St Andrews Safety Improvements Project

We've made improvements along St Andrews between Keith Road and 13th Street to slow driver speeds and improve safety for all road users. This section of St Andrews is a local street that is well-used by pedestrians, a designated bike route, and an important connection to the Green Necklace, Lions Gate Hospital, Ridgeway Elementary School, and other area amenities. 

Watch this overview of the changes we've made to provide a safer, more comfortable experience for everyone.

Project Background

The St Andrews Safety Improvements project was initiated in response to community feedback about persistent speed issues between Keith Road and 13th Street. In 2020, the speed limit along this stretch of road was lowered to 30km/hr. Data collection before and after the speed limit change showed only a minor change in driver speeds.

The original width of St Andrews was much wider than a typical residential street, making it easy for drivers to feel comfortable speeding. To help align driver speeds with the posted speed limit and provide a safer, more comfortable experience for everyone, design changes to the street were necessary.

Community Engagement Process

In April 2021, we reached out to the community about our plans to make safety improvements and launched a multi-phase engagement process. During this phase of engagement, we received input about the safety improvements that were most important to the community. The most common theme we heard was that excess vehicle speed is a concern. This input aligned with previous community feedback and helped shape a proposed design that would encourage driver compliance with the posted speed limit and improve safety for pedestrians and cyclists. 

In July 2021, we presented a proposed design to the community that received overall support for raised crosswalks, narrowing the roadway to support slower speeds, and using the remaining road space for an uphill mobility lane. The main concerns we heard were related to loss of street parking and not enough separation between the proposed northbound mobility lane and vehicle traffic.

In response to this feedback, the proposed design was adjusted to retain as much street parking as possible. Changes were not made to the uphill mobility lane as the proposed design aligned with provincial and regional guidelines for a local street. The community was encouraged to view the revised design, ask questions and provide input.

Visit our Let’s Talk page to learn more about previous phases of community engagement.

Design Approach

The modifications made to narrow the street are aligned with design best practices for a residential street and are consistent with the drivable width of neighbouring streets such as Ridgeway Avenue.

A narrowed street permits bi-directional travel, but does not create separate travel lanes. This promotes a greater sense of speed awareness among drivers and forces drivers traveling in opposite directions to slow down, look ahead, and navigate around one another using pullout space at lanes and gaps in parking. These actions make drivers more aware of their surroundings including the presence of vulnerable road users, making the street safer and more comfortable for everyone.

The design for St Andrews is shown below. Once complete, this section of St Andrews will include the following safety improvements:

  • Two raised crosswalks at intersections with high pedestrian volume on popular walking routes to school 
  • Northbound parking protected mobility lane with delineators
  • Narrower roadway requiring drivers traveling in opposite directions to slow down and navigate around one another using the pull out spaces along the street
  • Improved sightlines at intersections

St Andrews improvements map
click image to view larger 

Construction

The first phase of the project was completed in October 2021 and included sidewalk construction along the east side of St Andrews, and raised crossings at East 8th and 9th Streets to improve pedestrian comfort and safety.

The second phase of the project began in July 2022 and included installation of pavement markings to narrow the street. Delineators were part of the original design to offer guidance for drivers parking and to ensure sightlines at intersections remain clear. Their installation has been delayed as we work with the community to refine the design.

Data Collection and Monitoring

traffic monitoring locations on St AndrewsWe’ve monitored driver speeds and collected data along St Andrews during various phases of the project: 

  1. Prior to any changes being implemented (50km/hr speed limit)
  2. After signage was installed noting the 30km/hr speed limit change
  3. After changes were made to the street design 

The data was collected at three different locations along the route for a minimum of two weeks to gather a representative sample. 

Outcomes

Changing the speed limit without changes to the road design had minimal impact to 85% of driver speed. This is the industry standard methodology for assessing traffic speeds and describes the speed that 85% of drivers are traveling at or lower. Changes to the street design generated a 10% - 16% decrease in driver speed along the corridor and the average driver speed has fallen near or below the posted speed limit.


Location 1 – Between 11th & 12th Streets Southbound Change Northbound Change
Baseline (50 km/hr Speed Limit) 43km/h - 45km/h -
30km/hr Speed Limit 40km/h -7% 44km/h -2%
30km/hr Speed Limit + Changes to Street Design 36km/h -16% 40km/h -11%
 
Location 2 – Sam Walker Park Southbound Change Northbound Change
Baseline (50 km/hr Speed Limit) 35km/h - 38km/h -
30km/hr Speed Limit 34km/h -3% 37km/h -3%
30km/hr Speed Limit + Changes to Street Design 31km/h -11% 32km/h -16%
 
Location 3 – Between Keith & 8th Street Southbound Change Northbound Change
Baseline (50 km/hr Speed Limit) 39km/h - 39km/h -
30km/hr Speed Limit 36km/h -8% 38km/h -3%
30km/hr Speed Limit + Changes to Street Design 34km/h -10% 35km/h -13%

Please refer to the December 5, 2022 Council Report for more information about data collection, monitoring, and results. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Why were changes made to St Andrews?

