Mike Sullivan raises some interesting points

Mike Sullivan has a letter in The Star today, and it’s an interesting read.

Those Westonians who drive will know that we have shockingly high insurance rates—the highest in the GTA.

Why is this, ponders Sullivan. It’s not fraud. It’s not theft. It’s not that we’re bad drivers (though unless you’re me, you are). It’s that we’re poor.

When a person with benefits in their employment is injured in an accident, the employer pays the sick leave and extra medical costs. The auto insurer does not, until the employer plan is maxed out. When a person with no benefits is injured, the insurance company is on the hook for wage replacement (sick leave) and all extra medical cost from day one.

 

Humber Trail extension meeting

City of Toronto representatives were on hand in the Weston Library basement Wednesday night to answer questions about the latest extension to the Humber Trail. After construction, the trail will end at Mallaby Park where the new steps lead to Weston and St. Phillips. Cyclists and pedestrians wishing to continue on the northern section of the trail will have to climb the steps and make their way along Weston Road. Hopefully this will be a temporary link but in the meantime, the steps have a gutter that allows cyclists to wheel rather than carry their bikes up and down.

A plan of the trail extension.
A plan of the trail extension.

The Toronto and Region Conservation Authority (TRCA) owns the land and the City of Toronto manages it through their Transportation and Parks departments. To continue past the steps along the Humber (subject to a feasibility study), the TRCA will need to acquire the land up to the existing trail at Fairglen and Cardell.

Adapted from Google Earth.
WestonWeb rampant speculation showing where the trail could continue north and link avoiding Weston Road altogether. Adapted from Google Earth.

If WestonWeb readers have comments on the 600m proposed trail extension, the City of Toronto Transportation Department would like to hear from you. Contact Transportation Planner Jennifer Hyland by email or Phone: 416-392-0193.

The full set of posters will be available here in the next few days.

Humber Trail extended in 2013.

As part of Phase 1 of the Mid Humber Trail Project, a 600 metre extension will link the northern end of the Humber Trail – currently at Cruickshank Park to the Mallaby Park steps. This 3.5 metre wide pavement (matching the rest of the trail) will be placed over the current dirt path.

End of the trail, Cruickshank Park looking north.
End of the trail, Cruickshank Park looking north.
Location of the latest paved portion of the Humber Trail.
Location of the next paved portion of the Humber Trail.

The construction is expected to last 4-6 weeks beginning in ‘early summer’ and contractors will operate from the parking lot at Lawrence and Little. More information on the construction can be found here as well as during a drop-in session at the Weston Library March 6, between 7 pm and 9 pm.

For Phase 2, the city is currently looking at options to extend the trail from Mallaby Park to Fairglen Crescent where the trail continues.

LEF is hiring

The Learning Enrichment Foundation is hiring 12 full-time interns. Training is provided.

I’m extremely tempted by the BIXI bike mechanic program. I’d love that job.  In fact, ignore me: LEF does not offer a BIXI bike mechanic program. No such thing. Promise.

LEF Internship Poster

Weston Station Master Plan released

Last June, at the end of a year-long process of consultation, Metrolinx revealed the Weston Station Master Plan through a presentation followed by a discussion and question and answer session held at the Active Living Centre. The plan itself was not available in document form at the time but has now been finalized and released as a stand-alone 80-page document. The plan outlines the vision created when planning experts’ ideas have been combined with those of the community to produce a fascinating look into the future of Weston.

As residents we should all take the time to review this important document and take note of the implications for ourselves and future Weston residents.

As Adam has noted with regard to recent thefts from the new station’s bike racks, it is hoped that all aspects of the vision can be implemented with a clear eye on the realities of an urban environment.

Bikes will continue to be stolen at Weston Station

Mark Ostler, Media Relations Officer for GO Transit, has responded to the bike thefts at Weston Station. GO’s response: a bit of shame you lost your bike. Call the cops if you see someone stealing.

GO Transit is aware of four reports of bike thefts in recent months at Weston Station. Our transit safety patrols and station staff have been notified of the thefts and are on alert for further suspicious activity. Toronto Police are also aware of these incidents. Local riders are encouraged to report suspicious activity or crimes in progress first to Toronto Police and second to GO’s Transit Safety Dispatch, at 1-877-297-0642.

Your humble correspondent is not going to shoot the messenger, but this cheeses me right off. GO knows of one bike being stolen every two weeks since the station opened—and they’re not going to do anything about it. And, let’s be real: more bikes have almost certainly gone missing and unreported; bike theft is seen as an unsolvable crime (because it is), and GO is seen as an unmoveable bureaucracy (ahem…).

Ladies and gentlemen, this is not an unsolvable problem. It would require a few bucks and a few hours. The problem here is that the money is theirs but the bikes are yours.

  • Move the bike racks so that they are in sight of the staff
  • Install bike lockers, and heck, even charge users a nominal fee. The city charges $10 a month, and GO already has lockers at many locations.
  • Put a camera on them

And, of course, riders need to do their part. I’ve cracked a few locks in the name of science, so take it from me: no barrel locks, no cables, no chains, no ordinary padlocks. You want an MEC U lock, ($25) nothing less.

If you’re as cheesed as I am, you can call or email:
Georgetown South Project
20 Bay Street, Suite 600
Toronto, ON M5J 2W3
416-406-0489
[email protected]

Bikes being stolen at Weston Station

Bikes are being stolen at the new Weston GO station, according to a tipster. She says that almost all the bikes have been taken over the past few weeks, and that even beat-up bikes are disappearing. Hers was taken, too.

Many residents of the village now ride to the Weston station for their commute downtown, since the station is quite a bit farther away from the village. This, of course, leaves the bikes vulnerable, since thieves know that the owners could not return before the first afternoon train. GO Transit has bike lockers at other several other locations, but not at the Weston station.

Riders–share your comments?