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Strong majority favours more bike lanes and licensing bicyclists

July 18, 2017

In the sixth wave of the Campaign Research Poll, an online public opinion omnibus survey conducted among a sample of 506 Toronto voters, a healthy majority, close to 6 in 10, approved the idea of more bike lanes being constructed in the city (57%). About half this proportion disapproved (28%) of this proposal, and fewer than one fifth had no opinion on the issue (14%). Approval for adding more bike lanes was highest amongst younger voters (between ages 18-24 - 79%), federal Liberals (67%) and New Democrats (70%), the very wealthiest ($100K to $250K - 68%), provincial Liberals (72%) and New Democrats (71%), as well as those who would vote for Mike Layton as mayor (71%). Alternatively, participants who identified as Doug Ford supporters did not agree with this proposal (45%). As expected, those who travel through the city by bicycle (77%) were one of the greatest proponents for this proposal.

 

Disapproval of adding bike lanes was greatest among the oldest (aged 65+ - 34%), federal Conservatives (46%), those in mid-income groups ($60K to $80K - 40%), provincial Conservatives (45%), Doug Ford supporters (44%), Etobicoke residents (39%) and those who travel by car (37%).

 

STRONG MAJORITY FAVOURS COMPETENCY TESTING, LICENSING AND INSURANCE FOR BICYCLISTS

 

The majority of Torontonians, 6 in 10, agreed that the government should test bicyclists for competency, requiring a license and insurance similar to motorists (60%). Fewer than 3 in 10 disagree with this position, and more than one tenth have no opinion (12%). Agreement with such licensing requirements was highest amongst older participants (aged 65+ - 77%), federal Conservatives (66%), provincial Progressive Conservatives (67%), John Tory supporters (65%) and residents of York (71% - caution: small base size).

 

Disagreement with licensing, testing and insurance for cyclists was highest amongst federal New Democrats (34%), the wealthy ($80K to $100K - 42%), provincial New Democrats (34%), Mike Layton supporters (34%), East York (34% - caution: small base size) and cyclists (56%). Such disagreement was also shared by those who primarily walk around the city (36%).

 

MOST TRAVEL CITY BY PRIVATE VEHICLE, PUBLIC TRANSIT. FEW USE BIKES

 

The plurality of Torontonians move about the city by car (45%); while a smaller portion of Torontonians use public transit (39%). One tenth walk to their destinations (11%) and very few use bicycles (3%). Bike usage is most common amongst the youngest (between ages 18 to 24 - 8%) and males (4%), rather than females (1%). Boomers (55 to 64 - 54%), females (47%), more than males (43%), the wealthiest ($100K to $250K - 56%), Doug Ford supporters (51%) and Etobicoke residents (61%) are most likely to use a car to travel around Toronto. Public transit users are mostly comprised of Gen X (45 to 54 - 54%), the less wealthy ($20K to $40K - 52%) and Mike Layton supporters (44%).

 

“It appears that while Torontonians are enthusiastic about the city developing its network of bike lanes, they also strongly think cyclists should be subject to testing, licensing and insurance much like motorists” said Eli Yufest, CEO of Campaign Research. Eli may be reached at eyufest@campaignresearch.ca or at (647) 931 4025, ext 109

 

METHODOLOGY

 

This online poll was conducted between July 7 and July 10, among a panel of 506 Toronto residents. A probability sample of this size would have a margin of error of plus or minus 5%, 19 out of 20 times.

 

 

 

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