It's no secret that the City of Toronto's King St. project has been a 'love it' or 'hate it' type of situation. If you need a bit of a refresher on the whole subject, cars can't drive past more than one intersection on King St. The changes were made in order to halt congestion on the street and move street cars faster. Who's exempt from the driving rule? Taxis and street cars.
While it's been great for streetcar drivers and users along King St. it's become apparent that it's not just car drivers and Ubers who are suffering from the pilot project. Businesses along King St. are losing money, and we are talking tens of thousands of dollars.
Businesses along King St. range from restaurants to shopping boutiques and before the pilot project, the street was bustling. Unfortunately with the new rules set in and cars practically banned from the street, it's made the restos and boutique shops along the street a lot harder for people to get to. While business owners expected a slightly lower revenue, owners have come out to say that they've suffered terrible financial losses due to the project. One owner claiming that he's had to sink in upwards of $70,000 to keep his restaurant afloat.
Businesses are suffering so much that they are offering discounted parking, in the city of Toronto you know an area must be hurting if they are knocking off $5 from their parking spaces. The effects of the project apparently happened immediately after it was announced, with a dramatic drop in customers within days of police enforcing the new rules.
In the wake of so many businesses suffering, many are claiming that they will be seeking legal action in efforts to cancel the project. Until then, John Tory will apparently be meeting with business owners this Friday to discuss the issues facing King St and what changes could be on the horizon.