Newsletter - September 2017 from Mayor John Tory

Friend --

This week, Toronto Police are once again conducting a blitz targeting rush-hour lane blockers. I've asked our police to conduct these tag and tow blitzes as often as he can to send a message to inconsiderate drivers who continue to mess up traffic. Everywhere I go in this city, people tell me that traffic and congestion remains their number one issue. That’s why fighting gridlock and getting on with building transit - the long-term solution to our traffic woes - are among my top priorities.

Since coming into office, I have taken a number concrete steps to improve the way people move around this city:

We've accelerated road construction projects where it makes sense so work gets done faster and traffic disruptions end sooner. This year some 32 projects have been accelerated;
We've increased enforcement along rush-hour routes so people stopping to get a coffee or collect their drycleaning stop inconveniencing everyone else; and
I've personally chaired the Road Closures Coordination Committee to make sure we plan road closures better - we've moved marathons, coordinated construction projects and injected a good dose of common sense into the whole process. This had never been done before at the City.

I know there is more to do and I am absolutely determined to do it. Over the next six months, my administration will roll out several measures as part of our updated plan, Traffic Plan 2.0. While the list of new measures will be extensive, I'm writing today to let you know about six initiatives I've announced this week. They are:

Establishing quick clear squads dedicated to fixing the problems causing temporary lane blockages on the Gardiner Expressway, Don Valley Parkway, and other major roads.
Deploying full-time traffic wardens at congestion hotspots in the first half of 2018. Based on the success of the traffic warden pilot program, this initiative will help reduce gridlock at major intersections.
Requesting utility companies (Toronto Hydro, gas companies and telcos) to confine non-emergency work requiring lane closures to off peak hours (7:00PM - 7:00AM).
Sharing City traffic data with Waze starting next month. This partnership will give our Traffic Operations Centre better visibility into traffic patterns and give users of the popular Waze app enhanced information to plan and adjust their commute (if you don’t already use it, you can download it for free here:
Installing 'smart signals' in November that will monitor the flow of traffic in real-time and change traffic signal lengths accordingly.
Asking City staff for a report on possible increases to fines for traffic blocking offences.

Those are some of the new steps we will roll out throughout the Fall and into the New Year to keep Toronto moving. Over the last three years, we have finally focused on fighting traffic in Toronto and improving commute times. This problem didn’t happen overnight and it won’t be solved overnight. But I am determined to build on the progress we’ve made and continue the fight each and every day.


We're a taking a significant step forward with SmartTrack, my plan to use existing GO lines to create subway-like service connecting Scarborough, Etobicoke and points in-between with downtown.

In October, City of Toronto staff will be holding community consultations in neighbourhoods that will be getting SmartTrack stations and service. They are:

Oct. 10
Scarborough Civic Centre
150 Borough Dr.
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Oct. 11
Riverdale Collegiate Institute
1094 Gerrard St E.
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Oct. 12
Bloor Collegiate Institute
1141 Bloor St W.
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Thanks for taking the time to read this update. Please feel free to email my office at any time to let me know if you have any questions or comments.


John Tory

Office of Mayor John Tory · Canada
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Posted on 22 Sep 2017 by Admin