It’s the little things that (don’t) count

Way back in 2009, in the toddler days of this blog, I noted the curious street closure on Lanark Avenue a block north of Scott Street, where…  Lanark Avenue itself performs a tight turn that cuts it off from what appears at first glance to be its logical route, which is named Latchford. This turn and island separating the Lanark from Latchford was rebuilt in 2008-9.
I don’t think it was well thought out. Cyclists on Lanark have no curb break to take the few meters of pavement linking the two streets for pedestrians. This encourages cyclists to mount the concrete sidewalk some distance before the join, at a driveway curb dip. They then have to make a 90 degree turn onto the connecting sidewalk (engineer mentality at work ….).
Cyclists coming south have it worse, since the alignments are even more awkward.
You can read the whole old news here:
So with some interest, I noticed last year that park reconstruction was planned for the adjacent tot lot, graced with the name of a former councillor. Surely that would be a perfect opportunity to increase access to the park for toddlers and kids headed there  proudly riding their bikes… and to fix this error for the convenience of cyclists … and to get cyclists off the pedestrian sidewalk. So last June I wrote the Councillor pointing out the opportunity.
His assistant pointed out that fixing access to the park is “out of scope” for the park redo [of course, who’d expect two city departments to talk] and they’d put it into the five year plan of resident requests for consideration .
So this week I notice that the city has redone the sidewalk area of interest. And, of course, couldn’t put in the cyclist dip in the curb. 
Notice the cyclist with tike just off to the right of the picture, hesitating to be caught using the sidewalk while I was photographing.
No mind, however, we can always come back later and chop it up again to put in the dip. Job creation thru infrastructure or something.

4 thoughts on “It’s the little things that (don’t) count

  1. Parks and Rec, whatever department that handles sidewalks, another department that handles cycling, and the councillor have all identified the limitations imposed by their artificial walls, but do nothing to change the culture. Four silos doing their utmost to minimize even the possibility of implementing a comprehensive and cohesive solution. Sad, but not surprising.

  2. I wonder if this is another instance of accessibility rules making things less accessible; that in order for there to be a mid block curb cut, there must be a recognized crossing point, and since they don’t want to put one there they can’t put in a curb cut. I ran into that situation when looking at removing a fence at the dead-end of Newhaven St. in my neighbourhood. The city refused to simply remove a broken-down fence blocking access to the city owned greenspace because accessibility rules would then require them to put in a paved path.

  3. dfg: I think that fence is calling for community action to do what the city wont.

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