2019 CSCE Annual Conference - Laval (Greater Montreal)

2019 CSCE Annual Conference - Laval (Greater Montreal) Conference

Evaluating Design Solutions for Cycle Tracks along Urban Arterial Roads

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Mr. Michael Bandiera, Ryerson University
Mr. Clayton D'Souza, Ryerson University
Mr. Daniel Gaglia, Ryerson University
Mr. Daniel Henrique, Ryerson University (Presenter)
Dr. Said Easa, Ryerson University, Canada
Mr. Mladen Mladenov, Ryerson University
Mr. Michael O'Donnell, Ryerson University

Many arterial roadways in urban areas justifiably focus on motor vehicle traffic, but unfortunately they are not very accommodating to other modes of transportation, specifically cycling. Providing a safe and comfortable route for cyclists is key to encouraging cycling as a mode of transportation, however it must be balanced with accommodating the high volume of motor vehicles present. This is an issue mainly affecting urban areas in Europe and North America.

The purpose of this study is to design a dedicated bicycle facility along University Avenue, a major north-south arterial road in Toronto’s downtown core. The area of evaluation encompasses Front Street West and College Street, which is a span of approximately 1.9 km. In this study, case studies on bicycle facilities in many cities, most notably Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Minneapolis, Montreal, Portland, and Vancouver were analyzed to determine the specific designs and practices that could be potentially applicable in Toronto. The study evaluated the performance of two common design alternatives for bicycle facilities along University Avenue in Toronto. The alternatives included a separated one-way cycle track and a raised cycle track. Both design types were open to new innovations specific to the University Avenue corridor, provided that they meet municipal and provincial standards. The two alternatives were evaluated using a unique weighted scoring method that involved safety, economic, level of service, and constructability. A recommendation has been made to further evaluate the separated one-way cycle track for the given stretch of road.

The goal of this study is to establish a set of practical design guidelines and evaluation methods for bicycle facilities on major arterial roads in urban settings, and to encourage further research into the topic.