NEWS December 10th, 2015

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Safer Beltline crossings possible with upgrades

Crosswalk and refuge island being added to Avenue Road and Oriole Parkway

Visitors to the Beltline will now have a safer time crossing Avenue Road and Oriole Parkway, thanks to city staff and Ward 22 councillor Josh Matlow.

A new traffic light has been installed at the former, while a pedestrian and cyclist refuge island is being added to the latter.

“As a regular user of the beltline myself, along with my wife and my little daughter, I’ve seen countless examples of people taking their lives into their own hands and racing across these busy streets from one side of the Beltline to another,” Matlow said.

Last year Matlow requested city staff research viable options for the Beltline crossings and both streets. The refuge island and the traffic light, which has been synchronized with a nearby traffic signal at Chaplin Crescent and Avenue Road, won’t affect car traffic, he said.

“While city staff have always contended that people should be walking up to the traffic signals – and I agree that they should – that’s not what they do,” Matlow said. “You can wish for a different reality, but you also have to actually deal with the reality before you, and the reality is that everyone from bicyclists to joggers to young parents pushing strollers are racing across these busy streets every day.”