ActiveTO returns, closing major Toronto roads to traffic

·1 min read
Cyclists take advantage of the ActiveTO closure of Lakeshore Blvd. in Toronto on Sunday June 7, 2020. Toronto has once again closed large sections of major roads to give thousands the space to exercise while physically distancing. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press - image credit)
Cyclists take advantage of the ActiveTO closure of Lakeshore Blvd. in Toronto on Sunday June 7, 2020. Toronto has once again closed large sections of major roads to give thousands the space to exercise while physically distancing. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press - image credit)

Toronto's ActiveTO program is returning this weekend, allowing people to cycle, run and walk along major roads that have been closed off to traffic.

The program was created in the spring of 2020 to promote outdoor activity during the early stages of the pandemic.

Though a popular stretch of Lake Shore Boulevard West will not be closed this year, the following weekend closures began Saturday at 6 a.m. and will continue until Sunday at 9 p.m.:

  • Bayview Avenue, between Front Street East and Rosedale Valley Road, as well as River Street between Bayview Avenue and Spruce Street.

  • Lake Shore Boulevard East (eastbound lanes only), between Leslie Street and Woodbine Avenue.

The city says residents using these routes should do so only with members of their own household and access them by bike or walking because nearby parking is limited.

The closures are expected to reoccur on weekends and holidays through the summer and fall months.

Road closures recommended to continue after pandemic

The city is recommending that the program become a permanent fixture even after the pandemic ends.

According to the city, people who took part in the weekend road closures were overwhelmingly supportive of the initiative, with 92 per cent saying they wanted the closures to continue beyond COVID-19.

The staff report also found minimal evidence for increased vehicle traffic delays due to the program, with some exceptions on the Gardiner Expressway and The Queensway.