Comment 31194

By realitycheck (anonymous) | Posted May 21, 2009 at 13:07:28

Sorry the typeset I used didn't translate properly in my previous post, and much of the text disappeared. I am re-posting with hopes that it will be more readable, this time using "" to indicate comments that Jason made that I'd like to addrress.

Jason wrote "Main is more suited to become a 4-lane road with turning lanes at intersections. King isn't wide enough to be designed in this manner."

I have concerns with suggesting a 'two+two+turning lane' format along Main street. This could end up nearly as pedestrian unfriendly as its current incarnation.

Jason wrote "If Main were (sic) to house the LRT, there would be zero opportunity for street parking along both King and Main due to the narrower design of King and the loss of 2 lanes for LRT on Main."

I disagree. If LRT was placed as a central median along Main, there woud still be room for three lanes of traffic. Main could be configured with two lanes of traffic approaching the city core and one lane flowing away from the core. During off-peak periods, curbside parking can happen on one side of Main. King Street could be converted two-way with two lanes of traffic in either direction, alloowing for curbside parking on both sides of the street during non-peak periods.

Jason wrote "During the day, street parking on King from Sherman to Wentworth is mostly empty. Plus, it hasn't done much for business up until now. LRT bringing in shoppers and people who want to be there will help businesses much more than cars speeding through to the suburbs."

Perhaps there is less demand for daytime parking on King, or perhaps it just seems that way to you because you are making your observations during your workday commute when curbside parking is prohibited in most stretches of King. However, being a resident in close proximity to the area you describe, I can attest to the need for curbside parking, especially during the evening hours, particularly by such businesses as Rebel's Rock and The Pearl Company.

Jason wrote "King is more suited to LRT and it's spinoff effects due to the existing streetwall along it's length."

I have a completely different take on this than you. From my point of view, King has the advantage of a solid streetwall already in existence, whereas Main suffers more from the prevalance of vacant lots. Consequently, Main has more to gain from having LRT as it will spur development and fill many of the existing gaps in the streetwall. We would end up with two pedestrian friendly streets with solid streetwalls. It's all about maximizing the impact of this infrastructure investment. Main has more potential for immediate construction projects due to the availability of shovel-ready land. Furthermore, immediate intensification along Main will have less impact on the city's inventory of heritage buildings.

Jason wrote "Side streets can see street parking increased and make up for the loss along King."

Again, as a resident of one of these side streets in close proximity to main and King, I can assure you there is absolutely no room to absorb additional curbside parking needs for the city.

Jason wrote "King can still see parking from John to Bay and Queen to Dundurn. That's a lot of street parking.", and "Main can see parking from Dundurn to Sherman, and possibly east of Sherman with a simple parking cut-out into the southern sidewalk which is quite wide east of Sherman."

Again, it may be a lot of parking in your view, but it is a heck of a lot less than is currently available. LRT on Main Street will result in a net loss of curbside parking, but certainly not as deep a loss as if it should be placed on King.

I also want to point out the impact LRT on King would have on other forms of traffic that currently use King street, beyond the personal automobile. LRT on King would leaves room for just one lane of traffic in either direction for most of the affected stretch of road, rendering it virtually impossible for any kind of local bus service along this road. Local service will be needed to supplement and feed the LRT, and losing local bus service would be a great disservice to current HSR ridership. Furthermore, taxis would have great difficulty picking up and dropping off fares along a road without any clearance to pull out of the way of moving traffic, especially during rush hour. And what about service vehicles delivering goods to the businesses located along King? They would no longer be able to pull over for deliveries anywhere along King.

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