On May 28, 2020 Toronto City Council approved ActiveTO, a suite of programs that support the City’s restart and recovery response to COVID-19, including a Complete Street pilot project along Danforth Avenue from Broadview Avenue to Dawes Road, and Major Road Closures.
The City partnered with Park People and The Centre for Active Transportation (TCAT) at Clean Air Partnership to lead public intercept surveys to understand a nuanced perspective and best inform future recommendations on the Major Road Closures and Destination Danforth complete street pilot project. The one year pilot project was installed during the summer of 2020.
The Destination Danforth intercept survey was conducted over four days between September 24 and October 6th, 2020. Over 440 surveys were conducted with the general public on Danforth Avenue using a randomized methodology to ensure a diverse cross section of respondents. Results were analyzed to find trends in perception of the diverse respondents.
Here are the key findings (also found on Park People’s website and included within the City’s ActiveTO – Lessons Learned from 2020 and Next Steps for 2021 report):
- Almost half (44%) of respondents are multi-modal (they regularly use multiple modes of transportation);
- 80% of respondents considered the bike lanes ‘safe’ or ‘very safe’ and there was an equal gender split on sense of cycling safety;
- 40% of pedestrian respondents indicated the road felt ‘safer’ and another 40% felt there was ‘no change’ to level of road safety;
- The ease of finding parking changed very little since before the pilot installation (in 2017, 75% of respondents found it easy or very easy to find parking vs 71% in 2020); and
- There was mixed feedback about impacts to accessibility on the Danforth. About 30% of respondents felt the Danforth was slightly less or much less accessible after the pilot was installed.
Toronto City Council subsequently approved the return of a more flexible and expanded ActiveTO program in 2021.