Rob Ford comes out against marathons in the streets
Rob Ford has already pledged to get cyclists and streetcars off Toronto’s streets—and it looks like marathons are next on his hit list. According to the Toronto Sun, Ford’s office received complaints about yesterday’s Scotiabank Waterfront Marathon disrupting traffic along the Gardiner. Apparently, drivers can still tell the difference between a half-working Gardiner and something even worse.
“I’m a city councillor and I didn’t know the waterfront marathon was on,” he said. “I had calls from constituents who didn’t know.
“It’s up to the city to advertise through the media,” Ford said.
Several off-ramps were closed to traffic on the Gardiner Expressway. Lake Shore Blvd. was off-limits to motorists from 5 a.m. to mid-afternoon on Sunday and there were other street shutdowns to accommodate the Toronto Waterfront Marathon. About 20,000 people took part in the event which raised $2.7 million for charity.
Ford is proposing that large marathons instead be held in places like Downsview and High Park, where there’s enough space to keep runners away from traffic arteries. The mayoral front-runner isn’t claiming that these suggestions are gospel or anything—he told the Globe and Mail editorial board that he’s just throwing ideas out there. (Ford’s brother Doug even took the opportunity to make fun of him. Lesson: don’t campaign for office with your siblings.)
Of course, they’d probably have to change the name of the Waterfront Marathon, and there’s a question about how many runners would sign up to do a dozen laps of High Park—it doesn’t quite have the same ring to it.
• Take marathons off city streets — Ford [Toronto Sun]
• Ford suggests taking marathons, runs off city streets [CP24]
• Ford wants marathons taken off streets and moved to parks [680 News]
• Ford In Favour Of Taking Marathons Off Streets [Newstalk 1010]
34 thoughts on “Rob Ford comes out against marathons in the streets”
He’s a city councillor and he didn’t know this huge waterfront marathon was happening? Wasn’t this a huge item in the news back at the beginning of the year?
I really don’t understand how he is a front runner when he’s basically taking everything that Toronto is away…
Maybe he should ease on the not so healthy life style that he lives and promote sport as a way to get people going, save us some money on health care. I’m sure there would be more than few takers who would invite him for some personal training sessions.
The key is how to get him out of Timmy’s
As one of the runners who participated at the Scotiabank Waterfront race, I’m deeply troubled by Mr. Ford’s comment. His proposal is ill-conceived, detrimental to the city’s economy and disheartening to Canadians who have raised money for charities while keeping an active lifestyle.
Message to all responsible Torontonians: I highly encourage you to participate in this fall’s election but PLEASE, vote for the candidate who will forward the city by implementing initiatives that are inclusive, progressive, and innovative.
Hint: Ford is NOT fit (pun intended) for the job!
so I thought that Rob Ford was this frugal guy…Today I see him on CP24 talkig about how marathons should be taken off city streets and into parks, for example James Gardens which his house backs onto….Hello? he lives on Edenbrige in Etobicoke? If you’re not familiar a home on Edenbridge run a cool 3-5 Million bucks….how does a penny pinching city councillor afford this??? well I guess he doesn’t spend city $ because he’s rolling in it…holy crap!
He’s pathetic, look at him, he couldn’t run around the block. We have a world class event in a major city, as all major cities do, raising money for charities, promoting healthy living, creating tourism, hospitality and bringing world class athletes to Toronto and all he can do is complain about it.Wow, it going to be interesting if this guy actually wins.
I am sure that Mississauga would be happy to become the
major marathon city of Southern Ontario.
You didn’t know he was born rich? Yep, that’s how he thinks that slashing everything will suddenly balance the books. He’s never seriously had to worry about money in his life.
Grrr. I live in Ottawa and I knew this was happening this weekend. What a joke. He is the stereotypical politician. I am moving to Toronto again in May when I am finished school, and if this man wins I am seriously going to be sad for Toronto.
Perhaps somewhere outside the city core would be agreeable to everyone. Rob Ford is all for compromise as long as the solution is what he offers as a compromise. Someone tell Mr. Ford that when he speaks it should be ready, aim, fire; not fire, ready, aim. If he doesn’t practice this he better keep his feet clean because he will constantly have one or the other in his mouth.
