The real reason Toronto’s King St pilot is so important

“We can’t solve problems by using the same thinking we used when we created them.” – Albert Einstein, supposedly.”

Toronto faces great challenges, as do other cities that were built for buggies and cars, rather than to adapt for people and their technological changes over time. Urban areas are crowding, facing huge infrastructure debts and worsening climate change. Growing poverty and inequity.

To address some of this, many cities have built lines for bullet trains, massive cycling infrastructure, or closed their downtowns to cars. Toronto hasn’t done these types of things.

Our strategies for change tend to look like things to keep cars moving – see what can be done about towing parked cars during rush hour and such. We’re like this with other things too.

Toronto is averse to change. It’s in our culture.

Enter the King Street transit pilot.

Planners have realized that a pilot can be a quick way to bring in change that would otherwise be seen as impossible. A kind of shift like this will be inconvenient sometimes. It will affect some businesses or residents in annoying ways.

It’s also the right way to do things. Change of this kind will allow the City to work better because it is a fundamental move in the right direction.

Our traffic mess, pollution and pedestrian deaths won’t be fixed through tweaks led by politicians trying not to annoy anyone.

The fact that we had public servants willing to take a chance and convince politicians to go along with it is a great sign.

Toronto needs to think big to address its problems.

Let’s keep it up.

…Have any big thoughts? Share this and share your idea in the comments. Dream it as a pilot.