Toronto: To Adjust Timing of Traffic Lights at 350 Intersections to Fight Gridlock

Update:

Vehicle traffic gridlock is a huge problem in Toronto. Any motorist who has driven in the city understands the excessive delays and frustration navigating the streets through constant gridlock. There are two seasons in Toronto, winter and construction. photo by fightyourtickets.ca
Vehicle traffic gridlock is a huge problem in Toronto. Any motorist who has driven in the city understands the excessive delays and frustration navigating the streets through constant gridlock. There are two seasons in Toronto, winter and construction. photo by fightyourtickets.ca

see source

In an effort to get traffic moving, Mayor John Tory says Toronto will re-time more than 350 traffic signals on 17 key routes throughout the city.

Tory made the latest gridlock-fighting announcement Thursday morning, adding that the expansion of the existing program will see 1,500 traffic signals re-timed by the end of 2017. The mayor says once that’s done it will mean that 60 per cent of the city’s traffic signals will have been re-timed.

The Yonge St and Dundas Street intersection. This is one of the most vehicle/pedestrian travelled intersections in Canada. photo by fightyourtickets
The Yonge St and Dundas Street intersection. This is one of the busiest intersections in Canada. photo by fightyourtickets.

The city says that signal re-timing reduced travel times on 11 of Toronto’s busiest roads last year.

“We’re taking action to keep Toronto moving by targeting some of our most congested routes in the city,” Tory said, adding that it is a low-cost, high-impact initiative.

Signal re-timing is part of Tory’s six-point congestion management plan.

 

Ontario: HOV lanes will be introduced on the QEW in Sept.

Update:

HOV lane.
HOV lane. HOV lanes on the eastbound Queen Elizabeth Way. photo by fightyourtickets.ca

see source

1000 HOV lane Permits will be availabe to single drivers between Trafalgar Road and Guelph Line – for a fee of $180.00

Ontario is launching Canada’s first High-Occupancy Toll (HOT) lanes as part of a pilot project on the QEW–between Trafalgar Road in Oakville and Guelph Line in Burlington–to help manage congestion and add another option for travellers.

This new pilot project will start on September 15, 2016.  Existing High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes on the QEW will be designated as HOT lanes. Carpools of two or more occupants will still be able to use the QEW HOT lanes for free, while single occupant drivers will now have the option to purchase a HOT permit to use them.

HOT permit applications from members of the public will be accepted online from August 1 to August 21 through ServiceOntario. A limited number of applicants will be selected to purchase permits through a draw.  The permit will cost  $180 for a three-month term.

As part of the pilot, Ontario is issuing a Request for Information seeking innovative technologies that can be used to support tolling, compliance and performance monitoring of HOT lanes for the purposes of testing during the pilot. Possible technologies include telematics, radio frequency identification, video-analytics, GPS, and infrared cameras. The pilot will be used to inform long-term planning for future HOT lane implementation and will also support Ontario’s innovation sector by providing an opportunity to test emerging traffic management and tolling technologies.

Ontario is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in the province’s history — about $160 billion over 12 years, which is supporting 110,000 jobs every year across the province, with projects such as roads, bridges, transit systems, schools and hospitals. In 2015, the province announced support for more than 325 projects that will keep people and goods moving, connect communities and improve quality of life.

Creating new travel options and supporting innovation is part of the government’s economic plan to build Ontario up and deliver on its number-one priority to grow the economy and create jobs. The four-part plan includes investing in talent and skills, including helping more people get and create the jobs of the future by expanding access to high-quality college and university education. The plan is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in Ontario’s history and investing in a low-carbon economy driven by innovative, high-growth, export-oriented businesses. The plan is also helping working Ontarians achieve a more secure retirement.

Gardiner Expressway. photo by fightyourtickets.ca
Gardiner Expressway. Congestion in the norm on the highways in and around the GTA. photo by fightyourtickets.ca

Quick Facts

  • Approximately 1,000 HOT permits will be made available each term of three months.
  • For the first term only, permits will be valid from September 15 to December 31, 2016, giving permit holders an additional two weeks of HOT lane use as an early incentive bonus.
  • A 15.5 km stretch of dedicated HOT lanes with electronic tolling in both directions on Highway 427 will open in 2021, from south of Highway 409 to north of Rutherford Road.
  • HOT lanes will complement other initiatives, such as the GO Regional Express Rail that will increase GO Train trips by 50 per cent over the next five years with more stops serving more communities.

Background Information

Additional Resources

Drivers sick of sitting in traffic on the QEW will have access to the highway's HOV lanes, for a fee, starting in September.
Drivers sick of sitting in traffic on the QEW will have access to the highway’s HOV lanes, for a fee, starting in September. (Ontario Ministry of Transportation)

 

Paralyzed man testifies in P.E.I. bike crash trial

Update: see previous post – June 14, 2016 Driver on trial for P.E.I. crash involving cyclist

Accused Jordan Arsenault-Loeman and cyclist Alan Stanley attended provincial court in Charlottetown Tuesday.
Accused Jordan Arsenault-Loeman and cyclist Alan Stanley attended provincial court in Charlottetown Tuesday. (CBC)

see source

Cyclist Alan Stanley said it was a ‘beautiful day’ before accident happened

Alan Stanley was seated in his wheelchair in the witness stand Wednesday as he testified in Charlottetown Provincial Court about the crash involving his bicycle and a car last August.

