City council passes new criteria for 30 kph zones

Four-part checklist begins with community petition

When it comes to speeds on local streets, the ball is now in your court.

On May 7 city council passed guidelines outlining how a street’s speed limit can drop to 30 kph from 40 kph, the first step of which is a community petition requesting the lowered limit.

Under the new rules, a petition bearing a minimum 25 percent of residents’ signatures must be brought to the city before a particular local or collector road will be considered. For streets on which there are apartment buildings, 15 percent will be required.

The targeted street must be a local or collector road, be no wider than 8.5 metres and have fewer than 8,000 cars on it per day, a minimum of 85 percent of which having been clocked at below 50 kph.

The city would then look at whether the road is in a school zone or an adjacent park, or has bike lanes. Only one of the three needs to be met in order for the request to proceed. Should none be met, a final set of four criteria would be examined, with three needing to be met.

The four criteria are: no sidewalks, parking on both sides of the street (or one side of a street narrower than 6.5 metres), curves in the road less than 200 metres from each other, and lack of a safe stopping distance at least twice on the road.

Other items related to 30 kph speed limits:

  • Brought forward by Eglinton-Lawrence councillor Christin Carmichael Greb and supported unanimously by council, the general manager of transportation services will report to the public works committee on what impact would be seen in Toronto if the Ontario Ministry of Transportation amends the default speed limit, and what would be the impact of creating “school safety zones” — mandatory 30 kph speed limits in school areas.
  • Council will ask the province to enact a regulation allowing for Toronto to double speeding fines in 30 kph zones.
  • Councillors have requested the chief of police create a strategy to increase enforcement of speed limits in neighbourhoods.

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Posted: May 27 2015 10:13 am
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto
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