Mayoral Candidate Anthony Furey announced Monday morning plans to support the downtown core throughout the duration of the Ontario Line closure that includes calling on Toronto city council to immediately reopen King Street to through traffic and at least temporarily close the Adelaide and Richmond bike lanes for the duration of this construction.
Furey will also have the City allow regular street parties, outdoor performances, farmers’ markets and festivals on evenings and weekends on the closed portion of Queen Street.
We can’t let this area become a wasteland for the next five years,” Furey said. “I will work with the local BIA, community groups and entertainment organizations to come up with as many creative opportunities as possible.
Where closed-off sections of Queen Street are not experiencing active construction, Mayor Furey will see that City Hall safely turns those into creative spaces.
“The closed-off areas of Queen where there is nothing really going on shouldn’t just turn into parking spaces for the construction crew,” Furey added. “We need to put this vital space to use creatively.”
When it comes to closing the bike lanes, Furey says: “Just like how some cars will find themselves redirected, cyclists will have to reroute during this disruption as well.”
It should concern Toronto residents that none of the current or former City Councillors running for Mayor put forward proposals in advance to see that this project is most effectively and creatively managed to minimize disruption for drivers, residents and businesses.
Furey previously announced that he plans to sue Metrolinx for breach of contract and damages over their mismanagement of the Eglinton Crosstown LRT. This sends the signal that, as Mayor, Furey will not hesitate to hold Metrolinx to account when it comes to the Ontario Line. If this project is significantly delayed, Furey will advocate for compensation for local businesses and organizations.
“It’s great news that Toronto residents are getting another subway line and I look forward to working with the province to ensure that we pull out all the stops to get it completed on time,” Furey said.