Toronto launches Quick Clear Squads to help ease rush hour traffic

Nov 6 2017, 10:23 pm

To get the Gardiner and DVP moving during rush hour traffic, Mayor John Tory launched the city’s Quick Clear Squads on Monday.

The Quick Clear Squads will be on the Gardiner Expressway and the Don Valley Parkway during morning rush hour to fix any problems causing lane blockages, and the squads are part of Tory’s new traffic measures announced this fall.

“This is the kind of common sense approaches to traffic and congestion management that Toronto residents expect of City Hall,” said Mayor Tory in a statement. “Over the last three years, we have finally focused on fighting traffic in Toronto and improving commute times. I am determined to build on the progress we’ve made and continue the fight each and every day.”

Monday’s launch is a result of a two-month pilot by the City’s transportation division during September and October. Through the pilot, two Squad shifts were created to monitor lanes along the DVP, the Gardiner, and major arterial roads and respond to the scenes of accidents or stalled vehicles, according to the City.

The Squads provided onsite traffic control using the crash truck and sign board, cleaned up debris, assisted tow truck drivers, and made any necessary repairs in order to reopen the road.

While the full data is still being tabulated, the City said that early indications showed positive reviews on the pilot. Crews had responded to 330 calls, attended to 150 incidents of disabled vehicles, and responded within 30 minutes or less during the new shift times.

When the Quick Clear Squads aren’t attending an emergency or incident, the City said they monitor the DVP and the Gardiner and make maintenance repairs required to keep the roads in a state of good repair.

In September, Tory also revealed his plans to have full-time traffic wardens in the city.

The wardens would be at major intersections in Toronto to reduce gridlock, and the Mayor hopes they would be in place as soon as next year.

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