Protective bike lane won’t be finished in time for students’ return to school

A cycling advocate is raising safety concerns after learning an extension to the Colborne Street Cycle Track won’t be completed in time for the first day of school next week.

“Without physical barriers between motorists and cyclists, there is an element of safety that isn’t there,” explains Chair of the Cycling Advisory Committee Jamieson Roberts.

Construction workers continue to install segments of pre-cast cement curb to separate cyclists from motorists along Colborne Street, but city hall admits it won’t be finished in time for the return of students who cycle to school.

“Crews are still completing installation of the pre-cast curbs and green bollards south of Regina Street and they are anticipating that being completed by the end of next week,” explains Jennie Dann, Director of Construction and Infrastructure Services.

Initially, city hall intended to complete the cycle track extension from Dufferin Avenue to Oxford Street in 2020, but construction delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic pushed the second phase of the work to this summer.

Jamieson says the extension will eventually serve students attending about half a dozen nearby schools.

“School is next week and there’s no better time to get people into the habit of biking to school than the start of the year,” he adds.

Dann asks that cyclists wait another week and a half while work is completed.

“In the interest of safety we are really asking for everyone’s patience to complete some finishing touches.”