Investing to help make roads safer for all users

Councillor Stephen Blais is proposing to inject millions of dollars into the City’s Vision Zero based Strategic Road Safety Action Plan.

“Keeping our roads safe for all users is one of the most important projects we are currently working on,” says Blais. “We should fast track our road safety investments to allow us to do more, at a faster pace.”

The Municipal Parking Management Strategy is recommending the City maintain a balance of $20 million in the Parking Reserve. It is forecasted that the reserve will close with an approximately $24 million balance in 2019.

“Our city is continually growing and we must ensure that our streets remain safe for all users by sufficiently investing to meet these needs,” adds Blais. “Waiting is not an option, so we need creative thinking to get moving on making our streets safer.”

The City currently invests approximately $25 million in road safety programs and initiatives every year. Blais’ proposal would increase this investment by 16%.

The updated Road Safety Action Plan, which will be presented to committee later this year, will recommend funding the program through the increase in automated traffic enforcement. The investment in additional red-light cameras, school bus violation cameras, automated plate detectors and automated speed enforcement will generate the revenues needed to fund the vision zero based Road Safety Action Plan.

“These revenues will take time to be realized as the technology is rolled out over the coming years,” adds Blais. “My motion proposes to bridge the gap with the surplus from the Parking Reserve.”

We can make investments that will:
 Make our rural roads safer from high speeds.
 Make it safer for pedestrians to cross the street.
 Make it safer for cyclists to travel the city.
 Make it safer for all of our road users.

Road Safety Action Plan

In 2012 the City implemented the Safer Roads program called Towards Zero. From 2007-2011 the 5-year average of road fatalities per 100,000 population in Ottawa was 3.5.  Since the implementation of the 2012 plan, the five-year average (2013-2017) was reduced to 2.8. This puts Ottawa ahead of the Netherlands and in line with Sweden, both seen as global leaders in road safety.