I used to think the amount of roadwork and construction along Toronto streets were the biggest cause of the nightmare that Toronto drivers face everyday and I complained mightily about (as well as about the potholes, as you may recall).
But now I find another problem is reaching a crescendo of sorts: the number of delivery vans parked and double parked on our streets, both residential and commercial.
This has always been an issue in midtown Toronto but it’s has gotten completely out of control with the large volume of parcels being delivered for the holiday season. Canada Post, UPS, FedEx — all the companies that are profiting from the boom in online purchases have their vehicles on the street, usually parked illegally, forcing other drivers and cyclists to go around them or line up behind them while the drivers drop off parcels to homes and businesses. And also often taking up parking spaces, without putting money in meters where normally required, thus defrauding the city.
The worst instances I find in my area on St. Clair Avenue and Eglinton Avenue, both streets already under stress thanks to transit projects. But it affects us all over Toronto.
What gives delivery vehicles the right to do this? The few tickets they receive are chalked up to a (minor) cost of doing business. I understand they are performing a service to businesses and consumers but they are helping destroy the quality of urban life for those same businesses and consumers when they get in their cars or on their bikes. They need to find new ways to get parcels to recipients without this inconvenience to everyone else who users our roads.
I fear the problem will persist past the holiday season as online shopping continues to take over retail sales.