Community-guided plans for traffic, road safety, and active transportation.

Neighbourhood Streets Plans (NSPs) are a new service for neighbourhoods where travel choices or traffic patterns challenge the safety and mobility of people using the streets.

Through the planning process, a team of City staff will work with communities to identify local issues and opportunities, prioritize the greatest needs, and recommend changes to traffic operations and street designs.

NSPs will consider the needs of all road users and emphasize the safety of vulnerable road users such as seniors, school children, and people walking and cycling.

NSPs will result in short-term changes (1 to 2 years) which can be made using quick build materials like signs, paint and bollards, and will identify longer term improvements which can be accomplished through future programmed road work.

The outcomes of each NSP will be different based on the local context and needs of each neighbourhoods. Generally, NSPs will recommend changes related to motor vehicle speed management, volume management, and road user conflicts on local streets. These recommendations will be informed by the City’s Traffic Calming Guide, Vision Zero Action Plan, and Complete Streets Guidelines.

Excessive speeds on local streets can lead to more frequent collisions and substantially increases the likelihood of those becoming fatal collisions. Changes to address excessive speeds that will be considered include:

  • Lane narrowing can reduce speeds and encourage driver alertness. The space removed from existing lanes can be repurposed to expand sidewalks, cycling facilities, and green space.
  • Speed humps are raised sections of the roadway designed to discourage motor vehicle drivers from travelling at excessive speeds.
  • A curb extension is a horizontal intrusion of the curb into the roadway, resulting in a narrower section. Curb extensions help reduce speed and increase visibility of people walking when placed at intersections.
  • Chicanes are a series of curb extensions on alternate sides of a roadway which narrow the roadway and requires drivers to steer from one side to the other to travel through the chicane. Chicanes help reduce speed and discourage shortcutting and through traffic.

Excessive volumes of motor vehicles on local streets can lead to an increased risk of a collision for vulnerable road users, noise pollution, and reduced air quality in the neighbourhood. Changes to address excessive volumes that will be considered include:

  • One-way street conversions change the direction of one or more segments of an existing one-way street so as to remove direct routes through a neighbourhood. These conversions discourage short-cutting traffic or through traffic in a neighbourhood.
  • Directional closures are a curb extension or vertical barrier extending to approximately the centerline of a roadway, effectively obstructing one direction of traffic at a specific location.
  • Raised medians at intersections are vertical barriers located on the centerline of a two-way roadway through an intersection, which prevent left turns and through movements on one of the roadways. Raised medians can obstruct short-cutting or through traffic while maintaining access for people walking or cycling.
  • Turn restrictions prohibit turning movements onto or off of a street in order to discourage short-cutting traffic through a neighbourhood and can also help improve the flow of traffic by prohibiting turns onto busy roads at unsignalized intersections.
  • Modal filters restrict the movement of cars to reduce short-cutting traffic in a neighbourhood while maintaining access for people walking or cycling.

Conflicts between road users can be caused by the competition for space between people walking, and biking, and driving as well as by road users taking unexpected actions. Changes to address road user conflicts that will be considered include:

  • School crossing guards help children to safely cross the street during their walks to and from school and remind drivers of the presence of pedestrians at key intersections.
  • New or expanded sidewalks create access, connectivity, and improve safety for people walking along a street. Separating vulnerable road users like people walking from cars on the roadway reduces the likelihood of a collision occurring.
  • Dedicated cycling facilities like contraflow lanes on local streets create access and connectivity through a neighbourhood for people on bikes.
  • Intersection controls like stop signs and traffic signals provide for an orderly flow of traffic and reduce conflicts by regulating movements through an intersection. When considering locations for stop signs or traffic signals, City staff follow the Ontario Traffic Manual guidelines which set out the warrants for implementing these measures.
  • Advisory signs and beacons help alert drivers to potential dangers and conflicts with other road users or fixed objects near the roadway.

Neighbourhood nominations can be made at any time.

City staff will review all nominations between July and September each year to select the next set of neighbourhoods. Neighbourhoods nominated by June 30, 2023 will be considered for the 2024 program. 3 to 6 neighbourhoods will be selected for the 2024 cycle.

Neighbourhoods will be selected based on prioritization criteria that considers equity, potential for impactful change, alignment with planned road works, and community support.

A plan typically takes 18 to 24 months to complete from time of selection.

At this time, all nominations are expected to be submitted by a Councillor on behalf of the communities they represent. Nomination is expected to expand in future years, as the program matures.

Neighbourhood Streets Plans are only one of many ways that the City addresses local traffic concerns. This program is best suited to neighbourhoods facing several, complex, interconnected issues that need to be studied and addressed as a whole.

NSPs are intended for neighbourhoods experiencing:

  • Excessive speeding on local roads;
  • Excessive vehicle volume or cut-through traffic patterns on local roads;
  • Significant levels of non-compliance with traffic regulations and signage;
  • Threats to safety of vulnerable road users;
  • High levels of dependence on personal motor vehicles; and,
  • Complex traffic conditions near local destinations (e.g. schools).

This program is not suited for neighbourhoods where construction activity is the main source of traffic patterns, or where future traffic patterns resulting from development are the main concern. These issues are best addressed by construction management teams and development review teams, respectively.

For help addressing traffic concerns at a specific segment of a street, you can order a lawn sign, request a Watch Your Speed sign, petition for a speed hump, or request a traffic investigation by calling 311.

Nomination Form

Fill out the form below to nominate your community for a Neighbourhood Streets Plan.

Nomination Form

Prior to launching the Neighbourhood Streets Plans program, the City initiated a limited number of similar projects, which are listed below.