In 2012 Toronto converted some painted bike lanes on Sherbourne Street to a segregated bike lane.
Sherbourne runs parallel to Yonge Street, and is about 8 blocks east of Yonge, running from Bloor to Front Street. A walk along the bike track proved interesting.
Immediately south of Bloor, the track commences as a curbside painted lane, that then drifts out from the curb and becomes green painted. There is an orphan bit of black asphalt between it and the curb, with faded zebra hatching marks on it, but I was unable to determine if this was a right turn lane (awfully narrow) or a side boulevard or …. Perhaps just being a rube from the hicks blinded me to its obvious purpose, but it did make me wonder just how other motorists, visitors, and many not-too-bright drivers might see and interpret this situation.
The stopped taxi in the picture above didn’t seem too concerned about where he might be and questions about the legality of the situation ..
A short bit further south, the situation became much more apparent. A low concrete mound-like curb appeared, to separate the cycle track from the motorist road. Where there is a segregating curb, the track was not painted green. Here is a close up of the mound curb, which was covered with skid marks and tire tracks, showing evidence of abundant and frequent vehicle crossings, no doubt a goodly number by Grand and Toy and UPS trucks:
Maybe it is apparent to transportation planners what all the different bits of road markings mean, but on site I thought there were way too many things to interpret: solid green paths, green lined paths, raised curbs, flat curbs, dotted merge lines, yellow bits, sharrows, diamonds … surely it would have been easier for everyone to have just painted the thing green everywhere! In this case, there was so much noise in the messages that the key points were lost.