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Old 01-19-2008, 01:20 AM
Location: Toronto
215 posts, read 1,544,143 times
Reputation: 141


Here in Toronto we have a pretty major "Grid Glitch" as I like to call it. We have a nice grid system of major roads, but there is a major break in it. I dont mean at the old municipal borders, where the road has to swing out this or that way 100 meters or more, because you can still make the connection, but I'm talking about between Eglinton and St.Clair.

These two major east-west streets are about 2km apart, and between them is a number of roadblocks. In the east, St.Clair hits lake Ontario. It's only a short jaunt from here to the Don River. The north-south connections in this area are very well done, however, due to Lake Ontario, any travel to downtown would have to be done though the east-west portion of the city south of old East York. This part of the city lacks a freeway and has older 4-lane roads that have Streetcars running in mixed-traffic, and is hardly an option for a fast commute.

In the west, St.Clair hits the humber river. Beyond the river the grid is complete, but south of here the grid connections are troublesome, with only three good connections (Bloor, Dundas, and "The Spine") This boxes in the area containing Downtown, and separates it from the area where most of the people live.

Back to the don river, which despite normally running north-south, takes a rather inconvenient turn west and runs where St.Clair should be. There are only two north-south bridges across the river, and one of them empties onto an east-west street. The other empties into two 4-lane old roads. By the time you get to the end of the don river you find your first real and true north-south connector. Bayview. Problem? It runs far to the east of downtown. People still tend to use this route as a fast by-pass of other roads in the area, however.

Next is Yonge St. the centre of Toronto. It runs straight though, but is a 4 lane road with many stop lights. Next is Avenue, which does not run straight though. Someone thought it'd be a great idea to put a College right where Avenue should do, and hence you have to drive around it, and it's not a simple easy drive either. Beyond Avenue you have Bathurst, which dare I say is the best connection of all. Even though it's a 4-lane street, there are few lights though the area, and very little parking on the curb. Beyond Bathurst, you have streets like Oakwood, which represent part of a broken grid with streets like Ossington. The next big connection is Dufferin, which would be fine and dandy even though it is west of the core, but this street tends to have much parking, and has buses running every 2 minutes and 30 seconds on average. After Dufferin you get another grid-break at places like Lansdowne and Caledonia, and then Keele, and Weston, before finally getting to Jane, another road with very often buses, that is far to the west of the core.

Google Maps shows this well here:
Google Maps

I suppose what I'm asking is if anyone knows of other canadian cities with such major glitches in their road grid?
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