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Cosburn-Cedarvale to get its traffic light after overwhelming Council OK

Corner of Cedarvale Ave. and Cosburn Ave. seen from southeast corner. -STAFF

Corner of Cedarvale Ave. and Cosburn Ave. seen from southeast corner. -STAFF

\ October 3, 19:45 \ BY GARY WEBB-PROCTOR \

The speed and quietude of Toronto City Council’s rubberstamp approval today of installation of a stoplight at the corner of Cosburn Ave. and Cedarvale Ave. was a marked contrast to the proposal’s previous deferral in July.

Council voted overwhelmingly, 33-3 to okay the measure proposed by Ward 31 Councillor Janet Davis despite an April report from the city’s Acting Director of Transportation Services, Dave Twaddle opposing it.

Mr. Twaddle’s report, stating that “the justifications for the installation of traffic control signals are not satisfied at the intersection” and that the existing pedestrian crosswalk “is generally operating safely.”

As reported in our July issue, Ms. Davis had asked for the stoplight following the December 2016 death of an elderly woman, Jae Blue, at the corner, the latest of “several serious traffic incidents” according to a petition introduced by the councillor that had been signed by 356 people along with a similar online one endorsed by over 100.

As the main access point to East York Memorial Arena, Stan Wadlow Park and playing fields, the Kiwanis outdoor swimming pool and Stan Wadlow Clubhouse from the northeast corner and the East York Curling Club across the street, the intersection is traversed year-round by children and seniors accessing several indoor and outdoor sports, community programs, the off-leash dog park, playground and skate park.

Although Toronto and East York Community Council at its June meeting had disregarded the traffic department’s recommendations in endorsing replacement of the crosswalk with the light, at the July council meeting some members of the city-wide body expressed the sentiment that it represented a “war on cars.”

Their desire to debate the issue led to it being bumped to the end of an already packed agenda and by the time it came up on the fourth day of the meeting, exhausted councillors, also affected by the death earlier that day of veteran Ward 28 member Pam McConnell, adjourned earlier than expected and referred the item to this month’s meeting, since no full council meetings were held in August and September.

No one spoke to the motion when it arose this morning, however, and only Etobicoke councillors Mike Ford and Stephen Holyday, along with Don Valley West Ward 26 rep Jon Burnside, voted against it.

Given the approach of cold weather, it is expected to be spring before the new light will be installed and operational.

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