David Soknacki makes enemies of downtown store owners by threatening to take their parking away
Anyone who wants to see see a small-business owner panic should try this fun experiment: walk into a shop on any major downtown street and tell the person behind the counter that the two or three on-street parking spaces outside are about to be removed. The notion that a loss of parking will lead to a loss in business is often a sticking point in negotiations for things like new bike lanes. And so mayoral candidate David Soknacki is a very brave man for promising to impose an outright ban on street parking in the downtown core if he’s elected. A very brave man.
His proposal, released on his website earlier today, makes a certain amount of sense. It calls for an area, likely “no larger than the square between Bloor, Spadina, Jarvis and Front Street,” to be slowly stripped of on-street parking on major streets over the course of three years. The additional street space would allow traffic to flow more easily, theoretically reducing gridlock (although there are some urban planners who would quibble with that). The loss of on-street parking would be offset by new, multi-storey parking garages on existing Green P lots. “Gridlock is such a reality that lane space on key roads is more valuable to move people than it is to park cars,” Soknacki is quoted as saying in the proposal’s press release.
Imagine Bloor Street as a flowing, four-lane road, rather than than the two-lanes-plus-parking gridlocked nightmare it tends to be during peak travel hours. (Maybe, if the environmental assessment goes well, we could even shoehorn some bike lanes in there, one day?) But Soknacki will have to get elected before that can happen, and with this as one of his more notable policy proposals to date, he may have to do that over the objections of some—but certainly not all—of the city’s most influential shopkeepers and restaurant owners. Couldn’t we just look at this as an opportunity to start charging people for valet service, guys?
6 thoughts on “David Soknacki makes enemies of downtown store owners by threatening to take their parking away”
One of the BIGGEST issues for gridlock in the downtown core is two lane traffic, while vehicles are trying to turn left (they are either stopped due to on coming traffic, or pedestrians crossing) AND vehicles trying to try right but are also stuck due to pedestrian crossing.
Either we can allow only one way traffic with no left or right turns at major intersections. My suggestion is to allow all pedestrians to cross first. Give them a good 15-30secs for all sides of the street. Then DO NOT ALLOW PEDESTRIANS TO CROSS during vehicle time, allowing for a better flow of traffic. Also the fine for stopping in the middle of the intersection needs to be better enforced.
I like the idea of removing the cars during peak travel hours. I thought we already did this, but we need immediate towing for non-compliant people.
“their parking” ??
It is not THEIR parking. It’s parking on a PUBLIC street. A very busy and crowded public street.
We don’t have a traffic problem we have a lack of good transit problem. Im tired of hearing how we are a world class city. We are not… any world class city has good transit. Stop electing people like Olivia Chow and Kristyin Wong-Tam. These people are here for the pay cheque, not to make improvements. We need people to fix problems not keep putting a coat of paint over our problems. Can someone tell me 5 thing Olivia Chow has accomplished that warrants her 25 years of pay cheques.
The only way to get a response Omer, would be to offer a cash reward.
Olivia loves cash……………………….yours!
Yup! Bike lanes, bike parking, lets turn this in to a two wheeled city. On rainy days, take a cab! On snowy days just stay at home. All so simple.
Soknacki and Chow seem to be in competition, in a wacky ideas contest.
Many years ago Toronto was created for horses, some people find it hard to believe that Toronto is that old.
Chow lives in some sort of fantasy land, and Sok is grasping at straws. Glad to see the end of Ford, but these two are in his league.
Street parking is always needed. I thought that there is no street parking on the busiest downtown streets between 3 and 6pm. To encourage shopping why not choose different areas each weekend to have zero car traffic. Let those businesses have street sales, food establishments sell food, set up temporary tables, etc. Allow temporary parking in school yard parking lots with minimum charge (money raised could go to the school). There are many intelligent solutions to the problem.
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