Posts Tagged ‘Toronto’

Windsor updates: Bikes, Trains, and Ferries

Sunday, April 10th, 2011

Bicycle Use Master Plan underfunded

The Windsor Star has a brief mention of the city of Windsor’s bicycling efforts, which according to some bicycling advocates is moving too slowly.

Members of the Windsor Bicycling Committee and the advocacy group Bike Friendly Windsor were at Wednesday’s capital budget meeting to implore council to devote more money to the Bicycle Use Master Plan (BUMP).

Drafted by the city in 2001, the 20-year plan was meant to show the city’s commitment to building an “easily accessible, safe and actively used” cycling network.

But Steve Konkle of Bike Friendly Windsor said BUMP has been the victim of “chronic underfunding.”

According to Konkle, Windsor has less than 25 miles of bike lanes.

Bike Train now daily

The Ontario Bike Train is now daily. The train makes it easy for cyclists to get between Windsor, London, Toronto, and other cities in Ontario. Bicycle racks are available for cyclists.

We spoke with Justin LaFontaine, Projects Director for Transportation Options and the founder of the Bike Train initiative. He said the big buzz among Toronto cyclists is riding in Detroit. And while they can take the bike train to Windsor, there is no option for them to get to Detroit.

They have had conversations with the Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority about ferry service across the Detroit River. The Port Authority is very interested in helping make that international connection for cyclists.

Until there is a convenient way for cyclists to cross the border, Detroit-area cyclists can drive to the Windsor train station. There’s also this interesting web site with the tag line, “Explore Ontario by bike. Stop at bicycle friendly places to eat, visit and sleep.”

What about AMTRAK?

One obvious question is what about bicycles on AMTRAK? The Pere Marquette and Blue Water lines should be getting roll-on bicycle service. However, we do not know about the Wolverine line, the line between Pontiac, Detroit, Ann Arbor, and Chicago. That line is not subsidized by MDOT and therefore is not required to have roll on service per an MDOT appropriations bill. We’re waiting to hear if AMTRAK will provide roll on service nonetheless.

Toronto shows some love for Detroit biking

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

The Globe and Mail newspaper out of Toronto had a chance to ride around Detroit. They went on a bike tour and are apparently giving us the big thumbs up.

Detroit’s old nickname, the “Paris of the Midwest,” does not roll off the tongue as smoothly as it might have in 1928. The city’s last few decades of Detroit’s 300 years have been rocky; thousands of its buildings burned, over half of its population moved away and its industrial strength weakened. But this once-gorgeous, battered city is a place of extraordinary Art Deco skyscrapers, palatial industrialists’ mansions and a vibrant arts community.

A burgeoning green economy is being embraced, replacing cars with bikes and establishing a strong local food movement.

It’s good to burgeon.

Ironically, Motor City is an ideal place to pedal. The Hub of Detroit is a Midtown non-profit bike shop with a mission to foster urban biking. It offers maps and great tips on biking in Detroit’s unique conditions, and profits are directed toward local youth programs. Wheelhouse, another bike shop on the waterfront, offers rentals and tours through Midtown and other parts of the city, encompassing Detroit’s majestic architecture, urban farms and local food movement, social events and its abandoned mansions – a great, safe way to experience the uniqueness of Detroit.

We couldn’t agree more.

Now if only we could get bikes across the Detroit River, our cycling friends from Toronto could take their bike train to Windsor and pay us a visit.

Biking to Work in Toronto

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010

Here’s an interesting blog out of Toronto called Urban Country that we stumbled on via a Howard Meyerson Tweet.

The blog article in particular is about biking to work:

Here in Toronto, the City has been handing out awards to bicycle-friendly businesses since 2001. The 2009 Bicycle-Friendly Business Awards will take place on January 19th, 2010 at the Gladstone Hotel and we will find out who this year’s most bicycle-friendly businesses are.

The consulting company that employs me imason inc. is an example of a bicycle-friendly workplace, and I felt compelled to highlight my workplace in the promo video above.?imason allows employees to bring their bicycles directly into the 8th floor office, storing them at the back of the office, while also providing shower facilities for those who feel compelled to shower after cycling in to work.

Do you work for a bicycle friendly employer?