“It was a beautiful summer day,” he said as testimony began.  “We were near the end of the ride when it happened. We’d gone about 90 kilometres.”

Stanley was headed south on Brackley Point Road in Charlottetown with a group of about 20 or 30 cyclists on Aug. 1, 2015, when his bike collided with an on-coming car that was making a left turn.

Bicycle accident
The scene Aug. 1, 2015, on Brackley Point Road where cyclist Alan Stanley collided with a vehicle. (Charlottetown Police)

Jordan Arsenault-Loeman, 26, of Saint John, N.B., has pleaded not guilty to making an unsafe turn, under the Highway Traffic Act.

Often led the pack

Wednesday morning, a fellow cyclist testified Stanley was one of the fastest riders in their group, and often led the pack.

She also testified Stanley “broke the rules of the road” once in a while, such as exceeding the speed limit or going through stop signs.

Bicycle
Alan Stanley’s bicycle, foreground, after the crash on Aug. 1, 2015, that left him paralyzed. (Charlottetown Police)

“But only when there were no cars in sight and it was safe,” she testified.

The court also examined speed data downloaded from a GPS one of the cyclists had on his bike.

40 km per hour

That data shows the cyclists were coasting downhill at about 40 kilometres per hour just before the crash took place.

The speed limit was 50.

Drivers have testified traffic was heavy and moving slowly.

The cyclists were using the south-bound bike lane on Brackley Point Road.

Stanley has filed a civil suit against the driver.

The driver has filed a statement of defence claiming he is not at fault.

Driver on trial for P.E.I. crash involving cyclist

Update:

Accused Jordan Arsenault-Loeman, of N.B., and former cyclist Alan Stanley attended provincial court in Charlottetown Tuesday.
Accused Jordan Arsenault-Loeman, of N.B., and former cyclist Alan Stanley attended provincial court in Charlottetown Tuesday. (CBC)

see source

Paralyzed cyclist to testify at trial

A cyclist who was paralyzed after his bike and a car collided last year will testify at a two-day trial that started today in P.E.I. provincial court in Charlottetown.

Alan Stanley, 60, has been paralyzed since the crash on August 1, 2015 on Brackley Point Road in Charlottetown.

Stanley is among seven prosecution witnesses slated to testify at the trial of the car driver involved in the crash.

The driver, Jordan Arsenault-Loeman, of Saint John, N.B., has pleaded not guilty to making an unsafe turn, an infraction under the Highway Traffic Act.

The defence contends Arsenault-Loeman did no wrong — traffic was heavy and cars were moving slowly.

Stanley was with a group of 20 or 30 cyclists coming down a hill in the bike lane on Brackley Point Road, by the Sherwood Business Centre.

Arsenault-Loeman’s lawyer argues the bicycles were simply going too fast so his client can’t be at fault.

Witnesses testify

Two witnesses to the crash testified Tuesday morning, describing a scene of busy traffic that sunny Saturday afternoon.

Both testified the driver was in the northbound lane, and was making a left turn when the crash took place.

They testified the car was moving slowly.

“Nothing out of the ordinary,” one of them testified.

The cyclist was heading south in the bike lane on Brackley Point Road.

He was with several riders who were travelling next to the curb spread out at varying intervals, as one witness described it.

‘Knew it wasn’t good’

Under cross examination, the witnesses testified the bicycles were moving fast.

“I thought it must be a race,” one witness testified, “judging by their speed and how many there was.”

The other witness testified the bicycles were moving faster than the cars on the road.

“As the car made the left, I heard a crash,” one witness testified. “Then I saw the cyclist lying on his back. I knew it wasn’t good.”

The trial is scheduled to run two days.

Ontario: Highway 401 median saves road workers from flying truck wheel, OPP says

Update:

The OPP says two tires snapped off a tractor trailer on Highway 401 on Friday.
The OPP says two tires snapped off a tractor trailer on Highway 401 on Friday. (Screen Grab/OPP/Twitter)

see source

‘The tire would have probably taken out one of our road workers today’

A concrete median on Highway 401 in southern Ontario has been credited with saving a roadside worker from injury or possible death after a wheel flew through the air after becoming dislodged from a truck.

Two wheels flew off a westbound tractor-trailer on Friday afternoon near Veterans Memorial Parkway in London, Ont.

One tire bounced off into a field. But the other tire landed near the centre median “narrowly missing another worker on the highway,” said OPP Sgt. Dave Rektor in a post on Twitter.

“The tire would have probably taken out one of our road workers today. Fortunately the wall stopped the tire,” he said, broadcasting live on Twitter via the Periscope app.

You can view Sgt. Rektor’s video post below or by going here.

Police and Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation are investigating.

“This is just so dangerous. They can kill. If that hits a car at highway speeds, somebody’s going to die” Rektor said while inspecting the truck and looking over the tire investigators picked up.

“It’s becoming an all-too-familiar scene on our highways.”

In January, a 69-year-old Burlington, Ont., man died in hospital, hours after his vehicle was crushed by a wheel that flew off of a transport truck on Highway 400 near King Road.

In September 2015, a Brampton, Ont., woman died after she was hit by a flying wheel that dislodged from a dump truck in nearby Mississauga.