Traffic conditions on residential streets can greatly affect the liability of neighbourhoods. When streets are safe and pleasant, quality of life is enhanced. Neighbourhood residents are concerned with a variety of issues such as traffic volumes, vehicle speeds and the safety of pedestrians, cyclists and motorists. To help alleviate residents concerns, the City of Niagara Falls initiated neighbourhood traffic management programs.
Neighbourhood traffic calming measures are implemented to resolve traffic and safety problems on residential streets. Neighbourhood traffic calming involves altering motorist behaviour on a single street or on a portion of a street network. Is is the combination of mainly physical measures that reduce the negative effects of motor vehicle use, alter driver behaviour and improve conditions for non-motorized street users.
Effective speed control measures include primarily the use of speed humps with the use of traffic circles in some situations. Speed control measures not only reduce vehicular speeds but they can also help discourage non-local traffic from travelling through a neighbourhood. Based on the City's past experience, all-way stops on their own are generally not effective for speed control.
For speed control devices to be considered, at least 51% of the residents on the street must be in favour of speed control devices, in addition to a speeding problem being identified. A speeding problem is noted when the operating speed is 10 km/h or more above the speed limit (i.e. 61 km/h or more in a 50 km/h zone) on a residential collector or local street, or when the operating speed is between 1 km/h and 10 km/h over the speed limit (i.e. 53 km/h in a 50 km/h zone) when there is at least one pedestrian generator (school, park, retirement home, etc.) abutting the residential collector or local street.
If you feel that your street is a good candidate for speed control measures, please submit a correspondence to the City's Transportation Services Department. Once received, the City will scheduled technical studies to determine if there is a speeding problem on your street. If so, the project will continue with a questionnaire to all affected property owners, inviting their opinion for speed control devices on the street.