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Sharrows Land on Bloor

Sharrows on Bloor Street at Yonge Street

Sharrows on Bloor Street East at Church Street
Sharrows on Bloor at Yonge (top) and Church (bottom). Photos by David Topping/Torontoist.

Though they only last for three hundred metres so far, this is no small victory for cyclists. Bloor Street East, between just west of Yonge and just east of Church, has just gained freshly painted sharrows on both sides of the street. From what we saw today on the recently renovated roadway, they seem to be doing their jobs already: motorists are giving cyclists a bit more space than usual, and cyclists have moved a bit more into the road rather than towards the curb. That the painted-on sharrows literally impress cyclists’ place on the road will, as they spread around the city and along Bloor, hopefully go a long way towards changing everyone’s attitudes towards who our streets belong to—the correct answer being everyone.
Hat tip to @chriskayTO for the discovery.


  • http://undefined lisa

    So happy about this, and discovering the word “sharrow.”

  • http://undefined james a

    My own .2c is that these are purely bad news, since sharrows don’t do anything, and their appearance probably signals that dedicated lanes are out. Heck, signalling that bikes are allowed to share the lanes on Bloor almost seems like a signal that they aren’t allowed to share elsewhere.
    Enforcing no-stopping zones on Bloor would be a much more useful gesture towards improving everybody’s safety.

  • http://undefined Ben

    I like how the sharrows are implemented on Wellesley: augmenting the existing bike lane.
    Apparently there will be sharrows installed on the Prince Edward Viaduct to ease the merge across the streams of DVP-bound mofos.

  • http://undefined TokyoTuds

    Sharrows are in question about their effectiveness, but I too am happy about any type of new bike infrastructure: it raises awareness and increases bike use. If bike volume increases on Bloor exponentially, there is nothing to stop us from putting in dedicated bike lanes in the future.

  • http://undefined davedave

    It’s a step in the right direction.
    But so would cyclists riding responsibly as opposed to riding like lawless jackasses.

  • qviri

    To say nothing about motorists driving responsibly amirite?

  • http://undefined McKingford

    I feel more comfortable riding with sharrows than without. But the question becomes, if you aren’t going to put in dedicated bike lanes (everywhere) then why can’t you install sharrows in all those places without dedicated bike lanes?
    If you have sharrows in some places but not others, you signal to car drivers that cyclists don’t have the same rights on those roads as they do on sharrowed roads.

  • http://undefined njcwelke

    The recently added sharrows at Annette and Dundas have reduced the number of times i’ve seen drivers in the right lane (now a turn-right-only lane) try to merge left across the bike lane. They also keep cyclists out of the right lane and give them a “designated” place to stop at the light before continuing to Dupont. They seem to reinforce the meaning of the painted bike lane lines. And that’s a Good Thing.

  • http://undefined thegreenwoodfive

    davedave…dave. Clearly we’ve got some bad design on our hands. I have a whole load of examples I could provide you of questionable moves by both drivers and cyclists, so where does that leave us? I’d rather not be stuck in neutral.