No more cars on the Don Valley Parkway in 25 years — a harebrained or an ingenious idea?
That is just one of the future options for the DVP that can be seen at the Parkway of Least Resistance (PoLR) exhibit, part of the Move: Transportation Expo at the Evergreen Brickworks.
The exhibit team’s main goal is to reclaim the natural beauty of the Don Valley for walking, biking and camping, while implementing TTC or GO buses and trains as the only transit option by 2040.
Roberto Chiotti, lead designer of the PoLR team, says the existing structure is over capacity and solutions need to come quickly.
“A road designed for 60,000 people in cars is now trying to make room for 100,000 people,” said Chiotti, adding that the issue was urgent.
The exhibit also explores the pros and cons of adding a double-decker highway or a new subway line under the existing highway route.
However, Chiotti sees a car-less DVP as the best option.
“That solution compared to the other options will move more people in less time and for a fraction of the cost,” Chiotti added.
One step already made in that direction might be the GO bus bypass lane on the DVP.
Located on the shoulder of the DVP from Lawrence Avenue to York Mills Road, it allows GO bus drivers to get around slow moving or stopped traffic.
Mark Ostler, media relations and issue specialist for Metrolinx, says the bypass lanes have improved on-time performance for travellers and has other benefits.
“The addition of bus bypass lanes does indeed reduce the number of GO buses idling in traffic. Notably, a GO bus carries 57 passengers, meaning each bus has the potential to remove 57 cars and their related pollution from our congested highways.”
A second bypass lane was recently approved to run from St. Dennis Drive to Pottery Road.
Find out more about the exhibit at polr.ca.