The new OTrain public pathway is open for cycling, with the added challenge of dodging leftover construction vehicles.
The path, even unfinished, is wonderful. And I am absolutely delighted to see the signage along the path. There are signs directing people towards the path, such as the one pictured above, on the Somerset Viaduct.
There are signs giving directions, so you know which way you are going:
I do have one quibble, and feel guilty for saying it, instead of just being thankful we got the path. These signs are made using street name sign blanks. But they are rather crudely bolted onto a utility post. The backs are especially … utilitarian. Motorists get signs mounted on round poles. The NCC uses round poles for cycling signage:
Picky picky, I know, and I sort of regret biting the hand that is getting us such nice infrastructure. Things are improving. Cyclists will be accorded motorist-class treatment when paths are accorded the same quality standards as road signs.
GPS systems are the foundation of ever-more modern tools. They help us in wayfinding, they locate us for help when calling 9-1-1, they suggest where we can stop for coffee, icecream, or a pit stop when on the road. But public pathways are removed from this system.
If each of the lighting poles along the path was given a stick-on number, which could be logged as an address, then 9-1-1 geolocating would work, and your GPS could direct you to your destination the same way as it does for motorists. I suspect it will take some sort of “can’t find” public safety incident before that gets implemented.
On a more cheerful note, I also noticed the “yield” signs and directional signage are mounted at cyclist and pedestrian heights, easily visible. Too often, signs are mounted too high, designed to be seen from a greater distance by motorists and thus missed by those employing active transportation means.
Here is a snap from yesterday of a hybrid cyclist, riding on the sidewalk, balanced with a sack of groceries on each arm, leaving the Westboro Loblaws. Very brave. And a bit of what makes living on the west side so interesting.