HOV lanes definitely done after Pan Am Games: Province

18 Jul 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Carpool services popular during Pan Am Games: Uber.

Ontario’s Ministry of Transportation reiterated Friday it has no plans of keeping the HOV lanes, which were put in place on roadways and highways such as the Gardiner Expwy., Hwy 401, Lake Shore Blvd., and the Don Valley Pkwy. just before the games started as a way of allowing athletes and Pan Am officials to move quickly to and from events.Uber says more than half of its Toronto customers have been using its carpooling service during rush hour to take advantage of the Pan Am Games’ HOV lanes.”There are quite a few outdoor events that you can actually still see for free without a ticket,” Henry Dillon, a Toronto 2015 volunteer serving as deputy venue transport manager for Ontario Place West, wrote on Reddit.TORONTO: American swimmers finally made a splash in the Pan American Games pool on Thursday while the decision to have controversial hip hop artist Kanye West headline the closing ceremonies sparked outrage and took the focus off the athletes.

Many drivers will been happy to see the end of the HOVs, which are are only open to non-games motorists who have a minimum of three people in the vehicle. “There are no plans to keep any of the temporary HOV lanes in place after the games,” said ministry spokesman Ajay Woozageer in an e-mail, going on to say that “temporary HOV usage will be used to inform long-term planning” when it comes to battling congestion. The ride-sharing company says 60% of customers used UberPOOL this week and more than 50% of them were successfully matched with other UberPOOL riders going to similar destinations. Leading up to the games, the City of Toronto introduced temporary high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes to many of the highways and roads in and around the city. Those wishes were quickly met, as at least 20 such petitions on the popular social change site Change.org sprung up in the following 48 hours, with tens of thousands of people signing on to protest the rapper’s planned appearance July 26 at the Rogers Centre. “I, personally, have never seen so many petitions created within 48 hours about an event in Toronto,” said Change.org campaign director Kathryn Semogas. “There’s a debate playing out on the site, with about 20 petitions calling for West’s removal, the one with the most support has over 41,000 signatures.

After a smooth start to the July 10-26 competition, which many consider Toronto’s audition for landing a Summer Olympics, Pan Am Games officials have come under fire for not going with a more Canadian line-up. Since announcing on Wednesday that Grammy-winning West will be part of a line-up including USA rapper Pitbull and Canadian musician Serena Ryder, a number of online petitions have popped up demanding officials to reconsider. On Saturday and Sunday, the finals will be available for viewing for those situated on Sugar Beach, the same place to catch the medal ceremonies both days. While the games continue until July 26, with events across southern Ontario, many commuters from across the Greater Toronto Area are still in the swing of their normal work routines. It is a cheaper version of its UberX service, where ordinary drivers use their own vehicles to ferry passengers around for a fare, which is less than the regulated taxi rates.

On Saturday, there’s a ticket-only viewing area for the women’s marathon, but you can also see the event from anywhere outside of the competition venue, as displayed on this map. After out-duelling American Caitlin Leverenz to the wall in the 400 metre individual medley, 17-year-old Canadian Emily Overholt was left crushed when she was stripped of her medal for a non-simultaneous touch during the breaststroke. Two recent Canadian examples include a petition to get NXNE to cancel Action Bronson’s public show at Yonge-Dundas Square, which garnered over 40,000 signatures and led to NXNE cancelling the rapper’s appearance.

A few minutes later it was Brazilian great Thiago Pereira, winner of a Pan Am record 21 swimming medals, who was denied another gold for an illegal touch in the men’s 400m IM, handing victory to teammate Brandonn Almeida. Some say they haven’t seen much difference in the time it takes to get to the office, while others complain of jammed subway cars, highway gridlock and doubled commute times. In 2013, there were petitions to prevent Chris Brown from performing in Canada, which may or may not have resulted in sponsors pulling their support from his Dartmouth, NS appearance.

Uber reports that more than 2,000 people requested an Uber Pool ride on Tuesday, the first full day, though the company waived all fees during the morning and afternoon rush hour. With just two golds from the first two days of the swimming competition, the Americans finally flexed their muscles on Day Three, reaching the top of the podium in four of five finals. And in 2011, over 55,000 football fans signed a petition trying to prevent Nickelback from playing a halftime show in Detroit, which was ultimately unsuccessful. Next week, from Monday to Thursday, catch the water skiing and wake boarding events at the Ontario West Channel. “This is my favourite event and the one that I’m most looking forward to,” Dillon said.

Leverenz, Kelsi Worrell (women’s 100 butterfly), Giles Smith (men’s 100 butterfly) and the women’s 4×200 freestyle relay were all winners, with only Almeida preventing a USA golden sweep. Blancride also uses a mobile app, created at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology, that aims to link passengers looking for a carpool ride, usually a day or week in advance. The competitions are sold out but there’s a bridge crossing Lake Shore Boulevard West south of Fort Rouille that provides a view and may be open to the public. He ended up playing to a sold out crowd of 25,000, despite a petition with almost the same amount of signatures asking organizers to cancel his appearance all together. For Pan Am’s part, they seem intent on following suit and keeping with West’s performance as planned, no matter how many signatures these petitions can gather.

It is 25 cents a kilometre for the first 30 kilometres, then 20 cents a kilometre for the next 20 kilometres, and then 15 cents a kilometre after that. Canada and the United States traded gold medals at the badminton hall with the Americans winning the mixed doubles and the hosts striking gold and silver in the women’s singles. In fact, Pan Am CEO Saad Rafi seems genuinely excited about booking one of the biggest musicians in the world to close down the games. “If this just doesn’t get you excited and if you don’t think there’s going to be a party in Toronto on the 26th of July, then we have nothing left for you,” he said.

Kevin Cordon, Guatemala’s flag bearer at the 2012 London Olympics, successfully defended the men’s singles title he won in Guadalajara, beating Canada’s Andrew D’Souza 2-0 to bring the badminton competition to a close. Cuba struck double gold in men’s Greco-Roman wrestling, Mijain Lopez, Olympic champion in 2008 and 2012, winning in the 130kg weight class and Yasmany Lugo taking first in the 98kg division. Known as “slugging”, drivers pull up to places where passengers gather, often a bus stop or commuter lot, and call out a destination like the Pentagon. No money changes hands, as the transaction is seen as a win-win situation where drivers are able to use the fast lane and passengers get to their destinations sooner. In some cases, people who are paying to watch the Games are finding their tickets didn’t provide them with much of an improved view compared to those who didn’t dish out cash.

David LeBlanc, who runs the website Slug-Lines in suburban Virginia, said slugging comes from the word slugs, a term bus drivers used for counterfeit coins. But with the growth of on-demand apps, he’s now looking at whether some university students might help to develop a competing app. “I hate carpooling because it’s a set time and location,” LeBlanc said. “If I am in a meeting at work and I can’t leave, then I am inconveniencing the carpool. Because I go to the gym in the morning, so I’m already up at just before 5 a.m., then I have to be on a specific train if I’m going to make it to work. I’m lucky enough to have a job where I can work from home a lot of the time, so personally, it’s not as bad because I can be a little more flexible. Transit isn’t really an option because it would be a streetcar up to a subway up to a bus, and it would take me longer to take transit than it would just to drive.

The part that really just gets me: It’s really stupid, but they make an announcement every morning on the northbound line, like, ‘Good morning everyone!’ And the Toronto commuters are looking at each other like, ‘Seriously?

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