Saanich has been invited to take part in a road safety pilot project through the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure that could enact speed reductions on residential streets. (Black Press Media file photo)

Province invites Saanich to take part in road safety pilot project

Council to consider inviting neighbouring municipalities to join

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MoTI) has invited Saanich to take part in a two-phase road safety pilot project in 2020.

After months of back and forth with the provincial government, Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes is hopeful about moving forward with speed reductions on residential streets – those without a centre line – through the MoTI pilot project.

According to Haynes, road safety is one of the top concerns among residents and the issue isn’t exclusive to the District. The provincial government currently sets a speed limit of 50 km/h in cities unless otherwise posted, but many municipalities want it reduced to 40 km/h on residential roads, Haynes explained.

READ ALSO: Saanich mayor tasks province with lowering speeds to avoid patchwork of municipal bylaws

In November 2019, Haynes wrote to B.C. Premier John Horgan calling for a province-wide change to residential speed limits through the provincial Motor Vehicles Act (MVA). Haynes wrote that while municipalities have the ability to enact bylaws to change road speeds, doing so presents financial implications and a lack of speed consistency from one municipality to the next.

In December, Haynes told Black Press Media that Horgan’s office had replied asking that the Saanich mayor direct his request to the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.

READ ALSO: Crash renews Saanich residents’ concern about safety on Tillicum Road

In February, B.C. Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Claire Trevena wrote to Haynes on behalf of the premier. In the letter, Trevena explained that while the province is considering Saanich’s request to amend the MVA, doing so would present many challenges.

Instead, Trevena proposed that Saanich take part in a two-phase pilot project in 2020. Phase one would focus on zero-emission transportation and phase two would allow the province to work alongside interested municipalities to reduce their default speed limits.

READ ALSO: More than half of Saanich’s 10 worst intersections include McKenzie Avenue

Haynes has asked Saanich council to consider sending a letter to the other mayors in the Capital Regional District explaining that Saanich will apply for the second phase of the pilot project to reduce residential road speeds to 40 km/h and asking them to do so as well in the name of consistency.

During a meeting on March 9, Saanich council will consider Haynes’ request for the District to send a letter to the other mayors in the Capital Regional District asking them to join Saanich in applying for the second phase of the pilot project to reduce residential road speeds to 40 km/h.

“The time to support our most vulnerable transportation users is now,” Haynes wrote in a draft of the letter.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

District of Saanichspeed limitsTransportation

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Life mimics art for actors in play about pandemic

Performers from Oak Bay theatre school see parallels with recent play based on 1918 Spanish flu

New immigrants to Victoria have online options to combat isolation

The Inter-Cultural Association is going digital to comply with COVID-19 standards

VicPD expands online reporting to keep 911 call-takers free during pandemic

Incidents can be reported online if no information is known of a suspect

Big band fundraiser show at Dunnet theatre rescheduled for Sept. 26

Jazz singer Joe Coughlin, band leader Phil Dwyer remain booked for show

Minor earthquake hits Greater Victoria Saturday morning

Earthquake ‘lightly felt’ in the area, Earthquake Canada says

COVID-19: A message from the publisher

We will be making some changes to our print editions during these unprecedented times

B.C. COVID-19 cases rise 92 to 884, one more death, 81 in care

Outbreak action underway in 12 long-term care homes

B.C. veterinarians want to smooth the fur of COVID-19-worried pet owners

Vets expect to continue giving your fur buddies the help they need while social distancing

B.C. VIEWS: Small businesses need our help

Just as integral in neighbourhoods in Vancouver and Surrey as they are in Prince George or Kelowna

‘Tremendous’ response from blood donors has supply keeping pace with demand

About 400,000 of Canada’s 37 million residents give blood on a regular basis

Morning world update: Cases surge past 600,000; positive news in Germany

Spain suffers its deadliest day as Germany considers April 20 to possibly loosen restrictions

VIDEO: Penguins roam empty halls of Vancouver Aquarium

COVID-19 has forced the Vancouver Aquarium to close access to guests – leaving room for its residents

Most Read