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City looks to move forward with pilot project to lower residential speed limits


Drivers could soon have to slow down in four Winnipeg neighbourhoods. The city is planning on moving ahead with a pilot project to lower the default speed limit in select areas.

Pedestrians and cyclists take advantage of the Bourkevale neighbourhood's green spaces and quiet streets.

Bourkevale resident Bill Johnstone says people sometimes drive too fast in his neighbourhood tucked between Portage Avenue and the Assiniboine River.

"They go by quite quick and it upsets a number of us residents who have been here for a while," he told CTV News.

Those concerns have prompted an ongoing effort in the area to lower the residential speed limit from the default 50 km/h to 30 km/h.

Now it appears that's set to happen.

Approved last April, the city is planning on moving ahead with a pilot project in four Winnipeg neighbourhoods where the residential speed limits will drop for a year.

In Bourkevale, along with South Tyndall Park area, the speed will drop to 30 km/h.

The speeds will be lowered to 40 km/h in Richmond West and the Worthington neighbourhood.

The areas – two newly constructed and two older ones – were chosen to get data on various neighbourhood layouts so the city can make recommendations for citywide residential speed limits down the road.

"We're looking at traffic calming in the neighbourhoods and we've seen a huge desire, I'd call it a public outcry," Coun. Janice Lukes, chair of the city's public works committee.

"I envision ultimately as our city grows as our density increases, that eventually it will be a city-wide initiative."

Not everyone supports this move, though.

Coun. Jeff Browaty (North Kildonan) feels 30 or 40 km/h is too slow on residential streets. He worries this could be seen as a potential cash grab to ticket drivers.

"You can't legislate common sense," he said. "Fifty km/h under perfect conditions on these streets is appropriate, but again you have to slow right down when it's not safe to travel at these speeds and that's already in the current law."

For this to start, council needs to approve changes to a bylaw. If approved, the city said this could start by early to mid March.

The pilot project is expected to cost around $400,000, including the cost to install new speed limit signs. Top Stories

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