215 SPADINA AVE —— This bike, which was sponsored by 8-80 Cities, recognizes Jane Jacobs’ notable opposition to the Spadina Expressway. Approved by the Metro Council in 1961, the north-south freeway would have been constructed had it not been for the loud, energetic protest from Toronto residents who care about neighbourhood and community.
BIKES, BIKES, BIKES!
This past weekend, we had enough guardian angels to start a softball team. After a few set-backs and surprises, we were able to secure a location for our public painting event thanks to the generosity of Ray and Michaela of The Bicycle Commons. The open garage studio and alley way in Kensington Market was the perfect place to transform our crowd of sad bikes, which wouldn’t have...
BLOOR ST AND KEEL ST ——- This bike celebrates the ever-changing graffiti wall that runs behind the businesses lining the south side of Bloor Street, just east of Keel. Facing one of the few open stretched of TTC tracks in the city, the wall has been inspiring commuters daily the 1980s.
DUNDAS ST W ——— This yellow bike marks an extra hot intersection in the City. Ezra’s Pound, Ella’s Uncle and Saving Grace offer up a myriad of delicious options on a Sunday morning; and a stone’s throw away are MADE, The Black Hoof, The Communal Mule and many other sweet spots.
BIKES ARE SO HOT RIGHT NOW -- S'PECIALLY NEON ONES
Neon bikes, neon nails, kick ass girls and graffiti alleys all feature largely in Rye Rye’s new video for her song Sunshine, featuring MIA. Looks like Vanessa and I have our fingers on the pulse boy-o! Recently, we’ve had to face a whole lot of B.S. in order to get our good bikes on the street. Now, whenever I’m feeling down about our project I turn this song up and sing...
PARLIMENT AND DUNDAS ——— This bike marks the Regent Park neighbourhood, which is Canada’s oldest social housing community. The area is in the midst of a major revitalization, which promotes environmentally friendly living and is meant to integrate social housing residents and incoming condo investors. It is a well-meaning project that Jane Jacobs would have been proud of.
241 YONGE ST ——- In 1974, Canadian artist collective General Idea opened Art Metropole in the front part of their studio on the third floor of this location. The groundbreaking retail endeavour was inspired by the success of their self-published FILE Magazine and eventually became a leading centre for the distribution and collection of artist books and editions. The Good loves Art Metropole!
ALBANY AVE ——- This bike marks the street where legendary writer and activist Jane Jacobs lived. Jacobs is best known for penning The Death and Life of American Cities (1961), a landmark book of major consequence on the subject of urban planning in the 20th Century that called for urban planners to build for people and not for cars. After moving to Toronto from New York in 1968, Jacobs helped...
Every time I’m in the Regent Park community, which is often, I look at the green and blue bikes and smile broadly. I hope they are having a similar impact everywhere else you are ‘seeding’ them. You are making great lemonade from these old lemons, and are demonstrating that small positive actions can reverberate around the globe. Well done to both of you. Your project creates interest...
After being rescheduled twice within 24 hours, the Council Meeting to discuss the removal of the Jarvis bike lane was called on Tuesday, July 12. I arrived at City Hall with our letter to Mayor Rob Ford in hand, which I dropped off personally at his office. With little time to spare, I dashed up to the Meeting Room to show our support for the ill fated bike lane and to listen to the related...
We were very excited by the City’s positive response to the good bike project earlier this summer. We were happy that Adam Vaughan and Gary Crawford were so immediately engaged by our art project, and we were encouraged to hear that you also supported the project. On Councilor Crawford’s initiative, the City has provided us with over fifty bikes and has given us leeway with regards to bylaws;...
GREAT WORK! I wish more of this happened in cities across Canada. It brings uniqueness to life. I’d much rather live in a city filled by creative people like yourselves that try and liven up the concrete facade than a dead city dictated by rules which leave no room for neighbourhood identity. Besides, the city only noticed the issue once the bike was made beautiful. Oh the...
This week has been a demoralizing one for us. Our plants were being stolen so regularly from the good bike’s basket that the two of us gave up and substituted our breathing greenery with some cheerful, hot pink plastic peonies. We wired them securely to the basket frame and put up a sign kindly asking people not to take our flowers. The next day, they were gone; and so we resolved to give...
I love the bike and I am miles away from it in London, England. London, like so many other cities in this world, has character as well as a sense of community and culture thanks to lovely gems of urban art. In Toronto’s case, there is the neon bike. To remove it would be a very sad thing. Toronto needs a bit more character and vibrancy and more public displays of art that show off the...
They’re here! A big thanks to Jesjit Gill for the design and to Jeff Woodrow of Joy Apparel for silk screening two hundred bags. To get your hands on one, all you have to do is make a small donation (twenty bucks) via Rockethub.
PAINTING DAY AT REGENT PARK
We hosted our first painting event this past Sunday at the Regent Park community in the Queen East neighborhood. We partnered with Adam Molson of Daniels Corporation on this event because we see connections between our project’s community interests and the steps he and his colleagues are taking to integrate on site social housing with incoming condo developments. We set up ten...