Neighbourhood Traffic Calming Guide Update

Chair: Manoj Dilwaria

PROJECT STATUS (as of June 2012)

TAC has been approached by the TLC to get their buy-in and funding. A joint committee will then be set up with CITE and TAC to oversee the project, retain a consultant and update the guide. The TLC has funding budgeted for this year.


CITE has received requests from its members to update the current Canadian Neighbourhood Traffic Calming Guide that was prepared jointly by CITE and TAC in 1998. The CITE’s Technical Liaison Committee (TLC) established a Project Team, comprised of volunteers who will assess the need and justification for the update. Should the assessment confirm the need, the Project Team will then coordinate the update of the guide.


A survey was developed and emailed to CITE members assessing the need and justification for the update. The survey consisted of seven questions and closed December 2009.


  • Approximately 200 members responded to the survey. About ninety percent of the respondents were in favour of updating the guide (50% were Municipal staff and 50% were consultants).
  • Based on the survey results the need and justification to update the guide has been established.


  • The purpose is to obtain more detailed feedback from agencies and consultants who are familiar with the guide and are involved with traffic calming projects to determine what should be updated or added in the new edition.


  • Workshop held in Mississauga on April 14, 2010. It was attended by representatives from 8 municipalities and the project team volunteers. The workshop was facilitated by Mike Skene, Chair, CITE’s Technical Liaison Committee, who also chaired the committee responsible for developing the current guide.
  • Several key areas that may be added / enhanced in the current guide were discussed at the workshop, with emphasis on the following:
    • Document structure / format / Illustrations
    • Additional technical elements (Arterials, gateways, other traffic calming devices, electronic devices, geometrics, etc.)
    • Cost estimate updates
    • Public process – update / enhance
    • Definition of traffic calming
    • Seasonal / Temporary installations
    • Policy / Planning excerpts


  • A workshop was held in Calgary on June 29, 2010.
  • Similarly to the Toronto Workshop, areas for enhancement of the guide were identified during the discussion.


The status of the study was presented at the ITE 2010 Annual Meeting and Exhibit on August 10, 2010 at Vancouver.

Presentations were also conducted at the Ontario Traffic Councils’ Transportation Planning Committee Workshop held at Burlington, Ontario in April 2011 and at the CITE 2011 Annual Conference in June 2011 at Halifax.

The attendees at these presentations were requested to provide their suggestions as to what in the guide should be updated or included in the revised version.


Generally, the present guide has been well received by agencies/organizations and used extensively throughout these years. However, some municipalities have used this guide as a basis to develop their own customized guide to better reflect local needs and conditions.

Based on the workshops and feedback that the project team received, the following are categories for inclusion/modification/revision in the updated guide:


  • Reference to “Canadian” and/or “Neighbourhood”
  • Continue with Neighbourhood Focus?
  • Guide or Recommended practice? (Liability and legal issues)
  • Traffic Calming definition (Need to update?)

Document Structure/Format

  • Colour
  • Examples
  • Links to resources/case studies
  • Hard copy only or electronic version as well

Traffic Calming Process

  • Screening criteria (assess merits of traffic calming request and provide guidance as to when to continue with the request)
  • Warrant analysis (when to implement – include criteria such as required public support, speed and volume thresholds, etc. )
  • Prioritization of request (criteria to prioritize/rank traffic calming requests)
  • Public Process – Update to Reflect Best Practice
    • Notification/Consultation (Questionnaire/Public Meeting)
    • Who should be included?
  • Removal of devices (when to remove and what should the process be)


  • Current guide has operational focus (Retro-fit)
  • Reactive vs. Proactive Approach (Traffic Calming in New Developments)
  • Integrate Active Transportation (i.e. cycling lanes)
  • Gateway Features (e.g. Traffic Circle)
  • Arterial and Major Collector Roadway (road diet?)


  • Non physical devices
    • Electronic devices – speed awareness board
    • Psycho-perception devices
    • Painted speed bars
    • Painted road narrowing
    • Police car/man cutout
  • Physical devices (vertical deflection)
    • Speed cushions/tables/lumps
  • Physical devices (horizontal deflection)
    • Traffic Circle (additional information required such as channelized islands, sign/pavement marking requirements and placement)
  • Temporary/seasonal devices


  • Geometric standards for devices (requires updating)
  • Vehicle Requirements (some designs provide challenges for garbage, fire, bus, snowplow maneuvering)
  • Multi-modal design (i.e. incorporate active transportation)
  • Accessibility (e.g. compliance with OADA)


  • Cost analysis (requires updating)

Next Steps

  • Continue membership outreach to obtain feedback/suggestions
  • Approach TAC to partner with CITE to update the guide
  • Establish funding sources
  • Establish a project team to coordinate and oversee preparation of the new guide
  • Develop Terms of Reference and retain a consultant to update the guide.


If you or someone in your organization has experience with traffic calming using the current guide and would like to provide valuable input as to how the guide may be improved, please email your suggestions to the Chair.