out of neighbourhood
Minimize impacts to on-street parking
Reduce motor vehicle traffic infiltration to make the street more comfortable for cycling and walking
The bikeway proposal for Argyle Street from Ossington Avenue to Shaw Street
The proposed bikeway on Argyle Street includes:
Ossington Avenue to Givins Street: an eastbound contra-flow bike lane for cyclists only for 15 metres, which becomes a shared travel lane for cyclists and motor vehicles; a westbound shared travel lane for cyclists and motor vehicles.
Givins Street to Shaw Street: a westbound contra-flow lane for cyclists only; an eastbound shared travel lane for both cyclists and motor vehicles
Changes to local traffic on nearby streets
The following changes to traffic flows are required to provide motor vehicles access in and out of the area.
Argyle Street Reversal
The eastbound 15-metre contraflow bike lane at Ossington Avenue only allows cyclist access and prevents eastbound motor vehicle traffic from entering Argyle Street. This will eliminate eastbound traffic infiltration.
Motor vehicle traffic will generally travel westbound from Givins Street to Ossington Avenue. Traffic volume on this block is expected to decrease.
How motor vehicles will access Argyle Street:
Motor vehicles will enter Argyle Street via Halton from either Ossington Avenue or Shaw Street to Givins Street
Motor vehicles will exit Argyle Street to either Shaw Street or Ossington Avenue
Three new street reversals
Halton Street will change to eastbound from Ossington Avenue to Givins Street
Bruce Street will change to eastbound to provide direct access from Ossington Avenue to Argyle Place
Rebecca Street will change to westbound to accommodate reversal of Bruce Street
Streets without traffic changes:
Halton Street (Givins Street to Shaw Street) will remain westbound
Argyle Street (Givins Street to Shaw Street) will remain eastbound for motor vehicles
Givins Street will remain southbound
Turning restriction for motor vehicles
No right turns from Argyle Place onto Argyle Street eastbound so that eastbound traffic is minimized
Note: Properties with driveways between Ossington Avenue and Givins Street may turn in both directions.
Street Parking on Argyle Street
The proposed changes do not remove any existing on-street parking spaces on Argyle Street. Parking will be located on the driver’s right side:
Between Givins Street and Shaw Street, street parking will be shifted to the south side
Between Ossington Avenue and Givins Street, street parking will remain on the north side
A shared travel lane can be marked with “sharrows” (bicycle markings with chevrons) to identify where cyclists should ride in motor vehicle traffic and remind drivers to share the road.
A contra-flow bicycle lane can be installed on a one-way street, which then becomes two-way for bicycles, while remaining one way for motor vehicles.