The new plan that could make it easier to calm traffic on local streets
WINNIPEG -- The City of Winnipeg wants to slow down drivers, as a new plan to expand traffic calming measures on local streets is gaining momentum at city hall.
Richard Meade says drivers use his River Heights street to avoid main arteries, but it has humps to slow down speeders.
"Just see everybody trying to skip the lights, skip the stop signs, so they just cruise past they don't care about the kids running across," he says.
Meade says Winnipeg could use more traffic calming measures.
"If they had more then they wouldn't be speeding so fast down each street. It’d be like okay it's not that much of a shortcut, let’s just stay on the main route.”
Currently, residents can ask for speed humps on their street, but it’s only considered if 70 per cent of residents on a street sign a petition.
A study of 311 requests for speed humps between 2015 and 2018 shows just 32 of 156 met the 70 per cent target, and of those none met the city's criteria.
The city is hoping to change that.
"I think this is going to result in more demand for traffic calming in neighbourhoods. We've seen the threshold diminish," says public works chair Coun. Matt Allard.
The city's infrastructure committee passed a new traffic calming process. Instead of 70 per cent on a petition, residents would only need 25 per cent to jumpstart the process.
“It's a lot less onerous then requiring that 70 per cent which is quite a gate to pass through," says David Patman , manager of transportation for public works,
The city is also vowing to work closer with residents.
Currently speed humps are the only option, but the new process will consider other measures that may be more appropriate depending on the street and larger neighbourhood such as: raised crosswalks, traffic circles, raised intersections, curb extensions, lane narrowing, rumble strips, access restrictions, and enforcement if necessary.
“Our new process opens up, there's a whole big menu of different options to traffic calming,” says Patman.
Meade would like other options. He says the speed humps on his street are too low and long, and don't slow anyone down.
"Make it like a curb if you're going to hit it fast you're going to feel it, you drive over it slow you're going to do fine," he says.
The new plan now moves up the chain at city hall, requiring council approval.