There are few things more irksome to a cyclist than a needlessly blocked bike lane. So while some people are making their own, others have created a service to help defend the far-too-few bike lanes we have already.
This is precisely the idea behind MyBikeLane Toronto. A North American network of blogs launched in 2006, MyBikeLane is dedicated to outing the road hogs and other boobs blocking the way. All cyclists who have experienced lane blocking are invited to post photographic evidence and license plate numbers, track re-offenders, and use Google geotags to record the scene of the crime.
With this year’s number of smog alert days on pace to set a new record, the city lacking response to bike lane disrepair, cyclist abuse becoming all too common, and one million cyclists clamouring for new lanes, “biking in Toronto” is quickly becoming both a punch line to any number of jokes and a tragedy of ever-growing proportions.
Yet as troublesome as the subject of bike lanes can be, it appears, at least in part, that the problem lies in the approach. While many Toronto citizens have whole-heartedly endorsed bike lanes, even a cursory review of MyBikeLane Toronto quickly reveals that the worst offenders of lane blocking are taxis, couriers, delivery trucks, ice cream vendors and postal vans. Given this, perhaps the next consultation the City of Toronto should arrange is with local businesses (and the feds)? In this vein, feedback from last week’s Toronto Cycling Consultation Session will be available August 17. In the meantime, go show MyBikeLane some love—and add your voice to the chorus demanding that T.O.’s bike lanes be protected and respected.
Thanks to Arieh Singer who emailed email@example.com with this story. Photo courtesy of Brass at MyBikeLane Toronto.