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You don't need a full St. Clair style ROW to have transit priority. In fact, you don't need any ROW at all - just have a transponder trigger the traffic light as the vehicle approaches the intersection, and then load/offload at the far side of the intersection. The King transit mall is already optimized for such a concept.

You also don't need a ROW to have transit only lanes. One lane for transit, one lane for traffic, no parking, as many cities in Europe do.

no you definitely need ROWs + signal priority + turning restrictions to optimize the tram/streetcar network if that's the goal.

like you described, one lane for transit, one lane for traffic, no parking. that exact design exists on Queen's Quay, you don't need to cite Europe as an example when one exists here in Toronto just a few hundred metres south. QQ has an additional 7 m. to work with, but I think something like this could still work on Dundas, Queen, King etc...

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how would you give streetcars (or LRT's) priority without a ROW and can a ROW even realistically fit within 20 m. street width?

Spadina = 36 m
St. Clair = 30 m.
Queen's Quay = 27 m.

King, Queen, Dundas, Bathurst, Roncy, Broadview & Gerrard = 20 m.

the existing streetcar ROWs all exist on wider streets. i'm all for giving streetcars priority it would be great if that were the case, but i have a tough time envisioning it in practice.

using King as an example, I guess it could work if you gave 2 out of 4 lanes to streetcar ROWs, had no street parking, no bike lanes and no left turns. commuters would still have to cross one lane of live traffic to board streetcars like they do currently, but it could work in theory.

i would fully support optimizing the streetcar network by giving each route a ROW + signal priority + less stops.
There is one option that missing here... designing streets and cities for people and restricting automobile movement.
 
There is one option that missing here... designing streets and cities for people and restricting automobile movement.

While I'm content to support this idea, not merely in theory, but in practice where feasible...........

I do think we need to acknowledge that would take an enormous investment, on the order a an Ontario Line a year worth of investment in transit, but also in roads, supermarkets, cycling, etc That's a generational if not 2 x generational shift.

Not to say we shouldn't be working in that direction; but we do need to acknowledge an interim state; we also have to have a funding plan for the change involved; and we have to address certain practical questions.

For instance, its nice to say we might make every major road or every second major road car-free, but how exactly do we get the trucks to the supermarkets, or pick up the garbage?

Bringing transit closer to people and making walking a cycling straight forward, also means, to my mind, at the minimum, completing a 1km on a centre street grid of 'major' roads, which can support frequent transit.

I would argue for an even finer grid oriented to walking/cycling. (at least every 500M, preferably closer).

We also need to establish all sorts of new highway/railway crossings.

Complete a rear-laneway system where that doesn't now exist.....

And; of course, build up the capacity, redundancy and attractiveness of public transit.
 
We should have toll-free expressways for commercial trucks, buses, and delivery vans. The private use trucks and automobiles should have to pay a toll to use them.

Off-street parking (garages and lots) are needed, while delivery vehicles should have stopping zones away from the arterial roads for them to use for free, within a time limit. A laneway for deliveries would be preferred.
 
There is one option that missing here... designing streets and cities for people and restricting automobile movement.
two actually. subways are also a thing, but more importantly what do you suggest?

a car free downtown core or a series of transit malls? i'm an urbanist, but neither seems realistic to implement honestly not that i would object.
 
two actually. subways are also a thing, but more importantly what do you suggest?

a car free downtown core or a series of transit malls? i'm an urbanist, but neither seems realistic to implement honestly not that i would object.
Well yes, though I think underground transit deviates significantly from the original point.

Realism is a matter of perspective, none of these ideas are revolutionary or rely on new technology, all this already exists.

We've been satisfied with doing basically nothing for the past 30-50 years, so realism to implement (particularly where nothing 'innovative' is required) is very much a will to do something different. People don't like change, even if it has significant benefits in the long term.
 
Before any Line 4 Sheppard Subway extension, they have to do better with what we have currently along Sheppard Avenue East. We need to allow higher density, mixed-use development within a 15 minute walk of the current stations. That includes parks, recreation, and offices replacing the parking lots.

That should include building the Willowdale Station at Sheppard Avenue East & Willowdale Avenue as they redevelop.
 
Given the ROW constraints, any dedicated transit ROW means we have 1 lane in each direction on King/Queen etc to work with. Keeping these open to vehicles is an option, but I’d say that’s not very realistic in achieving other goals like creating room for cyclists etc. So with that in mind, is it not theoretically possible we turn King/Queen etc into one ways for autos? Ie, you only use *1* lane for autos on each street, in one direction. That leaves one additional lane for pedestrians/cyclists and creates a natural “boarding” side for the streetcars.

Obviously there’s taboo around one way streets, but I think it’s a bit different in this case where bare minimum auto access is the goal, not necessarily optimal auto access. Little risk of killing the streets when they aren’t dependant on the drivers. So you’d have a situation where say, King is WB only and Queen is EB only for cars. Not the ideal solution, but it’s practical.
 
Given the ROW constraints, any dedicated transit ROW means we have 1 lane in each direction on King/Queen etc to work with. Keeping these open to vehicles is an option, but I’d say that’s not very realistic in achieving other goals like creating room for cyclists etc. So with that in mind, is it not theoretically possible we turn King/Queen etc into one ways for autos? Ie, you only use *1* lane for autos on each street, in one direction. That leaves one additional lane for pedestrians/cyclists and creates a natural “boarding” side for the streetcars.

Obviously there’s taboo around one way streets, but I think it’s a bit different in this case where bare minimum auto access is the goal, not necessarily optimal auto access. Little risk of killing the streets when they aren’t dependant on the drivers. So you’d have a situation where say, King is WB only and Queen is EB only for cars. Not the ideal solution, but it’s practical.
Toronto gives a higher priority to the single-occupant motor vehicle than we do to public transit. Unlike Europe or Australia, where public transit has a higher priority.

Go to this link and view the "video about the importance of sharing the roads with trams when driving in Melbourne, Australia. Observing the road rules when driving helps keep our roads safe and reduce delays to trams and their passengers." Just change their driving on the left to our driving on the right.`
 
Don't believe Matlow wants to build any subway outside his area, or maybe downtown. This is the same person that talked at people on the RT about why public transit dollars shouldn't be spent in Scarborough in anything but some austerity rail.
 

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