The Toronto Waterfront Revitalization Corporation(TWRC) is hosting an event this summer to demonstrate how the City can be reconnected to the central waterfront giving Toronto residents access to the water and cyclists a continuous Martin Goodman Trail. The Quay to the City is the name of this event and cyclists are invited to take part in the opening celebrations.
One of the goals of the plans to revitalize the waterfront was that the Martin Goodman Trail be continuous. While there has been work to improve and upgrade the trail in the eastern beaches last year and in Marilyn Bell park this year the one big gap in the trail has been in the section between Spadina and Yonge Street on Queen's Quay. There seemed to be no solution because of the wall of Harbourfront condos blocked any continuous access across the central waterfront. That all changed when the winner of the Winner of the TWRC's Central Waterfront Design competition was announced. The team of West8, Du Toit Allsopp Hillier proposed closing the two lanes of traffic south of the streetcar tracks and running the Martin Goodman Trail and a pedestrian promenade in its place. You can see the plan at THE MULTIPLE WATERFRONT.
| The Martin Goodman trail, a lawn and a pedestrian promenade will replace traffic for 10 days in August this year and permanently in the years ahead. |
This project will be built in the future but cyclists will get a chance to try this design out between August 11th to 20th, 2006. To give us a temporary extension to the Martin Goodman Trail, one km of the eastbound lanes on the south side of Queens Quay from Spadina Ave. to York St. will be closed and re-landscaped. In addition, from York St. to Richardson street one of the eastbound lanes will also be closed to provide a two way Martin Goodman trail link right to where the existing trail starts up again in the boulevard south of Queens Quay.
The TWRC is planning an official opening of this project on Saturday August 12th and is inviting cyclists to take part. They want a large group of cyclists to ride through a ribbon to officially open this new section of the trail. If you want to take part meet at York and Queens Quay at the Bike Arch (a large sculpture made of 600 bikes resembling the Arc de Triomphe) before 9:00 am. To RSVP or to get more information contact Tanya Hardy at 416214-1344 ext 239 or thardy(a)towaterfront.ca(replace (a) with @ in your email program).
If you can't participate in this event there is much more going on during the street festival that will occur during the 10 days that the street is opened to people and closed to cars. You can download a map and event guide at the following link: Quay to the City Event Guide(PDF).
This is a great example of what can be done to create truly innovative cycling infrastructure. TRWC is leading the way in this regard with the Marilyn bell park project and now Queens Quay. Hopefully this bold work continues and it starts to be replicated across the city. Martin Koob