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Toronto's top doctor in favour of Yonge Street bike lanes

Cycle Toronto is calling on the city to expand the Bloor Street bike lanes. 680NEWS/Momin Qureshi

A controversial plan to transform a section of Yonge Street is getting positive reviews from Toronto’s top doctor.

The plan would see a stretch of Yonge in North York reduced from six lanes to four to make way for new bike lanes. The separated lanes would be installed on both side of a three kilometre stretch of the thoroughfare from Sheppard Avenue to Finch Avenue.

The $60 million ‘Tranform Yonge’ plan would also make the stretch more pedestrian-friendly. The plan could see an addition of safer pedestrian crossings, as well as a widening of sidewalks along the stretch.

The staff report will be before next weeks infrastructure and environment committee and as part of the report, a glowing endorsement from Dr. Eileen de Villa. The city’s chief medical officer says the plan will result in more social interaction and encourage active living.

Other items on the council agenda today include a request to look into possibly changing the ratio of full-time to part-time paramedics.

In a report going before council, it says by changing the ratio, more paramedics would have paid sick days to decrease the likelihood of them working in other positions, potentially exposing them to greater risk.

This comes as the union representing Toronto paramedics came out yesterday saying its members are exhausted. overwhelmed, and at a breaking point due to the workload of the COVID-19 pandemic.

City council will also debate a motion to call on the province to withdraw its amendment to the municipal elections act as it relates to ranked ballot elections.

Toronto had recently voted to go ahead with consultations to look into the use of ranked ballots for the 2026 municipal election.

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