The St Andrews Safety Improvements Project was initiated in response to ongoing community feedback about excessive vehicle speeds on the street. To address these concerns, the City implemented a 30km/hr speed zone from Keith Road to 13th Street in the summer of 2020. Following the implementation, data collection showed that speeds had not significantly changed, indicating that further modifications were required. This project supports key actions identified in the City’s Mobility Strategy and Council’s Strategic Plan by reducing travel speeds to improve neighbourhood safety and livability. 

What was the engagement process?

In March 2021, the City launched a multi-phase public engagement process to gather insight from residents on their experience with speed, safety, and comfort on St Andrews. The most common theme that emerged was that excess vehicle speed is a concern. Based on what we heard, we developed a proposed design for St Andrews that addressed the issue of excess speed while achieving our design goal of creating a safer street for everyone. Learn more about the phases of engagement on our Let's Talk project page.

Why was a 30km/h speed zone introduced?

Reducing driver speeds to 30km/h or less has a significant impact on the safety and comfort of pedestrians and cyclists. When drivers travel at slower speeds, there is more time to react to avoid incidents. Should an incident occur with a pedestrian or cyclist, the probability of injury or death is significantly reduced. Slower speeds also reduce vehicle noise and the impact of cut-through traffic making a more livable neighbourhood.

Why is the road so narrow?

The original width of St Andrews was much wider than a typical residential street, making it easy for drivers to feel comfortable traveling over the posted speed limit. The modifications made to narrow the street are aligned with design best practices for a residential street and are consistent with the drivable width of neighbouring streets such as Ridgeway Avenue. A narrower street promotes a greater sense of speed awareness among drivers and forces drivers traveling in opposite directions to slow down, look ahead, and navigate around one another using pullout space at lanes and gaps in parking. These actions make drivers more aware of their surroundings including the presence of vulnerable road users, making the street safer and more comfortable for everyone.

Why is the bike lane so wide?

The width of the bike lane is a result of narrowing the drivable roadway space to influence driver speed. A secondary benefit of narrowing the roadway to achieve slower driver speeds is more space that can be used to enhance the safety of other road users by improving the quality of the City’s cycling network. As a designated bike route, the additional space created by narrowing the road was used to create an uphill bike lane. This protects cyclists and other mobility device users traveling uphill when the speed difference with drivers is greatest. Cyclists traveling southbound share the travel lane with other vehicles following the same procedure of navigating around others traveling in the opposite direction.

How is the street safer for pedestrians?

The addition of the bike lane acts as an extension of the curb and provides additional protection for pedestrians before they begin crossing the street, and where there is greatest risk of conflict with drivers. This shortens the actual crossing distance and decreases the amount of time that pedestrians spend in the street. A shorter crossing distance means less risk and greater safety. Sightlines have been measured from this crossing point to ensure pedestrians and drivers are visible to one another. 

Why did you modify the intersections?

The intersections on St Andrews have been modified to reduce the crossing distance for pedestrians. Parking has been restricted near the corners to ensure pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers are all visible to one another. Slower speeds combined with reduced exposure to vehicles and good visibility make intersections safer and more comfortable for vulnerable road users to cross the street. When turning on or off St Andrews, drivers will need to take notice of the new street alignment and adjust where they initiate their turn. In most cases, this will mean slowing down to look ahead, and proceeding with the turn when it is safe.

What about emergency services?

The City has worked with emergency services staff on the design of the street to ensure their needs are met when responding to calls along the St Andrews corridor.

How about garbage and delivery trucks?

The St Andrews design takes into consideration the additional space needs for these types of vehicles to travel along and access the street.

Why not install more speed bumps?

Speed bumps are a tool for slowing traffic, but they also slow emergency response because they are an obstruction that can’t be moved. The City is selective about where they are applied and we minimize their use. In order for speed bumps to achieve the goal of slowing drivers along a sloped street like St Andrews, the frequency needed would be extremely prohibitive and costly.

Next Steps

There will be another engagement opportunity in early 2023. We’ll be reconnecting with the community to gain a better understanding of how people are experiencing St. Andrews to determine if refinements are needed.

To be directly notified about project updates and opportunities for input, email transportation@cnv.org.

 

Contact Info

Email: transportation@cnv.org

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