November 28, 2016
The City of Toronto, Metrolinx and the Toronto Transit Commission have worked to expand a program that allows authorized transit vehicles to use dedicated lanes along parts of the Don Valley Parkway when traffic is moving slowly.
Building on the success of the program first implemented in 2010 with GO Transit, TTC vehicles (including Wheel-Trans) will soon have use of the special lanes, including a new section between the St. Dennis Drive bridge south of Eglinton Avenue and the CP Midtown Rail overpass just north of Wynford Drive. GO vehicles will have access to the new section mid-December. TTC vehicles will begin using the new lanes in early 2017.
“The extension of this program will enable transit vehicles to travel more quickly and efficiently along one of the City's key thoroughfares," said Councillor Jaye Robinson (Ward 25 Don Valley West), Chair of the City's Public Works and Infrastructure Committee. "It is critical that we continue to employ strategies such as this to reduce delays and keep traffic moving on our roads."
When traffic slows to speeds lower than 60 km per hour, GO and TTC buses and service vehicles responding to calls will be allowed to use the lanes to bypass congestion with speeds no more than 20 km per hour over the main traffic speed.
“Extending the bus bypass lanes is going to help the TTC provide service along this busy route," said TTC Chair and City Councillor Josh Colle (Ward 15 Eglinton-Lawrence). "The lanes will help provide our customers, particularly those using Wheel-Trans, with more reliable service and better travel times."
For the past six years, GO Buses have used the dedicated lanes between Lawrence Avenue and just north of York Mills Road. The lanes resulted in lower travel times for transit riders in the peak periods.
“We’re pleased to build on the success of the program introduced in 2010 with GO Transit, the City of Toronto and the TTC,” said Bruce McCuaig, CEO of Metrolinx. “This expansion will improve service for GO passengers as well as improve traffic conditions for motorists.”
The TTC currently uses a portion of the DVP for its 144 Downtown/Don Valley Express bus service at peak times and Wheel-Trans is a regular user of the road at all times. This will give the TTC more options in planning future bus service.
In addition to authorized transit vehicles, police, emergency and winter maintenance vehicles will continue to use this lane to perform their duties.
The City of Toronto will implement the required pavement markings and signage for the additional segment of bus bypass lanes with $2.5M in support from Metrolinx for the pavement markings and signage, and a contribution to the future capital rehabilitation costs.
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