Thirty-one pedestrians and cyclists have been killed by cars so far this year; last year it was 13 by this time. Three cyclists have been killed; I knew one, Roger Du Toit. Yet when it comes to transportation in the City of Toronto, it's cars that matter. The mayor will spend half a billion dollars to save three minutes of time for the drivers, but wants the Transit Commission to cut back its budget by two percent. As for cyclists, it isn't even apparent that he considers them to be people:
In frustration, cyclists staged a die-in this morning, a very polite Canadian die-in that didn't close down traffic and shut down streets like they do everywhere else. They weren't even asking for much; a couple of cents on the car dollar for bikes. Even bike activists wondered about this:
A real cycle die-in is on a road blocking traffic, where it actually has political meaning. Not in a token public square. #BikewashersUnite— SharkDancing (@SharkDancing) June 18, 2015
But it went ahead, organized by Cycle Toronto and other activists.
It didn't exactly fill Nathan Philips Square in front of City Hall but was impressive nonetheless.
Today we're calling on City Hall to adopt a strong Vision Zero policy and commit to reducing and eliminating road fatalities for cyclists, for pedestrians, for drivers. In a city that can spend hundreds of millions of dollars especially on an elevated highway we need to find that money to be able to commit to building $20 million per year. Make the investment to protect the lives of people who ride right across the city.