Several major roadways in Toronto's downtown have been blocked off to make way for stars and guests attending film screenings as the eagerly anticipated Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) returns to the city once again.
But for a city already dealing with perpetual traffic, the TIFF-associated road closures have left drivers frustrated — or according to actor Andrew Phung, wanting to "kill your soul."
The Canadian actor was in town promoting his newest film 'Mr. Dressup: The Magic Of Make-Believe,' and was on the TIFF red carpet on Saturday when he talked about his love for Toronto.
When asked by a Narcity reporter what he would do if he had a day off and could go around the city incognito, Toronto traffic wiggled it's way into the conversation.
"Honestly, I just want to be in Toronto but minus the traffic," Phung said. "If I could experience Toronto without 60% of the traffic. This city is amazing, there is an energy and a vibe to this city but the traffic will kill your soul."
Narcity's interview clip has since gone viral on TikTok and Torontonians are chiming in with their own experiences.
One commenter offered a subtle reminder to not "forget construction," referencing how dozens of construction projects across the city can grind traffic to a crawl for hours at a time.
Another offered up a helpful suggestion and told residents to "ride a bike or TTC." Many agreed that it can often be faster to just hop on a bike or flag down a streetcar instead of driving through downtown.
Toronto's traffic 'crisis' is so notable that it was even brought up in an ETalk interview about the movie 'Mission: Impossible' earlier this year.
ETalk host Sonia Mangat offered Tom Cruise her own version of a Mission: Impossible challenge during the interview— spending two hours in Toronto traffic.
"You know what, I have done that challenge and I've been in that traffic," Cruise jokingly said. "What's up with the traffic in Toronto? Have they figured this out?"
A report released in January by traffic analytics company INRIX, places the city as one of the worst cities for traffic congestion globally, with only Boston and Chicago ranking higher than Toronto in North America.
The report also revealed that the average commuter lost approximately 118 hours on Greater Toronto Area roads and highways to congestion in 2022.
With TIFF-associated road closures expected to impact downtown roadways until Sept. 17, next time you head out the door, it may be wiser to grab your bike instead.