This report presents an ambitious vision for a connected Greenways network of off-road multi-use trails (greenways) in publicly owned corridors throughout Scarborough. Scarborough is fortunate in having major opportunities to build Greenways in existing public rights of way with no need for land purchase or expropriation. The Greenway network presented here sets out a vision for a connected network that reaches to every corner of Scarborough, with 93% of Scarborough residents living within 1km of the proposed network. Some off-road paths currently exist, but most are in parks, and are very narrow. Crucially, they don’t connect together to form a network and are therefore almost useless to get around Scarborough. The total network we propose is 164.9km in length, of which 51% already exists as paths and trails. This is a significant head start, but we argue that it should be a major City of Toronto priority to improve these paths and connect them together. A major Toronto policy priority is to facilitate the shift to a mobility culture in which active transportation plays a meaningful part. But the reasonable fear of dangerous roadways is an important obstacle to a greater share of active transportation for mobility in Scarborough.
A Greenway network can make a major contribution to building a walking and cycling culture for everyday mobility. This Greenway network will transform Scarborough from an active transportation desert to the place with one of the best urban off-road active transportation networks in the world. We argue that plans for active transportation including Greenway network plans must be in place before large-scale intensification redevelopment of Scarborough accelerates. It is important that no further public land corridors should be privatized before a plan for a complete network of off-road multi-use trails is agreed and established as City of Toronto policy.
See our full report here