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Illegal right turns frustrate residents as construction plagues midtown Toronto intersection

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Frustration with Toronto drivers is mounting on a small residential street south of Eglinton Avenue West, sandwiched between the on and off-ramps to Allen Road.

Despite a sign showing it's illegal to drive north on a portion of Everden Road from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m., vehicles use the stretch to turn right on Eglinton. This turn is also illegal during the same time and also has a road sign.

Ben Kayfetz, who lives nearby on Everden Road and has started a petition to fix the intersection, said ever since the new road configuration reopened this past year, the number of drivers not following the rules continuously creates a long line of backed-up vehicles on his street, contributing to the clogged traffic on Eglinton for those trying to get on Allen Road.

"It's just really annoying," Kayfetz told CTV News Toronto in an interview Wednesday afternoon. "And it takes away from the enjoyment of living in the city."

"I can't get out of my driveway at many times of the day," said Anthony Hylton, who also lives on Everden Road.

"It's very disheartening that the city doesn't seem to have done anything about it," Hylton said before correcting himself. "Actually, I lied. They put traffic wardens at the bottom of the street from time to time to stop these cars from going up. But as you can see, as soon as the traffic wardens leave, the traffic comes back."

Kayfetz said construction pylons have been left near the section of road it's illegal to drive. Ever since the spring, he said he's helped traffic wardens in the area, on most mornings, by assisting with controlling traffic flow. The City of Toronto said it has two agents directing traffic in this spot.

  • Watch this story on CTV News Toronto at 6 p.m.

Kayfetz says he helps by taking the pylons and spacing them out across the street. With the pylons laid out, it appears most of the approaching vehicles slow down and turn around. However, CTV News observed some who either got out of their vehicle to move a pylon and make room to get by or mounted the curb to bypass the pylons.

To show CTV News Toronto what it's like without the pylons, Kayfetz pushes them off to the side. Soon after, vehicles were illegally zipping by, and not too long before, a stacked line of cars was on Everden Road.

"I really don't know. I can't get out of here because there's cars in front of me, close behind me," said one driver in the line waiting to make the illegal right turn. "It's a struggle with Google Maps."

"There's just no organization," said another. "I guess something needs to be done about it."

A long line of cars as a result of traffic congestion around Eglinton. (Ben Kayfetz)

Kayfetz said the top of Everden Road was closed for many years during the construction of the Eglinton LRT Crosstown, but within the past year, it reopened with a new traffic configuration on Eglinton.

He believes a lack of lanes to turn north onto Allen Road is the source of the problem and wants to see the ramp with four lanes instead of the current two.

"I think that 500 metres or so down the ramp, enough room for the merging to happen down there instead of backing up here," he said.

The City of Toronto said in a statement to CTV News Toronto the option of four lanes onto the Allen was explored but not pursued because of cost and property impacts. However, it said it is monitoring traffic cameras and looking at other possibilities to improve the situation.

"Staff are currently examining options that will enhance signage and pavement markings in addition to exploring traffic flow improvements through analysis, modelling and design solutions. Staff are also looking at designating certain streets in the area as one way to minimize traffic infiltration, potentially reducing congestion and improving traffic flow," the city said.

Metrolinx said in a statement that its contractor is conducting deficiency repairs in the area requiring lane closures and is working with the city.

The stretch of road in question is next to a police station. CTV News Toronto reached out to police. Officers said they plan to contact the Traffic Agent Supervisor for further information.

It's not clear when Kayfetz will stop adjusting the pylons near his home or when the traffic might ease up. 

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