(Black Press Media file photo)

(Black Press Media file photo)

Oak Bay looks to shift car culture with speed limit pilot

Council supports Saanich’s shift to seek 30 km/h limit on side roads

The bulk of Oak Bay council sees a speed limit pilot project in Saanich as an opportunity for safer streets and a culture shift.

In March, Saanich amended its application to the province for a pilot project to lower the speed limit to 30 km/h instead of its original plan for 40 km/h on roads without centrelines. Victoria later amended its support, opting to apply for a 30 km/h project and Saanich followed suit then sought support from other municipalities in the region. Oak Bay, Esquimalt and Sidney signalled support last week.

Oak Bay originally supported the bid for a pilot project reducing side road speeds to 40 km/h. That was in line with council direction dating back to 2016 when Oak Bay embarked on a project to look at just that, creating more a cohesive speed limit scheme in the district. At that time, the district did some work but didn’t move forward when the work showed a blanket speed limit was not manageable as a municipality. At the April 12 meeting, municipal staff suggested council seek more input from staff on impacts of the difference in speed, building from the 2016 studies and analysis and potential budget implication and best practices – before supporting the change.

The 10 km/h difference spurred conversation among council April 12, but in the end they supported the pilot in a 4-2 vote with Coun. Hazel Braithwaite and Mayor Kevin Murdoch opposed.

READ ALSO: Oak Bay, Esquimalt and Sidney join Saanich in application to reduce residential road speeds to 30 km/h

Both cited the process of public input sought, and staff work put in around the 2016 project that determined a 40 km/h limit recommendation.

Murdoch felt it wasn’t appropriate to go down that road without staff input.

“Obviously everyone wants safer streets… I don’t believe just saying 30 is better is the way to shift behaviour,” Murdoch added.

Coun. Tara Ney noted 2016 was a different time and people are “increasingly more frustrated” with speeds in the community, echoing a sentiment from Coun. Cairine Green.

“What we want to establish is a culture in Oak Bay that would support a 30 km/h speed limit,” Green said, noting she has consistently heard complaints of speeding from residents.

With support from neighbouring communities in hand, Saanich plans to apply for the next round of pilot projects with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.

READ ALSO: False alarm – Oak Bay not considering faster speed limits


 

Do you have a story tip? Email: c.vanreeuwyk@blackpress.ca.

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.

oak bay

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

Just Posted

Andrew Swanson was arrested Wednesday after he was wanted for an alleged choking assault and for obstructing police. (Black Press Media File Photo)
Victoria police arrest Andrew Swanson on warrants for alleged choking assault, obstruction

A member of the public spotted Swanson and called 911 before police came and made the arrest

(Black Press Media file photo)
Youth sustains minor injuries in stabbing at Saanich Plaza

Suspect under age of 16 taken into custody, no risk to the public, police say

Al Kowalko shows off the province’s first electric school bus, running kids to three elementary and two secondary schools on the West Shore. (Zoe Ducklow/News Staff)
West Shore proud owners of B.C.’s first electric school bus

No emissions, no fuel costs and less maintenance will offset the $750K upfront expense

A B.C. Centre for Disease Control map showing new COVID-19 cases by local health area for the week of April 25-May 1. (BCCDC image)
Vancouver Island’s COVID-19 case counts continue to trend down

Fewer than 200 active cases on the Island, down from highs of 500-plus earlier this spring

With the help of a $110,000 federal grant, Saanich will be adding 22 new EV chargers for its municipal fleet to reduce emissions from district operations. (Black Press Media file photo)
Saanich adds 22 new EV chargers for municipal fleet to reduce corporate emissions

Federal grant adds $110,000 jolt to project, installation to be completed fall 2022

Protesters attempt to stop clear-cutting of old-growth trees in Fairy Creek near Port Renfrew. (Will O’Connell photo)
VIDEO: Workers, activists clash at site of Vancouver Island logging operation

Forest license holders asking for independent investigation into incident

Starting Tuesday, May 11, B.C. adults born in 1981 and earlier will be able to register for a vaccine dose. (Haley Ritchie/Black Press Media)
BC adults 40+ eligible to book COVID-19 vaccinations next week

Starting Tuesday, people born in 1981 and earlier will be able to schedule their inoculation against the virus

Parks Canada and Tla-o-qui-aht Tribal Parks dig the washed up Princess M out from sand along the south shore of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve. (Nora O’Malley photo)
Rescue attempt costs man his boat off Pacific Rim National Park Reserve

Coast Guard response questioned after volunteer responder’s speedboat capsizes in heavy swells

Road sign on Highway 1 west of Hope warns drivers of COVID-19 essential travel road checks on the highways into the B.C. Interior. (Jessica Peters/Chilliwack Progress)
B.C. residents want travel checks at Alberta border, MLA says

Police road checks in place at highways out of Vancouver area

The Canadian Coast Guard icebreaker Louis S. St-Laurent sails past a iceberg in Lancaster Sound, Friday, July 11, 2008. The federal government is expected to end nearly two years of mystery today and reveal its plan to build a new, long overdue heavy icebreaker for the Canadian Coast Guard. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Vancouver, Quebec shipyards to each get new heavy icebreaker, cost remains a mystery

Vancouver’s Seaspan Shipyards and Quebec-based Chantier Davie will each build an icebreaker for the coast guard

Findings indicate a culture of racism, misogyny and bullying has gripped the game with 64 per cent of people involved saying players bully others outside of the rink. (Pixabay)
Misogyny, racism and bullying prevalent across Canadian youth hockey, survey finds

56% of youth hockey players and coaches say disrespect to women is a problem in Canada’s sport

People line up outside an immunization clinic to get their Oxford-AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine in Edmonton, Tuesday, April 20, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Hospital investigating whether Alberta woman who died after AstraZeneca shot was turned away

Woman was taken off life support 12 days after getting vaccine

People line up for COVID-19 vaccination at a drop-in clinic at Cloverdale Recreation Centre on Wednesday, April 27, 2021. Public health officials have focused efforts on the Fraser Health region. (Aaron Hinks/Peace Arch News)
B.C. reports 1st vaccine-induced blood clot; 684 new COVID cases Thursday

Two million vaccine doses reached, hospital cases down

Most Read