In 2013, with funding from the Healthy Canada by Design CLASP initiative, TCAT worked with Toronto Public Health to share knowledge about the health benefits of walking and cycling, discover feasible design options to improve cycling and walking, and gather information on community need and preference in two Toronto neighbourhoods: the Annex and Black Creek.
To gather more evidence and deepen the impact of this project, TCAT commissioned a study by Ryerson’s Graduate Planning Studio to analyze the potential for enhanced active transportation infrastructure in Black Creek. The report makes a case for improved infrastructure in the Black Creek neighbourhood specifically, and proposes principles and interventions for active transportation infrastructure in other inner suburban areas of Toronto.
Interestingly, the study found that Black Creek residents already use active transportation in high numbers. Compared with intersections such as Bloor and Brunswick, Spadina and Nassau, and Yonge and Sheppard, roughly the same number of people access the Jane Street and Finch Avenue intersection by foot.
The study provides 11 design principles to guide active transportation infrastructure interventions. For example, ensuring that pathways are well lit and safe to travel at night; improving intermodal connectivity, to facilitate long-distance travel using public transit; and Complete Street design, to ensure that streets, trails, and pathways provide facilities for all users. These principles informed the study’s recommendations for a network of active transportation routes and nodes in the neighbourhood.
The final report is available online.