The City of Saskatoon is considering lower posted speed limits in residential neighbourhoods. Speed limits in school and playground zones and areas with a high number of seniors are also being reviewed.
Why are speed limits being reviewed?
Vehicle speed and pedestrian safety in residential neighbourhoods have been the top concerns we've heard from citizens through the Neighbourhood Traffic Review program, with many telling us they are interested in having speed limits lower than 50 km/h on residential streets.
Studies show that lower speeds can help prevent collisions and dramatically reduce the chance of severe injury or death for pedestrians or cyclists who are hit by vehicles. Lower speed limits on residential streets would have little impact on travel times for drivers.
Click the arrows on the boxes below to find out more on why the City is considering lower speed limits in residential neighbourhoods. You can click on the images to view larger versions.
Reaction Time & Braking Distance
- Drivers travelling at higher speeds travel farther before they can react.
- Vehicles travelling at higher speeds take longer to come to a complete stop.
Field of Vision
- Drivers travelling at higher speeds have a narrower field of vision. For example, one study found that drivers travelling at 40 km/h are more able to notice what's happening around them than drivers travelling at 70 km/h whose focus is more on what is right in front of them.
- As vehicles travel faster, the risk of death to pedestrians and cyclists involved in a vehicle collision rises dramatically.
- The dramatic increase in risk of death or serious injury at faster speeds is also true for those in a vehicle, particularly for head-on collisions or side-impact collisions when a vehicle turns in front of another.
- 650 speed studies have been completed in residential areas in Saskatoon in the past few years due to resident concerns with speeding. Speeding was confirmed in about half the studies.
- Reduced speeds would have a minor impact on a typical travel time. See the neighbourhood maps below for estimates of increases to travel times for each neighbourhood if posted speed limits were lowered to 30 km/h or 40 km/h.
- What feels safe for drivers may not feel safe for pedestrians, cyclists, or people in their yards.
- Other cities have decided to reduce speed limits in residential areas, such as Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto, Hamilton, Ottawa, Montreal, Portland, and Seattle. In addition, several cities in Saskatchewan have speed limits of 40 km/h, such as Warman, Martensville, and Prince Albert.
- The City is also reviewing speed limits in areas where a high number of seniors live, as some seniors may take longer to cross the street, may have slower reaction times, and may be more prone to injury.
- The City is also considering possible changes to posted speed limits next to schools and some playgrounds. More information on these possible changes are available in the online survey (March 2 - April 30) that can be found on the "Engage" tab of this website.
How would this affect my neighbourhood?
There are three different types of streets with residences on them in Saskatoon:
- Local streets make up the majority of streets in residential neighbourhoods. They usually have lower volumes of traffic and their main function is for access to residences.
- Collector streets have higher volumes of traffic and provide access to schools, parks, and community centres, and often have bus routes. Some examples include Richardson Road, Assiniboine Drive, Kingsmere Boulevard, and Stensrud Road. Here is a map of all collector streets in Saskatoon.
- Arterial Streets are typically around the boundary of a neighbourhood and connect to other neighbourhoods, have higher volumes of traffic, and sometimes have more than one travel lane in each direction. Some examples include segments of Diefenbaker Drive, Spadina Crescent, and Taylor Street. Here is a map of all arterial streets in Saskatoon.
To see a map of estimated impacts to travel times in your neighbourhood if speed limits are reduced, you can select it from the dropdown menu below. Please note these maps present impacts to travel times if Council chooses to reduce speed limits in residential neighbourhoods and include both collector streets and arterial streets in the speed reduction.
Each link below contains two maps for each neighbourhood: one displaying a change to posted speed limits of 40 km/h and the other displaying a change to 30 km/h.
How can I give my input?
See the "Engage" tab to find out how you can engage with us.