A true Torontonian knows some things about pedestrians and vehicular traffic on the Toronto streets:
1. At intersections the Pedestrian DOES have the right of way. Which means - sit there patiently waiting for the people to cross before you turn the corner.
2. A true, and law-abiding pedestrian DOES wait for the Traffic light and/or the Walk sign to turn green before crossing the street - even if there is no traffic coming.
3. A driver WILL stop behind the street car, or if already beside it, stop, while the streetcar doors are open, whether or not the traffic light is green.
4. A driver will pull safely to the side of the road and stop, or if not possible, will stop, when an emergency vehicle is coming up behind them with lights flashing and siren sounding, or will allow the vehicle right of way at an intersection. Please remember that someone's life could be in jeopardy if you don't let that vehicle through.
5. Honking the horn is not going to achieve much other than scare some poor innocent person, and annoy others. Especially if you are sitting several cars back there is obviously a problem, and horn blowing or yelling is not going to solve the problem.
6. When someone lets you in lane, don't forget to wave thanks. If they do not let you in, giving them an obscene gesture isn't going to get your car any further ahead.
Enjoy driving and walking in the city and please remember to watch out for the other guy because you're that person's "other guy" too!
1. When passing a streetcar on the inside, NEVER make the pass when the streetcar is stopped. You MUST stop behind the rear doors until the doors are closed. Lifetime Toronto guys like me always look to the right when exiting a streetcar, but others don't.
2. Avoid driving on east/west streets like Queen, King, and College, because they have streetcars on them. Use Richmond, Adelaide, etc. .
3. If you're staying in a downtown hotel, ride the TTC everywhere. If you get on the subway, I think it's 5 tokens or tickets for $9.00, or cash fare $2.25 a ride. Get the TOKENS. If you find yourself at the Union Station subway you'll be glad you did. The lineups can be a mess, with tokens you can go through the turnstiles yourself.
4. Crosswalks: If crossing one, press the button and wait for the cars to stop. If driving, don't drive through a flashing crosswalk.
5. Transfers: Most bus connections to subway stations don't require a transfer, since the buses come into a self-contained stations. Exceptions include stations like Jane, High Park, Dufferin and a few others. Most others allow you to transfer automatically. If in doubt grab one from a machine anyway or get one off the bus driver or streetcar driver when you pay your fare.
6. Sightseeing idea: Take the 501 (Queen) westbound streetcar from Queen and Yonge, Bay or University. (the destination will say Long Branch). You'll go through a lot of interesting neighbourhoods, from the trendiness of Queen West to the more earthy tones of Parkdale.
Past Parkdale, you go past High Park and towards the Humber Loop. If it's warm get off at High Park, or go past the Loop to Parklawn, where you can walk down to a nice new waterfront park where you can get the best views of Toronto from.
You can walk along the waterfront for several kilometres. Cross the Lakeshore at the intersections of Windermere, Ellis or Colborne Lodge to get back to the Queensway and the 501 streetcar going east. It will say Neville Park, Cowell or Connaught, all of which are well east of downtown.
Driving on the 401, Toronto's main East-West highway through the city, is mildly frustrating at best. Maintenance is a secondary concern, although it always seems like roadworks are underway.
The mysterious thing though, is that the traffic tends to slow down to standstill for no apparent reason. All of a sudden you'll be stopped dead, and when you reach the point that the traffic picks up again, there seems to have been no reason/ accident/ cops/anything for this to have happened.
The 100km/h speed limit is of course a totally seperate topic... for some reason North Americans are not allowed to enjoy driving at all...
Toronto has many movies and film productions shot in and around town. On my most recent visit, I happened onto the filming of an unknown movie, with a working title of "Cheetah Girls".
I took a photo of the car they were filming. It's a Mercedes concept vehicle of some kind. Sorry for the lousy picture.
Boy, was I wrong. What we saw being filmed was a car commercial for the new Nissan Murano. I see this commercial everywhere now. This photo was taken of the last shot of the commercial where the car drives by the building. Sure looked like a Mercedes at the time...
This seems to be common in Canada and in some US states. Unless otherwise indicated, you're allowed to turn right at a red traffic light from the far-right lane (when traffic allows of course). So, if you're standing there patiently waiting for the light to go green (like I did for the first few weeks) and someone starts honking their horn behind you, this is why...
The schoolbus has it s own private rules and as a driver you d better be aware of it! The childrens' safety must not be endangered so the schoolbus rules on the road!