Things I would like to shut down because they affect my life and I get no enjoyment from them: the Indy, the Air Show, the Ex, the Santa Claus Parade, random other parades in the city… however, like any other resident of a diverse place, I recognize that other people do take part in these and enjoy them, so I live with them. Rob Ford and the complainers should do the same. (And I’m not quite sure he understands how far 42 km is, and why we need full lanes for running races – does he not know that they’re actually crowded all the way across? And that people pass each other in races? Sigh.)
I am a business owner with a store on King Street East. Normally on a Sunday in Sept we would do 5 to 6 thousand dollars in sales. On Sunday the store did exactly zero.
Rob Ford gets it. Theses street closings hurt our downtown businesses. The store I own has 10 employees and has created 4 jobs in the past year. We get tickets for parking at our dedicated loading dock and Mayor Miller and the current council do not care at all about the loss of revenue we suffer each time the streets around us are close.
Neither do the self centered people who are posting all the negative comments here it appears.
Rob Ford is supportive of this- the well-being and maintenence of Rob Ford. He certainly knows how to complain, but does not offer any alternatives.
People in Toronto are so self centered. Always in a rush and out to make a buck. Me,Me ,Me. Todd C thinks that shutting down the street he has a busines on for 6 hours on a Sunday has hurt his income. Give me a break. you rely on people in this city..runners and non runners alike. don’t think for a minute life will be easier with Rob ford at the helm. Quite the contrary. Removing races and events that cater to all walks of life is what keeps the city moving and growing. Not your complaining.
If your business usually does $5 000 – $6 000 in sales on Sunday and you had absolutely no sales to speak of this past Sunday that has a lot less to do with the marathon than it has to do with your business.
The marathon was done with by the early afternoon. How do you explain your complete lack of sales for the rest of the afternoon/day?
Every time the major roads are closed sales drop at downtown businesses. When a store has constant sales each Sunday but zero on the day of the Marathon the connection is pretty clear.
The loss of business comes directly off the bottom line.
I have to somewhat agree with Rob Ford. There are too many events, not just the marathon, shutting down too many streets in Toronto. Every weekend you can barely move with all the closures. The Danforth, Bloor St., The Gardiner, it just goes on and on. I believe Jan Wong wrote an article about this in a recent issue of Toronto Life. The city has just become to big and busy to have all these road closures.
I have a hard time taking Rob Ford seriously. It’s easy to cater to the complainers by agreeing but how about a workable solution? You can’t run a marathon in a park and except for downtown, not too many neighborhoods get their streets closed more than once during the summer. Adjust, take transit, walk or stay home and enjoy the festivities.
I can’t believe that Toronto in future might be represented by “Chris Farley”.
I know the anti-Ford forces are in a campaign to flood these comment sections with posts to derail his campaign. However the fact that these people and their candidates show no regard to the plight of small businesses, which are the engines of Toronto’s success, shows the dangers of the anti-Ford vote.
Ford’s opponent’s comments that Ford is favoring SUV’s over people is insulting to small business owners who are trying to cover rent and payroll each month.
Closing the streets for countless parades and events is hurting small business. The mayor should care.
It’s not a case of traffic disruption in general, it’s a case of this moron having to be somewhere the Sunday of the marathon and getting caught up in the traffic.Probably had to go buy some donuts. Come on ! I live on the East Coast and I knew this marathon was happening on Sunday. What a lame excuse. This is the only event you hear complaints about disruption of daily life.. It’s the majority of fat ass, envious smokers who are jealous of the people who can accomplish something they never will be able to acocmplish. Get your head’s out of your asses Toronto.
Todd C, I, like others, have a hard time buying your claim of “zero sales” on Sunday. King St E was not closed off by the marathon and there was usual access available coming from the north or east. Coming from the west would just have to have cut through downtown north of Dundas – not exactly miles and miles out of the way.
Alternatively, your customers could have taken the subway or one of the north/south surface routes.
Furthermore, not too far from your King St E, there would have been hundreds more people out on the streets cheering/watching the race than usual on a Sunday morning.
Just what is it that you are selling that had such lackluster response from potential customers?
Doesn’t the Santa Claus parade close off more roads near your business for a longer period of prime Sunday retailing? Do you want mayor Ford to move that event off the streets?
Run in a park? I don’t expect that this guy has ever participated in marathon, but has he ever seen one. Thirty-thousand people running 44km requires a lot of space. How many tens-of-millions is he going to spend to create a running surface (a least four car lanes wide) in Downsview Park?
And Todd C, I live on King E and things weren’t that different from any other weekend. If your business is that car dependent in downtown Toronto, then you’re in serious trouble.
There is construction tearing up King at Parliment and there was no way to get to my business or park near it unless you came in from the North East.
Sorry if anyone wants to call me on this put up $1000 cash and I will show you the numbers for the last 10 weeks and last week.
And to the person who lives on King East sorry but I think you are full of crap.
It is true that Jan Wong also wrote an article in Toronto Life about how inconvenient road closures were to her. Here’s a thought to both Ford and Wong….GET OUT OF YOUR CARS!!!!! There is not much at all that I find a barrier to me and my trusty bike!
My husband and I are from PEI. We came to TO for the half marathon and spent a few dollars on food,hotel,clothing,drinks and entertainment. We really enjoyed ourselves, but to hear that some of the city does not support the event is really dishearting. If it was not for running we would not travel half as much as we do. We are not rich, but once a year we make a special trip somewhere for a top notch event like this one. I am sad to hear that next year I my have to spend my money someplace else instead of your city,to bad to cause I really enjoyed it.
Rob Ford only said he would like to explore the issue. Toronto has too many street closures.
MY NAME IS ROB FORD AND I WILL SAVE YOUR GRAVY!
MY NAME IS ROB FORD AND I APPROVED THIS MESSAGE.
You can see why he would try to shut it down….he can’t run, it’s really so much easier to get fat and explode. If he continues along this route he will become/is a drain on the Health care system.
Better the devil you know…Miller, he ran a marathon. Marathon’s make lots and lots of money for City. If Ford gets elected, Toronto will become a lame place not worth living/visiting. Wake up people. Suggestion: anyone running for Mayor would be required to complete a marathon. Half the jerks running now would not be eligible. Please vote with your head….
Why beat up Rob Ford? The guy does have some valid points that he brings to the table, and having lived in real world class cities…sorry Toronto has a lot to accomplish before it becomes world class ….maybe some of his suggestions could be explored. The other candidates’ platforms are not real solutions to the city problems but no one seems to bat an eye when they speak. But then again, after Miller’s legacy of taxes and more taxes and lack of services, scandals and overall contempt for the citizens of this city, anyone would be better as mayor including Mr. Ford!
I think this is downright hilarious. What are we going to do? Run around a park in a circle…we’ll have to rename is the Toronto Indy 500 marathon. This guy is absolutely ridiculous. He’s be rightly served to get his arse out there and run the marathan from the looks of things.
Those who come to Toronto for the marathon spend a few dollars on food,hotel,clothing,drinks and entertainment. b,Why not have them spend it in the suburbs, spread the “goodness” of the roadclosures and congestion with our fellow Torontians…
Rob Ford seriously needs to get over his attitude towards people who are not glued to their car seats. Honestly, maybe if he exercised a little bit, the endorphines would make him a bit of a less negative blow hole.
I think if New York City and Chicago can have major marathons in their cities, then surely Toronto can have one too. I don’t think this man likes Toronto very much as he doesn’t seem to want to make it a great city.
I hope you win
Rob Ford scares me! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UoY0ba3o3JM
I don’t drive and I don’t watch TV, and I still knew this marathon was happening a week in advance because I actually pay attention to what’s going on around me in this city just by opening my eyes and reading the signs. He has no excuse for being so oblivious.
It was the Jewish high holidays this October 2011.
Unlike in the past decades, not only did Mayor Rob Ford’s Toronto Parking Enforcement Staff give parking tickets in the area of Holy Blossom and Beth Tzedec synogogues, to cars in no parking/stopping zones, this T. Molinaro ticketed a car with a Disabled permit displayed;
And, the Ford administration would do NOTHING to rectify this injustice, nor accept any responsibility.
How do you interpret this kind of disrespect for minority groups.
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